Breweries Near Hershey Pennsylvania


Breweries Near Hershey Pennsylvania
By: B. Kline 

Hershey Pennsylvania is known as the “Sweetest Place on Earth”, and visiting it, with family or friends is often a tourist destination for many people. Chocolate World and HersheyPark pack people in nearly all year round. And this time of year is currently ‘Candy Land’ at HersheyPark, and they also have the Sweet Lights Tour down nearby Boathouse Road. It is a wonderful time in Hershey and a beautiful area to visit, so you might be curious…. what lovely breweries and fun places is there to visit as a craft beer drinker. Pennsylvania is a rich brewery heavy state. Especially given its size. Though a lot of breweries are condensed in the bigger cities like Pittsburgh and Philadelphia; the Hershey/Harrisburg area has quite a few selections as well.

In Hershey there is currently two breweries – Troegs Independent Brewing; which I am sure most people have heard of (famous for Mad Elf and Nugget Nectar) and Iron Hill (Hershey). Iron Hill is a chain craft brewery that has numerous (nearly twenty) locations throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Tattered Flag, a craft brewery and distillery has recently taken over a local craft bar in Hershey (Hershey Biergarten) to open a Distillery Lounge but they do have some of their beers on tap their as well. Soon, (targeted date was January 2020, but its looking to be much closer to May 2020) Rubber Soul Brewing Company will be opening in the nearby small town of Hummelstown. In the outskirts of Harrisburg, there is Boneshire Brew Works, Newfangled Brew Works, and Pizza Boy’s secondary location at Official BBQs and Burgers. In the city of Harrisburg there is ZeroDay Brewing, Appalachian Brewing Company, The Millworks, and The Vegetable Hunter.

So, as you can see, there is a lot of choices surrounding Hershey. I am going to give a little brief information on each of these breweries, as well as some of their beers on tap, so if you are traveling in the area you can stop by some of these great breweries and check them out.

Troegs Independent Craft Brewing 
Located At: 200 Hersheypark Dr, Hershey, PA 17033 
Untappd Link: https://untappd.com/troegsbrewingcompany 

Lets first start with Troegs Independent Brewing. Possibly the one you are most familiar with on this list, and it is the second largest (by volume of barrels made and sold) craft brewery in Pennsylvania (behind Yuengling – which by the way has recently released, on draft only, a special Hershey’s collaboration that can be found in the area: Yuengling Hershey’s Porter.) Troegs is located right next to HersheyPark. (Well, about a half mile down the road on HersheyPark Road, just after the Hershey Tangier Outlets.) The brewery gets pretty packed, which might be its only detriment, but the beer is fantastic and the food is amazing, so its a must stop anyway, depending on your time and season, you might just need to cut the visit short – unless you don’t mind the crowds.

 They have certainly been expanding too. Adding the foeders and making a larger cellar room. They’ve added a beer garden outfront. And lots and lots more parking. Which somehow still doesn’t feel like its enough! 

They have also branched out and done a lot more of their Splinter Series beers, done more and more regular scratches, and even begun to can some of the scratch beers, and upped the number of rotational/seasonal beers. Releasing some big hits like Lollihop, Golden Thing, and various Scratches in beer can that have all gotten great reviews. 

They have also added an upstairs loft with its own food menu and its own bar (though the taplist is the same as it is in the side-room by the foeders and at the main bar, just slightly more limited). The pizza upstairs is the best new feature total though, hop on that immediately! 

Their taplist is ever evolving, but in recent month or so, their taplist at the main bar has looked similar to this:

  • Perpetual IPA – IPA – American – 7.5% 
  • Troegennator Double Bock – Bock – Imperial – 8.2% 
  • Sunshine Pils – Pilsner – 4.5% 
  • HopBack Amber Ale – Red Ale – Amber Ale – 6% 
  • DreamWeaver – Wheat Beer – 4.8% 
  • JavaHead – Stout – Coffee – 7.5% 
  • Hop Knife – IPA – American – 6.2% 
  • Nimble Giant – IPA – Imperial / Double – 9% 
  • Naked Elf – English Ale – 6.9% 
  • Golden Thing – DDH – IPA – Double – 8.2% 
  • Boysenberry Tart Ale – Sour – 4.5% 
  • Raspberry Tart Ale – Sour – 4.5% 
  • Fest Lager – Lager – Marzen – 6.1% 
  • Dear Peter – Farmhouse Saison – 7.6% 

In Bottles Only: 

  • LaGrave Triple Golden Ale – Belgian – 8% 
  • Jovial Dubbel Ale – Belgian – 7% 
  • Mad Elf Grand Cru (2018) – Belgian Strong Dark – 11% 
  • Mad Elf Grand Cru (2019) – Belgian Strong Dark – 11%
  • Wild Elf – Farmhouse Wild Ale – 11% 
  • Bourbon Barrel-Aged Impending Descent – Russian Stout – 12% 
  • Bourbon Barrel-Aged Troegenator – Double Bock – 9.8% 
  • Bourbon Barrel-Aged Flying Mouflan – Belgian – 11.5% 
  • Dear Peter  
  • Farmette – Farmhouse Saison – 6.5% 
  • Blackberry Tizzy – Sour – 7.8% 
  • Mortal Cherry – Farmhouse Wild Ale – 6.6% 
  • Apricot Farmette – Farmhouse Saison – 7.4% 
  • Impending Descent (2019)

Troeg also has cider from Big Hill Ciderworks as well as numerous non-alcoholic sodas in bottle (for children and non-drinking drivers).  

If you’ve never been to Troegs Brewery before, make sure you take the walking tour. It’s a quick 5-10 minute self guided tour but you get to see some neat things along the way (like the krausen for DreamWeaver as well as their bottling and canning lines). They also offer a regular brewery tour and now a ‘Splinter Series’ tour as well.

Troegs currently has 409 uniquely produced beers (according to Untappd, which is a bit dated on this, since a lot of their scratches were released before Untappd was created, and they are currently up to Scratch 397) with a global average rating on Untappd of 3.79. 

Iron Hill (Hershey)
Located At: 101 Chocolate Ave., Hershey PA
Untappd Link: https://untappd.com/v/iron-hill-brewery-restaurant/8417581

Iron Hill is a large chain of brewery-restaurants mainly across Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and even one location in Delaware. Some have given it a comparison to Applebee’s. Which for some of the locations might be apt, but I think the Hershey location is a bit of a step above that. It does suffer a tad bit from ‘chain syndrome’ but for the most part, the Hershey location is its own unique animal.

It is located on Chocolate Ave which has become “downtown” Hershey now and in the past year has exploded into a night life scene with numerous bars, restaurants, and stores. Iron Hill is located just next to Primanti Bros. in the side-strip mall that this area has now become. (It is easily accessible by the backroad leading out of Chocolate World / HersheyPark side parking lot.)

Some beers currently on tap are:

  • Spruce Moose – 6.19% NE-IPA
  • Iron Hill Iron Giant – 7.7% IPA
  • Guavaboi – 6.6% IPA Milkshake
  • Reindeer’s Revenge – 9% Belgian Trippel
  • Chocolate Oatmea Stout – 5.6% Oatmeal Stout
  • Philly Special – 6.7% NE-IPA
  • Winter Warmer – 5.8% Winter Warmer
  • Lodestone Lager – 5% Lager

Tattered Flag Distillery Lounge
Located At: 251 Chocolate Avenue, Hershey PA

A bit up the road on Chocolate Avenue is the former Hershey Biergarten, now Distillery Lounge for the Tattered Flag Brewery & Distillery. Unfortunately I do not have more knowledge here to really pass on, but I felt I’d be remiss not to mention it. They haven’t switched over the old Biergarten Untappd to their own new one, and I know its much more based around their liquors and spirits, emphasizing those rather than their beers – though they do sell some of their beers there as well.

Leaving Hershey, lets instead of going right into Harrisburg, first cut into Hummelstown – which will be the future (new) home of Rubber Soul Brewing. They are hoping for an opening date of January 2020, but looking at the building that they are building and working on, I think a more realistic date will be May 2020. They were formerly out of Salisbury Maryland but had went bankrupt. Under new ownership (and owned by a larger company – Ghost Brewing LLC) they have moved to the old polce building in Hummelstown. New management, new ownership, new brewers, so lets hope it will be good right out of the gate.

Leaving Hummelstown, before we get into the outskirts of Harrisburg, lets visit another small town – Middletown. Middletown is probably best known for TMI – Three Mile Island and of course the near nuclear melt-down. Due to its airport being right on the edge of Middletown and outskirts of Harrisburg, much of the city melts into the burroughs leading into Harrisburg (Steelton, Highspire, etc.) so it gets kind of melded in with Harrisburg and Hummelstown on most maps.

Tattered Flag Brewery and Distillery 

Located At: 1 S Union St Middletown, PA 
Untappd Link: https://untappd.com/TatteredFlagBrewery 

Leaving Boneshire we can get right up onto 322 from Derry Street. There we can then turn right and get off at the Hummelstown / Middletown exit and go along Middletown Road (which becomes Vine Street), not much further we’ll turn right onto Main Street and then turn left to get onto Union and we are at our next destination. Middletown’s first (and so far only) brewery and distillery – Tattered Flag. 

Veteran owned and having just hit their third anniversary they have really been pumping out some outstanding beers in recent history. With new brewing crew of Dave Marrow, Justin Hoak, and Cliff Plank, they have been putting out exceptional IPAs (NE IPAS specifically) and sours. They were just voted Harrisburg best Brewery and Distillery.  

They have been doing some excellent collaborations with numerous breweries in the last few months as well. Beers with Wolf Brewing Co. , Levante Brewing, Abomination Brewing, and up and comer Pilger Ruh Brewing.  

They have a downstairs bar that is also their coffee shop as well as the distillery area. It was called the Nuclear Bean but on Untappd they refer to the bar as the Distillery Bar now. They also have their main restaurant and bar upstairs, though you can order food at either location.  

At the downstairs Nuclear Bean / coffee shop / distillery bar, you can order drinks. Their taplist there currently is:  

  • NP Project – Kombucha (Renewal Kombucha) 
  • Nuclear Bean Nitro Cold Brew – Coffee 
  • Silent Professional Foxtrot – Farmhouse Ale – Saison – 7.8% 
  • New Zealand Hop Test – IPA – Imperial Double – 8% 
  • Don’t Cryo’ver Spilled Milk – IPA – Milkshake – 8% 
  • TMI IPA – IPA – American – 6.5% 

They also have cans to go, which you can pick up upstairs or downstairs, there list of cans to go currently are: 

  • Tattered Abomination – IPA – New England – 7.8% (made with Abomination Brewing) 
  • Prepare to be Flabbergasted – Sour – 7% 
  • Teutonic Knight Hefeweizen 
  • Blue Raider Kolsch 
  • O’Dusseldorf Rules – Altbier – 5% 
  • Honey I Added More Hops – IPA – New England – 7% 
  • Double Knife Fight in Space – IPA – New England – 8% 
  • Makin’ Love at Midnight 2.0 – IPA – American – 7.5% 
  • Step 1 Brew Beer Step 2 ? Step 3 Profit – IPA – New England – 8% 
  • Makin’ Love at Midnight (Sour) – Sour – 7.8% 
  • TMI IPA 

Their taplist upstairs currently is: 

  • Teutonic Knight Hefeweizen 
  • DDH Double IPA – IPA – Imperial / Double – New England – 8.4% 
  • Swattier Divide (2018) – IPA – New England – 8.2% 
  • Step 1 Brew Beer Step 2 ? Step 3 Profit 
  • TMI IPA 
  • Fatum: Member Berry
  • Wasted Away Again
  • Don’t Cryo’ver Spilled Milk 
  • Should’ve Got a Warrant – Sour – 7.6% 
  • Stars and Stripes 20.19 – IPA – New England – 7.8% 
  • Sparklerz (Meyer Lemon) – Hard Seltzer – 5% 
  • Five Sided Puzzle Palace – Stout – Imperial / Double – 12% (Levante Brewing colab) 
  • Because I Was Inverted (Mango) 
  • Double Knife Fight in Space 
  • Groundhops Day – IPA – New England – 6% 
  • Honey I Added More Hops 
  • Makin’ Love at Midnight (sour) 
  • Prepare to be Flabbergasted 
  • Tattered Abomination 

Some recent past beers:

I’m not much of a foody, but I do love going to Tattered Flag or helping with their canning run, just to get to eat there. It is top notch gourmet style food. All bases covered, from hot dogs and hamburgers, to salads, to tacos and quesadillas, to steaks, and seafood. Everything is covered and everything is absolutely phenomenal.  

Of course I have to mention that you should check out the distillery if you have any inclination in liquors. Dan, the distiller for Tattered Flag is amazing and provides exceptional spirits. (He also does ghost tours in Gettysburg.) 

Tattered Flag Brewery has 373 uniquely produced beers with a global average rating on Untappd of 3.78. 

Traveling to the outskirts of Harrisburg, we have three locations, all in Rutherford PA. Which is a small outskirt town of Harrisburg, between Hummelstown and Harrisburg. Where Middletown was underneath Hummelstown and attached to Harrisburg, Rutherford is a bit of a wedge between Hummelstown and Harrisburg along the Swatera Creek.

Newfangled Brew Works 

Located At: 8001 Union Station Blvd, Harrisburg, PA 17111 
Untappd Link: https://untappd.com/NewfangledBrewWorks 
 

Newfangled Brew Works is located inside Union Station, a recent development built off of Union Deposit Road (a long road that connects Harrisburg to several of the smaller towns in the area like South Hanover Township, Union Deposit, Hoernerstown, and even to Hershey). It is right as you enter into the development in a large building conjoined with its restaurant pairing – Koda. Koda is a high scale restaurant located to the right of the main entrance into Newfangled. Newfangled also has its own built-in Taco Truck tucked away in the back lefthand corner. 

Lets discuss the food first, the taco truck has fabulous tacos, quesadillas, and other taco and Mexican related foods. Artisanal tacos is the best way to describe these, as this is definitely no Taco Bell menu (and a whole heck of a lot better tasting too). Their food menu can be found here: Food, their hours of operation are: Sunday  11AM-9PM, Monday-Friday 4PM-9PM, and Saturday 12PM-10PM.  

Pictured here is the quesadilla taco from the taco truck, with the added beef meat it came to be 7.42$ (pre-tip). Beer picture is the Guava Lemonade Kettle Sour. The taco was extremely delicious and the kettle sour washed it down perfectly. This is the side-porch and patio area to the left of the building (when facing the entrance).  

The brewery itself currently has 16 beers on tap for consumption. Some of their own, and a few others. Of their own currently on tap they have: 

  • Passionfruit Blonde Ale – Blonde Ale – 5% 
  • Ariana Flockhart – Blonde Ale – 4.9% 
  • Blood Orange Blonde Ale – Blonde Ale – 5% 
  • Guava Lemonade Kettle Sour – Sour – 5.6% 
  • Kettle Sour – Sour – 5.6% 
  • Brut IPA – IPA – Brut – 7.7% 
  • Double IPA – IPA – Imperial – 8.2% 
  • Irish Red Ale – Red Ale – Irish – 6% 
  • Saison – Farmhouse Ale – Saison – 6.8% 
  • Newfangled American Wheat – Wheat Beer – 5.2% 
  • Lager – Lager – 5.2% 
  • IPA – IPA – American – 5.8% 
  • Stout – Stout – American – 6.5% 

The non-Newfangled Beers on tap are: 

  • Yuengling Lager – Lager – 4.5% (Yuengling Brewery) 
  • Standard – Cider – 5.5% (Big Hill Ciderworks) 

Some recent beers:

They offer their beers right now in pints or traditional pours, dependent on the style, as well as half pours and flights. Pricing is your normal fair for a craft brewery (5$-7/8$ depending on style and costs to make the beer).  

Currently, Newfangled Brew Works has produced 39 unique beers, and has a global average rating of 3.72. 

Upcoming events for Newfangled are:  

  • Live Music – Fridays and Saturdays 7PM – 10PM 
  • Trivia – Wednesdays 630PM – 830PM   

Boneshire Brew Works 
Located At: 7462 Derry St, Harrisburg, PA 17111 
Untappd Link: https://untappd.com/BoneshireBrewWorks 

Coming down the road from Newfangled and getting onto Nyes Road it will lead you to Derry Street. From there you take a right hand turn and find yourself after a few blocks at Boneshire Brew Works. Boneshire was started by Alan Miller, Carson Brooks, and Alex Govelovich.  

Boneshire’s brewery is a small little ‘pub’ style brewery. As soon as you enter you feel already a member of a club where everybody knows your name. If you’ve been there once, your second time there, you are a ‘regular’ and quickly become on a first name basis with all of the staff.  

Currently food is limited to a few behind the bar items like pickle flights and bologna, but it is a BYOB environment with a pizzeria just two doors down (to the left of the building is a Crossfit and after that is the pizza shop, how lucky are those crossfit hard-workers being “stuck” between a pizza shop and a brewery?).  

Boneshire currently offers a taplist of their own, as well as a taplist of several breweries from Pennsylvania. Their current taplist is: 

Their own: 

  • Harrishire – Smoked – 7.3% (made in collaboration with Harris Family Brewery) 
  • AuZealand 2.0 – IPA – American – 6.3% 
  • Dark of the Forest (barrel aged) – Stout – Coffee – 10% 
  • Derry St. Wheat – Hefeweizen – 5% 
  • Good Walk Spoiled – Sour – 4.5%       

Guest tap lists: 

  • Jelsa – Mead – Melomel – 12% (Larsen Meadworks) 
  • Magic… Under Where? – Pale Ale – 5.5% (Pizza Boy Brewing) 
  • Kriek Nouveau – Sour – 6.9% (Free Will Brewing Co.) 
  • Brawler – English Mild – 4.2% (Yards Brewing Co.) 
  • Pils – Pilsner – German – 4.7% (Stoudts Brewing) 
  • Summer Scrumpy – Cider – 5.5% (Big Hill Ciderworks) 
  • Fruit Wagon – Sour – 6.3% (Saucony Brewing Company) 
  • Java Cask – Stout – Imperial Double – 14.3% (Victory Brewing) 
  • Pikeland Pils – Pilsner – German – 4.9% (Slyfox Brewing) 

Some other Boneshire Beers:

Boneshire Brewery has a steady string of events going on.  Mondays are D&D nights, Tuesdays alternate between Open Mic Nights and Bar Bingo nights, Wednesdays are trivia nights, Thursdays are live music nights. Their Facebook page has a full list of events with the band names already signed on for each Thursday through October. They also occasionally have live music on Saturday nights. 

Boneshire also does cans to go, in 4-packs of most of their in-house made beers. A few exceptions based on styles and things, but nearly all of their brewery beers are set to go. And typically at much better prices than a pint at the bar. They also do growler fills. 

They currently have 128 uniquely produced beers with a global average rating of 3.82 on Untappd. 

Boneshire Brew Works is probably my favorite brewery on this list, so please definitely check them out. I cannot recommend the brewery, the staff, the owners, or the beer enough. Most days you’ll find me sitting at the bar, so if you see my logo up on the recently checked in screen on the bottom of their Untappd menu – B. Kline – c’mon over and say ‘hi’ or tell the guys working the bar I sent ya.

Recently (as fresh and new as Black Friday 2019) Pizza Boy Brewing Co. jumped into their secondary location. A BBQ shack that kind of seems like its in the middle of nowhere – but isn’t – Official BBQ and Burgers has amazing food, and now to wash it down – amazing Pizza Boy beer!

Official BBQ and Beers – Pizza Boy Secondary Location
Located at: 6295 Lyters Ln Harrisburg, PA

The BBQ and the burgers here are phenomenal, as you can see from a recent trip I made there:

I recently did a full in-depth review of the location for my blog at The Beer Thrillers – which you can check out here: Official BBQ and Burgers.

Some beers currently on tap at the location are:

  • Ice Dreamz – Cranberry, Cherry, and Tangerine
  • St. Thomas – Coffee Pastry Stout
  • Visions of Yesterday – IPA
  • Front Loader – Triple IPA
  • Meyer’s Lemon IPA – 6.66% NE IPA
  • Not My Style, May Rate Anyway – NE IPA

There is a total of 20 taps, as well as two large fridges for cans and bottles.

Heading into the main city of Harrisburg, I will quickly brush over the four breweries inside the city. Partly due to time (this post is already getting insanely big), partly because they should be given their own article in the future, which I will most likely doing, partly due to me wanting to keep this about the outskirts of Harrisburg and Hershey area, and some what because my research on them isn’t as extensive.

The Vegetable Hunter
Located at 614 N 2nd St Harrisburg, PA

It is a very tiny, vegetarian / vegan restaurant slash small time craft brewery (nano nano brewery).

They currently have for beers on tap:

  • Easy’ Ridin’ Lager – Lager
  • Today’s Tom Sawyer! – IPA
  • Brother of Thor! – IPA
  • How to Play Kashmir by Led Zepplin – Farmhouse Ale

Their Untappd profile: Boutique brewery located in Harrisburg, PA. We handcraft each batch of beer onsite, 1/2 BBL at a time. It’s small batch brewing using fresh and unexpected ingredients. The beer recipes are crafted to complement the seasonal food featured in our restaurant. We utilize PA grown malts, hops, fruits, herbs and vegetables as much as possible. Our beer lineup is constantly changing, but you can always expect to see approachable, hop-forward ales and rustic row house ales (Saison, Grisette, etc.). (The Vegetable Hunter)

ZeroDay Brewing Company
Located at 250 Reiley Street Harrisburg PA

Located attached to Mid-Town Cinema, this is a great ‘local favorite’ urban set brewery. Perfect for the neighborhood and the clientelle. A fixture of the nearby area and a big community helper.

Currently 400 unique produced beers with a rating of 3.69 on Untappd.

Some beers on tap are:

The Millworks
Located at 340 Verbeke St Harrisburg, PA

Just two blocks away from ZeroDay is a giant structure that is The Millworks. A farm to table restaurant, an art studio, and a craft brewery all in one. Its a super ‘hip’ spot. They have produced 76 unique beers with a rating of 3.74. Some recent beers from them are:

And last but not least – Appalachian Brewing Company.

Appalachian Brewing Company
Located at: 50 N Cameron St Harrisburg, PA

The oldest and the largest brewery in Harrisburg. They have since branched out and opened several other locations in Lititz, State College, and Mechanicsburg. The building on Cameron Street is practically ancient, rustic, gorgeous, and a historic landmark (preserved by the state). There is a downstairs bar and restaurant, as well as the Abbey Bar upstairs that also doubles as a music venue.

Some recent beers there:

They have produced 362 unqiue beers with a rating of 3.52 according to Untappd.

Thank you for checking out this brief brewery hopping tour around Hershey, Hummelstown, Middletown, and Harrisburg. They all definitely deserve your time and attention as they are all pumping out some wonderful beers and have great stuff going on at their breweries all the time.  Central PA has a lot to offer, both for craft beer enthusiasts, and tourism in general. Its a great destination spot for families as well as singles and couples. The breweries on this list are all child friendly, and several of them are even pet friendly (namely Boneshire Brew Works and Troegs Brewery). There is even more breweries once you stretch your legs out a bit in the area – Elizabethtown has Moo-Duck Brewery and Cox Brewing Company, Carlisle has Molly Pitcher and Desperate Times, Enola has Pizza Boy, and Mechanicsburg has Ever Grain Brewing and Mellow Mink (and soon to open Wolf Brewing Co.). So please plan a trip some time, you certainly won’t be disappointed.

And lastly, make sure you hop on over to my beer blog – The Beer Thrillers, where me and beer buddy J. Doncevic have been writing some wonderful beer reviews, brewery reviews, trip recaps, beer event reviews, and all kinds of other beer related things in the Central PA area since May. Make sure to stop and check us out and let us know in the comments that you came from here, we’d greatly appreciate seeing you there!  We’ve also opened up a home brewing section with our good friend AJ through Default Brewing, and Let us Drink Beer will be writing some occasional guest blogs. So please be sure to check us out, click the follow button, click the like button, leave some comments, telling us what you think or how you found us, it would all be greatly appreciated!

Boneshire Brew Works – Rutherford PA (Derry Street – between Harrisburg and Hummelstown PA

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