Kootenay breweries pour their hearts into their craft-beer creations

You don’t have to travel far to find good beer in the Kootenays—check out this list of craft-beer breweries in the region

Group shot of Grand Fork Beer Co. employees.

It's celebration time! The Grand Forks Beer Co. is the Kootenay's newest craft-beer brewery. — Photo courtesy Grand Forks Beer Co. Facebook page

The only thing the Kootenay area has more of than mountains is breweries. The area’s craft beer culture is hip, happening and brimming with award-winning beverages and brewmasters extraordinaire. Head out for an adventure, and on the way, make sure to stop at one of these top Kootenay breweries for a cold one. Local liquor stores across the region also carry many of these top craft brews.

East Kootenay

Breweries in Cranbrook

Fisher Peak Brewing Co.
Where: 821 Baker St., Cranbrook, B.C.
When: The Heid Out Restaurant and Brewhouse is open Monday to Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Good to know: The Fisher Peak Brewing Co. is the sister company to The Heid Out Restaurant and Brewhouse. All beer is brewed inside the restaurant, allowing customers to get the freshest taste available. The brewery’s Hellroaring Scottish Ale took home gold at the Canadian Brewing Awards in 2018, along with first place at the British Columbia Beer Awards. To learn more about Fisher Peak Brewing Co. and their beer options, visit their website or Facebook page.

Surprise Point Brewery/Naito Beer
Where: Cranbrook. No on-site tasting room or store. Products are sold only to liquor stores and restaurants. 
When: Look for gluten-free Naito Beer in your local liquor store, pub and restaurant. 
Good to know: Naito Beer is B.C.'s first gluten-free craft brewery. The brewery is located in Cranbrook, with sales to local restaurants, pubs, liquor stores and other businesses interested in selling Naito beer. For more information, email: [email protected].

Breweries in Creston

Columbia Brewery
Where: 1220 Erickson Rd., Creston, B.C.
When:The store and tasting room at Columbia Brewery are currently closed, but are scheduled to re-open in Spring 2023.
Good to know: This larger brewery, owned by Labatt's Canada, is where the famous Kokanee beer is made, but it also produces other favourites, such as Alexander Keith's, Busch, Budweiser, Winchester and their new craft beer, Goose Island. Labatt Breweries recently announced an investment of $4.6 million towards enhancements at the Creston location. Renovations will include a new 35,000 sq. ft warehouse, a new roof, HVAC improvements and upgrades to the ammonia condenser.

Wild North Brewing Co.
Where: 125 - 16th Avenue North, Creston, B.C. 
When: The craft brewery is open Monday to Thursday 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., Friday and Saturday 12 p.m. to 9 p.m., Sunday 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Good to know: A welcome addition to Creston’s downtown scene, the Wild North Brewing Co. is owned by five Creston locals and opened to rave reviews in May 2021. At the brewery, not only can you buy beer on tap, a flight sampler, growler fills and four-packs of cans, but you can also purchase swag such as hats, toques, glassware and stickers. Read about how Wild North Brewing Co. got its start

Flight of beers for Cheers for Charity initiative.

Next time you're in Fernie, grab a Cheers to Charity sample flight at the Fernie Brewing Company. All proceeds go to a deserving local charity. — Photo courtesy Fernie Brewing Company Facebook

Breweries in Fernie

Fernie Brewing Company
Where: 26 Manitou Rd., Fernie, B.C.
When: Their family-friendly tasting room is open Sunday to Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Thursday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. 
Good to know: Fernie Brewing Company has “Cheers to Charity” sample flights in its tasting room, with all money going to worthy local charities in Fernie and area. The brewery started out as a pet project in the Pask family’s barn in 2003. It has now become one of the most recognizable Kootenay brands with its colour-blocking label and all-around great taste. To learn more about Fernie Brewing Company, check out this article.

Breweries in Golden

Whitetooth Brewing Company
Where: 623 - 8th Ave. North, Golden, B.C.
When:  Whitetooth’s tasting room is open every day from 2 to 10 p.m.
Good to know: The Whitetooth Brewing Company scored in five different categories at the 2020 Canadian Brewing Awards, in addition to snagging a Marketing Excellence of the Year Award from the Kicking Horse Country Chamber of Commerce’s recent Community Excellence Awards. They offer three lines of beer, all celebrating Golden’s mountain culture: West Coast Influenced, the popular Belgium Inspired and the High Gravity series.  As well, they also offer a selection of limited release brews. To see Whitetooth Brewing Company in action, visit their Instagram page.

Kenton Donaldson and Mark Nagao standing in front of brewing equipment.

Kenton Donaldson and Mark Nagao are the owners of the Whitetooth Brewery Company in Golden, B.C. — Claire Dibble photo

Breweries in Invermere

Arrowhead Brewing Company
Where: 481 Arrow Rd., Invermere, B.C.
When: The 1950’s gastown-inspired tasting room is currently open every day during the summer, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. 
Good to know: Making craft beer with mountain spring water and other top-quality ingredients, Shawn and Leanne Tegart have embraced success since opening Arrowhead Brewing Company. The honey for some of their darker beers is sourced from their own beehives. As a KootenayBiz Top 40 under 40 winner in 2017, read more about Leanne Tegart here.

Glass of Arrowhead lager and beer can.

The Arrowhead Brewery has six permanent beers on tap, as well as a selection of seasonal varieties. — Photo courtesy Arrowhead Brewing Company Facebook

Breweries in Kimberley

Grist and Mash Brewery
Where: 345 Wallinger Ave., Kimberley, B.C.
When: The Grist and Mash Brewery is open Wednesday and Thursday, 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 1 p.m. to 9 p.m., Sunday, 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Closed Monday and Tuesday. 
Good to know: A new face on the local craft beer scene, the Grist and Mash Brewery focuses on organic ingredients and seasonal taps brewed onsite. Their Pine Box stage gives a voice to an ever-revolving line-up of musicians and bands.

Over Time Beer Works
Where: 136A Wallinger Ave., Kimberley, B.C.
When: The tap room is open from Sunday to Tuesday 12 to 7 p.m., Wednesday to Saturday 12 to 10 p.m.
Good to know: Over Time Beer Works advises customers to drink its beer while it’s fresh.. Each batch is made by hand, meaning that each will have a slightly unique flavour. To learn more about its beer and where you can get it, visit Over Time’s Facebook page.

Breweries in Radium Hot Springs

Radium Brewing
Where: 7537 Main St. West, Radium Hot Springs, B.C.
When: Radium Brewing is open Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, 1 p.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday 12 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. Closed Tuesdays.
Good to know: Newly opened in June 2021, Radium Brewing prides themselves on small-batch brewing using environmentally-friendly techniques. Come out for a pint and enjoy patio seating in the summer and live music.

Outside of Tailout Brewing building.

Since opening in 2019, Castlegar's Tailout Brewing has quickly become a popular spot to hang out. — Photo courtesy Hedin Nelson-Chorney

West Kootenay

Breweries in Castlegar

Tailout Brewing
Where: Unit A, 1810 - 8th Ave., Castlegar, B.C.
When: The tasting room is open Monday to Thursday from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday, 1 to 6 p.m.
Good to know: Tailout Brewing is an ode to the outdoors. The rustic design of the tasting room reflects the owners’ love of recreational activities such as fishing and hunting. Tailout Brewing is currently producing a number of different brews, including a rotating list of seasonal beers on tap.

Breweries in Grand Forks

Grand Forks Beer Co. 
Where: 334 Market Avenue, Grand Forks, B.C.
When: The Grand Forks Beer Co. is open Monday through Thursday, 3 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday, 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Good to know: Settle the fork down at Grand Fork’s newest brewery. This lively spot has a fun, friendly atmosphere and features an outdoor patio, perfect for hanging out with friends after work. The brewery’s 10 different beers on tap have already garnered rave reviews from customers. Regular live music nights play host to indie musicians and performers from across B.C. and Canada.

Breweries in Kaslo

Angry Hen Brewing Company
Where: 343 Front St., Kaslo, B.C.
When: The brewery is open Monday to Thursday 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., Friday to Sunday, 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. The kitchen is open Thursday to Sunday, 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Good to know: The Angry Hen Brewery Company has a tasting room and patio, with the option of eight different beers on tap. Thanks to partnerships with local farmers, the company uses local fruit sources for their seasonal speciality brews.

Breweries in Nelson

Backroads Brewing Co.
Where: 460 Baker St., Nelson, B.C.
When: Backroads Brewing Co. is open Sunday and Monday, 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., Tuesday to Thursday, 12 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 12 to 11 p.m.
Good to know: Backroads Brewing Co. is located on historic Baker Street in downtown Nelson and evokes a cozy, backcountry vibe for patrons. This small-batch brewery likes to keep its patrons on their toes by offering lesser-known and forgotten styles of beer. Have no fear—they also keep a constant selection of old favourites on tap for those feeling less adventurous.

Nelson Brewing Company
Where: 512 Latimer St., Nelson, B.C.
When: The Tasting Room is open Monday from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday to Saturday from 1 to 8 p.m., closed Sundays.
Good to know: This eco-friendly brewery creates certified organic beer in addition to a number of other varieties. They offer 10 taps of craft beer that rotate regularly between small-batch one-of-a-kind brews and their classic lineup. To learn more about the Nelson Brewing Company, check out this article.

Mountains and close-up of beer can.

Majestic scenery combined with tasty brews from the Nelson Brewing Company—can't get much better than that! — Photo courtesy Nelson Brewing Company Facebook page

Torchlight Brewing Company
Where: 125 Hall St., Nelson, B.C.
When: The tasting room is open Sunday to Wednesday from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Thursday to Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. 
Good to know: As a nano-brewery, Torchlight Brewing Company has produced a range of craft beers with natural ingredients through environmentally conscious processes. It also brews sodas and ginger beer, both of which are served in the Torchlight Lounge. 

Breweries in Revelstoke

Mt. Begbie Brewing Co.
Where: 2155 Oak Dr., Revelstoke, B.C.
When: The Mt. Begbie Brewing Co. tasting room is open Thursday to Sunday 12 to 8 p.m. Their retail store, offering cold beer and cool merchandise, is open Monday to Wednesday 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday to Sunday 12 to 8 p.m. Both the tasting room and store are closed on holidays.
Good to know: The Mt. Begbie Brewing Co. was named the Canadian Craft Brewery of the Year in 2017. Tracey and Bart Larson are no strangers to awards for their Revelstoke brewery and take pride in embracing the science and artistry that are needed to create the perfect all-natural beer (Bart has a PhD in nuclear physics after all). To learn more about Mt. Begbie Brewing Co., check out this article.

Rumpus beer cans.

Fun and funky are at the heart of Revelstoke's Rumpus Beer Company. — Photo courtesy Rumpus Beer Facebook page

Rumpus Beer Company
Where: 208 - 1st St. E, Revelstoke, B.C.
When: The Rumpus Beer Company patio and lounge is open Wednesday to Monday at 3 p.m. You can also purchase growler refills to go.
Good to know: Opened in June 2019, the Rumpus Beer Company is a small brewery and lounge, specializing in small-batch brewing. Their beer matches the Revelstoke vibe—fun, funky and full of adventure. Check out their Facebook page for more information about the brewery.

Breweries in Rossland

Rossland Beer Company
Where: 1990F Columbia Ave., Rossland, B.C.
When: The Rossland Beer Company’s tasting room is open Sunday to Wednesday from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Thursday to Saturday from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Good to know: At the Rossland Beer Company, it’s all about good times. The award-winning brewery is a popular gathering place for locals and visitors alike and features hand-crafted beer at a fair price. Selections such as Paydirt Pale Ale, Helter Smelter Amber Ale and 7 Summits Milk Stout will have you coming back time and time again.

Breweries in Salmo

Erie Creek Brewing Company
Where: 117 - 4th Street , Salmo, B.C.
When: The brewery and music lounge is open Monday to Thursday 1 p.m. to 8 p.m., Friday and Saturday 1 p.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday 1 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Good to know: A hip and happening venue featuring live music and Kootenay-crafted beer, the Erie Creek Brewing Company guarantees a fun time will be had by all. 

Breweries in Trail

Trail Beer Refinery
Where: 1299 Bay Ave., Trail, B.C.
When: TThe Trail Beer Refinery is open Tuesday to Saturday, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Good to know: High-quality craft beer combined with tasty eats makes for a fantastic meeting place for friends and family. The Trail Beer Refinery decor mixes industrial and reclaimed elements with a modern twist and offers up craft beer, cider, sodas and more.

Close up of Erie Creek beer in glass.

Live music and great suds is part of the experience at Erie Creek Brewing Company in Salmo. — Photo courtesy Erie Creek Brewing Company Facebook page

Julie Matchett

Julie Matchett is a writer and content coordinator for KPI Media. She ranks as a 7 on the Introversion vs. Extraversion scale out of 100, which might help to explain why she chose a career of quiet contemplation as opposed to public speaking. View all of Julie Matchett’s articles

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