The Beer Lover's Guide to Central Massachusetts

Posted: April 24, 2017

Today, Central Massachusetts is a hot spot for beer businesses and beer enthusiasts. With major breweries like Wormtown Brewery and bars like Oak Barrel Tavern, the Heart of the Commonwealth is destination for superb local ale.

Wormtown Brewery

72 Shrewsbury Street, Worcester, MA | 774.239.1555

Ben, who was brewing and selling beer for Honest Town Brewing, in Southbridge MA, had a vision for a brick and mortar brewery in his home town of Worcester.  Tom was trying to figure out what to do with the addition on his restaurant that was the home to Peppercorn’s Ice Cream Factory.  After a few pints on a bar stool one night, a plan was formed to start a brewery that would be committed to being local both imagery and ingredients.

Hours: The Taproom is open Sundays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from noon to 8pm and Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 9pm. Tours are offered on Saturday and Sunday at 12:30, 1:30 and 2:30.

Try: Be Hoppy, a dry and highly drinkable IPA, and the well-balanced and fruity Bottle Rocket Pale Ale.

Rapscallion Brewery

195 Arnold Road, Sturbridge | 508.347.7500

An Old English word meaning “a playfully mischievous individual,” brewery co-proprietors, Peter and Cedric Daniel, adopted the name Rapscallion. As two young brothers from humble beginnings and a long line of small business owners, the name appealed to them for its history, its uniqueness and most of all its association with rebelliousness. Both the tap room and restaurant are places to mix with local people, so it’s no surprise that both locations are likened to public houses of the past. Proudly housed in a historic barn and farmhouse, the brewery aims to sustain a tradition of hard work and time-tested recipes dating back over a century.

Hours: The Taproom is opened on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 3pm to 9pm, Thursdays and Fridays from 3pm to 10pm, Saturdays from noon to 10pm and Sunday from noon to 8pm. Free tours are offered on Saturday and Sundays at 2pm.

Try: The Coffee Stout, a dark, roast stout brewed with organic Mexican dark roast beans.

Tree House Brewing Company

129 Sturbridge Rd., Charlton, MA | 413.523.2367

Tree House Brewing Company offers a wide array of seasonal ales that know no bounds! Co-founders Nate, Damien and Dean love to create their artisan brews  based on their moods and driven by their curiosity to experiment with unique ingredients.

Hours (Summer 2018): 
Draft & Cans:
Tues. 4pm-8pm.
CAN SALES ONLY: Wed.-Fri. 12pm-8pm
Draft, Can Sales, Live Music, Food Vendors: Sat. 11am-7pm

Try: Visitors from across the world seek out Julius, an American IPA boasting aromas of mango, peach, passionfruit and a melange of citrus juice. 

3Cross Brewing Company

26 Cambridge Street, Worcester, MA | 508.615.8195

This 5,500 square foot space in the basement of 26 Cambridge Street houses a spacious taproom. A “brewing nook” and lots of space for expansion. With a focus on serving the community and wanting to become a local destination, 3Cross Brewing Company is a great hole-in-the-wall place.

The name references the classic spoke lacing pattern for a bicycle wheel. Come visit and you will find elements of bicycle lore and culture throughout the brewery.

Hours: The Taproom is open Thursdays through Saturdays from 5pm to 9pm.

Try: Single-Speed, a pale ale that is a regular on the ever-changing menu

Flying Dreams Brewing

455B Park Ave, Worcester

Long before Flying Dreams was born, Dave Richardson spent years experimenting with flavors and honing his skills in brew school and as a master brewer at the legendary Gardner Ale House. Since then Mr. Richardson has been recognized as one of the top beer innovators in the region; collecting over thirty-five awards for his pure, unfiltered and unadulterated brews.

Hours: The Brewhouse is open Thursdays from 4pm to 9pm, Fridays from 3pm to 10pm, and Saturdays from noon to 10pm.

Try: The Become – a double IPA, orange, mango, grapefruit tasty ale

Local Beer Bar Favorites

After a visit to the local breweries, there’s no better place to stop and grab a beer than the local bars making a name for themselves. Brew City Grill & Brew House, a must-see in Worcester, features 37 beers on tap 9 canned beers and 101 bottled beers. 

Brew City Grill & Brew House104 Shrewsbury Street, Worcester

Oak Barrel Tavern – 229 Grove Street, Worcester 

The Citizen Wine Bar 1 Exchange Street, Worcester

Armsby Abbey –144 Main Street, Worcester

Chuck’s Steak House – 10 Prospect Street, Auburn

Dive Bar – 34 Green Street, Worcester

Michael’s Cigar Bar – 1 Exchange Street, Worcester

Moynagh’s Tavern – 25cExchange Street, Worcester

Nicks – 124 Millbury Street, Worcester

Quinn’s Irish Pub – 715 West Boylston Street, Worcester

The Muse – 536 Main Street, Worcester

Tagged As:

Food + Drink