What's the Best Place for a Beer Vacation?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by TheLittleMrs, Sep 23, 2018.

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  1. TheLittleMrs

    TheLittleMrs Initiate (0) May 21, 2012 Pennsylvania

    My 40th Birthday is end of January but I don’t want to do Grand Rapids that time of year so I’m wondering where a good craft beer destination might be for my hubby & I!
    NClifestyle and jhavs like this.
  2. Zorro

    Zorro Poo-Bah (5,060) Dec 25, 2003 California


    Just rent a car and start in San Diego and head north along the coast.
    Dan_K, jzeilinger, Harrison8 and 17 others like this.
  3. Shanex

    Shanex Poo-Bah (1,818) Dec 10, 2015 France
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    From San Diego up to Portland. Seconded.
  4. Smakawhat

    Smakawhat Poo-Bah (8,349) Mar 18, 2008 Maryland

  5. TheLittleMrs

    TheLittleMrs Initiate (0) May 21, 2012 Pennsylvania

    Should of mentioned I’m in the Philly area and really just want to do 1-2 nights max.
    thesherrybomber likes this.
  6. flaskman

    flaskman Initiate (0) Aug 3, 2015 New York

    I vote for Vermont in the summer or fall. It's beautiful and pretty easy. You can cross Lake Champlain and spend time in the Adirondacks or head to Montreal or Maine. Very scenic with plenty of great beer offerings and lots of things to see and do.
  7. Glider

    Glider Aspirant (267) Nov 15, 2004 Massachusetts

    Richmond VA would be a good option.
  8. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,771) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
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  9. drtth

    drtth Initiate (0) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Since you seem to be looking at Winter time, think about the possibility of traveling down through Virginia's Shanendoah Valley, stopping at a few places on the way, and winding up for a few days in Asheville NC.
  10. Squire

    Squire Poo-Bah (2,803) Jul 16, 2015 Mississippi
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    A second vote for Asheville considering your location and time constraints.
  11. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,782) Feb 15, 2010 New York
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    Perhaps NYC then.
  12. beertrip

    beertrip Initiate (51) Feb 6, 2015 New Jersey

    Portland, Maine, or Asheville, NC have worked for us. Tough decision, but Portland is closer. Can't go wrong with either choice as far as beer goes.
  13. DaverCS

    DaverCS Zealot (589) Dec 9, 2014 Arizona

    Just got back from my dream craft beer vacation with my dad. Growing up we would take a lot of road trips, but I am getting married and what better way to do one last major hurrah!

    Flew into Burlington, VT and rented a one way car rental. Did Foam, HF, Burlington brewing company, and Alchemist. Special nod to Hen of the Woods, Prohibition pig, and Blackback pub for excellent dining experiences. Headed up to Maine for Bissell, Maine brewing, Allagash, foundation, and battery steele. Nice detour in Acadia. Then headed down to NH, followed by a quick detour to Massachusetts for Tree House and Trillium. Armsby abbey by far has the best Mac and Cheese on the planet.

    Then we drove back to Arizona... hitting side project among many others along the way!
    nvbrew, fastcazualmf, bl00 and 23 others like this.
  14. TheLittleMrs

    TheLittleMrs Initiate (0) May 21, 2012 Pennsylvania

    We do LOVE Vermont; I’m just worried about the weather traveling then! Also would be leaving two small kids home. Thought Asheville and Florida also. Have family in Richmond too. But Vermont and NYC might be the coziest! Hershey, Harrisburg and Lancaster PA was a thought as well. Beer by day & Fire by night? I’m the one that loves beaches but FL would even be too cold then. Maybe one ski or snow tubing run too? I should also mention we both love dark beers, BBA, Stouts, Porters, & Brown Ales! Only recently getting into Milkshake IPAS and NE DIPAS.
    brutalfarce, jhavs and Shanex like this.
  15. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,934) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    Was going to suggest Bend, but it's probably not a good fit for your parameters.
    jakecattleco likes this.
  16. WSchmidt

    WSchmidt Initiate (90) Jul 3, 2011 Virginia

    At that time of the year and with a 1-2 day time horizon, your options are pretty limited. Asheville is a great place, but dead in January. All the good New England places will be cold, and have possible snow issues. Richmond would be OK, but the weather is still going to be spotty (or great, you never know what you'll get).

    Maybe come up with a few plans and play it by the weather once you get closer? The beer scene near Pittsburg (Brew Gentlemen) is good, and there's always NYC for beer and more (at very high prices).

    Ideally, at this time of the year, you would go to San Diego.
  17. beergoot

    beergoot Poo-Bah (8,793) Oct 11, 2010 Colorado
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    Traveling by air? By car? Rail??

    Pick a spot wherever within your mileage radius and explore the options (BA does have some nifty geographical ideas)...I think it is fair to say that many spots within the US have some mighty fine beer destinations...some well known, others hidden secrets, others waiting to be discovered...
  18. FJ88

    FJ88 Initiate (0) Jun 11, 2015 Massachusetts

    Boston. Trillium, Tree House, Jack’s Abbey.
    The Rhode Island breweries (Proclamation, Tilted Barn, Long Live) are within driving distance.

    Portland, Maine. Too many to list.

    I’m a golfer and I found a ton of craft beer in Saint Andrews, Scotland.
    TheLittleMrs likes this.
  19. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Poo-Bah (2,079) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado
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    As always I'm going to say Colorado. Estes park has some great taprooms now, and a couple nights by the fire at the Stanley never hurt anyone. Well, except the Torrence family.
  20. papposilenus

    papposilenus Poo-Bah (2,070) Jun 21, 2014 New Hampshire

    The entire economy of northern New England is based upon hoovering tourist dollars northward up the east coast's interstates and, since the majority of the breweries north of 89 are relatively near to ski areas, unless you're traveling during an actual blizzard, you will find the highways cleared, salted, sanded, covered with red carpeting and lined with cheering peasants dispensing warm mittens and cocoa. The possible exception being Hill Farmstead in Greensboro which really isn't near anything in particular and is inhabited by surly, dung-flinging peasants.
  21. TheLittleMrs

    TheLittleMrs Initiate (0) May 21, 2012 Pennsylvania

    Ok, where & what breweries do we go to in VT or NE? Trillium & Tree House aren’t necessary since my hubby may do them with the guys.
  22. papposilenus

    papposilenus Poo-Bah (2,070) Jun 21, 2014 New Hampshire

    A lot depends on day of week but, if it were me, on the first day I'd just head east to New Haven for New England Brewing and Counter Weight and, depending on the roads, maybe over to Fox Farm, and then up to New Park in Hartford... which is probably enough for Day 1. Day 2 head north to Vermont and there are dozens of brewery destinations en route between River Roost/Big Fatty's in White River Junction, Alchemist in Stowe, and Foam in Burlington.
    DMC43 and TheLittleMrs like this.
  23. TheLittleMrs

    TheLittleMrs Initiate (0) May 21, 2012 Pennsylvania

    It would be Thurs to Sun, maybe Wed night to Sun.
  24. beersgud

    beersgud Initiate (193) Jan 31, 2014 Kansas

    In January I would go to Tampa, especially if you love stouts. Angry Chair, Cigar City, and Cycle, just to name a few.
  25. WesMantooth

    WesMantooth Poo-Bah (3,162) Jan 8, 2014 Ohio
    Society Trader

    Since I actually read your comments, seeing as how you don’t want to be north in January and only have a day or 2, I like the above idea. The Tampa area gives you quick in and out option, good weather, and Cigar City, Angry Chair, and Green Bench (St. Pete). Ashville would also be an option with most likely better weather than Grand Rapids.
  26. HorseheadsHophead

    HorseheadsHophead Poo-Bah (2,465) Sep 15, 2014 Colorado

    In summer or fall I'd say Vermont hands down, but if you want a nice winter retreat, I second those that have said California or Florida.
  27. laketang

    laketang Poo-Bah (1,550) Mar 22, 2015 Arizona

    This one here
  28. rtrasr

    rtrasr Disciple (328) Feb 16, 2009 Arkansas

    Asheville NC then take I-26 down to Charleston SC. Asheville has the greater amount of breweries and certainly brewpubs. Charleston is coming on strong, though.

    Colorado is great too, love O'Dell's Nitro Milk Stout. I've always wanted to go to Bend Oregon and Oregon in general. New England looks great too.
    tjcarbone, jmerizio and TheLittleMrs like this.
  29. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Poo-Bah (2,079) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado
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    Nebraska is a long way from VT, there are a ton of breweries between them.
  30. jhavs

    jhavs Poo-Bah (2,053) Apr 16, 2015 New York
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    Since it’s en of January, how about Boston on Extreme Beer Fest weekend? Always a great time, and fun city in the winter.
    TheLittleMrs likes this.
  31. TheLittleMrs

    TheLittleMrs Initiate (0) May 21, 2012 Pennsylvania

    NE was for New England!
  32. brutalfarce

    brutalfarce Disciple (349) Mar 23, 2018 Connecticut

    Stowe puts you at Alchemist (among others) with Burlington and HF about 30 min in either direction
  33. SSGCujo

    SSGCujo Disciple (340) Jul 12, 2016 Wisconsin

    Just got back from a trip to the Pacific Northwest, went to Vancouver, Seattle and Portland. Portland was crazy good as far as Breweries. They had much to choose from, as far as choices. Seattle and Vancouver were good, but mostly IPAs , fruit and sours.
    TommyWiseau22 and ryno0384 like this.
  34. Ranbot

    Ranbot Defender (669) Nov 27, 2006 Pennsylvania

    Downtown Asheville, NC has many great breweries, is very walkable, and in January would be a nice break from PA winter. Sierra Nevada and Oscar Blues breweries are nearby too. Don't miss the Biltmore Estate either.

    NYC is an underrated beer destination. There are a lot of great breweries in the boroughs that are easy to get to via public transportation. NYC has lots of non-beery stuff to see too (museums, history, sports, shows, restaurants, etc.). You could easily fill a 3-day weekend. You won't avoid January's winter weather, but you can avoid driving in it by taking the train from Philly to NYC then getting around on the subway.
  35. moshea

    moshea Initiate (0) Jul 16, 2007 Michigan

    What about Cleveland? Brew Kettle,Great Lakes, Fat Head's etc. I know you didn't want Great Lakes weather, but with only a night or a night or two, perhaps it will work

    Edit: How about Mid-Town Detroit? Hopcat, Founders, Jolly Pumpkin are all very close to each other and there are lot's of smaller bars, breweries, stores and beer bars in the area. There is a new street car that runs right through mid-town as well. The museums and stadiums are all off of the street car line too.

    It would be cold, but fun!
    #35 moshea, Sep 24, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2018
  36. Celtics76

    Celtics76 Crusader (785) Sep 5, 2011 Rhode Island

    Portland Maine. Brewery or bar with a great taplist seemingly around every corner.
    2ellas, millionsuns, LeRose and 2 others like this.
  37. TheLittleMrs

    TheLittleMrs Initiate (0) May 21, 2012 Pennsylvania

    I’m REALLY liking and considering Asheville right now; seems like there’s 15-20 breweries there! And we could fly if weather isn’t bad! Otherwise maybe Portland Maine. Any places in Vermont have a high volume of Breweries?
    millionsuns and NeroFiddled like this.
  38. Ranbot

    Ranbot Defender (669) Nov 27, 2006 Pennsylvania

    The answer depends on your feelings towards driving. If you want to avoid driving, then I would say no. If you don't mind driving 10-30 minutes between breweries then the answer is yes.
  39. EvenMoreJesus

    EvenMoreJesus Initiate (0) Jun 8, 2017 Pennsylvania

    Asheville was the first place that came to mind, truthfully. Although it will be cold in NYC, it would also be an excellent choice. Don't sleep on DC, either.
    NeroFiddled likes this.
  40. Ahonky

    Ahonky Initiate (0) Feb 13, 2018 New York

    I never even contemplated a beer vacation. Seems like too much driving, which runs against the drinking part. Wherever I land I find beer.
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