Are you feeling a bit… parched? Fancy a pint? Want to wet that whistle? Greenville is swamped with tasty craft beers, craft brewpubs and craft breweries to take care of that thirst, with style, grace, expertise, creativity, wit and charm! And in many cases, some good grub to go along with it.
When Bob Hiller decided to open a brewpub in Greenville in the early nineties state law prohibited the production and sale of alcoholic beverages on the same premises. Gathering other upstate beer lovers, he lobbied to change the law and opened his doors, first on North Main, in 1995. So here we are where brewpubs abound! Having just re-opened the sparkling new location at 308 Trade Street in Downtown Greer, fans old and new are eager to pull up pints of Kurli Blonde Ale and Rainbow Trout ESB, pairing it with menu favorites like the Dakota Buffalo Burger and Ale Battered Mushrooms. Check out the new rooftop dining! For those truly committed to beer, check out the Ugly Mug Club.
At 2054 Piedmont Hwy. Since they opened in 1998 Thomas Creek has been filling up the Upstate with great variety of great beer. Signature brews like River Falls Red Ale and Banana Split Chocolate Stout have gained a wide following. Known in the area for their release party events, you can arrange for a brewery tour by phone, or, fill your growler and grab a pint in the tap room: Mon - Wed 9 a.m. - 6 p.m., Thurs - Fri 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Add to your calendar the Brewery Bash Oct 29th, and the Greenville Spinners have been known to make it bike ride destination!
Home of the Hatha and Hops Monday Yoga (7 p.m., $10 for class and a pint), the brainstorm that lead to this adventurous enterprise began in 2012. Quest’s very name entices one to explore what Greenville and environs has to offer. “Legendary” series brews includes Ellida India Pale Ale and “Seasonal” the Kermesse Pumpkin Saison. Check their website for special releases. A full calendar of weekly events including live music and food trucks. They invite you to make their brewery a destination on your quest for delicious craft brew! Free tours every Saturday. Located at 55 Airview Drive.
The latest addition to Greenville’s growing brew scene was founded by Clemson grads and named after the interstate that runs past Greenville. They are hard at work making their mark with Quittin’ Time Helles Bock, and Hop ’n’ Grind IPA. Currently brewing Leon’s Lederhosen in anticipation of Oktoberfest. Weekly tours are available on Saturdays at 3-3:30 p.m. or by request. Tap room hours: Wed - Thurs 4 p.m. - 8p.m., Fri 2 p.m. - 8 p.m., and Sat 12 p.m. - 5 p.m. Find them at 6 Whitlee Court.
Within six blocks walking distance from the Swamp Rabbit Inn at 400 Augusta Street, you too may learn to brew! You can quaff drafts like Upstate’s own Thin White Duke IPA or Extra Special Boiii Strong Bitter plus other local faves in the brewpub, or purchase your ingredients and consult with the experts to create your own beer! Yes friends, they will hold your little hand (or paw) the whole way. Make an event of it with your brew crew! The pub is open 10 a.m. - 10 p.m Mon - Sun with salads, sandwiches, and naan pizzas, and an event list of game nights and such. Go and just try to not have fun - we dare you!
Shoeless Brewing Company - Grapes & Grains
Located at 104 Mauldin Road, Suite A, distinguishes itself as the smallest brewery in the Upstate. Here the brewers enjoy making beer with the input of their patrons. You can brew your own beer here too (I'm sensing a trend, aren't you?)! The taproom and brewing facility are side by side so you can concoct your recipe, have a beer, and chat about brewing and beer at the same time. A store with brewing supplies is, of course, on the premises. How can we not be charmed by titles such as King Kahn Double Pilsner, Quyet Ryet Rye IPA, and Foxy Grandpa Cream Stout? They offer beer and wine making classes. Open 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. Mon - Sat. Go pull up a stool and give them some love.
A personal favorite! Voted Best Local Brewery in the Upstate for 2015. No surprise there. Opened by a classically trained brewer in 2014, just off the Swamp Rabbit Trail at 26 S. Main in Travelers Rest, it has been mobbed (predominantly by cyclists, I might add) pretty much since day one. More often than not one or another of the Upstate's most popular food trucks is in residence in the parking lot to provide vittles to go with the brew and the front patio is always hoppin'! From pale ale to porter the on tap offerings are world class. Fill your growler or just come hang out - or both! Open Tues - Thurs 5 p.m. - 9 p.m., Fri 2 p.m. - 10 p.m., Sat noon - 10 p.m.
Now to wrap up with some of we Greenvillian's favorite haunts to simply drink the craft beer...
The Community Tap is a hub of hop action that you will be invited to within hours of arriving in downtown Greenville. Since opening in 2010 it has already expanded its space once and become a local institution. With 20 beers on tap and 12 wines by the glass it is a favorite for various groups and clubs meetings and foodie pairing events. Great food trucks frequent the front lot and the fridges are stocked with an array of exotic brews. The covered outdoor patio is lovely. Open Mon - Wed 11 a.m. - 8 p.m, Thurs - Sat 11 a.m. - 9 p.m., Sun 1 p.m. - 7 p.m. If you are invited - and you will be -, go. If you're not invited soon enough you will find them at 217 Wade Hampton and making friends will be a cinch!
The Velo Fellow at 1 Augusta Street, mere blocks from the Swamp Rabbit Inn, is outfitted after the grand tradition of the British publick house. With a menu of Southern and British comfort food and mood of comfortable dark wood it's a perfect place to raise a pint. Drafts like Murphy's Irish Stout await as does a full bar if that won't do. Live music occasionally completes the scene. Order a basket of chips and chill. Mon -Thurs 11 a.m. -until (kitchen open until 10 p.m.), Fri - Sat 11 a.m.-2 a.m. (Full menu available until 10 p.m.) Sun 10:30 a.m.-until (Full menu available 10:30 a.m.-9 p.m.; serving brunch 10:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.)
Barley's Taproom has been mentioned before in the blog for its pizza and its array of bar games. It boasts 72 beers on tap. Find them at 25 W. Washington just off N. Main. Guaranteed to show you a fun and tasty time. Open late: Mon - Sat 11 a.m. - until..., Sun noon - until...
Until we drink again, Cheers! Prost! À Santé!
Peace, Love, and Pints,