Best Breweries in Madison: Pints to Try in 2023
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Best Breweries in Madison

Pints to Try in 2023

Best Breweries in Madison: A Tour of Beer

When it comes to breweries in Madison, there are an overwhelming number of choices. So many beers to try and so little time to try them!

Fortunately, the foodies at Madison Eats Food Tours are here to make it easier to find the right brew for you. In this post, we’ll explore some of the best breweries in Madison so you can get the perfect pint for the occasion.

Best Breweries on the East Side of Madison

Madison’s east side has breweries old and new that expertly pair craft beer with tasty bites. Here are a few great choices for beer in Atwood and the surrounding areas.

One Barrel Brewing Company

2001 Atwood Avenue

As the name eludes, One Barrel Brewing Company started out making beer, one barrel at a time. Since their beginning, they have made just a few bigger batches to meet the demand for their variety of beer styles they offer. One Barrel makes approachable beer and ciders for those long-time beer lovers or those new to beer fans. One Barrel also offers boutique BBQ to pair perfectly with a cold pint. Find OBBC beer canned around the Madison area. 

Starkweather Brewing Company

2439 Atwood Avenue

Starkweather is the newest brewery on the east side. Opening in early 2022, Starkweather has specialized in brewing really good beer–with a spin or two, to the taste buds. Beers with sweet heat–pairing fruit and jalapeno or habanero will wake you up. Outside of their unique combination beers, they also have standard styles that pair well with some of their food made in-house (try their totchos!). 

Karben4 Brewing

3698 Kinsman Blvd

Karben4 is celebrating their 10 year anniversary in 2023 by going back to the basics of why they started the brewery–great, fresh beer, made in-house. Karben4 even has amazing igloos to enjoy your beer outside, even during the chilly Madison winters. Make sure to grab a Sal’s pizza pie, Batch Bakery Pretzel, along with the rotating selection of local food trucks to pair with your beer selection. Karben4 has their current beer in their tap room, and make sure to pick up some of their great beer in stores–-look for the great can art (See Fantasy Factory). Find Karben4 beer around the Madison and Wisconsin area. 

Best Breweries on Madison’s West Side

Madison’s West Side has some large, well-established names in the beer game. Here are a couple top picks:

Capitol Brewery

7734 Terrace Avenue, Middleton, WI

Capitol Brewery in Middleton offers classic beer flavors, with a solid rotation of their fan favorites, along with their seasonal special releases. Tap room bar came directly from Germany, along with some of the classic beer recipes they still use today. Grab a six-pack in your local store or get a huge selection of their tap room exclusive beers, that will keep your taste buds happy. Find Capitol beers at their taproom, along with cans around the Madison area. 

Great Dane Hilldale

357 Prince Place

The Great Dane Hilldale is one of the multiple GD locations around the Madison area. Started in 1994 by two friends, The Great Dane has continued the brew pub tradition in Madison. The Great Dane Hilldale is a wonderful location to get a pint, after a long day of shopping at Hilldale Shopping Center. Find cans of Great Dane beer all around the Madison area. 

Best Breweries near Wisconsin Capitol Square

If you’re in downtown Madison during the warmer months, grabbing a cold brewski is a must. Here are a few great breweries near the Wisconsin State Capitol:

Young Blood Beer Company

112 King St 

(also 557 North Street)

With beer names such as, “I’m Calling About Your Vehicle’s Extended Warranty” and “Unsupervised at Target” you will find just as unique flavor combinations. Young Blood was started in 2020, and they make a slew of beers that will keep you on your toes with the flavors they are putting in cans and pints. Their beers are ever-rotating and always with a clever name! Find Young Blood beer at their downtown taproom, at their North Street taproom, and cans all over the Madison and Wisconsin area. 

Working Draft Beer Company

1129 E Wilson St

Working Draft was started to dedicate their beer to the classic European styles, while also bringing a fresh take at new American styles. From their czech-style pale ale to their newest hazy IPA, Working Draft beers appeal to a wide audience of beer lovers. Make sure to snag a stool at their bar–made out of old bowling lane wood, while enjoying a can of Nutkrack or a Baked Lab treat! Working Draft beer can be found at their taproom, along with cans all over the Madison area. 

Giant Jones

931 E Main Street (Brearly St Entrance)

Founded in 2018 by Jessica and Erika Jones, Giant Jones is known for their BIG beers for everyone. Think barleywines, double IPAs, golden strong ale, etc. Giant Jones is also Madison’s first certified organic brewery. Each spring, Giant Jones hosts their Barleywine Fest, which brings together in-house and guest taps of some high gravity and high quality Barleywine. Happening March 25th, 2023.  Grab some Slide chips or Origin Pizza (on Wednesdays) when enjoying a sip of their variety of beers. Find Giant Jones beer on tap or in bottles around Madison. 

Best Breweries on Madison’s North Side

Madison’s Northside is often overlooked when it comes to great beer. Here are two top breweries in the area:

Lone Girl

114 E Main St #101, Waunakee, WI

The Lone Girl offers delicious food, craft beer, of course and other drinks in a welcoming atmosphere that everyone can enjoy! The patio is a great space to gather in the warmer weather while you listen to live music, talk with friends and eat your way through burgers and curds, or why not stop in for brunch and enjoy strawberry french toast, or the freight train burrito with eggs, chorizo, sausage, smoked ham, potatoes, cheddar cheese, and chipotle ranch topped with queso and pico. Yum!

Octopi/Untitled Art

1131 Uniek Drive, Waunakee, WI

Octopi contracts with other brands to help them brew or package their products. Octopi/Untitled Art is also known for their creativity in flavors and offerings. From their Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream flavored stouts to their fruit ade beers, and even a large selection of non-alcoholic beers. Octopi/Untitled Art has specialty and standard beer selection in their Waunakee taproom. Check for both brands in stores or restaurants. Grab a variety to see the next flavor they will make next. 

Best Breweries on Madison’s South Side

Fitchburg and the surrounding areas have plenty of great breweries to enjoy. Here are two that are worth the trip:

Delta Beer Lab

167 E Badger Rd

Opened in 2019. 

The tap room looks like you’re stepping into a scientist’s lab, but that scientist lets you taste their formulas for a great pour. Grab a flight to try all of their new concoctions—even served in a beaker. Find Delta beer at their tap room, local restaurants, or in cans–sold at local stores (their labels look like periodic table labels). Each month, Delta donates a portion of their profits to rotating local charities. Grab Baked Lab treats or a Batch Bakehouse pretzel, while playing a boardgame from their collection. 

Hop Haus Fitchburg

2975 Sub-Zero Parkway (also a location in Verona)

Started in 2015 by a husband and wife team, Hop Haus specializes in a variety of beers, from pilsners to IPAs, to sours. Standard rotation of year round beers, alongside their seasonal or specialty, experimental beers. Try out their new slider menu to pair with a delicious seasonal beer. (Tip: Make sure to grab a side of their habanero dipping sauce, to dip their crispy fries or cheese curds in)

Grab Hop Haus beer at one of their pouring locations or in local grocery stores.

Get out there and try some beers this year!

Madison is becoming its own beer mecca with new microbreweries opening every year. If you’d like to explore Madison’s beer scene, try some of the spots listed above — or book a food tour with Madison Eats. We explore food, culture, and history of Madison’s iconic neighborhoods so you can eat (and drink) well while learning about the area. We’d love to see you on a tour!