You Can See The Sunshine Over the Blue Ridge Mountains at Highland Brewing Co.

There’s no shortage of great places to soak in the setting summer sun in Western North Carolina and the greater Asheville area. Add on top of that some of the many craft beer venue options and you have some good living.

Highland Brewing is one of the largest local breweries in Asheville. It’s on the outskirts of town, up slightly on a hill. You’ll need a car to get to the facility.

In the facility is a distillery and full concert venue where bands plan, not dopey local bands playing Van Morrison covers. The Orange Peel takes care of the 2,000 capacity version called The Meadow. Phantogram was playing the weekend I was there.

If you just want to chillax, you can do on the rooftop beer garden on the roof brewery. You can watch the sunset over a sea of solar panels.

On the ground floor is large indoor area with the largest ceiling fan I’ve ever seen. It’s like a turbine up there. There’s not much in terms of food options so you can consider it more of a pregaming type of situation.

Started in 1994, it’s one of Asheville’s original craft breweries. Founded by Oscar Wong (one the few Asian-American brewery owners in the U.S.) and run by his daughter Leah Wong Ashburn, it’s a Scottish-theme brewery with a bagpiper as their mascot. Their beers you’ll find anywhere in North Carolina, even at places that are not considered “craft”. I actually had my first taste (the Pilsner) at the Biltmore Estate.

In the taproom, you explore the whole line of goodness. They keep the beer straight-forward and traditional. Here’s what I had:

  • Black Mocha Stout
  • Oatmeal Porter
  • Gaelic Red Ale
  • Mandarina IPA
  • Karate Kat Wheat Ale
  • St. Terese’s Pale Ale


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