Since the new Capital Craft Beverage Trail Passport just came out on July 1st 2020 I thought I’d put together a list of the best 15 breweries near Albany New York. We’ve lived here for the last 3 years and always try to make it to as many breweries as possible. Me being gone for work makes that pretty hard but we’ve been able to complete the first couple pages of the passport every year. Maybe this will be the year we make it to all of them.
Each page of the passport you complete will earn you prizes like a koozie, tasting glass, or free event tickets.
Make sure the first brewery you hit up you ask for the passport you can keep track. I’m glad these brewery passports have gotten popular. I’ve always kept track of my brewery adventures and now so does everyone else, so it doesn’t seem as weird #judgementfreezone #imnotanalcoholiciswear
- Fort Orange – I’ve only been here once but I loved the vibe & they had some great beers too. Plus their flight board is pretty unique, modeled after Fort Orange in Albany.
- Druther’s* – See Schenectady
- Nine Pin Cider – I know it’s not beer but if you like cider they are a must visit! Love that their flight boards are in the shape of an apple & the fact that all the fruit they use is sourced from NY!
- Great Flats – My favorite brewery both for space & beer plus I love their logo! Their Raspberry IPA (pictured above) is still one of the best beers I’ve ever had and I love that their brewery has so much light and opens up to the outside so you can have the best of both worlds.
- Frog Alley – They have one of the best spaces in the area, right in downtown Schenectady with a huge outdoor patio. I love that they have a little bit of everything on tap style wise. I also just learned they’re named after an old baseball team in the area.
- Druther’s* – There are 3 Druther’s locations in the area (Albany, Schenectedy, and Saratoga Springs). They all have the same beers and most of the same food options however this location is my favorite because it’s right on the water. I highly recommend getting their Mac N Cheese for dinner which is large enough to share or save some for later. My favorite beers of theirs is the Scottish-Style 80 Shilling Ale & the Against the Grain Hefeweizen.
- Rare Form – This brewery makes the list because I love their neighborhood bar vibe. They’ve always got games, they do lots of events like trivia or movie nights. Plus their delivery truck will take you right in to an episode of That 70s Show. I always get their Members Only Brown Ale.
- Shmaltz – Walking distance to Rare Form, this is the ONLY Jewish beer company in the country. They always have some unique seasonal beers that are packed with flavor. Currently they’ve got a pastry stout with chocolate & raisins called Babka Loves Rugelach.
Check out BottleKeeper to keep your beer cold no matter how hot this summer is
15 breweries near Albany New York
Malta & Clifton Park
- Hank Hudson - Located on a golf club they've got a pretty sweet view, delicious beers and is run by two high school teachers who decided to take their passion for beer to the next step.
- Unified - Love the story of this brewery, started by a couple who fell in love with each other and with beer. Much like my own story except we don't have our brewery yet. Their brewery has a great vibe full of lots of locals and events.
- SingleCut - We were pretty stoked that a major brewery from NYC came up and opened a location near us. Love that their beers are all named after musicians and songs. I tried their Softly Spoken Magic Spells Double IPA with orange juice & apricots and damn was it juicy!
- Racing City - This is a very cozy brewery owned by a husband wife team. They even have wine if you need a break from all the beer. Their brewery is themed after the famous racetrack downtown Saratoga so be ready to see horses on everything. Their Short Stack Maple Hazlenut Black Lager is my go to.
- Walt & Whitman - For my full blog post on their brewery click here. They are a restaurant, coffee shop and brewery all packed in one. Basically I can spend the whole day there. Starting off with a homemade pop tart & one of their Girl Scout cookie themed lattes. Then head downstairs to start drinking their Now, Forager Raspberry Berliner Weisse while devouring a Detroit style pizza.
- Druther's*- this location is way cozier than their other locations but it's prime real estate right in downtown Saratoga Springs.
- Northway - This one might be the furthest from Albany but it is well worth the drive and is the best brewery on this list in my opinion. They are hands down my favorite brewery in the area because I've liked every beer I've gotten from them. The first beer we ever got was their Mango Milkshake IPA which we still pick up every year along with their Double Sunrise IPA and my new favorite OatBituary - an Oatmeal Stout made with Death Wish Coffee.
- Common Roots - One of the first breweries we fell in love with up here, mostly because of their Snowy Night double stout on nitro. We were lucky enough to visit their taproom a couple times before they had a terrible fire. They're quickly rebuilding a new taproom and brewery that is bigger and better than before - can't wait for it to open!
- Mean Max - Finally made it up to their brewery after trying out some of their beers from our local beer shop. Their flavors are on point! I highly recommend the All Fluffed Up Peanut Butter and Fluff Porter or any of their cream ales.
I hope you've enjoyed this guide to the best 15 breweries near Albany, New York! If you visit any please post on Facebook or Instagram and tag me @thehoppyflightattendant
Have more Brewery Adventures to plane? Check out my other posts about beer & breweries: