Hyattsville Arts & Ales Festival

I’ve never been more excited about the Maryland beer scene than after attending the Downtown Hyattsville Arts and Ales Festival!

Sponsored by the Brewers Association of Maryland, the festival featured 20 Maryland breweries pouring fresh craft beer from across the state, from old standbys like The Brewers Art to new classics like RaR and Jailbreak. There were large breweries (Flying Dog, Heavy Seas), farm breweries (Manor Hill), urban brewpubs (Denizens), and everything in between. And they were all pouring amazingly tasty craft brew.

Taking Lyft to and from the event allowed me to sample 40+ different Maryland brews, and there was not a single disappointment among them. I’m most excited about the new breweries on my must-visit list, like Manor Hill and Scorpion. But enough of this native Marylander’s effusive praise of my state’s beer scene – on to my hit list of beers.

7 Locks Brewing, Rockville, Montgomery County

7 Locks Brewing

This Montgomery County brewery is one of my local favorites. Beers Sampled:

  • White IPA
  • Honey Wheat
  • Surrender Dorothy Rye-PA

The Brewer’s Art, Mount Vernon, Baltimore City

The Brewer's Art

One of the first brewery restaurants I ever visited in 1997, and I’ve been enjoying it ever since. Beers Sampled:

  • Beazly (Belgian Ale)
  • Birdhouse Pale Ale

Calvert Brewing Company, Upper Marlboro, Prince George’s County

Calvert Brewing Company

I’ve had a few six-packs and am anxious to visit the brewery. Beers Sampled:

  • Good Company Pale Ale
  • Wye Rye

DC Brau Brewing Company, District of Columbia

DC Brau

OK, not a Maryland brewery, but they’re so close to Hyattsville! Beers Sampled:

  • The Public (Pale Ale)
  • The Corruption (IPA)

Denizens Brewing Company, Silver Spring, Montgomery County

Denizens Brewing Company

I love sipping refreshing brew in Denizen’s beer garden on a hot summer day. There were four beers on tap but I only sampled the ones that were new to me:

  • Third Party (Tripel)
  • 5 Points (IPL)

Evolution Craft Brewing Company., Salisbury, Wicomico County

I haven’t stopped at Evo on a trip to the Eastern Shore in years. Gotta get back soon! Beers Sampled:

  • Lot No. 3 (IPA)

Franklins Brewery, Hyattsville, Prince George’s County


Franklins Restaurant, Brewery and General Store is among my absolute favorite brewery restaurants. Another one that I’ve gotta get back to soon! Beers Sampled:

  • Hefeweizen
  • Oktoberfest
  • Private IPA

Flying Dog Brewery, Frederick, Frederick County

Flying Dog Tap Handle

Raging Bitch was my first beer of the festival – what a way to start! Beers Sampled:

  • Raging Bitch (Belgian IPA)
  • Dogtoberfest (Märzen)

Handsome Beer, Hyattsville, Prince George’s County

Handsome Beer

Handsome was new to me, and I can’t wait to try more…if I can find it! Beers Sampled:

  • White Ale
  • Strange Charm (Brown Ale)

Heavy Seas Beer, Halethorpe, Baltimore City

Heavy Seas

Heavy Seas came strong with four beers on tap:

  • The Great’er Pumpkin (aged in bourbon barrels)
  • The Partner Ships (Rye Wit, collaboration with Terrapin)
  • Loose Cannon (IPA)
  • Pounder Pils

Jailbreak Brewing Company, Laurel, Howard County

My newest favorite brewery! Beers Sampled:

  • Poor Righteous IPA
  • The 19th Tea (Amber Ale with Black Tea and Lemon)

Mully’s Brewery, Prince Frederick, Calvert County

Mully's Brewery

Mully's Brewery tent

I had never heard of Mully’s, but it’s now near the top of my beer to-do list. I tried all four, and want to try more! Beers Sampled:

  • Marc Six Blonde
  • Jack Straw IPA
  • Tongue Crusher (Double IPA)
  • Pumpkin Ale

Manor Hill Brewing, Ellicott City, Howard County

Manor Hill Brewing

Manor Hill’s Citra Splendor Imperial IPA took home my personal Best of Show as my favorite beer of the festival. This farm brewery is now at the very top of my beer to-do list.. Beers Sampled:

  • Citra Splendor (Imperial IPA)
  • Sunna Rising (Pale Wheat Ale)

Ocean City Brewing Company, Ocean City, Worcester County

Ocean City Brewing Company

Ocean City Brewing Company came prepared with not only draft beer, but six packs too! Good thing they had the hardest working brewery rep pouring samples. Beers Sampled:

  • Pumpkin Hollow
  • Alrighty Then (Watermelon Wheat)
  • Nuckin’ Futs (Honey Brown Walnut Ale)

Oliver Brewing Company, Claremont, Baltimore City

Oliver Brewing Company Cans

I’m a long-time fan of Oliver Brewing Company – the former Wharf Rat and now Pratt Street Ale House is a must-stop for Oliver brew before O’s games. And now they’re canning! Beers Sampled:

  • Riding Easy (Hoppy Blonde Ale)
  • Balls to the Wall (American Pale Ale)

Peabody Heights Brewery, Abell, Baltimore City

Peabody Heights Brewery

This contract brewery was pouring the winner of the 2015 Comptrollers Cup for the best craft beer in Maryland. The Pils was quite refreshing! Beers Sampled:

  • Old Oriole Park Bohemian Pilsner
  • Old Oriole Park Stout

RAR Brewing, Cambridge, Dorchester County

RAR Brewing

RAR was pouring some of the best beer of the festival. Another MD brewery high on my beer to-do list. Beers Sampled:

  • Grapefruit Nectar (American IPA)
  • Hell Track (American Wheat)

Scorpion Brewing, Owings, Calvert County

Scorpion Brewing

Scorpion had the friendliest, most welcoming folks pouring beer at the festival, which put their brewery squarely on my beer to-do list. Beers Sampled:

  • ESB
  • Berry Berry Wheat (Dunkel brewed with raspberries and blackberries)

Loved this festival! Good thing they were only pouring 2 oz samples so I could try so many beers! My final tally: 42 different beers sampled from 18 different breweries, plus a sample of Maryland Mead!

Maryland Meadworks


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