One of the things that the Waterloo Region has become very well known for is the abundance of fine craft beer you can find in the area. Hey, after all, we started the craft beer movement in Ontario and so it only makes sense that you’ll still find the very best of it here.
Craft beer fans – and those who simply just know a great tasting brew when they find one – will have a wonderful time sampling all that is on offer in Waterloo, Kitchener, Cambridge and beyond. These are just a few of our favourites (in no particular order) to help whet your whistle into planning a good-old fashioned (brew)pub crawl.
Abe Erb Brewpub, 15 King Street South in Uptown Waterloo
If you’re looking to eat while you sip – which is always a sensible idea – make sure your first stop in Waterloo is at popular local haunt Abe Erb as it’s one of the only breweries in town that offers a full food menu as well as an amazing selection of beer. We recommend ensuring that you ask your server for a beer sampler flight for the first round, no matter what you are ordering to eat, as that’s the best way to try some of the best of them
The brewpub’s name pays homage to Abraham Erb, who has long been credited as being the founder of Waterloo. The space features design nods to him and to all kinds of local history with a bar made of the charred beams of St Jacob’s barn, windows from an old furniture factory and barrel light fixtures courtesy of the Seagrams museum.Oh, and by the way, there is a sister location in Kitchener too, for double the fun on a Waterloo Region pub crawl.
Our Favourite Beer Here: Das Spirithaus Hefeweizen
Innocente Brewing Company, 283 Northfield Drive East in Waterloo
Ever felt like some of the more outlandish craft beers must have been dreamt up by some kind of crazy scientist? A visit to Innocente Brewing Company may prove you right. It was founded by Steve Innocente, a man who not only knows his beer he also has a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology and a Post Doctoral Fellowship in studying yeast (in Scotland)
You will particularly enjoy a visit to Innocente if you are a fan of a dark ale, especially a nice bitter one. You’ll also enjoy the scenery; an elegant space dominated by a black walnut bar, towering tanks, and bustling brewmasters hard at work right in front of you.
Our Favourite Beer: Charcoal Porter (Canadian Gold Winner)
Grand River Brewing, 295 Ainslie Street in Cambridge
With more than a decade of experience under their belts, the brewmasters at Grand River Brewing have worked hard to ensure that this is one of the regions most well-known breweries.
The building that houses the brewery is special in itself, as it was once Today visitors the original home to the Galt Knife Company. This has created an amazing space filled with red double brick construction huge windows and tons of great light. Grand River Brewing also specialises in crafting full flavoured beers with an alcohol content less than 5%, so if you don’t want to go too crazy, but do want a great beer, this is the place to head.
Our Favourite Beer: Grand River Tailgate
Waterloo Brewing Company, 400 Bingemans Centre Drive in Kitchener
It would be impossible to miss this brewery off the list. Why? For one it’s a fantastic place. And secondly, the Waterloo Brewing Company (the craft beer division of Brick Brewing Co) is Ontario’s original craft brewery. Yes, this is where it all started and Waterloo Dark, its signature brew is still one of the best you’ll ever taste, guaranteed. But we do however advise you to take your time – and bring at least a couple of growlers – to explore the other options as there are some real stunners.
Our Favourite Beer: Waterloo Dark