Over the last decade, the craft beer movement has really taken off in the US. According to the Brewers Association, the craft brewing industry contributed $55.7 billion to the US economy in 2014 and more than 424,000 jobs. Bart Watson, Chief Economist for the Brewers Association, states “With a strong presence across the 50 states and the District of Columbia, craft breweries are a vibrant and flourishing economic force at the local, state and national level. As consumers continue to demand a wide range of high quality, full-flavored beers, small and independent craft brewers are meeting this growing demand with innovative offerings, creating high levels of economic value in the process”.
Idahoans take their beer seriously, as they rightfully should. Idaho ranks 10th in the US in breweries per capita. So it isn’t surprising that you will find breweries you will love in, and near, Boise.
- 10 Barrel Brewing Company– Boise
10 Barrel Brewing Company is ranked as the number one brewery in Boise on Yelp. A Yelp review left by Annelise R., from Meridian, states “10 Barrel is one of those places that has a vibrant atmosphere, delicious food, great drinks, and it’s ALWAYS packed with locals who love it just as much as I do. Food: I’ve never had food that disappoints at 10 Barrel. I like to start with the chips & salsa, which are seasoned PERFECTLY with something like cumin and cayenne. Oh man, those chips are good! I’ve had everything on the menu from the burger (peanut butter burger with local City Peanut Shop PB is insane!), to the pizza (any are so good), to the salads. The quinoa salad, when paired with a protein, may look a little odd at first (it’s like a little hockey puck of quinoa and summer squash) but the flavors are SPOT ON! Drinks: House brewed ales and a full bar. I personally love their rotating sours as that’s not an option I can often find in other brew pubs. The only thing they’re missing is a drink happy hour! But taste any of the brews you like… they’ll keep the testers coming.” Minors are welcome to come and enjoy the restaurant.
Details: 830 W Bannock St. Boise, Idaho 83702 Open Sunday through Thursday 11am-11pm. Friday and Saturday 11am-Midnight.
- Barbarian Brewing– Garden City
Barbarian Brewing is a new brewery that opened in Garden City, Idaho in October 2015 that specializes in sours and barrel aged beers. It is their mission is to create delicious, complex, artisan ales. Barbarian Brewing incorporates the old world style that “barbarians” used to employ to make beer and adding a new world flavor through aging beers in wine, whiskey, and bourbon barrels and adding regional fruits. The tap room is a 21 and older establishment. Minors will only be allowed on the patio.
Details: 5270 Chinden Blvd. Garden City, ID 83714 Open: Wednesday and Thursday 4pm-9pm, Friday 3pm-9pm, Saturday 12pm-9pm, Sunday 12pm-6pm. Closed: Monday and Tuesday.
- Boise Brewing– Boise
Boise Brewing may not be the largest brewery in town, but that means a little more love goes into each batch. Brewing smaller will give them the flexibility to make sure there’s something different on draught every time you come down to the tap room. Boise Brewing supports local farms and businesses- from using local ingredients like honey and fruit, to donating their spent grains to area farmers. Boise Brewing’s mission is to be an important part of the local community. They were recently awarded the “Best New Brewer“ award for the state of Idaho by RateBeer.com.
Details: 521 W. Broad St. Boise, ID 83702 Open: Monday through Thursday from Noon-10pm, Friday and Saturday Noon-Midnight, Sunday Noon-10pm.
- Cloud 9 Brewery– Boise
Founded in 2012, Cloud 9 Brewery is a nanopub concept featuring locally sourced and organic components in both the brewery and restaurant. With an emphasis on creative brewing, Cloud 9 is situated in a unique place in the market. Instead of having the exact same line-up from month to month, the beers on-tap at Cloud 9 change as soon as the last drop from the previous batch has been poured. With so many taps, and only 6 year-round beers, the variety is truly amazing. On top of brewing six delicious beers year-round, they also brew seasonal beers and make their own root-beers and ginger ale. Their own brews as well as some guest taps are available for growler fills.
Details: 1750 W. State St. Boise, ID 83702 Open: Monday through Thursday 11am-10pm, Friday and Saturday 11am-Midnight, Sunday 11am-9pm. Happy Hour is Tuesday through Friday from 4pm-6pm.
- Highlands Hollow Brew House– Boise
Highlands Hollow Brew House or “The Hollow,” was given the moniker by local patrons, and has been a North-End favorite for years. The exposed wooden rafters were part of the old BSU stadium, and are now home to one of the most extensive collections of coasters, or ‘grog doilies’ in seven western states. Locals, extreme athletes (and moderates), hikers, skiers, Mtn. bikers, beer enthusiasts – hand crafted, quality beer being their aim – have come from around the world to enjoy The Hollow’s award winning brews and hand fashioned fare. They strongly believe in bringing the community together for a worthy cause and supporting local. Highlands Hollow is proud to be the oldest microbrewery in Boise (est. 1992). Stop in on Monday’s for $8 growler fills. You can also get a growler punch card, and once you have purchased 10 full priced growlers, you will get one free. They have live music every Wednesday from 6:30pm-9:30pm.
Details: 2455 N Harrison Hollow Ln. Boise, ID 83702 Open: Monday through Saturday 11am-10pm, Sunday 11am-9pm.
- Payette Brewing– Boise
According to the Boise Beer Trail, Payette Brewing Company is a production brewery that serves craft beer on draft throughout Boise and the Treasure Valley. Their new brew house is opening Spring 2016. It will run a 60-barrel brewing system with the capacity to brew 100,000 barrels annually. They currently offer six year-round beers in cans and on tap: Payette Pale Ale, Rustler IPA, Mutton Buster Brown Ale, North Fork Lager, Pistolero Porter and Blood Orange Rustler IPA. In 2012, Payette Brewing made Idaho brewing history when they introduced Payette Pale Ale and Mutton Buster as the first craft beer cans from the Gem State. You can find Payette beer in bars, restaurants, and retail locations including grocery and specialty stores throughout Idaho, Washington, Oregon and Utah.
Details: 733 S Pioneer St Boise, ID 83702 Open seven days a week from 11am-10pm.
- Ram Restaurant and Brewery– Boise and Meridian
Head into the RAM, grab a beer, watch some sports, and eat some great food. Their website states, “In 1995, we began brewing our own beer and contributing to the successful evolution of the craft beer industry. Our passionate and talented brewers strive to create the freshest, most “drinkable” beers you will find, and their efforts have garnered the RAM over 100 medals from institutions as prestigious as the NABA and GABF. We celebrate our brewers’ ingenuity each and every day with a rotating selection of “seasonal” creations, which are locally brewed, by hand, with the freshest local ingredients.”
Details: 709 East Park Boulevard Boise, ID 83712 or 3272 East Pine Meridian, ID 83642 Boise Hours: Monday-Sunday 11am-11pm. Meridian Hours: Sunday through Thursday 11am-11pm, Friday and Saturday 11am-Midnight.
- Slanted Rock Brewery– Meridian
Slanted Rock Brewing Company, LLC was founded in Meridian, Idaho on June 2011 by Bob Lonseth, Alesa Lonseth and Vincent Melchor. They are committed to brewing a wide variety of craft beers using only the finest ingredients available. They are a small company built on dreams and hard work. Imaginative beers like Señor Jalapeacho and Vanilla Imperial IPA show a true love for their art.
Details: 2374 E. Cinema Dr. #100 Meridian, ID 83642 Open: Tuesday through Thursday 4pm-9pm, Friday 2pm-10pm, Saturday Noon-10pm. Closed Sunday and Monday.
- Sockeye Brewing– Boise
Exceptional downtown dining without the hassle of downtown crowds. Sockeye is a local, non-franchise pub best known for fine hand crafted, small batch beer. Sockeye Brewing has evolved into a leading brewery in Idaho and the Pacific Northwest with taps at establishments across the Treasure Valley, and Idaho, and now Eastern Washington. You are strongly urged to try the reliable flagship beer, Dagger Falls IPA, as well as other varieties and seasonal favorites.
Details: 3019 N Cole Rd Boise, ID 83704 Open Monday through Thursday 11am-10pm, Friday and Saturday 11am-11pm, Sunday 11am-9pm.
The Woodland Empire Ale Craft Brewery website states, “Woodland Empire is our tongue-in-cheek way of saying ‘City of Trees,’ which is the nickname for the great city in which we live. Why ‘Ale Craft?’ Making beer is a trade, a craft. In our minds that level of quality that separates mass-produced from craft beer is the thought behind its creation. We are not an industrialized factory cranking out barcodes. There is thought and imagination in our beer, something more than just a product, and so we chose Ale Craft to describe the kind of company we are, rather than ‘brewing company’.”
Details: 1114 W Front St. Boise, ID 83702 Open: Tuesday through Thursday 11am-10pm, Friday 3pm-11pm, Saturday Noon-11pm, Sunday 2pm-10pm. Closed Monday.