We asked, you answered. After we called out seven breweries with exciting potential for 2015, you countered with some of your best new picks. Here are ten fan favorites from around the country and why they're worth visiting. If you’ve got any more under-the-radar breweries or brewpubs that deserve recognition, note them in the comments below.
1. Corsair Artisanal High Grav Beer Lab, Nashville, TN
Late last year, Corsair Artisanal distillery launched a full-on beer operation to compliment a diverse whiskey program. Since Tennessee has an odd law that classifies any beer with an ABV above 6.2 percent as a liquor, it's rare to find high gravity beers brewed in the state. Corsair's distilling license gives them a pass. Keep an eye out for their Hickory Alt, with barley smoked on site and their Ancient IPA, made with alt grains Farro, Kamut and Spelt.
(Recommended by FWx fan: Stephanie Stewart-Howard)
2. Solemn Oath, Naperville
Brewing with an eye towards Belgian-style and barrel-aged beers, Solemn Oath has put out a number of great higher gravity beers. And how can you not love a barleywine called Ticklefight?
(Recommended by FWx fan: Bobby Jungwirth,)
3. Westbrook, Mt. Pleasant, SC
South Carolina breweries like Westbrook are quickly putting the state on the map for great craft beer. Westbook is doing noteworthy barrel-aging work like last summer's limited edition aged version of their Mexican Cake, a spicy, cocoa-tinged stout. The One Claw Rye Pale is also a high-rated classic and available all year.
(Recommended by FWx fan: Holly Poulson Barcelona,)
4. Rhinegeist, Cincinnati, OH
Just opened in 2013, Rhinegeist has established a strong footing in Cincinnati with a full slate of interesting beers, particularly the Truth IPA. Their skull logo is pretty damn cool too.
(Recommended by FWx fan: Matt Ellison,)
5. Dry Hop Chicago, IL
You’ll have to go to the Lakeview neighborhood in Chicago to sample something from the constantly changing draft list, but they’re the first brewery in the area to use a crowler system (think a cross between a can and a growler) so you can take a can home with you.
(Recommended by FWx fan: Mandy Aaron Dysart,)
6. Barley's, Columbus, OH
Proud members of the Campaign to Save Real Ale (CAMRA), Barley’s makes a number of cask-conditioned ales in a style that is hundreds of years old. Every Friday they tap a new firkin (about a five gallon cask) that they will only pour for about two days. According to the brewpub though, the beer rarely even lasts that long.
(Recommended by FWx fan: Ian Hughey,)
7. 4 Hands, St. Louis
4 Hands has seen a lot of growth since it opened in 2012. The taproom a fantastic way to try great seasonals like Chocolate Milk Stout (winter) and Contact High Wheat (Spring-Summer), but the company also started to distribute locally.
(Recommended by FWx fan: Donald Schroeder,)
8. Redshedman Farm, Mt. Airy, MD
One of several new farm breweries, Redshedman actually grows its own hops on 200-plus acres.
(Recommended by FWx fan: Constance Casale,)
9. Shorts Brewing, Bellaire, MI
Shorts is committed to keeping its beer in Michigan, so it will take a trip to the Mitten State to get your hands on the Huma Lupa Licious IPA.
(Recommended by FWx fan: Laura Glick,)
10. O'So Brewing, Plover,WI
If you’ve never heard of little Plover, Wisconsin you aren’t alone. O’So brewing is doing great work out of a village of 12,000. Look for the Night Train porter around the state and down into Illinois.
(Recommended by FWx fan: Liam Goldrick,)