The craft beer scene has been making waves across Hamilton and beyond, with appreciators of the bubbly beverage popping up left, right and centre. Though the craft beer scene isn’t new, with the first ‘craft brewery’ opening in 1965, it has more recently come into popularity with the masses and has resulted in many breweries opening around the area! So, whether you’re looking to join the scene as a new craft beer drinker, or hoping to discover a new brew you love – look no further than your own backyard.
Shawn & Ed Brewing Co.
With a background in the wine industry, and a Brewmaster with over 40 years under his belt, Shawn & Ed opened up in Dundas in June 2015 in the restored Dundas Curling and Skating Rink. The Shawn & Ed team (or SHED, as they are often called in the community) believe in quality over quantity, with all of their beers using four natural ingredients: water, malted barley, hops and yeast. Their most popular brew is their classic Lagershed, a pilsner style lager beer with a crisp clean taste that makes for easy drinking.
65 Hatt Street, Dundas
Fairweather Brewing Co.
Despite the company being new to the craft beer scene (they have only been open since May 2017), the owners sure aren’t; as they’re a 100% brewer owned and operated company with all of the four partners working in brewing roles for many years. This gives them the freedom to make good beers first with no investors pulling strings. The Fairweather team prides themselves on brewing a variety of styles, such as their popular High Grade IPA, Silky Porter or Dream Pop Sour. 5 Ofield Road Unit #1, Hamilton
Grain & Grit Brewing Co.
A small family-run brewery located in West Hamilton, Grain & Grit has a focus on serving their neighbourhood first and connecting with their local community – serving the majority of their product right out of the taproom. The rotating tap list at their location allows them to experiment with different recipes and styles, from their popular West End IPA (which makes a return now and again) to their Breakfast Stout (a combination of coffee and lactose, to create a creamy, roasted, sweet stout that could replace your morning coffee).
11 Ewen Road, Hamilton
Rust City Brewing Co.
Family-run urban coffee house and craft beer bar Rust City Brewery is progressing towards becoming a brewpub – the team is on track for their transformation in early spring. In the meantime, they carry fair trade, organic coffee roasted on-site and one of the best selections of craft beer from local independent breweries in the area. Once they begin brewing, they plan to create small batch one-offs heavily influenced by British, Cask and Belgian styles, with a brewing system that will allow them the freedom to explore different styles and approaches. 27 King William St, Hamilton
Collective Arts Brewing
On the inside: award-winning craft beers that are creative and unique in nature. On the outside: limited-edition works of art by emerging local artists on the cans and bottles, changing every few months. Their flagship beer is their Ransack the Universe IPA, a brew with aromas and flavours of tropical fruits, mango, citrus and a light malt body. Find Collective Arts hosting the Liquid Art Festival this June at the brewery – a festival featuring international breweries that have never poured in Canada before. Tickets at liquidartbrewfest.com.
207 Burlington St E.Hamilton
Though their brewery is the latest on the scene in Hamilton, Clifford Brewing Co. has already built quite a following in the city since their launch (to licensees) in January 2015 with the popular Clifford Porter and Pinball Wizard APA. Since the 2015 launch, Clifford Porter has already won three Gold Medals and one Silver in the Canadian and Ontario Brewing Awards and their popularity has allowed them to open up an expansive brewery in the east end in January 2018.
398 Nash Rd. N. Unit 1, Hamilton
Opening as Hamilton’s first brewpub in May 2017, MERIT Brewing serves up sausages and snacks alongside tasty beers that are brewed on-site. Their most popular beer, and one they’ve spent a lot of time perfecting, is their Young Rival IPA (a brew with huge orange and pineapple aromas with stone-fruit and orange). The name pays homage not only to the city, but a nod to their friends at the Hamilton-based band, Young Rival. The team at MERIT strives to represent the heart, art, and soul of Hamilton in every beer, every bite and every experience.
107 James Street North Hamilton
By Heather Peter