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Breweries, Wineries, and Distilleries on Cape Cod and the Islands

IPA? Pinot Grigio? Scotch? No matter your beverage of choice, there are breweries, wineries, and distilleries on Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard where you can learn the ins and outs of how beer, wine and spirits are made. So, come to the Cape and Islands to sip and learn about your favorite beverage and perhaps discover a new “regular.”

If you love beer, then be sure to pay a visit to one of these three breweries located in the area.

Cape Cod Beer

Cape Cod Beer began brewing in Hyannis in 2004 and describes their beer as “a vacation in every pint.” With the wide selection of their local brews, you are bound to find your “vacation spot.” Sample year round favorites such as Cape Cod IPA, Cape Cod Red, and Cape Cod Beach Blonde, as well as their seasonal beers, Stargazer Stout, Berry Merry Holiday Ale, and Hot Blonde, just to name a few. A visit to the Cape Cod Beer Brewery is well worth the visit. If you are interested in how they brew a “vacation,” then you won’t want to miss a tour of the brewery to learn the process of creating Cape Cod Beer. Tours are offered daily Monday through Saturday at 11:00 am. Families are welcome, but children must be supervised. The hours are 12-6pm on Monday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday and they are Closed Tuesday and Wednesday.

Oak Bluffs on Martha’s Vineyard is home to the handcrafted beer of the Offshore Ale Company. Since 1997, they have regularly brewed local favorites East Chop Lighthouse Ale, Menemsha Creek Pale Ale, and Beach Road Nut Brown Ale. Their seasonal selection is second to none. The classic fall beer, Octoberfest, is made with wood fire roasted sugar pumpkins, their Miss Behavin is a winter warmer-style beer, and their Offshore Blueberry is a summery, fruity favorite. Tours are offered Mondays & Tuesday by appointment, Wednesday - Fridays at 2pm, and Saturday 1pm, 2pm & 3pm. Tour is $10 and includes tasting. Reservations are strongly recommended, and participants must be 21+. In addition to beer, Offshore Ale Company offers an extensive food menu and is open for lunch and dinner. Be sure to stop by on your next visit to Martha’s Vineyard, and decide for yourself if “it’s better offshore.”

Cisco Brewers on Nantucket is known for such microbrews as Whale’s Tale Pale Ale, Sankaty Light Lager and Grey Lady Ale. They started brewing beer in 1995 and have producing quality beer ever since. The Brewery itself is akin to an outdoor bar. There is usually live music and a food truck from which to purchase food, and there is plenty of space for kids and dogs to play. If you are looking for a fun, casual spot to taste some local beer, then a trip to the Cisco Brewery should be on your to-do list. Open Monday - Saturday, 11am -7pm & Sunday, 12pm - 6pm Check website calendar for daily food truck and music and tour information.

Or, if wine is your preference, a stop at one of the Cape and Islands local wineries is a must.

Falmouth’s Cape Cod Winery, founded in 1994, is home to vinifera grapes, and their vineyard has been compared to those found in the area of southern France and Northern Italy. With the abundance of cranberries on Cape Cod, it is no surprise that the Cape Cod Winery produces a cranberry blush as well as a cranberry chardonnay. Looking for a nice red? The Nobska Red, with its hints of raspberries, cherries and black currants, is a popular choice. With these, as well as 7 other wine selections to choose from, be sure to stop by for a tasting. Summer tasting hours are 12 AM to 4 PM, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday & Sunday, Saturday hours are 11 AM to 4PM from the end of June through Labor Day. Fall tasting hours are 12 PM to 4 PM on Saturday and Sunday through the end of December.

Vineyard Winery was established in 1981 and is located near Cisco Beach on Nantucket. By combining local ingredients along with off island ingredients, this winery is producing some unique and delicious reds and whites ranging from Peach Vigonier and Blueberry Pinot Gris to Black Cherry Port and Sailor’s Delight. Part of Cisco Brewers, tours are held 1pm – 2pm & 4pm – 5pm, and are in conjunction with tours of the brewery and distillery. The cost is $20, which includes a sampling of the products.

Truro Vineyards

Established in 1991, Truro Vineyards is a family owned and operated business that produces beautiful wines in a beautiful setting. Situated in the hills of Truro, a visit to the tasting room in the fully restored 1830’s farmhouse is a treat for anyone who enjoys wine. Tastings are $10 and are held from the end of March through the beginning of May on Fridays, Saturdays, and Mondays from 11 AM to 5 PM, and Sundays from 12 noon to 5 PM. Beginning in May, tastings are held every 30 minutes, Monday through Saturday 11 AM to 5 PM and Sundays 12 PM to 5 PM. Free Wine & Vineyard Tours are held at 1 PM & 3 PM, Distillery Tours are held at 12 PM & 2 PM. In addition to tours and tastings, Truro Vineyard is host to numerous events. One of the most popular during the summer is Wine, Art, Appetizers, and Music (WAAM), which is held every Wednesday throughout the summer. Five local wines are paired with food prepared by local chefs, and all this while enjoying live, local music and local art. Whether looking for a dry red or a nice Chardonnay (which goes perfectly with local seafood), with over ten wines from which to choose, a perfect match should be easy to find!

First Crush Winery in Harwich is the newest winery addition to the area. Not only is it a winery that produces exquisite wines, but it is also a cooperative that encourages and supports active wine making. From the Starfish Sauvignon-Blanc to the Three-Sip-Cran, you will find something special about each of First Crush’s wines, which are available at many local restaurants and liquor stores. Although there are no set hours for public tastings and tours, visitors are welcome but must arranged by appointment only.

If you prefer spirits to beer and wine, then pay a visit to the only distillery on the Cape and Islands. Triple 8 Distillery on Nantucket began producing their high proof spirits in 2000. Currently, they distill five vodkas ranging from traditional to flavored (vanilla, orange, blueberry and cranberry) and four types of liqueurs, including a gin, rum, bourbon, and a 10-year single malt whiskey. Triple 8 is a part of Cisco Brewers; thus their tours also include a tour of the brewery and winery. Tours are held 1pm – 2pm & 4pm – 5pm. The cost is $20 and includes a sampling of some of the products as well as a tasting glass.

When visiting the Cape and Islands, be sure to take some time to taste the local flavor at one the breweries, wineries or distilleries. Cheers!

About Becky Fischer

About Becky Fischer: I have worked for since 2003. Currently my position entails providing photography, video, and consultation services to vacation rental homeowners, and I have photographed over 700 homes on the Cape and Islands. My husband and three children moved to Brewster in 2006. I grew up outside of Boston, spent summer vacations on Nantucket, and was married in Orleans. My favorite activities on the Cape are walking on the CCRT, deep breaths at the beach, visiting great coffee shops, and working with my community to support the schools and local events.