Sure, Niagara is well known for its wineries, and St. Catharines is in the heart of Ontario Wine Country, but there’s also an amazing craft beer scene here, too.
St. Catharines is home to a growing number of artisan beer makers who are turning out some of the best brews around. The city has earned its place on the Ontario ale trail with recent accolades over the last few years. Both Lock Street Brewing and Dragan Brewing have been recognized by the Ontario Brewing Awards. Plus, Downtown St. Catharines is home to one of Ontario’s oldest brewpubs, the Merchant Ale House.
Need more information to plan your tour of the local craft beer scene? Read about five of the top craft breweries in Niagara (listed alphabetically below) and a ‘Must Sip’ to try when you visit.
Cold Break Brewing
? 193 St. Paul St. W
Located in West St. Catharines, along the wine route, the 15-barrel brewhouse serves up great tasting beer. Opening in December of 2019, Cold Break Brewing offers a 125-seat taproom and spacious patio to enjoy great beer and an elevated food menu featuring locally sourced ingredients.
Must Sip: Galway – Irish Red Ale
Decew Falls Brewing Co.
? 207 St. Paul St. W.
Started in 2017, Decew Falls Brewing Company hit the streets asking local bars and restaurants to give its flagship brew a chance. They did. Now you can enjoy a Morningstar Cream Ale as well as new flavours and good food at the new Decew Falls tap room on St. Paul Street West.
Must Sip: Morningstar Cream Ale (still my favourite)
Dragan Brewing and Wine Company
? 100 Grantham Ave. S.
Dragan Brewing is St. Catharines’ newest craft brewery and is already making its mark on the local ale trail. Enjoy Dragan’s award-winning Garnet Azacca Citra Pale Ale paired with Charcuterie or paninis from their menu.
Must Sip: Garnet Azacca Citra Pale Ale
Lock Street Brewing Co.
? 15 Lock St.
Enjoy old craft in the heart of Port Dalhousie. Dedicated to making authentic beers and ales, Lock Street’s philosophy when crafting its brews is to take its time so you can enjoy yours. Check out the Biergarten (patio) out back and enjoy food by oddBird.xpress.
Must Sip: Jealous Mistress – English Brown Ale with Honey.
Merchant Ale House
? 98 St Paul St.
Among the pioneers of the craft brewing industry, the Merchant Ale House was St. Catharines’s first brewpub and has been brewing a wide variety of unique beers for more than 20 years. The Merch keeps the idea that there are few better companions than fine beers and great food close to heart and has become a Downtown St. Catharines icon.
Must Sip: Bad Blood – Dark Lager