No Slowdown In Sight
The microbrew trend has mega appeal in the bay area. To cool down, what’s better than a pint or two? Thankfully, there’s no indication of a slowdown. You see it in the creativity of local brew houses, where taps flow with experimental concoctions and award-winning draughts. Here are ten locales that do it well. Use this list and challenge yourself to a local beer travelogue. Cheers!

GREEN BENCH BREWING CO.

1133 Baum Ave. N St. Petersburg, FL
greenbenchbrewing.com

This is the brewery that arguably started the microbrew trend in St. Petersburg. Out of 15 barrels at this brew house comes a benchmark beer, Green Bench IPA, of high hop content and resonating finish. The Surrealist IPA takes its inspiration from the works of Salvador Dali, yet another example of his ubiquitous St. Pete presence. Green Bench spends much of their creative energy on their oak fermented saisons and barrel-aged sour program. Cheer for the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field, and you’ll find custom 2-Seam Blonde Ale from Green Bench on tap. The Rays created the signature beer in conjunction with Green Bench and it is available only inside the stadium (located within walking distance).


81BAY BREWING CO.

4465 W Gandy Blvd. Tampa, FL
81baybrewco.com

Here, you’ll receive your pale ale or IPA in the correct glass. This is a brewery that pays attention to detail. Located in South Tampa, 81Bay features an oversized indoor taproom, all the better for those who need a rest from the heat. Through its 22 taps flow stouts, porters, lagers, reds, Mexican and Australian pilsners and bocks. One tap serves infused water. 81Bay just opened its doors in early June! Don’t miss all that’s available including limited releases and seasonal brews at one of the newest breweries in Tampa.


ULELE SPRING BREWERY

1810 N Highland Ave., Tampa, FL
ulele.com/ulele-spring-brewery

Oysters at UleleInside the 1903 Tampa Water Works building on the Hillsborough River, you’ll find the 2,100-square-foot Ulele Spring Brewery, Tampa Heights’ first on-site brewery. Here, fresh fruit and locally sourced honey are incorporated into krausened lagers and ales produced with Reinheitsgebot methods. Positioned at the north end of the picturesque Tampa Riverwalk, Ulele Spring Brewery produces five core beers and seasonal brews to complement the menu at the adjoining restaurant Ulele, which serves food inspired by Native American culture. The brewery’s Ulele Light, a medal-winner at the 2016 Florida Beer Championships, is the perfect companion to an order of the restaurant’s signature chargrilled oysters and fresh Gouda Grouper, while the award-winning Rusty’s Red pairs well with locally raised Fresh From FloridaTM beef by Strickland Ranch.


3 DAUGHTERS BREWING

222 22nd St. S
St. Petersburg, FL 33712 3dbrewing.com

Bring the kids and prepare to taste some creative craft brews. Beer lovers and the juice box set coexist here; after all, the brewery is named after the daughters of founders Mike and Leigh Harting. It seems only natural that patrons sip Beach Blonde Ale or Stern Line Stout while their children play oversized games of Jenga® or Connect Four®. There are 14 taps and a rotation of craft offerings, from the super-hoppy to the refreshingly light.


BIG STORM BREWING CO.

2 Taprooms
2330 Success Dr. Odessa, FL 12707
49th St. N Clearwater, FL bigstormbrewery.com

748A1516_American Pale Ale_landscapeBig Storm Brewing Co., named after the frequent summer storms that roll in from the Gulf of Mexico, uses locally sourced ingredients and infuses them into beer, paying homage to their roots. See if you can spot the wildflower honey sweetness that lends a balance to the hops in their Arcus IPA when you visit one of the two taprooms. The Clearwater location is 16,000 square feet of fermented inspiration, dedicated to brewing the higher volume core and seasonal brands. The new 8,000 square-foot brewery and tap room (only one block away from the original Big Storm brew haus) in Pasco County is where some of the more unique brews are created. Try the new Berliner Weisse, Merchant Porter and the long anticipated Sun on Maibok.


BarTHE BREW BUS TAMPA BAY

1-888-945-2739
brewbususa.com

It’s a brewery. It’s a bus. It’s a Brew Bus. What could be better en route to a brewery tour than complimentary beer? Passengers head to Seminole Heights, Tampa or St. Petersburg for brewery tours; while they ride, Brew Bus specialties like Last Stop India Pale Ale, Rollin Dirty Irish-Style Red Ale, and You’re My Boy, Blue are doled out. Guides know the local beer scene and are happy to share it over a cold one. Private and public tours are available.


7VENTH SUN

1012 Broadway Dunedin, FL
7venthsun.com

While some people may have “minored” in beer during college, co-founder Devon Kreps actually has a degree in Fermentation Science. Beyond the academics, 7venth Sun has variety and creativity down pat. Some uniquely named (and great tasting!) brews include Graffiti Orange Creamsicle Wheat, Time Bomb Session IPA with Citra & Nelson, and Headbanger IPA with Citra and Simcoe. Visit their website or call before you go to see what gems are on tap that day, or arrive and be surprised. Fill a growler or two with your favorite. Future plans include a new tasting room in Seminole Heights.