Working with some of the best local breweries, bars and restaurants around Toronto our staff here at BetterYet know a thing or two, because we've tasted a thing or two. Here's our list of the Top 5 Best Craft Breweries in Toronto for 2018.
The Brief: This one's all about the beer. There are no bells and whistles at this brewery, but Muddy York Brewing takes our top spot on this year's list because, well, its beer is f**king great. This is not a tourists' brewery and it doesn’t pretend to be - it’s a modest, husband and wife run brewery, tap room and bottle shop that embodies the craft spirit and makes damn good beer.
The Feel: Located about 15km northeast of downtown Muddy York is slightly off the beaten path and that’s just the way they like it. It feels like if your friend’s cool Dad opened a brewery in his backyard - it’s quaint, elegant and feels like home. Don’t come here for a rowdy time or a fancy menu (you can buy pickles for a dollar), come here if you love great craft beer.
The Brew (our Top 2 beers):
Muddy York Porter - This porter is the main reason Muddy York tops our list, it’s easy-drinking. Dark and smooth with tastes of chocolate, coffee, and faint cherry.
Major Small Best Bitter - A traditional English Bitter with hearty flavor and a good kick of subtle spice. If you like a full-flavor session ale this is the beer for you.
You can find Muddy York beers at ~50 bars across the GTA and beyond - and at your local LCBO.
The Brief: Bellwoods brewery comes in at a close second because it has it all. Great beer, good food and a sheek-urban-craft vibe all it’s own. A great spot to impress friends from out of town, take a date or just grab some cold ones with friends.
The Feel: The small brewpub-turned-craft-brewery located just north of Liberty Village is VERY popular and has become the local stomping ground for trendy 20/30-somethings, so you may have to wait to get in, but it’s well worth it.
Barn Owl Blend No. 16 - Bold and dry with a hint of lemon. This is an excellent, drinkable beer that goes down easy and tastes like pure class.
Donkey Venom w/Hapsak Berries - At 8.5% she packs a punch, but don’t let that fool you. This is a dry, extremely full-bodied beer with an explosion of flavors that leaves you with hints of black cherry, dark chocolate, grapes and raspberries, while still not being too heavy or too much.
You can purchase Bellwoods beers at your local LCBO or Beer Store
The Brief: Amazing beer coupled with awesome gourmet pop-ups and food trucks in the summer - set in a high ceiling, exposed brick space full of natural light.
The Feel: Located in the Stockyards district, Junction craft holds onto its rail-hub history with train-themed brews. We can’t say enough good things about this place - a huge array of amazing beers, great food and a merch shop with swag worth rocking.
Brakeman’s Session Ale - An award winning English Pale ale that stays true to its roots. Smooth, dry and refreshing.
Conductor's Craft Ale - A medium bodied APA with a light and fruity taste, a touch of sweetness and a nice, mild bitter finish.
You can purchase Junction Craft beers directly in their taproom or at your local LCBO
The Brief: Heaven on earth for the craft beer lover. Sip a cold one with a friend while watching the beer-making process from the bottle shop and tap room. Great beer, vibrant, lively and friendly to all.
The Feel: Henderson radiates the cool industrial vibe that makes living in a city like Toronto so much fun. Warehouse style with a beautifully lit and decorated interior located in the Junction Triangle.
Pick up some Hendersons at your local Beer Store or LCBO
The Brief: This brewery rounds out our Top 5 because it absolutely steals the show when it comes to IPAs. If you like a good IPA, then you'll love a great IPA - and they've got plenty.
The Feel: As one of the oldest craft breweries in the GTA this brewery doesn't come with any glitz and glamour, just excellent craft beer. Located about halfway between downtown and Mississauga it's a great causal spot to stop and grab a cold one.
Pick some up in the on-site taproom or at your local LCBO or Beer Store
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