Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, is a city known for its rich history, iconic landmarks, and delicious food. However, what many people may not know is that Philadelphia is also home to some of the best breweries in the country. With a thriving craft beer scene, locals and visitors alike can enjoy a cold brew at one of the many breweries scattered throughout the city.
From small-batch hole-in-the-walls to beer giants, Philadelphia has something for every beer enthusiast. With so many options to choose from, it can be overwhelming to decide which breweries to visit. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the best breweries in Philadelphia to help guide your beer-tasting journey. Whether you’re a fan of hoppy IPAs or smooth stouts, these breweries have something for everyone.
History of Breweries in Philadelphia
Philadelphia has a rich history of brewing beer that dates back to the colonial era. In the late 1600s, William Frampton established the first brewery in Philadelphia, and since then, the city has been a hub for beer production. During the 19th century, Philadelphia was one of the largest beer-producing cities in the United States, with over 90 breweries operating in the city.
However, the Prohibition era of the 1920s and early 1930s had a significant impact on the brewing industry in Philadelphia. Many breweries were forced to shut down, and those that survived had to switch to producing non-alcoholic beverages. The Philadelphia Brewing Company, formerly known as the Weisbrod & Hess Oriental Brewing Company, was one of the few breweries that managed to survive Prohibition by producing soda instead of beer.
In the late 20th century, the craft beer movement in the United States led to a resurgence of interest in brewing beer in Philadelphia. In 1985, Dock Street Brewery became the first microbrewery to open in Philadelphia. Since then, many other breweries have opened in the city, including Yards Brewing Company and Evil Genius Beer Company.
Today, Philadelphia is home to a thriving craft beer scene, with many breweries producing a wide variety of beer styles. The city also hosts several beer festivals throughout the year, including the Philly Beer Week and the Brews & Views Beer Festival.
Top Breweries in Philadelphia
Philadelphia is a city known for its rich beer history and vibrant brewery scene. With so many great options to choose from, it can be hard to decide where to go first. Here are some of the top breweries in Philadelphia that are sure to satisfy beer lovers and craft beer enthusiasts alike.
Yards Brewing Company
Yards Brewing Company is a staple in the Philadelphia beer scene. Founded in 1994, Yards has been producing high-quality craft beer for nearly three decades. Their flagship beer, Yards Philadelphia Pale Ale, is a must-try for anyone visiting the city.
Address: 500 Spring Garden St, Philadelphia, PA 19123, United States
Dock Street Brewery
Dock Street Brewery is another long-standing brewery in Philadelphia. Founded in 1985, Dock Street was one of the first microbreweries in the city. Today, they continue to produce innovative and delicious beers, including their award-winning Dock Street Amber.
Address: 2118 Washington Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19146, United States
Philadelphia Brewing Company
Philadelphia Brewing Company, or PBC for short, is a local favorite. Their beers can be found in bars and restaurants all over the city. Their flagship beer, Kenzinger, is a crisp and refreshing lager that pairs well with just about anything.
Address: 2440 Frankford Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19125, United States
Evil Genius Beer Company
Evil Genius Beer Company is a newer addition to the Philadelphia brewery scene, but they have quickly made a name for themselves with their creative and unique beers. Their flagship beer, Purple Monkey Dishwasher, is a chocolate peanut butter porter that is sure to satisfy any sweet tooth.
Address: 1727 N Front St, Philadelphia, PA 19122, United States
Tired Hands Brewing Company
Tired Hands Brewing Company is located just outside of Philadelphia in Ardmore, PA. Known for their hazy IPAs and farmhouse-style ales, Tired Hands has a cult following among craft beer enthusiasts.
Address: 16 Ardmore Avenue Ardmore, PA 19003
Victory Brewing Company
Victory Brewing Company has two locations in the Philadelphia area, one in Downingtown and one in Kennett Square. Their HopDevil IPA is a fan favorite, but they also produce a wide variety of other delicious beers.
Address: 3127 Lower Valley Rd, Parkesburg, PA 19365, United States
Attic Brewing Company
Attic Brewing Company is a small, family-owned brewery located in Germantown. They produce a range of classic and modern beer styles, including their popular Germantown Blonde.
Address: 137 Berkley St, Philadelphia, PA 19144, United States
Urban Village Brewing Co
Urban Village Brewing Co. is a brewpub located in Northern Liberties. They offer a variety of beers brewed on-site, as well as wood-fired pizzas and other tasty food options.
Address: 1001 N 2nd St, Philadelphia, PA 19123, United States
Source Urban Brewery
Source Urban Brewery is a newer addition to the Philadelphia brewery scene, but they have already made a name for themselves with their delicious and innovative beers. Their flagship beer, the Source Pale Ale, is a must-try.
Address: 1101 Frankford Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19125, United States
Wissahickon Brewing Company
Wissahickon Brewing Company is located in East Falls and offers a wide range of beer styles, from traditional German lagers to hazy IPAs. Their taproom is a great spot to relax and enjoy a beer with friends.
Address: 3705 W School House Ln, Philadelphia, PA 19129, United States
Levante has two locations in the Philadelphia area, one in West Chester and one in Chester Springs. They produce a range of delicious beers, including their popular Cloudy & Cumbersome IPA.
Address: 208 Carter Dr Suite 2, West Chester, PA 19382, United States
2SP Brewing Company
2SP Brewing Company is located in Aston, PA, just outside of Philadelphia. They produce a range of classic and modern beer styles, including their award-winning The Russian Imperial Stout.
Address: 120 Concord Rd #101-103, Aston, PA 19014, United States
Bald Birds Brewing Company
Bald Birds Brewing Company is a small, family-owned brewery located in Audubon, PA. They offer a range of delicious beers, including their popular Audubon Lager.
Address: 970 Rittenhouse Rd #400, Audubon, PA 19403, United States
Conshohocken Brewing Company
Conshohocken Brewing Company has two locations in the Philadelphia area, one in Conshohocken and one in Bridgeport. They produce a range of delicious beers, including their popular Blood Money IPA.
Address: 739 E Elm St #2301, Conshohocken, PA 19428, United States
Other Half is a New York-based brewery that recently opened a location in Philadelphia. They produce a wide range of delicious beers, including their popular All Green Everything IPA.
Address: 1002 Canal St, Philadelphia, PA 19123, United States
Brewery Ars is a small, family-owned brewery located in Philadelphia’s Kensington neighborhood. They produce a range of delicious beers, including their popular The Luminous IPA.
Address: 1927-29 W Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19145, United States
Iron Hill Brewery
Iron Hill Brewery has several locations in the Philadelphia area, including one in Center City. They offer a wide range of classic and modern beer styles, as well as delicious food options.
Address: 781 Harrisburg Pike, Lancaster, PA 17603, United States
Love City Brewing Company
Love City Brewing Company is located in the Callowhill neighborhood of Philadelphia. They produce a range of delicious beers, including their popular Eraserhood IPA.
Address: 1023 Hamilton St, Philadelphia, PA 19123, United States
Beer Styles and Signature Beers
Philadelphia is home to a diverse range of breweries, each with its own unique style and signature beers. From hoppy IPAs to smooth lagers, there is something for every beer lover in the city. Here are some of the most popular beer styles and signature beers in Philadelphia:
IPAs are a staple of the craft beer scene, and Philadelphia has no shortage of hoppy options. Some of the most popular IPAs in the city include:
- Yards Brewing Company’s “Philadelphia Pale Ale”
- Evil Genius Beer Company’s “Bye Felicia IPA”
- Dock Street Brewery’s “Rye IPA”
- 2nd Story Brewing Company’s “Liquid Swords”
For those who prefer a smoother, more refreshing beer, lagers are a great option. Some of the best lagers in Philadelphia include:
- Victory Brewing Company’s “Prima Pils”
- Saint Benjamin Brewing Company’s “Foul Weather Jack”
- Neshaminy Creek Brewing Company’s “Croydon Cream Ale”
Saisons are a farmhouse-style beer that originated in Belgium. They are known for their complex, spicy flavor profile and are a favorite among craft beer enthusiasts. Some of the best seasons in Philadelphia include:
- Tired Hands Brewing Company’s “SaisonHands”
- Crime and Punishment Brewing Company’s “Saison de la Dispense”
- Forest and Main Brewing Company’s “Saison du Bois”
Hazy IPAs, also known as New England IPAs, are a relatively new style of beer that have taken the craft beer world by storm. They are known for their cloudy appearance and juicy, fruity flavor profile. Some of the best hazy IPAs in Philadelphia include:
- Odd Logic Brewing Company’s “Stigma Crusher”
- Levante Brewing Company’s “Cloudy and Cumbersome”
- Fermentery Form’s “Soft Shapes”
Pilsners are a light, crisp beer that originated in the Czech Republic. They are a popular summer beer and pair well with a variety of foods. Some of the best pilsners in Philadelphia include:
- Philadelphia Brewing Company’s “Kenzo’s Pils”
- Roy Pitz Brewing Company’s “Best Blonde Lager”
- Love City Brewing Company’s “Pilsner”
Milkshake IPAs are a newer style of beer that is known for their creamy, sweet flavor profile. They often contain lactose and are brewed with fruit or vanilla. Some of the best milkshake IPAs in Philadelphia include:
- Triple Bottom Brewing Company’s “Milkshake IPA”
- Second District Brewing Company’s “Milkshake IPA”
- Human-Robot Beer’s “Milkshake IPA”
Sours are tart, acidic beers that are often brewed with fruit or aged in oak barrels. They are a popular choice among beer connoisseurs and pair well with a variety of foods. Some of the best sours in Philadelphia include:
- Tired Hands Brewing Company’s “Fruit Punch”
- Fermentery Form’s “Sour Form”
- Second Sin Brewing Company’s “Fruit Frenzy”
Porters is a dark, malty beer that originated in England. They are known for their rich, complex flavor profile and are a favorite among beer enthusiasts. Some of the best porters in Philadelphia include:
- Dock Street Brewery’s “Prince Myshkin”
- Wissahickon Brewing Company’s “Jawn of the Dead”
- Iron Hill Brewery’s “Pig Iron Porter”
Many breweries in Philadelphia have their own signature beers that are a must-try for any beer lover. Some of the most popular signature beers in the city include:
- Yards Brewing Company’s “Philadelphia Pale Ale”
- Evil Genius Beer Company’s “Purple Monkey Dishwasher Porter”
- Dock Street Brewery’s “Man Full of Trouble Porter”
- Tired Hands Brewing Company’s “HopHands”
Philadelphia’s Craft Beer Culture
Philadelphia has a thriving craft beer culture that has been steadily growing in recent years. The city is home to a wide variety of craft breweries, nanobreweries, and homebrewers, all of whom are dedicated to creating unique and flavorful beers.
The craft beer scene in Philadelphia is diverse and constantly evolving. From traditional brewpubs to experimental nanobreweries, there is something for everyone in this vibrant beer community. Many of the city’s craft breweries offer tours and tastings, allowing visitors to sample a wide range of beers and learn about the brewing process.
In addition to the numerous craft breweries, Philadelphia is also home to a number of beer gardens and pubs. These establishments offer a relaxed and friendly atmosphere where beer enthusiasts can gather to enjoy a cold brew and socialize with like-minded individuals.
Philadelphia’s craft beer culture is deeply rooted in the city’s history and traditions. The city has a long and proud history of brewing beer, dating back to the colonial era. Today, Philadelphia’s craft brewers continue to draw inspiration from this rich brewing heritage, while also pushing the boundaries of what is possible with beer.
Awards and Recognitions
Philadelphia is home to some of the best breweries in the country, and their hard work and dedication to craft beer have not gone unnoticed. Over the years, many of these breweries have won awards and recognitions for their exceptional brews.
One of the most prestigious beer competitions in the United States is the Great American Beer Festival (GABF), held annually in Denver, Colorado. Several breweries in Philadelphia have won medals at this competition, including Yards Brewing Company, which won a gold medal in the English-Style Brown Ale category in 2018.
Another major beer competition is the World Beer Cup, which is held every two years. This competition features breweries from all over the world, and winning a medal at this event is a significant achievement. Several Philadelphia breweries have won medals at the World Beer Cup, including Victory Brewing Company, which won a gold medal in the English-Style India Pale Ale category in 2018.
In addition to these major beer competitions, many Philadelphia breweries have also won awards and recognitions at regional and local events. For example, Tired Hands Brewing Company has been named the best brewery in Pennsylvania by RateBeer.com for several years in a row.
Overall, the awards and recognitions received by Philadelphia breweries are a testament to the high quality of their craft beer. Whether you’re a local or a visitor to the city, be sure to check out some of these award-winning breweries and taste their exceptional brews for yourself.