If you have been (or read) about Alaska, you probably remember how folks gush about its pristine natural beauty. But, one area that still remains untapped is the wide variety of Alaskan beer. If we’ve piqued your attention, now it’s time to take a look at where you can find them the next time you’re at The Last Frontier.
If you’re looking for something more local, you can check out our other Alaska brewery articles below.
You can also look at our best breweries in America article if you are looking for something in a different city or state.
Here, let’s take a look at some of the finest that Alaska has to offer when it comes to breweries.
Seward Brewing Company
The Seattle Bar was once located where Seward Brewing Co. is now, but it closed owing to prohibition in 1904. The structure underwent several changes throughout the years before becoming Seward Brewing, which is situated in the center of the quaint fishing community. In my opinion, the Rockfish Red is the best. They close for the winter and reopen their brewery and tavern in May to welcome visitors.
Small breweries are all over the place in a state like Alaska. However, some are better than others, and this one definitely falls under the former category. A decent variety of beers along with great food are what Seward Brewing has to offer.
Glenn Highway-Tok Cutoff, Gakona, AK 99586
This charming tiny brewery in Gakona, Canada, should be on your itinerary if you’re traveling to or from that country. This area exemplifies Alaska’s frontier culture. The brewery was conceived in 2012 but only became operational in 2015 after all the legal snags were resolved. What began as a personal experiment grew into a business when Eddie, the proprietor, saw that the locals were consuming his beer so quickly that he could hardly even test it. Gakona, which means Rabbit River in Athabaskan, is a word. The bottle logo for the Dark Side of the Hare Stout has a rabbit disguised as Darth Vader.
While you will find plenty of cold beer, some stand out with their old-time authentic Alaskan flavor that you will not find anywhere else.
One of the top breweries in Alaska is Barnaby. One of my favorite things about them is that they are owned by Native Americans and women, so you can feel good about patronizing a forward-thinking company. Although they are not by any means Juneau’s oldest brewery, they are thrilled to be one of the city’s most award-winning two years in a row. Barnaby specializes in American-style ales and lagers and dabbles in experimental brews on occasion. They only provide tastings in their taproom, but you may order meals or bring your own. They welcome families but require that you keep your children under control.
This is an award-winning craft brewery, so you can bet that every beer you sip is a winner. But, to make your life easier, the Woke AF, Bear Bait – Raspberry Wheat is a must-have.
Although Alaska’s craft beer market only truly began to take off in 2016, Skagway has been brewing since 1897 to slake the thirst of prospectors during the Klondike Gold Rush. With unfiltered ales made with Alaskan water that is clean and untreated, they compete in the current brewing period. They keep things local despite requests from people in Alaska and throughout the world for beer exports, so make sure to get some beer to take home.
They offer five staple beers, among them the well-known Prospector Palee. The Spruce Tip Blonde Ale, brewed with hand-selected Sitka spruce buds and a truly Alaskan delight, might just be the greatest beer on tap.
HooDoo Brewing Co.
HooDoo distinguishes out in a field where it’s more typical to discover brewers who quit their desk jobs than it is to find a true artisan with a broad education. Bobby Wilken, the company’s brewmaster and proprietor, was born and raised in Fairbanks and later studied brewing in Chicago and Germany before beginning his career at Alaskan Brewing in Juneau. His extensive knowledge is evident in his uncomplicated yet well-rounded products, which he launched as a sole proprietor in his hometown in 2011.
If you visit the HooDoo Brewery, don’t forget to try the Hoodoo Stout, Maibock Lager, and Scottish Export.
Best Breweries in Alaska with Food
Here are some of the best breweries in Alaska that offer delicious food with wonderful drinks.
While some might say it’s far to sample their delicious beer, it is worthwhile to travel to the odd town of Talkeetna. Stop by the Denali Brewpub in the center of Talkeetna if you’re hungry to taste brews and eat some killer food. The brewery offers a wide range of appetizers, soups, salads, sandwiches, and barbecue items to tantalize your tastebuds. If you’re ever there, don’t forget to taste their Brisket Sando; we promise it’s worth it!
Visit their Brewery on Talkeetna Spur Road if you want a taproom experience. Their brewery tours are excellent—possibly the finest in the state. A few spaces are available for online reservations, but walk-ins are also accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. They also have a meadery, a cidery, and a distillery in addition to the brewery.
If you want to know what the trip to Denali is worth, just ask for The Single Engine Red, and you’ll get the picture. Apart from that, just about every other brew Denali produces is great, so you can’t go wrong.
Midnight Sun Brewing Company
It’s simple to overlook the fact that Midnight Sun Brewing produces such excellent beers because there is so much to praise about it, including the hilarious backstories behind the names of its best-selling brews, the incredibly welcoming staff in the taproom, and the wall-mounted salmon that serves draught beer.
Since it began twenty years ago, a variety of high-quality barleywines, puckering sours, strong stouts, and well-balanced IPAs have found their way into the bottles and kegs here, making it without a doubt one of the state’s top beer destinations. What’s even more interesting is the brewery’s vast menu that offers some absolutely delicious options to satisfy your cravings, from mouthwatering Ahi Poke Bowls to delectable Mac-n-Cheese; they really have it all!
Make no mistake, the brews they have on offer are just as dramatic as the brewery’s name. Buzzwinkle and Pleasure Town are great beers to start with if you’re visiting Midnight Sun for the first time.
49th State Brewing
What began as a small brewery in Healy, Alaska—the 49th State—near Denali National Park—has grown to include Anchorage for double the deliciousness. They have a great rooftop at their Anchorage location with views of the Cook Inlet. With a fantastic outside space where you can play lawn games, dance to live local music and get on the “Into the Wild Bus,” the original location is rustic and quaint (from the movie). The owner is dedicated to reviving Anchorage’s sustainable farming sector and always makes morally and environmentally responsible food selections.
In order for you to drink and unwind, they provide a shuttle service from Denali National Park. They welcome pets, so bring your dog. Their menu offers a wide variety of locally produced meat and vegetables, organic fare, and a fantastic vegetarian selection to go with your beer. Purchase the sampler or Cabin Fever; you won’t regret it.