A Guide to the Best Breweries in Cumbria

Situated in the northwest of England, Cumbria is renowned for its natural beauty. Boasting picturesque landscapes and idyllic locations, visitors are drawn to the extensive number of ways to explore. Not only is Cumbria perfect for the outdoor enthusiast, but anyone who just as enthusiastic about all thing’s beer!

Cumbria has a huge array of independent breweries and micro-breweries making it a wonderful place for a craft beer lover to indulge. With many of these breweries holding awards from the likes of CAMRA (the Campaign for Real Ale), there is a lot for the Cumbria region to shout about.

Whether you want a reward after an adventure or a quiet pint with friends, you can visit the breweries themselves, or even take a trip to their affiliated bars, restaurants, or event spaces! If you are a super fan of craft beer, then you might be interested in the breweries offering tours and tastings to the public!

No matter how you have explored the Lake District, why not reward yourself with a tasty pint from one of these independent breweries.

In no particular order, here goes…

Beginning their brewing adventure in 2012 in Bowness, Bowness Bay Brewing is now located in the vibrant market town of Kendal. Surrounded by plenty other artisanal businesses within the popular Castle Mills, it is a wonderful place to try a new beer. Bowness Bay Brewing craft over seventeen different beers, including ales, bitters, lagers, stouts and even low alcohol options.

Alongside brewing award-winning beers, they created The Barrel House and The Venue; a cosy, atmospheric bar, and a larger event space that hosts live music and events. Whether you prefer a quiet pint or a lively event, Bowness Bay Brewing has a beer and venue for you.

Have a look at their website to order their range of beers online or check out what’s on at either of their venues!

Beginning in a humble barn in 2010, Ennerdale Brewery now has a fantastic Brewery Tap and Bistro on site. Located in the picturesque Chapel Row on the edge of Cumbria, it is worth taking a visit to the cosy Bistro Tap with the whole family. Boasting multiple awards for both their beer and food, you can indulge in a delicious homemade meal from a menu that has something for everyone. They use fresh, local ingredients for all their meals making it the perfect partner to one of their hand-crafted beers.

Ennerdale Brewery regularly craft four different beers; Ennerdale Darkest, Pale, Honeycomb and Wild as well as a selection of seasonal ales which you can buy in local pubs or on their website. If you are really into your beers, then why not compliment your visit with a tour of Ennerdale Brewery and have a look at what goes on behind the scenes!

Find more information about Ennerdale Brewery here on our member’s page.

This Cumbrian craft brewery is located outside of Carlisle in the idyllic village of Great Corby. Founded in 2009, they produce superb small-batch craft ales that have continued to grow in popularity. With nine beers in their core range, and always crafting limited editions, Great Corby has got a beer you’ll want to try.

You can order their award-winning beers on the Great Corby Brewhouse website or look at their map of pubs that serve them. If you are super interested in Great Corby’s brews, then go one step further and book a group brewery tour or tasting session!

You can find out more information about The Great Corby Brewhouse here on our member’s page.

Having recently opened their Tap Room, Gan Yam has grown from a stock pot in south London to crafting and selling right here in Cumbria. Located on the edge of Kendal next to the beautiful Benson Knott, Gan Yam crafts gorgeously packaged and even better tasting beers.

Gan Yam have even crafted a beer with the iconic Kendal Mint Cake in mind, something you will not experience tasting anywhere else! Pop down to their tap room which opens on the first weekend of each month to get a taste of local talents and good beer.

Check out their website to order their beers online and keep up to date with their tap room opening times.

The founders of Lakes Brew Co. came together after becoming redundant at the beginning of lockdown. They all shared a huge passion and love for beer and now produce an amazing range of craft beers in the heart of Kendal.

Lakes Brewing Company have a great selection of beers in their core range and are constantly collaborating and crafting with others to produce fantastic, limited edition products. They have even created a pop-up taproom to serve their beers that is just a 10-minute walk from Kendal Town Centre, making it a perfect place to try both Lakes Brew Co. beers and tasty local food vendors.

Check their website to purchase their beers online and keep up to date with their pop-up tap room!

Windermere Brewing Company is a microbrewery located in the Hamlet of Ings, a small but beautiful village situated between Kendal and Windermere. Their 5-barrel microbrewery brews their own range of aptly named beers and ales such as Collie Wobbles, A Bit’er Ruff and Shih Tzu Faced, that they sell through their award-winning, on-site pub, The Watermill Inn.

The Watermill Inn is renowned for serving up to sixteen different real ales at one time making it a beautiful place to get a taste of local brewing. Alongside their ales, they cook up delicious pub-grub making it a great place to reward yourself after a Lake District walk.

Check out their website to learn more, purchase their beers online, or even book a room at The Watermill Inn!

Situated on the beautiful bank of the river Rothay you will find Grasmere Brewing Company. Despite being a small, independent brewery, they brew their own fantastic Grasmere beers, such as Grasmere IPA and Grasmere Helles Lager. They even distil their own Grasmere vodka and gin in the flavours Blood Orange and Pink Berries.

Serving through their cosy on-site tap room, The Good Sport, enjoy a taste of their quality hand brewed beer or their distilled spirits. The picturesque location is perfect to enjoy a cold pint or cheeky tipple from an independent, Cumbrian brewery alongside a delectable, locally sourced pub-lunch with friends and family.

Look online to find more information on their products and tap-house The Good Sport.

This mighty independent brewery is in the delightful Cartmel Peninsula. Beginning their journey in 2013, they now brew a fine range of good-looking beers such as Session IPA, Oats and Mosaic and Export Stout, that they sell through multiple Fell Bars within Cumbria. Whether you are in Kendal, Cartmel, or Penrith, you can get a taste of Fell Brewery beer.

Fell Brewery have also recently unveiled Glisky, a brand new and exciting music venue and events space within the vibrant town of Kendal. Whether you prefer a quiet pint or a boogie, Fell Brewery has the beer and bar for you!

Check their website to order their beers online and keep up to date with bar openings and upcoming Glisky events.

Born in the lakes, Handsome have been brewing their popular range of beers and ales in their brewery and tasting room at Bowston. Since 2016, they have been busy crafting both their regular and seasonal ranges of pale ales to dark stouts.

Their crafts include Hound IPA which won a CAMRA award, Blacksmith Stout named after their brewery residing in the old Blacksmiths of Bowston and Harvest Moon which is brewed with hops only grown in The Lake District.

Go and enjoy a quiet pint of Handsome beer right next to the charming river Kent, or pop into their cosy bar, Handsome Bar in the town of Kendal!

Kirkby Lonsdale Brewery have been crafting beer since their journey began in 2009. Situated in the quaint and idyllic town of Kirkby Lonsdale, they have now created a gorgeously atmospheric barn-conversion venue, The Royal Barn and Kitchen.

Not only serving up their vast range of tasty craft beers, but they also create delicious home-made pancakes and pizza making your visit worth it. With their beer names linking to the local area, such as their first beer Ruskin’s named after the iconic Ruskin’s View, Kirkby Lonsdale Brewery is the perfect choice to experience a proper Cumbrian ale!

Check out online to purchase their beers, vouchers and look at their food and drink menu.

Boasting a massive array of awards for their crafts, Coniston Brewing Co. have an impressively tasty range of Cumbrian ales. Beginning in 1995 in the heart of Coniston, a beautiful village surrounded by amazing locations for all outdoor enthusiasts, these breweries beers have only grown in popularity.

Coniston Brewing Company craft 12 tasty beers, including Old Man Ale, Bluebird Bitter and Special Oatmeal Stout. With Cumbria at the core of their ales, this makes Coniston Brewing Company a top pick. Why not have a taste of one at the Black Bull Inn just down the road!

Have a look at their website to find out more about their beers and even purchase them online!

12. Tractor Shed Brewing

Nestled between Workington and Seaton in west Cumbria, Tractor Shed Brewing boasts a small yet talented team of brewers. Founded in 2011, Tractor Shed Brewing take pride in their unique and flavourful brews inspired by their Cumbrian roots, with the brewing taking place in a shed where a farmer once kept his tractors.

In the summer the Tractor Shed Brewing shed hosts special themed events and the venue is available for private hire with outdoor bars to elevate any occasion. Their range of beers includes delightfully crafted pilsner, helles lager, blonde lager, pale ale and stout. So, whether you prefer your brew in cask, keg or bottle form, Tractor Shed Brewing has something to satisfy every beer enthusiast’s taste buds.

Thank you for joining us on our exploration of local, independent breweries in Cumbria. We hope you find a Cumbrian craft ale perfect for you! And whilst you’re here, why not explore more of Made in Cumbria’s food and drink suppliers to find your next adventure in the Lakes.

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