If you’re into craft beers, Florida’s St. Pete/Clearwater Craft Beer Trail is for you. Take
an hour’s drive from Tarpon Springs south to Treasure Island and discover an array of small,
independent breweries making specialty beers sure to quench your thirst. Go on a tour and
sample beers rated as some of the best in the world by RateBeer.com, an independent site for craft beer recognized as the most accurate source for beer information.
At Dunedin Brewery, Florida’s oldest craft brewery, try some Red Head Ale or Nitro Stout.
Brews here are handcrafted in small batches, 15 barrels at a time. Just around the corner,
visit one of the trail’s newest breweries, 7venth Sun. Sample beer sweetened with fresh fruit to cut down on the tartness of a typical German Berliner Weisse-style beer. Beer fans are calling it Florida Weisse!
Greg Rapp in Pinellas Park started Rapp Brewing Company 15 years ago. He explained
that the craft beer craze in Tampa Bay originated with the Cigar City Brewpub in
Tampa and spread across the region. “The home brew community is huge here,” Rapp
said. “It’s about people wanting something different other than the regular fizzy, yellow,
watery stuff that was being offered.” Rapp brews everything from lagers, ales and
stouts to Belgian and European beers. He said that people who aren’t even beer drinkers
come to his brewery. That’s what he likes about the craft beer community. “We even get wine
drinkers here who don’t like beer and we let them sample a number of beers until they find
something they like,” Rapp explained. “A lot of people don’t realize the spectrum of flavors we
can create in the craft beer community. That’s how the craft beer craze is growing.”
There are 17 breweries along the trail with new breweries opening in St. Petersburg faster
than a frosty mug. Among those, the St. Pete Brewing Company said it captures a taste of St.
Petersburg with its popular Orange Wheat and Pinellas Pale Ale.
If your taste buds have been piqued, check out Tampa Bay Beer Week, which begins the
first Saturday in March and runs for eight days (tampabaybeerweek.com). Take part in special
events and sample beers from more than 40 breweries nationwide.
Dunedin Brewery – http://www.dunedinbrewery.com
Rapp Brewing Company – http://www.rappbrewing.com/