Travel insights from Jenna Buege, associate editor of The Compass

5 Midwestern Breweries to Make You Hoppy

With some of the longest-operating craft breweries in the nation, the Midwest should be at the top of your list if you enjoy unwinding with a couple of cold ones. A beer-flavored rainbow of brews, whether you enjoy a rich stout or a traditional pilsner, these heartland establishments are sure to tickle your taste buds.

1. Milwaukee, Wisconsin – Good City Brewing

With beer of every variety to quench your thirst, Good City Brewing is one of Milwaukee’s best and fastest growing breweries in town. Choose between year-round offerings like Reward, a scrumptious double IPA, and Motto, a fan-favorite mosaic pale ale, or treat your taste buds to a limited seasonal release. Insider tip – don’t sleep on the curry fries, they pair great with beer and are completely addicting.

2. Chicago, Illinois – Half Acre Beer

A Windy City icon, visit Chicago and you’ll be hard pressed not to find Half Acre’s flagship brew, Daisy Cutter, in any establishment that serves alcohol. With two locations in the city, Half Acre’s offerings run the gamut with what they refer to as, “time honored classics and experimental, sensory expanding releases.” Whichever brew you prefer, locals will tell you that there’s no better place to be on a hot summer day than the Balmoral location’s fabulous outdoor beer garden.

3. Minneapolis, Minnesota – Bauhaus Brew Labs

This is not your grandmother’s brew. Bauhaus Brew Labs is known for their knack of totally transforming traditional German beers into something unique. And the fun doesn’t stop there; Bauhaus Brew Labs is brimming with artistic charm that was inspired by the Bauhaus, a German art school that’s mission was to “reimagine the material world to reflect the unity of all the arts.” Expect colorful cans, spray-painted walls, hints of German flair and of course, great beer.

4. Cleveland, Ohio – Great Lakes Brewing Company

Imagine browsing the shelves at a local supermarket or liquor store when you see beers with names like Bierwolf Dunkelweizen, Lake Eire Monster Imperial IPA and Burning River Pale Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Company. You just know those suds are going to be epic A historical superstar, Great Lakes Brewing Company was one of the first places to kick off the craft brewery craze in Ohio upon their opening in the mid-80s. Today, Ohio has a lot more options, but locals keep coming back for Great Lakes’ educational brewery tours, informative classes and fantastic drinks.

5. Bloomington, Indiana – Upland

It’s all about sour power at Upland, Indiana’s second largest brewery that gained notoriety thanks to its magnificently tasty sour beers, most of which are barrel-aged and fruit-based (like persimmon, guava and boysenberry). But don’t fret if sour isn’t your jam; Upland also offers a number of other options including standard ales, lagers and stouts.

Did we miss one of your favorites? Comment below about your favorite brewery and what makes it special to you.

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