Reno’s Craft Breweries: Sipping & Celebrating High Desert Suds

By Mary Sisco | Monday, March 18, 2024

Who knew Reno would emerge as a craft beer haven, bubbling with a lively mix of creativity, fun flavors and community spirit? The city's craft breweries have transformed the local beer scene into a vibrant blend of unique brews, each sip telling a story of innovation and passion. 

Photo: Small-batch brews are the hallmark of Slieve Brewing Company.

Reno's breweries aren't just places to grab a cold one; they're hubs of originality, pushing the boundaries of traditional brewing. From the experimental concoctions to the meticulously crafted classics, each brewery in Reno has a distinctive identity that reflects the spirit of its creators. Beyond the refreshing brews themselves, Reno's craft breweries have become warm meeting hubs, where locals and visitors enjoy gathering to share stories, laughter and, of course, a few pints. The communal atmosphere encourages a sense of belonging, turning each brewery into a home-away-from-home for many.

Let’s take a frothy adventure through Reno's crafty spots, where every pint is a celebration and every brewery a welcoming spot for beer enthusiasts.

At Lead Dog Brewing Co., for example, quirkiness takes center stage. Known for their eclectic brews like the Peanut Butter Chocolate Milk Stout and Pineapple Habanero IPA, Lead Dog is a trailblazer in the Reno beer scene. The brewery's commitment to pushing flavor boundaries has earned it a loyal following of beer lovers looking for a totally new taste adventure. Lead Dog has locations in Downtown Reno and Sparks.

Photo: Behind the scenes at Lead Dog Brewing

Great Basin Brewing Company, with locations in Downtown Reno, Sparks and Carson City, pays homage to the region's rich natural landscape. As one of Reno's pioneers in craft brewing, they've mastered the art of making timeless classics, like their iconic Icky IPA. Great Basin's focus on quality and tradition has anchored its place as a local favorite.

The Brewer's Cabinet is a prime example of a brew house that thrives on community connections. With a charming, rustic atmosphere and a commitment to sourcing local ingredients, this friendly brewery seamlessly blends a love for beer with a goal toward lively social engagement. The Brewer's Cabinet frequently collaborates with local businesses, artists and events, turning the friendly pub into a dynamic meeting spot that goes beyond the traditional confines of a taproom.

Brasserie Saint James is a brewery with a European flair and a penchant for Belgian-style brews. The cozy ambiance, combined with their carefully curated beer menu, offers a sophisticated yet laid-back setting for beer connoisseurs. Try sipping on a farmhouse ale or a rich, malty quad – your gills are sure to quiver. Brasserie Saint James is a must-visit for anyone who prefers a taste of Old World brewing charm.

Photo: Drawing a sample at Voodoo Brewing

Have a hankering for hauntingly good hops? Voodoo Brewing’s West Coast IPAs are a hophead's ambrosia. These spooky-good creations are hopped multiple times to deliver truly rich, unusual flavors with pleasant dry undertones. Voodoo’s craft collection includes several one-of-a-kind IPAs, ales and lagers with fun bold flavors and aromatic profiles. It’s a go-to tavern for many local and visiting beer aficionados.

Pigeon Head Brewery is known for its warm, inviting atmosphere and flavorful lagers and ales. Visitors feel right at home with charming decor of picnic tables and stools, savoring a delectable variety of at least five craft brews always on tap. A welcoming community and proud brew craftsmanship come together at this local favorite.

Photo: Beer-fueled camaraderie at a Schussboom Brewing event.

With more than 20 taps showcasing small-batch craft beer brewed right on site, you're set for a true taste bud adventure at Schussboom Brewing. The experienced team of certified beer servers is ready to guide you through a delightfully diverse selection, making every visit an opportunity to learn, explore and savor truly unique beer varieties.

Step back in time at 10 TORR Distilling and Brewing, located in a quaint remodeled 1940s-era grocery store. Drink in the quirky-cool antique decor as you sip meticulously crafted beer brewed with independently grown hops and local honey. The fun crew offers activities like trivia and jazz nights, outdoor games on the patio and brew tours, making every visit a deliciously special event. 

Photo: 10Torr's beautiful setting in a remodeled 1940s-era grocery store

Saddle up for classic Western heritage at The Depot Craft Brewery and Distillery, housed in a renovated brick railroad building. Honoring the true essence of our region, the hospitable Depot team offers fascinating historical tours and a number of innovative craft brews that celebrate our beloved Wild West. Enjoy brunch or a bubbly brew in this charismatic local brewery.

Photo: A few of the selections of IMBĪB Custom Brews

Don't miss the hidden gem of IMBĪB Custom Brews, serving up more than 20 brews on tap, is an elegant microbrewery with a diverse selection for every beer lover. Specializing in old-world-style barrel-aged beer, hoppy and malty ales, and fruit-infused sours, their brewers cater to a wide range of palates. The inviting industrial-style taproom provides a charming space for visitors to enjoy quality pours and engaging conversations. 

Ascend to the summit of craft brewing at Slieve Brewing Company, a family-owned and -operated small-batch craft brewery rooted in Irish heritage and led by skilled brewer Philip Mountain. Serving a distinctive variety of beer styles and variations, you can explore traditional pilsners, one-off IPAs and more. Check out their special events and exciting new brew flavors regularly.

Photo: Slieve Brewing Company's location on Morrill Avenue in Reno

Reno's fun and original craft breweries are a beer lover’s dream — they provide an immersive experience that combines creativity, social connection and a passion for quality brewing. 

As you move forward on your craft beer trek through the Biggest Little City, savor the refreshingly unique flavors, embrace the sense of community and toast to the brewers who have turned Reno into a destination for beer enthusiasts everywhere. Raise a pint to the spirit of originality, friendship and scrumptious suds in Nevada’s beautiful high desert.

About the Author Mary Sisco
Mary has lived in Reno for almost a decade and loves it — especially hiking through the foothills in the spring and fall. She has a degree in journalism and has enjoyed all kinds of writing, from news to technical to marketing to creative.