By Carly Zinderman
When it comes to grabbing a cold brew, Gainesville has plenty of sports bars and dive bars to enjoy a beer and watch the game. But if you’re craving something a little more inspired than just your average beer, there are many craft beer pubs, wine bars and specialty beer and wine shops in town to quench your thirst.
The best craft beer in town
First Magnitude Brewery brews craft beer the way only Gainesville can. Gainesville’s north central Florida region has the highest density of freshwater springs of any place in the world, and these unique waters give First Magnitude’s collection of microbrews their distinctive edge. With a built-in beer garden that hosts live music regularly, First Magnitude also offers a family-friendly atmosphere with a game room featuring oversize Scrabble, oversize jenga and more.
Opened in 2009, Swamp Head Brewery is a local brewery that serves up unique homemade beers as well as select others in The Wetlands, its aptly named tasting room. Stop by for a flight and friendly conversation, and take home a growler filled with Swamp Head’s latest limited release or another of your favorite Swamp Head brews.
Gainesville House of Beer has over 40 craft beers on tap at any time, so you can choose your favorite beer from anywhere in the nation or try something completely new. Have a seat on the patio and order delivery from a nearby restaurant, or take in a game on a flat-screen TV to go with your selection.
The Brass Tap is where to go if you want to try one of over 300 craft beers and someone else in your party wants a glass of wine. The Brass Tap offers beer and wine as well as a selection of cigars and live music.
Destinations for wine lovers
Just outside of Gainesville is blueberry-growing country, and Island Grove Winery uses the tiny fruit to create wine with big taste. Made entirely from blueberries, with no grapes or added flavors, blueberry wine is a unique treat that can make any occasion special.
Take the best wine and beer with you
In addition to wine bars and breweries, Gainesville also has beer and wine shops that boast great selections. At Dorn’s Liquor and Wine Warehouse, you can find wine, beer and liquor as well as a selection of cheese. Over at Tipple’s Brews, you can bring something home from the shop’s vast selection of wine, craft beer, cigars, chocolates and other gourmet goodies and even create your own six-pack.
Whether you prefer to park it on the patio with a cold one or discover and take home a new favorite vintage, Gainesville has plenty of options to keep wine and beer lovers cool all summer long.