WILMINGTON — The Wilmington area continues to grow its reputation as an “Asheville East” of craft breweries — there are now 18 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 as information comes along.
Schedules can fluctuate inside the brewhouse, so check the breweries’ links for updates on their Facebook pages. Brewers and taproom managers: keep us informed at email@example.com.
Upcoming Beer Events
Beer Voyage (Saturday, July 13): the first annual Beer Voyage will include 8 beers – including the Boats! Lime IPA collaboration release – from Wilmington’s Flying Machine Brewing Co. and Wilmington Brewing Co., Raleigh’s Ancillary Fermentation, and Charlotte’s Wooden Robot Brewery on two separate chartered boat rides on the Cape Fear River. Tickets (200 total spots) go for $65, with all proceeds going to the Cape Fear River Watch.
Cupcakes and Beer (Thursday, July 18): at Leaf & Barrel Provision Co. located at 15010 US Highway 17 in Hampstead, featuring flights of cupcakes paired with flights of beer.
Session Beer Market Turns Two (Saturday, July 20): the bottle shop will celebrate its second-year anniversary with giveaways and collaborations. A full taplist will be announced soon (check the Facebook link above); located at the corner of 17th St. and South College Rd.
This week in craft beer Monday, July 8 – Sunday, July 14
Bill’s Brewing Co. | 4238 Market Street in midtown Wilmington
Recent Release (Friday, July 5): Passionfruit Lemon Witbier (6% ABV), a tart Belgian wheat ale brewed with zested lemons and conditioned on 160 pounds of passionfruit puree.
Recent Release (Friday, July 5): Slice of Summer, an American wheat beer made with peaches, mangos, and honey (6.5% ABV).
- 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
Upcoming Tap Release: Loopy Fruity Gose, a batch of their Galloping Gose with blended fruits. Stay tuned to their Facebook page (link above) for the release.
- 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
And 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
Check out their most recent beer list here.
- 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
Small Batch Release (Thursday, July 11): Treat Yourself, a Double IPA aged on pineapple and dry-hopped with ekuanot hops.
Fresh Batch: Stop by for a fresh pint of Pontus, a Double IPA double dry-hopped with El Dorado, Amarillo, and Mosaic with flavors of tangerine and grapefruit with “balanced bitterness [that] makes this a very drinkable and hop forward DIPA,” according to Taproom Manager Amy Walker.
Can-Release (Friday, July 12): Teaches Peaches Peach Wheat.
- 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
Upcoming Collaboration Release: the Boats! Lime IPA will debut on the Brew Voyage departing downtown Wilmington Saturday, July 13 (more info at the top of this article).
- Brewing Philosophy: “We want to mix new age ideas with old school techniques to bring a new era of innovation to the marketplace.”
- Brewers’ Top 3: Vimana (a Kölsch), Hollow Bones (a Roggenbier), and Hollow Wolf Lord (a double New England IPA)
- Founded: June 2016
Flytrap Brewing | Located at 319 Walnut Street in downtown Wilmington
Recent Releases (Friday, June 28): Blueberry Saison (7.2% ABV), aged on local blueberries from Carol Sue Farms.
- 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
Gin barrel-aged beer releases (July 6): the Gin Barrel Wheat Hot Lithuanian Summer (6.5% ABV), fermented with a Lithuanian farmhouse ale yeast and aged in a freshly emptied Mother Earth gin barrel (all four of these beers were aged in Mother Earth gin barrels); the Gin Barrel Saison (6.3%), the most gin-forward of the group; the Gin Bramble Sour (6.4%), a sour wheat beer with blackberries aged for 10 months in oak before finishing in a gin barrel; and the Gin-dia Pale Ale (7.3%), the Port City IPA finished in a gin barrel.
Release (July 5): Radiance Summer Ale (5.2% ABV), a crisp golden ale with overtones of lemon zest, tart plum, and mild spice. “Think of it as a pilsner fermented with Belgian yeast,” Front Street’s Ellie Craig said.
Release (July 3): Tripel Play (8.6% ABV), a low-carb, light golden ale with Belgian overtones of plum, bubblegum, and spice and with a dry finish (only 8 grams of carbs per serving).
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
Recent Tap Release (June 21): Georgia on My Mind, a cream ale brewed with Georgia peaches and jalepeños, released for their 5th year anniversary.
- 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
Recent Release: Expedition Pale Ale (5.8% ABV), a modern American Pale Ale brewed with Azacca and Motueka hops.
- 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
New Beer Release (July 1): Cali Mole Rush, a West Coast IPA.
- 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
Tap Releases (July 6-7 weekend): the Blueberry Temptress, the second of their Sour Temptress Series, and the Fire Knife Double IPA returns.
- 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
Limited cans of Hammer of God pale lager are still available but no IPA cans until early August as the brewery transitions all clean production into its new facility.
- Brewers’ Choice: Rusty Cage, Five Thieves, Hillbilly Prophet
- Founded: 2016
Red Hare 34 North Experiment Station | 4802 Main St in Shallotte
Keep up with any new releases on their Facebook page (link above).
- Brewing Style: “Our style is fun, approachable beers. Specialize in lagers and crushable IPA’s to experiment wilds and sours, all usually with a classical and historically accurate base but with our innovative spin.”
- Brewers’ Top 3: Soft J IPA, SPF 50/50 Tangerine, and Putin’s Paradise Russian Imperial Stout
- Founded: 2012 (Shallotte location opened April 2018)
Salty Turtle Beer Co. | 103 Triton Lane in Surf City
Latest Releases: Summer Sands American Light Lager and Manila Mango NEIPA.
- 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
Waterline Brewing Co. | 721 Surry Street in Downtown Wilmington
Release: Mango Kolsch, brewed at 5.3% ABV.
Brewhouse Expansion: on Wednesday, July 3, the brewery doubled their cellar space by adding four 20-barrel fermenters, bringing their cellar capacity to 160 barrels.
- 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
Recent Tap Releases: Tides of Tangerine, a fruited summer wheat ale brewed at 7% ABV; and Just Camping 5.2, an American stout that is a lighter version of their original Glamping stout.
- 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
Can Releases: Summer Lure (a double-dry-hopped New England IPA), Rom Com (a passion fruit pale ale), Day’s Work (a session IPA brewed in collaboration with Wrightsville Beach band ASG), and Scott Bot (a double-dry-hopped New England IPA).
- 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
Throughout July, 11% of proceeds from their Signal Fire Session IPA will be contributed to the Brigade Boys and Girls Club.
- 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