The motor city has more than its fair share of breweries, so whittling down the top five is a bit of a challenge. Still, we did the hard work and based off of visitors’ reviews and our own personal experiences, we think we’ve come up with the five breweries in Detroit that you absolutely need to hit up for a drink.
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Jolly Pumpkin Pizzeria and Brewery
441 W Canfield
Detroit, MI 48201
Jolly Pumpkin Pizzeria and Brewery is a fun, casual spot to eat and drink that can accommodate a family if you need to bring kids along. They craft a handful of beers, most of which cater to those who like a darker brew. Communal seating and a decor of wood and steel make chatting it up with strangers an easy task. Thankfully, everyone here always seems to be in high spirits and open to talking it up.
As far as the food here is concerned, you need to order their Korean Short Rib Pizza. After trying that, good luck even thinking about ever ordering anything else there. Really, it’s that good.
The only complaint with Jolly Pumpkin is their ordering and seating situation. There are a couple lines that you need to go through before you can even sit down, which kind of makes the situation feel like a bit of a hassle. That being said, the beer and food are both good enough to still come here, which says a lot. Try shooting for non-peak hours and you’re going to end up loving this place.
237 Joseph Campau St
Detroit, MI 48207
The tap room at Atwater Brewery is right inside their warehouse, which makes for a cool conversation starter and a feeling that whatever you’re drinking was crafted just for you. It also doesn’t hurt that Atwater Brewery is right in the Riverfront district, meaning there’s a good chance you might just be around there and be able to stop in during a random outing.
They have nine beers that they craft, and their signature Vanilla Java Porter has earned that spot for good reason – it’s a unique concoction that has some nice sweet and coffee tones.
The food they offer gives you a wide selection of dishes to choose from, but the star of the show here is absolutely their hot dogs (weiners), which come in all kinds of flavors – they even have vegetarian and gluten free dogs if you’re so inclined to eat that way.
The happy hour at Atwater is pretty good and happens 3 to 6pm, Monday through Friday. During happy hour, you can get $2 off beer, $6 craft cocktails, $7 wine, cheese and crackers, and $9 sandwiches with beer.
Motor City Brewing Works
470 W Canfield St
Detroit, MI 48201
Motor City Brewing Works has been in operation for over two decades now and by the looks of things they are not going anywhere. They offer up one of the best spots in Detroit to grab a quick bite and drink seriously excellent craft beers.
If you’re looking for something both refreshing and packed with flavor, they offer an English style mild ale called the Ghettoblaster that is a treat.
Like many of the breweries in Detroit, the food offered at Motor City Brewing Works is centered around pizza. There is some really experimental and out of the ordinary ingredients as far as their pizzas are concerned, but their standard pizzas are exceptional in their own right as well. Baked in a brick oven, the crunch is a great complement to their house made craft beers.
Also, every wednesday they hold a “This Week in Art” event which spotlights a rotating selection of arts from artists in and around Detroit and is well worth the visit if you’re into that scene.
1401 Abbot St
Detroit, MI 48216
Alright, if you’re really into beer (and why wouldn’t you be?), Brew Detroit is where you need to spend all your free time. The place is a literal beer co-op. What this means to you is that you’ll be able to sample some incredible creations from individuals and some larger local brewmasters (even Atwater brews some stuff here) on tap that you will not be able to find anywhere else. It doesn’t hurt that Brew Detroit is also much more spacious than most local bars and breweries, making it feel comfortable and welcoming.
One thing you need to keep in mind before hitting up Brew Detroit, though, is that they don’t have food or a happy hour there. That being said, this is still a great place to hit up to have a few drinks and watch the game or to visit after dining out.
Batch Brewing Company
1400 Porter St
Detroit, MI 48216
A fun spot for food and drinks, Batch Brewing Company offers everything you want from a brewery. They have communal seating, so you’ll get a chance to meet some new people while sampling a good selection of craft brews.
If you make your way to Batch, make sure to give the Batch Sambac Sour a try. It’s a well-crafted beer with a nice flavor and a brilliant finish.
For food, the options are mostly Mexican-inspired like tacos and bolillos (sandwiches), but they offer a seasonal bread pudding that people are losing their minds over, so that is well worth trying. They also make their pretzels by hand, which are large and with the cheese fondue are killer with the Batch Brown Chicken Brown Ale.
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