6 Boatable Microbreweries

The food and beer taste better at any local restaurant when you can enjoy them — responsibly — by boat.

September 22, 2017
6 Boatable Microbreweries
Fox River Brewing Company and Taproom Tom King

Brewpubs have forever changed the way we enjoy beer. Why settle for something mass-produced in cans when you can taste creative brews dreamed up by the crew at the local microbrewery? Get on board and hop to it – responsibly.

River City Brewing Company
835 Museum Circle
Jacksonville, Florida 32207

Seven different original beers are usually on tap, plus great food in the main dining room and the more casual Brewhouse Lounge. The marina on the St. Johns River features 62 slips for 20- to 120-foot boats, with fuel available. Courtesy slips are available for guests.


Fox River Brewing Company and Taproom
1501 Arboretum Dr.
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54901

In the center of the Lake Winnebago and Fox and Wolf rivers system, Fox River has been brewing since 1995. The patio and sloping lawn are hopping in the summer, with an outdoor bar and dining and frequent live music. The long list of fresh beers is constantly revolving. The latest is Blu Bobber, a light fruit beer that’s served on draught with a forkful of floating blueberries — refreshing! Dock space for 30 to 40 boats fills fast.

Operation Dry Water: If the helm is your responsibility, stay sober. It’s that simple. According to the U.S. Coast Guard, alcohol use is the leading known contributing factor in recreational-boater deaths. Consider the consequences suffered by Orange County, Florida, resident Mark Watts, whose 2006 BUI accident killed a 20-year-old woman on Lake Irma and sent him to prison for six years. “What I’ve gone through couldn’t compare to parents losing a child,” Watts states in a public service video produced for Operation Dry Water, a year-round boating-under-the-influence awareness and enforcement campaign of the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators. “You don’t want to be me. Take the time to think about consuming alcohol and operating a boat.” Check out the powerful video and the website at

Wood Boat Brewery
625 Mary St.
Clayton, New York 13624
[email protected]


The home of full-flavor beer and fabulous brick-oven pizza, this microbrewery is located in the Thousand Islands region of the St. Lawrence River. Locavores rejoice — a majority of the hops and a minimum of 20 percent of the malt used in Wood Boat brew is produced in New York State. Go for the Channel Marker IPA. The brewery is located just steps from the Islander Marina and the Antique Boat Museum.

Wayzata Brew Works
294 Grove Lane East
Wayzata, Minnesota 55391

Located in the former Minnetonka Boatworks building, the taproom serves outstanding beers, including our favorite, Wayzata Brew Works Oktoberfest, plus pizza and soft pretzels. Guests are also welcome to carry or order in food. Lake Minnetonka is just 35 feet from the glass wall, with public docks a short walk away. We love the old outboards hanging from the walls.


Liquid Riot Bottling Company
250 Commercial St.
Portland, Maine 04101

Located in the Old Port waterfront area on the site of the Portland Rum Riot (1855), this upscale brewhouse and distillery features 16 taps and a wide variety of beers, some rather experimental and esoteric; for example, the recently released Vinlandic, a Norwegian-inspired Brettanomyces farmhouse ale brewed with local grains and juniper boughs, is aged in gin barrels. Tie up at DiMillo’s Old Port Marina.

Half Moon Bay Brewing Company
390 Capistrano Road
Half Moon Bay, California 94019


Located on the San Mateo coast south of San Francisco and a quick walk from Half Moon Bay Harbor, the taproom deck overlooks the Pacific. There are usually a dozen beers on tap, from a light Kolsch to the interesting Calf-eine Coffee Milk Stout. The menu looks good too, especially the weekend brunch.


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