If summer was a seasonal beverage, it might be a beer. Nothing quenches heat wave thirst like a frosty cold one. Thankfully, many of the breweries in and around the DMV serve brews in a family-friendly setting, meaning you can relax on one of these dog days with kids in tow. Enjoy!
Dirt Farm Brewing
If you enjoy craft beers, heading to Loudoun County is a must. Dirt Farm, nestled on the side of the Blue Ridge Mountains, not only serves exceptional beers but it offers outstanding views. Kids will enjoy grabbing a meal here: Dirt Farm offers house-made flatbreads. You’ll find plenty of toys and attractions on-hand to entertain the little ones, like tubs of bubbles, monster-sized trucks and more. The most fun? Playing in the dirt, of course! Great Country Farm (owned by the same family that runs Dirt Farm) is at the foot of the mountain and a must-see stop.
18701 Foggy Bottom Rd. (Bluemont, VA)
Twinpanzee Brewing Company
If you enjoy family game night, bring your crew to this Sterling establishment for some beer and board games. Twinpanzee offers games for all ages, including Candy Land, Operation, Chutes and Ladders, Trouble, Sorry!, Clue and more. There is also a Nintendo Entertainment System with over 30 games to challenge your loved ones with. Kids 16 and under are treated to free chips and juice. The brewery frequently hosts family-friendly events like kart racing.
10 Executive Dr. (Sterling, VA)
Peabody Heights Brewery
The largest brewery in Baltimore City is also the most kid-friendly; Peabody, located in the Abell Neighborhood, offers tours and tastings every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. In addition to the industrial-style tasting room, you’ll also find outdoor seating. The real draw is the dedicated kid play space, that includes two bookcases filled with children’s books, a train table, ride-on toys and more.
401 E 30th St. (Baltimore, MD)
Dacha Beer Garden
Set in a little townhouse a block from the Shaw metro, Dacha is part swim up bar, part diamond in the rough. Kiddos can hang at the picnic tables flanked by a giant mural, while the grown-ups pop over to the walk up bar and try to figure out whether they want mead, cider, or an impressive selection of Deutschland authentic beers to drink from “Das Boot.” We’re not lying, they really do come in a boot glass, so make sure the kids have their favorite sippy cups so they don’t get jealous. There’s no formal kitchen here, but you’re welcome to bring outside food. Note: The toilets here are of the portable variety, but regulars swear they are the cleanest outdoor bathrooms ever.
1600 7th St., NW (Shaw U.)
If you want to give your pint-sized world traveler an authentic Oktoberfest experience, without the cost of airfare, then check out Biergarten Haus. Little ones will chow down on traditional German food like Spatzle mit Ziegenkaese (mac and cheese), Kartoffelsalat (warm potato salad) and Wurstplatten (sausages). Adults can sample some of the top German beers (Spaten, Eggenberg, Hofbrau). Everyone gets to jive to the surprise appearances by polka bands.
1355 H St., NW (H Street)
For fans of former Bardos, throw the kids in the car, and head to this Bardo. A reincarnation of the popular Arlington brewery, Bardo has reopened in Southeast as both brewery and beer garden. With room for 75 0 people, you can bring the kiddos and sprawl out. Older kids will love the corn hole games lined up on the side yard. It’s still getting its ducks in a row, so the future will see self-service taps, outside movies, and a full service restaurant. Its super rustic, so no need to dress the kids in their Sunday best.
25 Potomac Ave. SE
Westover Beer Haus
Locals swear that Westover Beer Haus is the best place to hang with kids and enjoy a brew on a lazy Saturday afternoon. Hidden within the Westover Market, the Beer Haus is super fam-friendly with lots of other parents grabbing some shade and testing out one of the 16 micro brews they have on tap. With a giant volcano mural and twinkling lights outside, little ones will feel like they’ve stepped into a fairy tale oasis.
5863 Washington Blvd. (Arlington, Va)
Tucked away on 14th street is a marriage of American and Bavarian culture. Garden District is a fun, kid-friendly BBQ joint that pays homage to the biergartens of southern Germany with rows of picnic tables anchored by Hofbrau Munchen umbrellas, which help keep little melons from roasting in the sun. Kiddos can tuck into some homemade cider donuts, while Mom and Dad sip an ice cold draft of Weihenstephaner hefe-weissbier or Kostritzer Schwarzbier (both are top German beers). For extra good little girls and boys, Garden District offers Coca-Cola Classic with real sugar, or Boylan’s orange cream soda.
1801 14th St., NW (U Street)
Vanish Farmwoods Brewery
Spend the day in the country at this Loudoun County brewery; set on over 50 acres, this rural establishment encourages guests to BYOG (bring your own games) and make use of its wide open spaces. You’ll find corn hole boards and gaga ball on the premies for patrons to enjoy. There is also a newly built playground on site. Kid-friendly entertainment, like face painters, are often on-hand. Enjoy over 20 beers on tap. While you are in the area, be sure to check out Temple Hall Farm, a working farm open free to the public (and a short five mile drive from the brewery).
42264 Black Hops Ln. (Leesburg, VA)
Port City Brewing Company
If you’re looking for a port in the storm, sail on over to Port City Brewery where fresh, local craft beer is always on tap. Tours ($10/person) are available on the weekends, and each ticket allows you to sip some of the tastiest IPA, Pale Ale, Porter and Belgian White this side of the Potomac. Kiddos will be in awe of the giant steel casks, checkered floor and history behind making beer in Alexandria. Port City’s so kid friendly they even warned us when the tour was starting to make sure the bell ringing didn’t scare the little ones. Ice cold craft beer and kid courteous staff? Win-win.
3950 Wheeler Ave. (Alexandria, Va)
MacDowel Brew Kitchen
Craft beer aficionados regularly gather here with their littles who like to play and build sand castles on the year-round beach outfitted with a couple of fire pits for chilly afternoons. With a full menu, this is the perfect spot for a laid back weekend brunch.
202-B Harrison St., SE (Leesburg, Va)
—Meghan Meyers and Hilary Riedemann