A Brewery Crawl in Wine Country – Five Craft Breweries to Visit in Niagara | Ontario Culinary
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A Brewery Crawl in Wine Country – Five Craft Breweries to Visit in Niagara

With sweater weather comes seasonal beers. And we’re heading to Niagara region to explore its bustling craft beer scene!

It may be famous for its wine, but Niagara is also home to a number of craft breweries that produce really good beer using local ingredients such as Niagara fruit. Cold weather does not mean you cannot enjoy a pint – in fact, it’s the perfect time to huddle inside a cozy brew pub and enjoy a barrel-aged ale or a toasty stout. We’ve rounded up five craft breweries in Niagara to explore this holiday season with recommendations on what to drink when you get there. Cheers!

Niagara Brewing Company

4915-A Clifton Hill Niagara Falls, ON

Located 200 meters from the falls, Niagara Brewing Company sits on the former site of the Foxhead Inn, one of the first luxury hotels to be built in Niagara Falls. Their unique beers reflect Canada’s brewing heritage and today’s innovative craft beer scene. With an impressive selection of beers and a delicious bar menu on offer, a trip to their taproom and brewery is time well spent.

What to Drink: Irish Red Ale
Classically Irish, this dak red ale studded with ruby highlights offer a prominent malt flavour topped with strong caramel, biscuit and toffee highlights. It starts slightly sweet and finishes dry with a slight roast. Perfect for a celebratory winter evening.

Silversmith Brewing Co.

1523, Niagara Stone Road, Virgil, ON

When founders Chris and Matt started looking for a home for Silversmith Brewing Company in 2011, there wasn’t a single brewery in the area which had 38 wineries. On Canada Day in 2012, Silversmith opened its doors and poured its first beer. Since then, they’ve been serving up stand out craft beers to Virgilians from their brewery and beerhall built inside a church dating back to the 1890s.

What to Drink: The Black Lager
Their flagship (and award-winning) beer that started it all, The Black Lager pours an opaque brown with a tan coloured head. Flavours of toasted malt, dark chocolate, coffee and a hint of earth pairs well with their fall feature sandwich – the Veal Schnitzel.

The Exchange Brewery

7 Queen St, Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON

Situated in Niagara-on-the-Lake’s Old Town heritage district, this trendy new brewery and tasting room blends traditional and modern techniques to produce exceptional craft beers using the finest ingredients, including Niagara fruit. Their selection includes a range of American styles along with sour and funky Belgian-style beers and ales. The tasting room features 2 8-tap bars, each one featuring a selection of their flagship brews, seasonals and limited-release beers.

What to drink: Belgian Stout
An ideal beer for the holidays, this stout is brewed with dark Belgian Candi sugar, plenty of roasted barley and fermented with their house Belgian yeast, then aged in oak barrels. For those visiting the brewery, try the Pumpkin Ale. Lightly spiced and brewed with loads of pumpkin, this brew is the epitome of fall and it’s currently on tap.

Bench Brewing Co.

3991 King St, Beamsville, ON


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Bench Brewing Co. is a Belgian-inspired farmhouse brewery located in the very heart of Niagara’s beautiful Twenty Valley. Their 8-acre property includes a 50hL brewing facility, a barrel room, their very own hop field, a tap and tasting room and a beer garden overlooking the neighbouring Twenty Valley vineyards and orchards. With an impressive range of barrel-aged, sour and mixed fermentation beers available, there’ll be plenty to enjoy during a visit here.

What to drink: Fortified Abbey Ale
A medium bodied ale with rich and dominant notes of figs, raisins, plums and warming whisky vanilla flavours. Inspired by the Trappist beers made in Belgium and aged in Canadian whisky barrels for 10 months, it’s the perfect beer to drink when it’s cold outside.

Shawn & Ed Brewing Co.

65 Hatt Street, Dundas, ON


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It’s always been a lifelong dream for longtime friends, Shawn and Ed, to open their own craft brewery. After searching for the perfect location to brew the best possible beer, Shawn & Ed Brewing Co. was born – in a restored century-old building (a.k.a. the old Dundas Curling & Skating Rink). Their small-batch beers are brewed with great care and craftsmanship, using carefully selected ingredients.

What to drink: Lagershed Dark
A big, dark sipping beer with subtle nutty biscuit and chocolate aromas that compliment its creamy and almost coffee-like flavour. It has a distinct bitter leafy hop and malt sweetness to finish.