WILMINGTON — The Wilmington area continues to grow its reputation as an “Asheville East” of craft breweries — there are now 17 in the region — and we’ll be here to keep you in the loop.
Our craft beer tracker is a place to keep up with scheduled beer releases, festivals, special casks, and more for the week ahead. We’ll publish every week and update throughout as information comes along.
Remember, schedules can fluctuate inside the brewhouse, so check the breweries’ links for updates on their Facebook pages. Brewers, taproom managers, and owners — keep us informed at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week in craft beer Monday, Jan. 7 – Sunday, Jan. 13
Bill’s Brewing Co. | 4238 Market Street in midtown Wilmington
This week they’ll be releasing the Experimental Pale Ale with Belma, Citra, and Amarillo hops.
- Brewing Philosophy: “We strive to create beer that everyone can enjoy, from the craft beer connoisseur to individuals new to the craft beer scene.”
- Brewers’ Top 3: Dog Haze of Summer NEIPA, Schwarzbier, and Wave Break IPA
- Founded: June 2016
Broomtail Craft Brewery | 6404 Amsterdam Way, King’s Grant area of Wilmington
Broomtail continues to roll out their Plumbum Series with Lotta Love, a strong blonde ale (7.5 percent ABV) with a malty backbone and fruity undertones, fermented with one of their new house yeast blends.
- Brewing Philosophy: “To enrich the world by using scientific art coupled with the natural resources and living organisms provided by Mother Nature developing unique, high-quality beer for all to enjoy.”
- Brewers’ Top 3: Galloping Gose’ – series of light sours using natural lactobacillus and brewers yeast in fermentation to develop smooth, refreshing, true to style Gose’; Acerbic Ecstasy – flagship IPA, a hybrid English / West Coast IPA; Moe Beer – signature brown ale, highly crushable and pairs well with almost any dish.
- Founded: 2014
Keep up with their souring/barrel aging facility and taproom in Ogden, The Sour Barn (7211 Market Street).
Check Six Brewing Co. | 5130 Southport-Supply Road in Southport
Their new releases are the Flight School Cocoweed Stout and the Saint James Wright Red Ale.
- Brewing Philosophy: “Make the finest ales and lagers possible, using local ingredients whenever possible.”
- Brewers’ Top 3: Harley Pope Vanilla Porter, Aerial Aggression Double IPA, B-17 Bock
- Founded: June 2016
Edward Teach Brewery | 604 N 4th Street in downtown Wilmington
Their newest drafts are the Belgian Blonde, Southern Cross Belgian Dubbel, and Winterfest Lager.
- About:: “Set in a historic firehouse in Wilmington’s Brooklyn Arts District, we craft beers for everyone. Try our German or Black Lagers, Peach Wheat Ale, and IPAs.”
- Founded: December 2017
Flying Machine Brewing Co. | 3130 Randall Parkway in midtown Wilmington
Returning to their lineup on Saturday afternoon was the Maker of Wings Modern American IPA. “Sitting at 6.5 percent ABV, this beauty hints at papaya, stone fruit, and mixed berry.”
- About: The new 16,600-square-foot building has a 10,000-square-foot brewhouse, taproom, two-story outside patio, and inside and outside bars.
- Founded: June 2016
Flytrap Brewing | Located at 319 Walnut Street in downtown Wilmington
They just released the Rye Pale Ale (6.3 percent ABV), “refreshing and hoppy with subtle hints of rye,” said owner and brewer Mike Barlas.
- Brewing Style: “A neighborhood brewery specializing in small batch American and Belgian style ales that are guaranteed to be at the peak of freshness.”
- Brewers’ Top 3: Our Saisons, our Rotating House IPA, and our Kettle Sour Ales
- Founded: October 2014
Front Street Brewery | 9 N. Front Street in downtown Wilmington
Two new small batches are on tap while they last. First is the Mexican Hot Chocolate (6.5 percent ABV), a chocolate stout with creme de cocoa and habanero. “This beer is amazing,” head of sales Ellie Craig said.
Next up, the Peach Pucker Ale (6 percent ABV) features fresh peaches, wild yeast, and wine yeast all coming together to “make you pucker up.”
- Brewing Style: “Specializing in American and Belgian style ales and small batch brews.”
- Brewers’ Top 3: Amberjack ESB, Napoleon Rye-namite, Tiny Tim’s Christmas Ale
- Founded: 1995
Good Hops Brewing | 811 Harper Ave in Carolina Beach
Their Stanky Yankee is back on tap, featuring a strong peach and orange-peel aroma. “This hoppy New England IPA has a bitey mouthfeel followed with a nice dry finish.”
And their Resilience IPA is still on tap, part of a nationwide collaboration brew led by Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, all proceeds sent to victims of the Camp Fire in California.
- Mission: “To make and drink damn tasty beer, offer a comfortable neighborhood gathering place and support all things local.”
- Flagships: Donna Golden Ale, Flip Hop IPA, Stanky Yankee Hazy IPA
- Founded: 2014
Ironclad Brewery | 115 N. 2nd Street in downtown Wilmington
Their latest release: the Sea State 9 (New England IPA): “melon and passion fruit on the nose, flavors of citrus and coconut with a smooth subtle finish. Hopped with galaxy, cashmere, and Motueka in the kettle and double dry hopped.”
- Brewing Philosophy: “We strive to provide each beer enthusiast with a unique experience by infusing traditional styles with unexpected ingredients: Fermentation of the Imagination!”
- Brewers’ Top 3: Smoked Honey Lager, Cukes of Hazard, and Navigator Double Bock
- Founded: 2015
Mad Mole Brewing | 6309 Boathouse Road near Bradley Creek in Wilmington
Up-and-coming beers at Mad Mole: Rufus Saves the World-New England IPA (returns at the end of the week), and a dank IPA (name to be determined, also ready by the end of the week).
- About: “Wilmington’s first solar-powered brewery. Spun off from a local software company, Mad Mole combines technology and art to brew better beer.”
- Founded: June 2018
Makai Brewing Co. | 5850 Ocean Highway W. Unit 1 in Ocean Isle Beach
A batch of their Carolina Tropical IPA is in the works. Stay tuned on their Facebook page (link above).
- Brewing Philosophy: “Extending the reach of North Carolina craft beer ‘toward the sea’ with consistent flagships and diverse small-batches inspired by the Hawaiian Islands, the Carolina Coast, and our local community.”
- Brewers’ Choice: Carolina Tropical IPA, Nightingale Coffee Porter, Fire Knife DIPA
- Founded: 2017
New Anthem Beer Project | 116 Dock Street in downtown Wilmington
A “super small limited taproom only release” on Jan. 4: the Long Needle v2. “This beer used to be really resiny dank and weedy. We decided to switch the Eureka hops for a new one that comes across kinda cannabis-y. Well, it kinda is. What it mostly is though is delicious mixed berry/fruit stripe gummish and really good.”
Also, on Jan 5., a can-release of the Clap Back, an all-Citra DIPA “finally with some really nice Citra hops.”
- Brewing Style: “Diverse and recognizable hoppy beers with a sidecar of barrel-aged dark beers and traditional styles from the UK and Belgium.”
- Brewers’ Choice: Rusty Cage, Five Thieves, Hillbilly Prophet
- Founded: 2016
Salty Turtle Beer Co. | 103 Triton Lane in Surf City
The Belgian Dubbel is releasing this week, strong (8.1 percent) with “malty sweetness and hints of cocoa and caramel aromas and flavors. Hop bitterness is medium-low to medium. Yeast-generated fruity esters,” co-owner Dan Callender said.
- About: “Veteran-owned brewery located in Surf City, consisting of 10 rotating taps and a family friendly taproom featuring food trucks and live music. “
- Brewers’ Choice: Coastline Kölsch, Hey Zay NEIPA, Swingbridge Breakfast Stout
- Founded: Dec. 2017
Read about the brewery’s plans to expand.
Waterline Brewing Co. | 721 Surry Street in Downtown Wilmington
Their newest, The Urban Chakra, is a 6.7 percent Gruit. This is “an old world style, hopless ale brewed with herbs and spices, packed with spruce, juniper, alehoof, bergamot peel orange peel, lemon peel, yerba mate, matcha, lemongrass, reishi, dandelion root, rosehips, elderflower, grains of paradise, devils claw, black tea, coriander, and cedar,” co-owner Mark Anthony Mueller said.
- Brewing Philosophy: “Brewed Under the Bridge with a focus on traditional, easy drinking beer styles with the occasional twist.”
- Brewers’ Choice: Our top-selling Kolsch, awarding-winning Coffee and Cream Pale Ale, and the annual release of our Whiskey Barrel Aged Tennessee Tripel.
- Founded: 2014
Waterman’s Brewing | 1610 Pavilion Place near the Wrightsville bridge
Nothing new to report here, stay tuned on their Facebook page (link above) for any new releases in the week ahead.
- Brewing Philosophy: “Love your liquid!”
- Brewers’ Choice: Abundant Sunshine IPA, Knothead ESB, Makin’ Me Hazy IPA
- Opened: July 2017
Wilmington Brewing Co. | 824 Kerr Avenue in midtown Wilmington
“Yeah, yeah, yeah, good job on your new year’s resolution and all that. Now come get a fresh 4-pack of Tropical and really enjoy 2019! Coming down the canning line available today (Jan. 2).”
- About: “Homegrown from a small home-brew shop to an 11,800 square-foot facility. WBC includes a 3bbl and 25bbl brewery, tasting room, and a home-brew supply store.”
- Brewers’ Choice: Tropical Lightning IPA, Blair’s Breakfast Stout, Jalapeño Saison
- Opened brewery/taproom: 2014
Wrightsville Beach Brewery | 6201 Oleander Drive near Bradley Creek, Wilmington
Last week they released “one of their most popular seasonals,” the Coastal Honey Lager (made with more than 100 pounds of local honey — “bees pollinate with sparkleberry!”).
Also out last week: the Rosé IPA, a “beautiful rosé-colored IPA with a hint of red berries and lots of bubbles.”
And throughout January, every order of their Puppy Drum Pale Ale will contribute towards the paws4people foundation.
- Brewing Style: “Wide variety perfect for sipping on the beach, including a year-round selection of lagers.”
- Brewers’ Choice: Carolina Harvest Ale, Raspberry Berlinerweisse, bourbon barrel-aged Masonbarrel Barleywine
- Founded: 2016