You heard it here first: South Dakota has a craft beer scene. Though, if you’re not one of the 853,000 people who call the Mount Rushmore State home, you’d be forgiven for not knowing this fact.
If you consider yourself a craft beer aficionado and a lover of all things beer, but haven’t heard of the malty and hoppy goodness being produced between the Black Hills of the state’s west and the grassy prairies of the state’s east, don’t question your craft beer fandom, it’s not your fault. After all, there’s only one South Dakota brewery that distributes their beer outside of state lines, and a total of two that can their beer for consumption outside of the pub (and the second started canning just last week).
But don’t be fooled, the craft beer scene in South Dakota is growing. And unlike in craft beer pilgrimage-worthy states like Colorado, California, Oregon, Vermont, Montana and Michigan where it’s near impossible to imagine craft beer getting any more popular, South Dakota’s craft beer scene is, comparatively, just catching fire and finding its footing.
So what can you expect from South Dakota beer? For the most part, you’ll find thoughtful and delicious variations of classic crowd pleasers, like brown ales, cream ales, saisons and IPAs with less emphasis on the flamboyant flavors found in more jaded craft beer markets.
Now that you’re 1) aware South Dakota beer exists, and 2) thirsty to try some, here are a few breweries not to miss while traveling in the state.