You can’t get any more middle America than South Dakota. It’s the sort of place that makes for the perfect pit stop while driving across the country. Unfortunately, a quick pit stop is all of South Dakota most people ever see. It deserves better. The state, and the Black Hills, in particular, merit time for delving. The mystical Badlands, the endless seas of grass where the buffalo literally roam, the craggy mountains, small towns, and monuments make the region a wholly unique corner of the country. There’s also a great, low key beer scene bubbling away in those hills.
Brewery crawling through the towns and beer bars of the Black Hills is huge fun. The beer is great — there’s no denying that — but what really makes the region’s beer scene shine are the people you meet. This is a part of America where striking up a conversation with a brewer, bartender, local, or tourist is as simple as sitting down and ordering a brew. There’s an ease to interactions that makes the whole scene one of the most welcoming you’ll ever come across.
Let’s jump into ten of the must stop beer destinations around South Dakota’s Black Hills.
Miner Brewing Company — Hill City
Miner Brewing focuses on bringing South Dakota into the craft beer experience. Brewmaster Sandi Vojta started Miner to highlight the local ingredients and atmosphere of the Black Hills and it’s been a fantastic success.
Vojta’s beers are a nice blend of classic brewing styles amped up with local chokecherries and black currants. There are plenty of standard and expertly brewed ales on the list if you’re not up for a berry infused masterpiece. But, trust us, you need to try the Chokecherry Brown Ale. The beer has a nice malty base that hints at sweet biscuits. Then sweet and tart South Dakota chokecherries come through in the end, giving the ale a super refreshing edge.
Pair that with a sausage and sauerkraut flatbread pizza and you’re set.