2 Days 2 Nights
Maine, the northernmost state of the contiguous United States, is known for its bearded lobstermen and lumberjacks, the freshest seafood, wild blueberries and high-quality craft beer–it’s no wonder the state’s nickname is Vacationland. In summer 2020, living in Maine is something to cherish. Although the pandemic canceled most travel plans, living in this secluded state allows for fun and fulfilling “staycations” to shake off those quarantine blues.
The sheer number of breweries within Chicago limits would lead you to believe you would never need to leave the city to get your craft beer fix. While this is technically true, there are many Chicagoland suburbs that have great breweries that, unless they distribute to the city, Chicagoans will miss out on.
Sweden – a country whose northern tip breaches the Arctic Circle, making the summer days long and joyful and outdoor activities bountiful. Unfortunately, I decided to visit the capital of Stockholm in early November, and was greeted with 3pm sunsets and a Seattle-but-colder weather vibe. I didn’t mind, as it gave me ample excuse to visit the city’s numerous beer bars, leading to some enjoyable long, brisk, waterside stumbles. Swedes love their craft beer, and you will not find it hard to indulge yourself while taking in this extremely walk-able city.
New York’s North Fork region has emerged as a destination for those seeking a getaway on Long Island’s East End without the glitz found in the nearby Hamptons. Though wine has been a draw to the area, beer is now becoming part of the attraction. More so than the Hamptons, the North Fork is the ideal place for a weekend getaway well into the shoulder seasons. Here are some ideas for a weekend getaway to the North Fork.
I had to divide up this Two Days Two Nights feature due to how many great breweries I experienced during my trip. While Part One features highlights on Allagash, Industrial Way, Bissell Brothers and more, Part Two features a full experience of Portland’s trending Yeast Bayside brewery scene along with a particularly scenic trip farther north up the coast to visit some of Maine’s more interesting farmhouse breweries. So, let’s kick back off with the second part of Friday afternoon, which revolved around a trip to downtown Portland, home to the trendy Yeast Bayside brewing district.
When I told my friends and colleagues I was heading to Portland for the weekend, the most common follow-up was “Oregon?” And while the largest city in Oregon is well known for its established beer scene, I was actually headed to the burgeoning beer city of Portland, Maine, which boasts the most breweries per capita in the U.S. It continues to garner accolades as one of the best beer cities in the world. After a smooth two-hour flight, I was smack dab in the middle of one of America’s hottest beer cities, home to the likes of Allagash and Bissell Brothers along with a bevy of beer-focused neighborhoods like Yeast Bayside, delicious Maine cuisine and wonderful sunrises—all positioned neatly around Casco Bay. Here’s a look at how you can get the most of your experience in Portland, Maine. Part one of this Two Days Two Nights feature is below. You can read part two here.
There is no better way to celebrate the National Park Service’s 103rd birthday on August 25th than with a visit to a brewery near one of the oldest and most iconic American parks, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The Smoky Mountains may be vast, covering parts of both North Carolina and Tennessee, but provide phenomenal sightseeing opportunities and plenty of beer just outside the park’s gates to keep you satiated.
You could spend a week or two visiting the Smokies, especially if you have a family or love to hike. There are over 850 miles of hiking trails in the park. Oh, and it will be nearly impossible to avoid seeing bears, which are used to visitors and relatively harmless as long as you don’t get too close (50 yards, please people!). But if you can only spare a weekend, read on.
Over the years, the craft beer scene on the island of Oahu, specifically in the Honolulu area, has grown tremendously. More and more local breweries are popping up to cater to the growing interest in independent beer. With many visitors and college students coming from areas that have a booming craft beer scene, it’s only natural that the trend continues to grow on the island.
Although you’ll probably be spending more than two days and two nights if you’re making the trip to the Aloha State, here’s a round up of some breweries to visit if you want to dedicate a couple days just to visiting the local breweries.
Summer has finally arrived, and in the Midwest, we only have a few short months of sunshine and warm weather. What better way to enjoy the summer than to take a quiet stroll away from the concrete jungle of Chicago? In honor of Indiana Dunes receiving National Park status, I decided to dust off my hiking boots and head to northwest Indiana to see what fun a craft beer nerd and nature lover can have in Porter County.
When I moved to Los Angeles to attend college, one of the first and most common questions I was asked was “Where are your from?” My response would be “New York.” That would typically be followed up by something like, “Oh, I love the city! Which borough are you from?” Which would prompt me to clarify that I was from Upstate NY. This would bring about the question, “Oh, so like Buffalo?” Nope. That’s about six hours away. I would then tell them I was from the Albany area, hoping they learned their state capitals in primary school. Sometimes, I’d even have to use my hand as a makeshift map of the state, pointing out the various cities they’ve heard of to identify the Albany area.
About an hour’s drive west of Richmond, Virginia, the small city of Charlottesville offers an ideal weekend getaway for beer lovers. Being a college town, summer is a great time to visit with many of the college kids home for break. Here are some ideas on how to spend a weekend here.
In just about any direction from Chicago, you can do a short drive and experience a fun, beer-filled weekend. About a 3.5-hour drive north of the city and you’ll hit Stevens Point, Wisconsin, home of the Central Wisconsin Craft Collective.
When life gives you a handful of Boeing Max 8-shaped lemons, you make lemonade. Or when your flight for a quick weekend getaway is canceled, you jump on Skyscanner, put “everywhere” into the destination, and see what comes up for cheap. For me, this destination ended up being the Romanian capital of Bucharest, a city with a population of roughly three million that had its heyday in the ’20s and ’30s when it was hailed as the “Little Paris of the East.”
March is here; and by this point many of us in cold weather states have gotten sick of the sub-zero temperatures, potholes, and unseen sheets of ice that cause us to fall on our ass. Rather than reaching a breaking point and going postal, it may be a better option make your way towards southern Florida for a short getaway in weather that teeters between the mid-70s to mid-80’s to get some much needed vitamin D.
Now that summer is officially over, a weekend getaway to the Great Lakes State may not be high on your travel bucket list. However, fall is the perfect time of year to travel north, as the opportunity awaits to get two tours for the price of one! The changing colors of Michigan’s beautiful landscape provide a stunning backdrop for a craft beer tour in Southwest Michigan.
I’ve had a life-long obsession with skyscrapers. I don’t really know where it came from, maybe growing up just outside New York City played a roll, or maybe too many Tower of Babel lessons in church as a youngster had the opposite effect of what was intended. Now, I tend to judge cities on two major categories: Their skyline and their craft beer scene, two lovers who often quarrel rather than get along. Where the towers rise, the beer quality tends to fall – world class postcard skylines like Dubai and Shanghai have not inspired great beer to follow suit, and while both cities have recently been doing better in this regard, in New York and LA you have to get outside the high-rises to find the best stuff. However, the Hong Kong Beer Scene proved to be different.
Whether you have a long layover, or you’re able to take a few days to explore, here’s a few of my favorite places I went to while enjoying the shade of some of the most marvelous structures made by man.
Anyone that’s familiar with the craft beer scene knows that San Diego is one of the best places in the country to go for a beercation. The official number of breweries constantly fluctuates, but there are approximately more than 150 operational breweries in San Diego County. That number doesn’t count the numerous satellite taprooms that many breweries have around town.
One thing that’s great about the San Diego area is that with the seemingly endless amount of breweries there isn’t a bad place to start your brewery tours, regardless of where you’re staying. Many breweries you probably already know, such as Modern Times, Coronado, Karl Strauss, Stone Brewing, Pizza Port and, well, there are so many it’s hard to name them all. San Diego offers several, diverse beer experiences. For instance, North Park has smaller, cozier taprooms and Miramar has larger (and sometimes massive) production breweries. So, here is a quick guide to just a small number of the area’s numerous breweries — some you know, some that may be new to you. We hope it helps you when you visit San Diego.
When the snow melts, Minnesota springs into life. As a Minnesota native, I’m partial to the great Land of 10,000 Lakes for many reasons. If you can get past the prolonged winters and man-eating mosquitoes, Minnesota really does have a lot to offer to the outdoor enthusiast, family man, beer aficionado, sports fan and everyone in between. Oh, and the beer scene in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul is absolutely kickass.
Next week over 14,000 of the craft beer industry’s finest will descend upon the Music City, for a week of education, networking and, of course, a little drinking and sightseeing. To help you navigate the sights and sounds of Nashville, PorchDrinking’s resident Nashville expert, Liz Riggs, brings you a guide to breweries, restaurants, attractions and local haunts, along with some not-for-tourist spots to check out in-between those hospitality suite stops. Explore Nashville’s craft beer scene through the lens of a local.
Chicago has always been a weekend destination as people look to explore the city’s rich history, culture and of course, have a slice of deep dish pizza. It’s also now a place where craft beer fans can indulge in the wide array of breweries that the city offers. If anything, it might be overwhelming when trying to think of how to tackle all the breweries within the city limits. Spoiler alert—it would be virtually impossible to visit every single brewery in a weekend.
So if you’re coming to Chicago for a weekend, here’s a guide on how to get the most out of the Chicago craft beer scene in a limited amount of time. Understand that like I said above, it would be virtually impossible to do every brewery, so I had to leave some out. It’s nothing personal and you can alter this itinerary however you like. You’ll also notice that there are no suburban breweries on this list. I’ll be doing another itinerary in a couple of weeks that will focus on just suburban breweries—don’t worry guys, I didn’t forget about you!