Top Breweries in Midwest

Woman pour off beer head from a glass of draught beer using a knife

In no particular order we’re going to list the top 15 breweries in the midwest that’ll KNOCK YOUR SOCKS OFF!

No. Literally. KNOCK your socks clean off with many of the offerings these breweries produce. As hard apple cider producers we are quite impressed with the creative minds an brewmasters behind these craft beer operations. We give respect where respect is due.

You can have a look at what we have to offer by clicking here to learn more about what makes Blake’s hard to shake when it comes to quality hard cider. This isn’t your girlfriends Mike’s hard lemonade. This is the real deal.

These midwest beer brands will take you on a road trip with your taste buds competing for your sip. Below is a midwest breweries map of some of the top companies we can find to get you warmed up for the races.


Number #1

Dark Horse – Marshall, MI

Hailing all the way from Marshall, MI, this wild stallion galluped it’s way to the top of our list for classic’s such as Scotch ale Scotty Karate and any variation of their “Plead the 5th” stout. As dark as this horse may be, their offerings are sure to brighten your mood in even the most dire life circumstances.


Number #2

Kuhnhenn – Warren, MI

This small town brewery with big time national awards is growing up fast as they speed up and expand their production to reach more drinkers.

Speaking of drinkers, Dripa may very well be the smoothest 9% beer you’ll ever have. Then you’ll know why it’s won so many awards. We’d tell you to take our word for it, but then again, we’d tell you to visit their pub to taste it for yourself. Thank us later.


Number #3

Bell’s – Kalamazoo, MI

As the great Anita Ward once said in her chart topping song, “You can ring my bellllll, belllll, belllll, ring my bell”

Bell’s brewery traces it’s roots back to a homebrew supply shop in Kalamazoo in the early 80’s. Defining summers with selections few beer craft companies can, Bell became one of the founding fathers of the craft brew scene – not only in the Midwest, but nationwide.

They’re constantly pushing their own limits to the max with classics such as Black Note; a barrel-aged stout sure to knock your socks off, or Hopslam; akin to jumping your tastebuds and slamming you on the ground with loads of flavor.


Number #4

Founders – Grand Rapids, MI

Whether your walking from around the corner or taking a road trip from Los Angeles to the Mitten State, Founder’s customer service team will always make you feel like your right at home getting a feel for your personal palate and making suggestions to match it, while also giving you the opportunity to take a trip on the wild side if you’re feeling especially adventurous.

But the customer service wouldn’t make a lick of difference if their selections didn’t speak volumes about their attention to detail and quality ingredients.

Be sure to try the Mango Magnifico — a mix of spicy habaneros and the sweet taste of mangoes. It’s to DIE for!


Number #5

Upland – Bloomington, IN

Indiana’s second largest brewery located in Bloomington, Upland has become a local staple since they’ve opened back in 1997.

How did they do it? On the strength of their unique blend of excellent sours such as Eantillon Rose de Gambrinus and Elgoods Coolship Lambic #2.

By the way, we have some really awesome hard cider you should try. Click here to learn more.


Number #6

New Glarus – New Glarus, WI

Currently enjoying it’s 3rd decade of brewing excellence, New Glarus with it’s Raspberry Tart and Serendipity fruit beers draw the most attention among the craft beer geek set until they recently released Scream (Double IPA) and, in New Glarus fashion, nailed it.

They’ve been bombarded with expansion opportunities and deals but aren’t able to as they can barely keep up with demand in their own state of Wisconsin! So if you want a taste of their best, if you’re out of town or state, prepare yourself for a road trip to beer heaven.


Number #7

Pipeworks – Chicago, IL

With the slogan “Small Batches, Big Beers”, Pipeworks Brewing is the brain child of Beejay Oslon and Gerrit Lewis who specialize in gypsy brewing – a concept where beer production is made more than once. Once it’s done, it’s done. You will never experience it again.

Began from a $30,000 fundraising kickstart program back in 2012, the duo have released seriously sought after double IPA’s like their Square Grouper and Citra.


Number #8

Summit – St. Paul, MN

When the craft movement was going through it’s own ‘great depression during the mid-’80’s, Summit was ‘clawing it’s way on to the top’ of an uncertain industry. Apparently, their tenacity paid off. Big time. They’ve evolved into a 240,000 barrel-a-year (that’s THOUSAND with a capital “T”) sending their beer to every corner of these great United States. What’s more astonishing is they’ve managed to maintain their ‘street cred’ amongst craft beer enthusiasts with selections like their Saga IPA and Fest Bier.


Number #9

Central Waters – Amherst, WI

Unlike their Wisconsin neighbors, New Glarus, Central Waters Brewery has out-of-state distribution of their most popular selections for the ambitious craft enthusiast who are a bit out of reach from their central location. Their devout following stemming from their wide-ranging barrel-aging program makes this one a keeper.


Number #10

Surly – Minneapolis, MN

Initially, Surly Brewing Company became so popular in their home state that, out of loyalty, pulled OUT of other states they were distributing to including the lucrative market in Chicago.

Wanting to build a $20 million state-of-the-art restaurant and beer garden, they were limited by state laws and ordinances. Their influence along with heavy support and petitions from beer advocates persuaded legislation, including the Governor himself, to revise state laws accommodating their goals.

Now SURLY…that’s some powerful craft beer!


Number #11

Toppling Goliath – Decorah, IA

Toppling Goliath Brewing Company is a fitting name for the underdogs in the small town of Decorah, IA. Though they lack the big brand recognition, marketing and distribution systems, what they lack in size they make up for in character with bold brews like Kentucky Brunch and The Assassin. Take THAT you big bully giant!


Number #12

Goose Island – Chicago, IL

Before you go up in arms about the validity of Goose Island’s entry because of their acquisition by Anheuser-Busch InBev, there is still a large enough segment who are scrambling to get their hands on BCS variants each fall and with sours like their blackberry-infused Juliet, Goose still got the goods in light of being majority owned (and thus, no longer officially ‘craft’) by large scale producers and distributors.


Number #13

Boulevard – Kansas City, MO

A Kansans pride and joy, Boulevard Brewing Company, the Midwest’s home for fine ales and lagers since 1989, is on a special mission to produce fresh, flavorful beers using only the best ingredients on the face of planet Earth using both old and new brewing techniques.

Speaking of brewing techniques, one of their most prized brewing feats, Tank 7, was a total accident that turned out to be a delightful mistake. Gee. If only mistakes could turn out so tasty more often…

…hey, we can dream, right?


Number #14

Perennial Artisan Ales – St. Louis, MO

Established in September 2011, this St. Louis company embraces a cult-like following hooked to their saisons and sours like an IV needle to an arm. Their barrel aged, rye-aged imperial stout – Abraxas – is hunted down for it’s perfectly tuned mix of cocoa nibs, vanilla, cinnamon, and ancho chile.

Influenced largely by Belgian and American craft styles using fine premium fruits, spices or wild yeast strains, Perennial’s hand-crafted beers are a pleasure to drink…responsibly, of course.


Number #15

Three Floyds – Munster, IN

If you’ve wondered who lead the charge in modern day beer release parties, it was none other than Three Floyds with their strange, yet oddly cool dark theme. In addition to making cult classics like Zombie Dust and Dreadnaught they’ve jumped into the distillery side of the industry in an effort to expand their reach nationwide.

Man drawing beer from tap in an plastic cup and hand oh another man takes beer plastic cup Draught beer. The bartender pours a beer in a plastic cup. On the bar table are plastic cups with a beer


So there you have it. The best midwest brewery brands in the country. You’ll be hard pressed to find any better, unless of course you do which we’ love to know about to consider adding our list if they check out.

If you’re around our neck of the woods stop on buy and say “Howdy” at 17985 Armada Center Rd. Armada, MI 48005, give us a call at 586-784-9463 or shoot us an email at for questions or inquiries.

You can also visit us at Blake’s Hard Cider to learn more about our latest products and exciting upcoming events.

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