Posts Tagged ‘flathead valley’

Big Brews in Big Sky Country

June 3rd, 2013 by kimtaylor

Beer enthusiasts at the annual Great Northern Brewery Beer Barter.  What would you do for a year's supply of beer?

Beer enthusiasts at the annual Great Northern Brewery Beer Barter. What would you do for a year’s supply of beer?

Something’s brewing in the Flathead Valley and beer enthusiasts are rejoicing.  Two new breweries are set to open this Summer in NW Montana joining the ranks of 5 other breweries already producing fine, locally crafted lagers, stouts and ales.  According to the Montana Brewers Association there are 40 craft brewers in the State – maybe the Flathead Valley aims to be the ‘Napa Valley’ of brewing regions in the Treasure State.  You never know….  Craft beer brewing here and across the nation shows no signs of stopping and beer aficionados are jumping for joy.

If you have a beer lover in your family or group who is visiting the area why not take a day and visit a couple of local breweries for tours, tastings and some ‘pub grub’.  Just make sure there’s a tee-totaling designated driver at the wheel.

Right here in Whitefish is the Great Northern Brewery [just look for the tallest building in town!].  Established in 1995 it is the oldest brewery in the area.  They started their claim to fame with Black Star a double hopped golden lager and expanded their offerings to include Wheatfish, Wild Huckleberry, Going to the Sun IPA and Snow Ghost Winter Lager to name a few.  At their Draught House you can sample free tastings of each of their featured brews as well as sandwiches and snacks to go with them.  Summer tours of the brewery take place Monday – Thursday at 1 pm and 3 pm.

After that you can head on over to Desert Mountain Brewing & Draughthaus in Columbia Falls.  Their grand opening took place in March 2013 and featured Two Ocean IPA, Siyeh Stout and Bad Marriage Blonde, an amber hybrid in style, similar to German Alt beer named for Bad Marriage Mountain on the East side of Glacier National Park.  Visit their taproom in downtown Columbia Falls for beer tasting, board games, watching a game on TV or surfing the web.

From there, visit our friends to the South. Around beautiful Flathead Lake there are 3 breweries to choose from… or why choose?  Why not stop at all three!  Flathead Lake Brewing Co. is located in Woods Bay on the East side of the Lake and they have a deck to sit out and enjoy the view.  Farther South in Polson, Glacier Brewing Co. has a variety of beers (and sodas!) on tap for tasting including Golden Grizzly Ale, Wildhorse Island Pale Ale and in tribute to the cherry growers in the area, Flathead Cherry Ale.  For the kids there’s Polson Pepper Soda and Glacier Brewing Root Beer.   Then head back north around the West side of the Lake to the Tamarack Brewing Company’s Alehouse and Grill in Lakeside, MT.  Their wide range of beers, from Blue Jay White IPA to Yard Sale Ale to Switchback Stout will make it a tough choice to pick the perfect beer to go along with their extensive menu choices from fish tacos to salads to burgers and grilled sandwiches.  If trivia is your thing, join them on Tuesdays for trivia night starting at 7 pm.

Opening up this summer is the Kalispell Brewing Company {August 2013} and Homestead Ales in Eureka {June 2013}

For more information on Montana made beers visit www.montanabeerfinder.com and get the scoop on all the Big Sky brewers.

Author: Sarah Stewart