Cruise and Brews in Alaska's Inside Passage
Food & Wine
Heading to Alaska in the heat of the summer is an amazing reprieve. There are multiple cruise lines who provide amazing itineraries and deliver impeccable service on board, but cruise passengers can really make the ports of call all their own. Alaskan frontier towns offer plenty of local brews to satisfy both new and experienced beer connoisseurs. The pioneering spirit of Alaska can be experienced best in the ports of call during your cruise. Whether or not you choose to sign up for any on-shore excursions, you will always be able to experience the local culture just by walking around these historic towns.
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Where to stay in Alaska
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Places to eat & drink in Alaska
Walk from your ship to the Devil's Club Brewing Co. This small storefront packs a big punch with their slate of "Adventurous Ales", interesting artwork and yummy shareables.
Visit the oldest outdoor bar in Alaska, the Griz Bar. Not technically a brewery, they offer both local beer and spirits, most notable of which is the ghost pepper infused vodka from Anchorage Distillery. Not for the faint of heart, this vodka is amazing in their Ghost Mule.
Likely the most well-known brewery in Juneau is the Alaskan Brewing Co. As a larger-scale operation they offer tours and free tastings! Don't forget to try one of their hard seltzers, too.
Just off the main drag in the heart of the historic downtown is the Skagway Brewing Co. There's likely to be a line for a lunch table, but there's open seating at the cozy bar, and you can try a flight of goldrush-esque brews such as Prospector Pale Ale and Boom Town Brown.
On your way to Klondike Brewing Co, make a stop for pizza at the Red Onion Saloon, Skagway's infamous former brothel (complete with red light bulbs hanging in the second-story windows). You can also take a tour of the historic operation if you like.
The Klondike Brewing Co boasts a fantastic patio in addition to their cozy tasting room. If you're a fan of nitro beer, you'll be pleased to try their 2nd Ave Nitro Stout.
A nice walk from your ship will bring you to the heart of Alaska's 1st City and Salmon Capital of the World. If you are looking for dive bars that feature Alaskan brews, this is the town for you. Worth a stop is a small brewery up the street from the docks — Bawden Street Brewing Co is a relatively young operation and they proudly "don't sell anything they don't make".
Sourdough Bar, right next to the docks, is a super-divey hangout, catering to tourists and locals alike. They have all the Alaskan beers as well as some amazing canned cocktails from the Port Chilkoot Distillery.
On your way back to the ship, stop in at the Totem Bar. In addition to local brews, this dive still serves ice cold Jägermeister and has a *gasp* cigarette vending machine!
The pioneering spirit of Alaska can be experienced best in the ports of call during your cruise. Whether or not you choose to sign up for any on-shore excursions, you will always be able to experience the local culture just by walking around these historic towns.
Need to Know
For more travel tips, check out Fora Advisor Kelly Weinstein’s guide, Luxury Cruising Alaska's Inside Passage.
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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Alaska.