The best MLB stadiums for craft beer fans

Photo via Mikkeler NYC/Instagram

The best MLB stadiums for craft beer fans

Beer + Breweries

The best MLB stadiums for craft beer fans

Beer is as synonymous with baseball as peanuts, chewing tobacco and foam fingers. Maybe it’s because an ice-cold brew is the only thing that can get you through a mid-August scorcher when your team’s down five runs and the playoffs are looking like a long shot. For most of modern baseball history, our options didn’t go much beyond light beer or regular. Either way, you were overpaying for an industrial brew that tasted like water with a touch of malt – the floral flavor of hops was still but a dream.

These days, all that’s changed. Even ballparks named after major beer companies – Anheuser-Busch Stadium, Coors Field and Miller Park – serve up a selection of premier craft brews that even the biggest beer snobs would have trouble complaining about.

But not all stadiums are created equal when it comes to their selection of suds. Here are eight of the biggest contenders for best in the (beer) game:

Miller Park | Milwaukee Brewers

What’s in a name? Well, if you’re the the Milwaukee Brewers, a lot. Miller Park lives up to the high bar set by the fact that it is, quite literally, the home of the Brewers. And while the stadium might be named after its bottom-of-the-barrel hometown macro brew, Miller Park still has plenty of crowd-pleasers coming out of its taps. Breweries like Sprecher Brewery, Milwaukee Brewing Company, Third Space, MobCraft, Raised Grain, Lakefront Brewery and Horny Goat Brewing Company are all available. But if you happen to have a ticket to watch the Brew Crew, seek out a New Glarus, a beloved Wisconsin brewery that, despite a huge demand across the country for many years, doesn’t distribute outside of the state. For the best selection, head to Local Brews, now in its second season, which has 24 beers on tap from 17 Wisconsin craft breweries.

Citi Field | New York Mets

Citi Field quite possibly has the most impressive lineup of celebrity chef-run restaurants of any ballpark in the majors, and as of 2018, it’s got the beer prowess to match. Citi Field’s beer selection had great seasons’ past, with New York breweries like like Sixpoint, Blue Point, Brooklyn Brewery and Ommegang on offer, but this year Mets fans can now drink from a massive selection of 60 – yes, 60 – rotating taps from Mikkeller Brewing. The inimitable Copenhagen-based brewery recently opened a 10,000 square-foot facility right down the street from the stadium in Flushing, Queens, and there’s no better place to enjoy one of its beers than with a view of the field.

Coors Field | Colorado Rockies

Colorado may famously be home to one of America’s biggest (and most underwhelming) breweries, but the state has been at the forefront of craft brewing for decades, and Coors Field’s namesake beer is far from the only thing on tap. Stands across the stadium serve up local beers, including New Belgium, Odell, Breckenridge and Oskar Blues  – some of which, namely the excellent Odell – is difficult to find in all but a handful of states.

Safeco Field | Seattle Mariners

There are few – if any – ballparks in the majors that do food and drink as well as Seattle. Mariners fans have an almost unfair amount of fresh, local options when it comes to filling their bellies – and considering Washington has more craft breweries than any state besides California (it’s tied with Colorado for No. 2), that makes Safeco a great place to drink. Pyramid Brewing Company, which is just across the street from the stadium, supplies taps to the park, along with other brews from around the state, including Bale Breaker, Georgetown and Fremont. Make sure to order one to wash down the stadium’s shockingly popular grasshoppers and enjoy one of the best vistas in all of baseball.

Progressive Field | Cleveland Indians

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In 1974, in what seems more like a scene from the 1989 classic comedy Major League than a real life event, Cleveland Stadium made the mind-boggling decision to host 10-cent beer night. The crowd, belligerently hammered on Stroh’s, took part in streaking, theft and a riot that got so bloody the umpires called the game in favor of the visiting Texas Rangers. It was in the midst of the sixth of seven straight losing seasons for the Indians. Things are looking up for The Tribe since then – they’ve got a new ballpark, they’re primed to win the American League Central for the fourth straight year, and the beer is vastly superior (and more expensive) than it was four decades ago. Fat Head’s, Great Lakes and Market Garden are among the best local beers on tap, but if you’re only going to get one beer at Progressive Field (after all, they’re a lot more than 10 cents these days), we’d recommend Brew Kettle’s White Rajah.

AT&T Park | San Francisco Giants

San Francisco has one of the best food scenes in America, and among the city’s culinary MVPs is James Beard award-winner and Top Chef Masters finalist Traci Des Jardins. But the SF legend’s contribution to AT&T Park has way more to do with beer than food. Thanks to Des Jardins and her recently opened in-stadium Public House, fans can order from a menu of 75 craft and imported beers, many of which are from California (including heavy hitters like Russian River, Lost Abbey, Pizza Port and North Coast) and the Pacific Northwest. Not only is it one of the best beer bars in baseball, it’s also one of the best in San Francisco – and yes, it’s open even when the Giants are away.

Guaranteed Rate Field | Chicago White Sox

Perhaps Public House’s only rival for best MLB beer bar, Guaranteed Rate’s Craft Kave serves up more than 75 craft beers, including hometown heroes like Solemn Oath, Two Brothers and Off Color. But Craft Kave also represents other cult favorites from around the Midwest, including Indiana’s 3 Floyds and Michigan’s Founders, Bell’s and Dark Horse. The Sox might never rival that other team from the North Side of the city when it comes to their place in Chicagoan’s hearts, but they’re certainly winning over the city’s beer bellies.

Petco Park | San Diego Padres

California has more than 600 breweries, which is good enough for tops in the country, and nearly as many as Washington and Colorado (tied for No. 2) combined. And nearly a quarter of those breweries are in San Diego County, which means Padres fans don’t mess around when it comes to beer, and thankfully Petco Park knows how to please a crowd with rotating brews from 15 breweries in the area, and quite a few other from around the state and country. And we’re not talking about one beer per brewery – Ballast Point, which has its own beer garden, has more than a dozen different beers on tap; Pizza Port has 11; and Alesmith has six, to name just a few.

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