Kathleen Storey and Bob Peterson met on a dating app and instantly began chatting about their mutual appreciation of craft beer. When they decided to meet in person, they went to a local beer bar.
“One pint turned to three as we continued to grow more comfortable and wanted to learn more about each other,” she says. “To this day, any time we go to a brewery, we play different games that allow us to continue to get to know each other in new ways. Every brewery visit is an opportunity to grow our love.”
When the couple got engaged, they knew they wanted to host their big day at a brewery. “When we started planning our wedding, the only venue we truly had in mind was Revolution Brewing because of its importance to us and the city of Chicago as an independent brewery,” says bride Kathleen Storey.
Breweries have become popular destinations for happy hours and weekend plans. Many are increasingly becoming the chosen spot for couples to say, “I do.” As couples look to create memorable celebrations for themselves and their guests, a growing slew is foregoing traditional halls and venues for places that feel more casual and often don’t require a wedding planner to dress up.
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But Revolution is far from the only brewery that regularly hosts marriage ceremonies.
There are around 10,000 breweries across the United States, many of which can host events ranging from small affairs with a handful of people to warehouse blowouts with a few hundred guests. For those looking to get in with a crowd—and save some money—Milwaukee’s Lakefront Brewery hosts an annual Valentine’s Day wedding event where couples can tie the knot or review their vows. But for those who prefer to have their own big day, here are some of the best breweries for weddings around the country.
Chicago, Illinois | Up to 250 Guests
Revolution operates two brewing locations in Chicago, a pub and the larger production facility where Storey and Peterson married. Since the company began hosting weddings a dozen years ago, more than 800 couples have sealed the deal inside those walls. Meghan Rutledge, chief people officer for Revolution, says that’s because couples are “placing more of a focus on the quality of the drinks, specifically beer, served at their wedding.” In the operation’s Kedzie Tap Room, with its soaring 30-foot ceilings and plenty of natural light, offers a glimpse through a floor-to-ceiling glass wall at the brewery’s state-of-the-art canning line. You can fit in up to 250 guests for a cocktail-style affair and 180 for a seated buffet.
Penn Yan, New York | Up to 100 Guests
Abandon Brewing Co., which specializes in beer, seltzer and cider, regularly hosts weddings—and the locale makes clear why. This rustic farm brewery sits on 25 acres of picturesque Finger Lakes land complete with a vineyard. Ceremonies can take place overlooking the sparkling Keuka Lake, while receptions are held on an open-air pavilion adorned with string lights adjacent to the barn. Looking to stay the night? Those booking their nuptials here have the opportunity to reserve a restored 1800s farmhouse nestled among vineyards and apple trees. With breathtaking lake views from the roomy front porch, it’s a scenic spot to both get ready for the event and unwind after vows are exchanged.
Denver, Colorado | Up to 200 Guests
Just down the road from Coors Field is one of the Mile High City’s most popular breweries for craft beer aficionados. Bierstadt Lagerhaus specializes in traditional, uncompromising lagers, which are made by Ashleigh Carter and Bill Eye with patience and commitment—the perfect philosophy upon which to start a life-long commitment. It’s not a typical wedding venue—events are held in an industrial-style, 21,000-square-foot space, outfitted with a built-in stage and AV system—which is why many couples gravitate toward it. Oversized yard games and vintage pinball machines are also on offer. “Less fancy, more fun,” says brewery manager Chuck Harris.
South Glens Falls, New York | Up to 220 Guests
Located in the gateway to the Adirondacks, Commons Roots Brewing Co. is a well-appointed and thoughtful community brewery with private and semi-private event spaces, perfect for couples who both love beer and a rustic farmhouse vibe. Whether you opt to book half the casual Biergarten, which offers relaxing Adirondack chair seating and cozy firepots, or the Brewer’s Bar, with its view into the industrial brewing facility, there’s an option for a wide range of weddings.
San Carlos, California | Up to 130 Guests
Near the midway point between San Francisco and San Jose, and not far from the Bay, Devil’s Canyon Brewing Co. offers more than 25,000 square feet of event space, with different, customizable rooms available. The main taproom feels like a traditional weekend hangout vibe, while the barrel room is larger and can be transformed to match any aesthetic. An outdoor pavilion can provide a casual, communal space.
Fridley, Minnesota | Up to 125 Guests
The Forgotten Star Brew Company, located adjacent to the Northern Stacks event space, is located just north of Minneapolis. Weddings are held in a refurbished World War II-era factory, which has been converted into a chic industrial space. Expect a dramatic backdrop of soaring smokestacks and double-height windows that welcome in photo-friendly natural light, plus an interior that’s essentially a blank canvas ready for couples to transform.
Austin, Texas | Up to 200 Guests
Farm weddings always carry a certain air of charm. This venue, on the outskirts of Austin, may offer more than most. Jester King is one of the country’s finest spontaneous breweries, which take advantage of local wild microbes to aid in the fermentation of its beer (it also has a lovely clean beer program). Set on rolling acres on the outskirts of Hill Country, the brewery offers a sense of serenity and calm. From the exposed beam farmhouse to the pristine landscaping, the brewery grounds will charm guests of all ages—all while introducing them to wild ales of distinction. A fun amenity: Couples can arrange to have the property’s herd of 75 Nigerian dwarf goats crash the party. The four-legged creatures are invited to mingle with (and be fed by) reception guests, who’ll be treated to displays of head butting and general cuteness.
Cincinnati, Ohio | Up to 250 Guests
This Cincinnati brewing staple offers a number of venue spaces, but the operation’s Club House is one of the top picks for good reason. Rhinegeist Brewery’s string light-lit Clubhouse space offers more than 6,000 square feet of rustic brick walls, gleaming pine floors and wide wooden rafters—the perfect setting for couples looking to meld modern and traditional without having to add too much decor. It’s got all the space but is far more fun than a traditional banquet hall. Guests can also opt for the more petite Annex space, which delivers historic taproom vibes with industrial concrete flooring and charcoal-hued walls.
St. Louis, Missouri | Up to 100 Guests
This venerable craft brewery, which dates back to 1991, now has three locations in the city, each with its own event space. At each one, Schlafly Beer uses its innovative on-site kitchens for the celebrations it hosts, creating a real sense of place in the weddings held there. Views range from the city’s skyline and Main Street to the brewhouse. Gatherings held at each can range from formal to casual, with the staff working diligently to make sure pints flow freely.
Up to 250 Guests
There are farmhouse breweries and then there are breweries located on a farm. The Brewery at Four Star, in the Berkshire Mountains, is the latter. It’s located on a hop farm, so couples can hold photography sessions among pretty rows of hop trellises. With its large rustic barn and well-kept grounds, this is an excellent venue to showcase the beauty of the Connecticut River Valley and, of course, love.
Stowe, Vermont | Up to 250 Guests
Overlooking Vermont’s Green Mountains, this alpine-themed brewery and resort is owned by the famed singing family. It’s located on 2,600 gorgeous acres, which provides ample space and a picturesque meadow setting. Ceremonies can be held on a rustic wooden deck, above the tree canopy with the rolling mountains clearly in the distance. For the reception, opt to rent the seasonal tent in the secluded Wedding Meadow, which offers a panoramic view of the mountain ranges surrounding Stowe. There’s also the indoor Mozart Room, situated in a welcoming post-and-beam space with high ceilings and an open-hearth fireplace.
Philadelphia, PA | Up to 200 Guests
Yards Brewing Company’s event space is housed on its sprawling second floor, which can accommodate up to 200 guests. The Philadelphia institution is considered by many to be a temple of brewing excellence, which should certainly help to impress guests. This location—the brewery’s third in its lifetime—was built only a few years ago and serves up a sleek, stainless-steel brewhouse backdrop. Expect floor-to-ceiling views of the taproom and brewery and a dedicated bar, plus bistro lighting and wooden farmhouse tables. Take things to the next level with customized pint glasses for the big day.
Published: November 24, 2023