Boston is a city with a serious beer history. Some may know it for the iconic Sam Adams Boston Lager, which sparked the American craft beer revolution (hooray!), and others have travelled far and wide to make it into Beantown for their infamous St Paddys Day Parade in Southie to celebrate with over one million spectators and a big local Irish population. Then there is the beloved show Cheers, which gave Boston its recognition as a friendly-neighborhood-pub-kind-of-town. And it is, for the most part, unless you are from out of town or wearing a Yankees cap.
Here are the top three Breweries, beers and pubs you don’t want to miss on your next trip to Boston. Even if it’s just a short business trip, you’ll have plenty time to squeeze in our top three!
- Aeronaut Brewing Company (Somerville, MA)
Boston is a city of history, but its people are the ones that make the craft beer industry here so unique. A little rough around the edges, and super sharp, Bostonians are creating some of the best beers around, and the folks at Aeronaut Brewing are no exception! The brewers here are literally bringing their beers to life with their creation of Auronaut Labs. Co-founder and CEO Ben Holmes, took us on a tour of their lab where they have a team of microbiologists that grow their yeast cultures for their beers! This MIT dropout and his group of highly technical and savvy brewers are making some badass brews that are knocking it out of the park (Fenway park, if you must)!
In addition to a tour by the owner himself, the Aliens got our hands on several of their delicious craft brews. We tried their Saison of the Western Ghats, Mass Wheat, A Year with Dr. Nandu, and the Jackdaw London Porter.
This brewery is still young, but we expect to start seeing their name creeping up if they keep brewing beers like this.
Our favorites: A Year With Dr. Nandu and Jackdaw Porter
Tips: A Year With Dr. Nandu was by far the best IPA we had our entire time in Boston, and we drank plenty of them! It’s got a ton of flavor, with a hint of tropical fruit and Mosaic hops. We left with a growler and shared cans with our human friends all weekend long! Well done, Aeronaut!
- Trillium Brewing (Boston, MA)
Trillium was a must hit on our list. We’ve been hearing nothing but rave reviews of this local craft beer blazer and we had to see what all the hype was about. We arrived at their Fort Point location, and to our shock, they did not offer any tastings of the beers here, or at their brewery in Canton, MA. They only sell their bottles and refill growlers. This was a little disappointing at the time, since we arrived thirsty and ready to be impressed. However, the folks here were very knowledgeable and were up for some ‘brew talk’, plus they allowed us to take this very attractive photo of them with the couple 22oz bottles we chose to take home.
Popping open the bottles at home was similar to opening presents on your birthday, when you were 10. We got the Fort Point Pale Ale Dry Hopped with Enigma Hops and the Congress Street IPA. Both poured a very hazy, almost opaque yellow-orange color with a cream colored head. They were approachable, clean and crisp, but with a unique twist with highly flavorful hops and unique yeast cultures native to New England.
Our favorites: Fort Point Pale Ale (we tried both the small batch Enigma dry hopped and regular, both terrific)
Tips: Their brews are also available on tap all throughout Boston, and at most popular craft brew pubs!
This cash-only pub is right in the heart of Boston, off Boylston Street in the Bay Bay. It’s been serving up some of the best local and regional craft brews for the past 14 years and has that quintessential small Boston pub feel. We can only imagine ducking in here on a frigid Boston winter day and watching the glass fog up from inside creating a space that makes you lose all sense of time, place and urgency. We love this pub for its selection of beers, its purposefully boorish Boston vibe (the pictures say it all), and its traditional pub feel. Here we found some of our favorite beers of the trip, from Night Shift Brewing from Everett, MA. Their amazing beers kept popping up everywhere we went (including another hot spot Foundry on Elm in Somerville, MA pictured below).
Our favorites: Night Shift Awake Porter (aged with coffee)
Tips: Get a table in the back, it’s warmer there!