It may not be as large or as well-known as its neighbor Phoenix, but when it comes to craft beer, Tempe, AZ has a dynamic brewery scene that is like an oasis in the hot Arizona desert. Imagination and perfect execution are on full display at these 7 Tempe breweries (and distilleries) and are reason enough to pay a visit to this craft beer hot spot.
- The Beer Research Institute
- Fate Brewing Company
- Four Peaks Brewing Company
- Huss Brewing Company
- Pedal Haus Brewery
- The Shop Beer Company
The Beer Research Institute
Although its name may sound more like a place for conducting scientific experiments than enjoying a fine craft beer, The Beer Research Institute (which is technically in Mesa but is so close to Tempe that we’re really just splitting hairs at this point) offers a full spectrum of styles including IPAs, stouts, ales, lagers, and barrel-aged selections.
While you simply can’t go wrong with any of The Beer Research Institute’s dozen or so rotating offerings, nothing gets the party started like the Peach Mango Imperial Boom Box (ABV 10.0%, IBU 22). This tart, fruit-forward beer is a true crowd-pleaser and the only thing that could possibly make it more enjoyable is pairing it with a gourmet burger from BRI’s kitchen.
Fate Brewing Company
Even more than a craft brewery, Fate Brewing Company touts itself as a community gathering place and this spirit shows in its drinks, food, and atmosphere. For first-time visitors to Tempe, this is where the locals (there is also a location in nearby Scottsdale) come for the one-of-a-kind beer and delicious pub fare and that pretty much says all you need to know about Fate Brewing Company. They even host events.
With well over a dozen selections, the beer menu at Fate Brewing Company offers a diverse drinking experience. But a great choice would be the award-winning Hatch Chile Gatos (ABV 4.8%, IBU 23), a golden ale that is lovingly infused with the essence of roasted hatch chiles to produce a peppery nose and just the right amount of heat to make things interesting.
Four Peaks Brewing Company
Located just east of Arizona State University’s main campus, Four Peaks Brewing Company is quickly becoming a Tempe institution for hand-crafted drinks and lovingly prepared food. While savory dishes like chicken enchiladas and scratch-made pizzas are a big draw, make no mistake, the main attraction at Four Peaks Brewing Company is the impressive selection of craft-brewed beers.
Four Peaks Brewing Company has built a loyal following of beer enthusiasts for its outstanding lineup of craft beers. One selection that is particularly popular is its 8th Street Pale Ale (ABV 4.9%, IBU 21). With its inviting amber hue, floral notes, and slightly sweet hop-forward flavor, this beer is inspired by classic British pub ales and is a definite crowd-pleaser that pairs well with anything coming out of the kitchen.
Huss Brewing Company
Tempe’s own Huss Brewing Company is a true craft beer success story. Started by the husband and wife team of Jeff and Leah Huss, Huss Brewing Company has grown to become The Grand Canyon State’s third-largest brewery and it is showing no signs of stopping. Despite all of its success, however, Huss Brewing Company is true to its original mission of producing the state of Arizona’s finest craft beers.
Huss Brewing Company’s IPAs are immensely popular but its signature beer selection is the Scottsdale Blonde. Inspired by the German-style Kӧlsch found in Cologne, Scottsdale Blonde is brewed with German hops and presents a beautiful blonde color with crisp carbonation and slight sweetness in the finish. Whether enjoyed by itself or as part of a meal, this is one beer that should make Arizonans proud.
Pedal Haus Brewery
The website for Pedal Haus Brewery might put it best by stating that there’s “lots going on” at this Tempe institution. From watching the big game on scores of overhead big screens to celebrating a special event or just enjoying a cold brew on a sunny afternoon, Pedal Haus Brewer has something for everyone, whether you are a Tempe local or visiting from out of town.
Along with the great atmosphere, Pedal Haus Brewery is first and foremost one of Arizona’s finest breweries, and its signature beer is its highly decorated, award-winning Bière Blanche Belgian Witbier (ABV 4.98%, IBU 11.2). With an incredibly balanced flavor with a hint of citrus and spice, the only thing that can make this beer better is by pairing it with a freshly baked Bavarian pretzel from the kitchen.
The Shop Beer Company
Compared to the other establishments on this list, The Shop Beer Company takes a more low-key approach to the art of brewing and serving craft beers. What it lacks in terms of pizzazz it more than makes up for in its passion for perfecting its craft. The Shop Beer Company’s tasting room may be BYOF (bring your own food) but the one thing all of its patrons have in common is a love for great beer.
Speaking of great beer, The Shop Beer Company’s F.Y.I.T.M. (ABV 10.1%, IBU 110), which stands for Five Years In The Making and is lovingly pronounced “fight-em”, is a hop-forward double IPA with refreshing hints of citrus in the nose and not-so-subtle oomph in the glass.
Breweries Near Tempe
If Tempe doesn’t have what you are looking for, here are a few breweries near Tempe that are worth checking out: