Toast At Any One Of These Top Four Ottawa Microbreweries

on May 17, 2013

Drinker

Microbreweries are popping up everywhere these days. While they’ve long taken a back seat to wine and whiskey, now are the days of the beer connoisseur, and the Ottawa region is great place to get your taste on.

Draw a circle around the City of Ottawa and you’ll find great microbreweries on all sides.

Maybe check into a hotel in the centre of town (perhaps the Albert at Bay Suite Hotel, an affordable option located within a convenient 15-minute walk from the brand new Mill Street Brewpub on Victoria Island) and gas up the car. These are the four corners of microbrew in the Valley:

East (Vankleek Hill): Beau’s All-Natural Brewing Company

In operation since 2006, this family-owned operation has exploded throughout the Ontario brewing scene. Even if you’re not up for “yet-another” brewery tour, the trek down Highway 417 is worth it just for a stop at the beer/swag shop. Beaus’ very friendly and knowledgeable staff will crack open anything you’d like to taste and tell you as little or as much as you’d like to know about the history and brewing process. Growlers and bottles are available for carry-out, as is a borderline-absurd selection of t-shirts, glasses and other merchandise. If you’re looking for a souvenir that will last more than 24 hours, check out the beer posters, designed by the wildly talented Jordan Bamforth. They’re a bargain at $5 a pop.

West (Beckwith Township): 

Formally known as The Old Mill at Ashton Country Pub and Brewery, the Ashton is a small-town secret that is officially out. Located a pleasant 30-minute drive from downtown Ottawa, just off Highway 7, the Ashton is easily accessible by car and – if you’re so-inclined – by snowmobile. This charming pub has been a staple in the community for over 30 years, but the brewery was added only recently in 2011. A mix of staples and seasonals are always on tap, and growlers are available for carry-out. Head over for a nice meal and live music on the weekends.

North (Gatineau): Les Brasseurs du temps

Just a short drive over the ChaudièreBridge, on the Quebec side, les Brasseurs in part of an almost 200-year-old brewing tradition in the Outaouais. An afternoon would be well-spent trying out their wide selection of brews (an average of eight to 12; check their website for what’s on tap from day to day) while enjoying an authentic French-Canadian meal in their restaurant. Round out your visit with a tour of the brewery’s museum, open daily with free admission.

South (Nepean): Broadhead Brewing Company

These guys definitely put the “micro” in microbrewery. This tiny operation, which got its start in a basement (all great alcohol does!), is located in the former city of Nepean, now part of Ottawa. Owned by four friends and built from scratch, Broadhead is worth a visit just to chat with their enthusiastic and knowledgeable staff and try the half-dozen(ish) brews on tap. They’re open five days a week (Tuesday-Saturday).

Cheers!

  • steve beauchesne

    Thanks for talking about us!

  • Magic

    You forgot Beyond The Pale in Hintonburg. IMO the best in Craft Brewer in Ottawa

  • Erik P.

    Beers at Les brasseurs du Temps are great, but don’t waste your money on their food. Overpriced.

    • weekendtrips

      The $16 crabcakes aren’t worth it?

    • Susan Smith

      Definitely the best beer in the Ottawa region, and the best location too, right next to the cycleway. The food is horrific.

  • Susan Smith

    BDT is nice, but the craft beer scene in Ottawa is very lame compared with Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal .. and the entire US.

    • thehut1234

      It’s all relative though is also half the size of Vancouver and montreal and a quarter of the size of toronto. And comparing a local market (ottawa) to an entire country is just retarded.
      Ottawas craft brew market has literally exploded over the last two years.