Published March 2020
Craft breweries are small-batch, microbreweries that offer an emphasis on quality, flavor, and brewing technique. When visiting Ohio's Lake Erie Shores & Islands you may wonder what the area offers in terms of places to enjoy a local brew or a fantastic selection of unique beers. If you are a fan of beer, you are in luck, because the region really delivers in terms of its offerings. Grab your buddies and take a Shores & Islands brewery tasting tour!
Twin Oast Brewing – Located on a 60-acre farm on the Catawba peninsula, this brewery offers five locally-sourced beers year-round and several seasonal brews, many utilizing the fruits of the on-site orchard. Twin Oast is popular for its outdoor space, diverse food menu, and special events such as Apricot Fest, QuinStock, and Oastoberfest. Tours of the 15-barrel brewhouse and 30-barrel fermenting facility are offered occasionally.
Catawba Island Brewing Company – Located between Catawba and Port Clinton, this family-owned craft microbrewery is open year-round with a large, indoor tasting room and plenty of outdoor seating when the weather warms. Catawba Island Brewing Co. is home of Lake Erie Love beer. They offer live music, an extensive collection of board games, and education about different types of beer. Pizza and snacks are available and food trucks visit often.
Bait House Brewery – Operating from the historic Herb's Bait Shop building just east of downtown Sandusky, this brewery features an old world “shack by the sea” feeling, along with a large, all-seasons patio. Bait House is pet-friendly also, even serving dog biscuits made from “spent grain,” leftover from the brewing process. Featuring fine hand-crafted beers, Bait House is adding a new kitchen and new food items in 2020.
Redhead Ciderhouse – Located at Burnham's Orchard in Berlin Heights, Redhead Ciderhouse utilizes apples direct from the orchard – picked, pressed, fermented, and packaged on-site. The tasting room is open Monday-Saturday, with carry-out available on Sundays. Both bottles and growler-fills are available for such unique cider flavors as Apple Pie and Hot Chick, a hard cider infused with jalapeño peppers.
CLAG Brewing Company – COMING SOON to downtown Sandusky, CLAG Brewing Company is the latest addition to Small City Taphouse – an establishment already highly regarded for its extensive and unique beer selection.
Kelleys Island Brewery – An island tradition, this family-owned business has been operating on Kelleys Island in different capacities since 1960. For over 20 years (est. 1999) the Kelleys Island Brewery has been delivering good moods and craft ales to island visitors. New for 2020 – learn the “ancient” craft of brewing beer in a modern-day brew house with Beer Camp. Come for a weekend, or multiple stays, to learn about the ingredients, the process, and the challenges and fun of making and marketing fresh beer.
Put-in-Bay Brewery & Distillery – Put-in-Bay's only brewery offers a fine selection of craft beers along with island-distilled vodka and rum. Growlers and crowlers are available for to-go beer orders, or enjoy on-site in the historic island building along with a delicious menu of fresh food.
Hazards Microbrewery & Restaurant – Located at Middle Bass Island's St. Hazard's Resort, this secluded resort offers cabins, cottages, and waterfront condos as well as a pool and tiki bar for guests. The restaurant is open to the public and features homemade menu items as well as the popular Summer Blonde Ale.
When visiting, be sure to check out the Lake Erie Shores & Islands Cheers Trail, a trail of craft beverage-makers, which includes breweries, distilleries, and wineries. If you visit six or more locations, you can collect a complimentary souvenir. Have fun discovering your favorite Shores & Islands brew!