Oktoberfest Is Upon Us—Go Tour a Brewery

Learn how the good stuff gets made at these local craft beer facilities.

Learn how the brewing process works at 3 Stars. Photograph by Jeff Martin.

Every year around this time, our enthusiasm for beer reaches a fever pitch. You can celebrate the season with Oktoberfest events, of course, or just stock up on all those pumpkin beers on the market. Alternatively, you can take a local approach and tour a nearby brewery. Here’s the skinny on six Washington-area beer-making facilities open to the public.

DC Brau Brewing Company

3178-B Bladensburg Rd., NE; 202-621-8890

Free tours and tastings most Saturdays (call ahead) noon to 4.

“Growler hours” coincide with tours of this Northeast production brewery—fill up 32- or 64-ounce containers of beers.

Flying Dog Brewery

4607 Wedgewood Blvd., Frederick; 301-694-7899

A tour with a tasting costs $5 and happens every Thursday and Friday 4 to 8 and Saturday noon to 3.

Maryland’s largest production brewery is conveniently close to downtown Frederick, so you can shop with a buzz on after taking a tour that includes a five-beer tasting flight.

Lost Rhino Brewing Company

21730 Red Rum Dr., Ashburn; 571-291-2083

Free tours every Saturday noon to 5.

Take a road trip to Ashburn, where you can grab a bite at the brewery’s tasting room before heading back to DC. Think draft-friendly fare such as nachos made with IPA queso and beer barbecue sauce.

Mad Fox Brewing Company

444 W. Broad St., Suite I, Falls Church; 703-942-6840

Free tours on the first Saturday of each month.

This sustainable-minded brewpub supplies local farms in the Falls Church area with spent grain to be used as livestock food after the brewing process. Sample four of the 12 on-tap beers for $6.

Port City Brewing Company

3950 Wheeler Ave., Alexandria; 703-797-2739

Although this award-winning craft brewery in Alexandria doesn’t serve food, local food trucks are known to make an appearance during tour hours.

Tours including a tasting flight run Friday at 6:30, Saturday 1 to 6, and Sunday 2 to 3. $9.

3 Stars Brewing Company

6400 Chillum Pl., NW; 202-670-0333

Free tours every Saturday 2 to 3; free tastings Saturday 1 to 5 and Thursday 5 to 8.

Founded by two longtime friends in 2007, 3 Stars celebrated the first anniversary at its Northwest location in September.

You might also like:
The Washingtonian’s Craft Beer Guide