Do you know how you can tell that Connecticut is fast-becoming the go-to state for craft beer and brewers? When you realize that more and more breweries are setting up shop here. A true beer community requires three things: innovative beer makers, enthusiastic beer drinkers, and plenty of places to enjoy all that beer. With these 13 new breweries coming to CT in 2015, it looks like our fair state is well on its way to becoming the craft beer capital of the east … and beyond.
Aspetuck Brew Lab (Bridgeport)
Located in the Black Rock section of Bridgeport (at 3389 Fairfield Avenue), Aspetuck is on a mission to take craft beer to new heights. Named for the Algonquin term for “river originating at the high place,” Aspetuck pays homage to its water source (and lifeblood) – the Aspetuck River, which is one of the cleanest rivers in the state, and produces exceptional brewing water for the best in beer. Over the next few months, founders Peter Cowles and Tara Kasaks Cowles plan to build out their brewer and taproom to make Aspetuck the perfect blend of heritage and experimentation. Learn more now.
Brewery Legitimus (Farmington Valley)
Brewery Legitimus founder Chris Sayer was inspired toward beer making after living abroad in Belgium. He brings with him 12 years of experience in the beverage industry, and is excited to introduce superior-tasting Belgian and American style craft beers. But over time, that may expand to new and innovative styles, while still holding true to Sayer’s attention to detail and balance. Learn more now.
Hog River Brewing (The Hartford Area)
Hog River Brewing isn’t just some flash-in-the-pan idea founder Ben Braddock came up with one day. Hog River is his life’s passion, and the culmination of years of hardwood and commitment. Braddock quit his suit-and-tie job 5 years ago to begin his journey of beer brewing, and has developed some of CT’s best beer (including his latest stint at Willimantic Brewing Company). The only thing Braddock may love more than beer is his home state, CT, which is why he’s setting up shop in Hartford. As far as the name, Hog River, it’s a nod to the river that once flowed through Hartford (and still does, underground). No word yet on the exact date of launch. Learn more now.
Howling Wolf Brewing Company
Howling Wolf is what’s known as a nano brewery (handcrafted with painstaking love) but is on its way toward becoming a microbrewery. As part of becoming a microbrewery, they’ll likely have to find a place to officially setup shop, but wherever it may be, you can be certain it’ll be in CT. Some of the beers this small outfit has already introduced to a community of beer lovers include their Chocolate Stout, Hefeweizen, IPA, Porter and Pumpkin Ale. Learn more now.
Kent Falls Brewing Co. (Kent)
How many breweries can say they call farmland their home? That’s exactly the case with Kent Falls Brewing, whose land has been in continuous agricultural use for more than 250 years. These days, the great minds behind Kent Falls Brewing use the rich soil from this land to grow their own hops, while benefiting from their own local and plentiful water source. True to farming, Kent Falls is committed to crafting beer that supports its surrounding community. Learn more now.
No Worries Brewing (Hamden)
No Worries Brewing isn’t just about beer – it’s about the experience. Once they open their doors, they’ll feature a full tap room (to buy pints and growlers) and will work in conjunction with local food trucks and restaurants to make sure their patrons have food to wash down their beer with. Other features that stand No Worries Brewing apart include their Mug Club membership (which offers you a personal mug, early access to events, and VIP invites) as well as fun events like Trivia Night, Food Pairing events, local artist spotlights and more. Learn more now.
Noble Jay Brewing Company (East Lyme)
“Mike the Brewer” – as he likes to be called – has been brewing for friends and family for more than a decade. Over that time he’s created memorable brews, such as Lay It Down Brown (American Brown Ale), Fatty Boom Boom (Baltic Porter) and Sassy Bird (French Saison). With all that experience under his belt, Mike felt it was time to follow his dream of opening his own brewery. He named his company after his mother (whom he lost at a young age), and is excited to bring a wealth of beer styles to East Lyme, including Black Beers, Barleywine and more. Learn more now.
Outer Light Brewing Company (Groton)
At Outer Light Brewing Company it’s all about enjoying the simplicity of life. From watching the clouds pass by to sitting at a campfire, OLBC wants their beers to represent all that’s good in life. OLBC is still in the process of building their brewery and tasting room, but their goal is to provide their guests with a place to sit down and enjoy a beer or grab a growler for home. Learn more now.
Still Hill Brewery (Glastonbury)
Slated to open in the summer, Still Hill Brewery already has a healthy array of brews in its arsenal, geared up for craft beers from around the state. Year-round offerings include IPA, Ryesing and APA, while seasonal offerings will feature Summer Blonde, Wiezen Up, The Nut on the Hill, Sluggy Buggy (Oatmeal Stout), Coffee Porter, Momma’s Imperial Little Helper and Twisted Monk (Trappist Abbey). Learn more now.
Tidal River Brewing (Canton)
Well, you know that Tidal River is all about Connecticut, just by looking at their name: loosely translated, Connecticut is Algonquin for “long tidal river.” Tidal River embraces their role as a nano brewery, and is hard at work going through test batches like a mad scientist, ready for their launch (date to be determined). Learn more now.
Veracious Brewing Company (Monroe)
Soon to be located at 246 Main St (RT-25), one glance at the Veracious Facebook page proves that the folks behind Monroe’s newest beer paradise is hard at work making their dreams come true. Between setting up chandeliers to hooking up their steam boiler, Veracious’ beer masters are intimately involved with every nook and cranny of their new home. Featuring refurbished church pews as walls, and soon to be some of the most innovative beers this side of the Mississippi, Veracious will certainly be a can’t miss destination for any beer lover in CT. Learn more now.
Oldies but with a twist
These two breweries are CT staples, but are looking to expand into new areas in 2015.
Stony Creek Brewery (Branford)
Aptly named (as they’re located in Stony Creek), SCB is expanding into Branford this year. The newest SCB location is located on the waterfront in Branford, at 5 Indian Neck Avenue, and will house more than just a brewery. It’ll feature two outdoor decks, a tasting room and a celebration room. With this new space, SCB also plans to expand its current beer lineup. Learn more now.
Charter Oak Brewing (Norwalk)
Norwalk is about to experience a plethora of amazing craft beer, once Charter Oak Brewing sets up shop. Charter Oak brews in small batches (250 to 280 cases at a time), and has their hops and barley delivered right before they brew, thus guaranteeing freshness. They currently contract their beer (pay others to brew their beer) and are New Canaan-based, but are looking to get into the brick-and-mortar game, with a site that will feature both a brewery and tasting room. Learn more now.