It’s a free-carb day after all those steps, so why not take advantage of it by sipping some in suds form? Charleston is in the midst of a major beer boom with breweries establishing all across the Lowcountry region. However, you don’t have to travel far afield to have some fun; a growing number of breweries are concentrated in the “Neck” area of the peninsula, revitalizing old warehouses and storefronts and bringing beer lovers to new parts of the city. Join them at these downtown breweries.
Edmund’s Oast Brewing Co.
Pacific Box & Crate complex, 1505 King Street Extension
The brewery sibling of the popular Charleston restaurant, Edmund’s Oast, this 20,000-square-foot production facility has an array of beers, including a selection of sours and barrel-aged brews.There’s even a special sealed area for sour and wild fermentation. As for sipping, a good bet to begin with is the Lord Proprietor’s Mild, not sour at all but a low 3.7% ABV, brewed with Charleston black tea. And if you’re hungry, they have a full menu, a wood-fired oven, and some delectable chicken wings.
289 Huger St.
There is a long history of this brand, which was making beer in Charleston before the Great Earthquake of 1886. These days, Palmetto is a thoroughly modern operation with a bustling tap room and extensive bottle distribution throughout the state. Despite its availability, it’s still worth it to visit the tasting room for an Espresso Porter fresh off the tap. Regular live music offerings sweeten the sips.
10 Conroy St.
Named the ninth best brewery overall in the 2017 US Open Beer Championship, Revelry has been excellent since it opened. A great pint to begin your brewery education is the Gullah Cream Ale, especially since it is made with local Geechie Boy Grits. Chef collaborations and special releases also add some mystique, but beer is just the beginning at this brewery, which has become a gathering place for many young professionals who crowd around its bar made out of a old piano, or hang out on its perfect-for-the-sunset rooftop.
1647 King Street Extension
Focused on making “good, solid beer for good, solid people,” Tradesman has relocated from James Island to the growing unofficial brewery district of Charleston. They’re still getting settled in their new digs so the brewery is only open only on the weekends from noon-6 p.m., but that’s plenty of time to order up a sampler paddle of all the taps (including the best of them, the Welder’s Wheat Ale, made with agave) and rub shoulders with its hyper-local crowd.
2038 Meeting St.
Jason Caughman, formerly of North Carolina’s Pisgah Brewing, relocated to Charleston a few years ago and branched out on his own with his line of “pure luxury beers.” It’s not a luxury setting, however, so prepare for a laid-back, warehouse experience up close to the brewing process. What is top-notch, however, is Caughman’s ability to deftly balance flavor in his tight selection of beer, including the Glitter Pony, which clocks in at 8.4% ABV, but you’d never know it by taste or mouthfeel.
Munkle Brewing Company
1513 Meeting Street Road
One of the newest breweries on the block, Munkle is nevertheless debuting in style with a selection of six beers in the Belgian style, a taproom where you can sit comfortably or rock on rocking chairs outside, and a great back story about an uncle who was a beer-making monk and inspired the whole thing. Cheers his inspiration with a Gully Washer Wit fresh from the tap.
Cooper River Brewery
2201 Mechanic St. B
This is an expansive brewery off the main roads on the peninsula, so even if you’re local, you might have missed this taproom. Dog-friendly like many breweries, there’s outdoor seating, trivia nights, live music on occasion, and regular rotating food truck visits. In other words, it’s a great space to spend an evening or a weekend afternoon, especially if you sample from the varied beer line up, including Blood Orange Blonde or Proper ESB (Extra Special Bitter).
Fatty’s Beer Works
1436 Meeting St.
Another newbie (Charleston is in a beer boom!), Fatty’s has a selection of solid brews — the Musket Mule French Saison is delicious and light for post-run palates — and a general fun, playground-for-adults feel, which is most obviously evident in a astroturf “backyard ” with a game or two and plenty of rocking chairs for relaxing. Inside includes plenty of seating and often live music, and a community-minded focus. The 9 Doves Hefeweizen pays trip to the Mother Emanuel victims and raises money for the cemetery just behind the brewery in which they were buried.