Summer brews: Quench your thirst at these 11 Lanark County breweries and distilleries

Where can you take an epic road trip through scenic landscapes peppered with lakes, rivers, and charming small towns, while making stops at not one – but 11 – craft alcohol producers along the way?  Located less than an hour from the heart of Ottawa, Lanark County is the perfect getaway, and our small-batch producers are happy to serve up refreshing brews to whet your palate on a day like today.


Of course, nothing goes better with a fresh brew than some outdoor activity to build your thirst. During your travels, you can combine two of Canada’s favourite pastimes, and tour a brewery, distillery or cidery before or after playing nine or 18-holes on one of Lanark County’s golf courses. Here, you’ll find all the ingredients for the perfect day on the green, plus a fantastic road trip.


To start your adventure you can check out Lanark County’s newest virtual food and drink trail, the Sip & Savour Trail, or the itinerary below for a two or three day adventure. Remember to plan ahead to be sure your road trip includes a designated driver, or takes place on foot.


In Almonte you can walk to multiple locations from overnight accommodations, so it’s the perfect scenario to launch your food and drink experience. The same in heritage Perth, where local restaurants, breweries, and a distillery are all within walking distance of a luxurious hotel, inn, and bed and breakfasts.


If you’d rather take part in a guided tour, then one of Brew Donkey’s bus tours may be just the thing for you! Brew Donkey offers pick up and drop off locations in Ottawa for tours that take you to several of the breweries and distilleries listed below. Visit their website to find the tour called “Western Libations” that will bring you Lanark County.


We’ve pulled together the best experiences to make your visit to Lanark County an inspired one. Use our pre-planned itineraries to start your small-town experience in some of the most beautiful communities in Eastern Ontario. Golf, explore, and taste the spirit of craftsmanship in Lanark County!



  1. Cartwright Springs Brewery

239 Deer Run Rd., Pakenham


Start your road trip in the charming village of Pakenham, where you can enjoy a cold, refreshing beer made with natural spring water, creating unique flavour profiles you won’t find anywhere else. Located on the same property as the brewery is Cabinscape’s Joni Cabin, where you can spend the night in rustic bliss with a tiny cabin experience.


Golf Here: While you’re in Pakenham, don’t miss a chance to take a swing on the green at Pakenham Golf & Country Club, a 27-hole championship course with three nine-hole courses.


  1. Crooked Mile Brewing Company

453 Ottawa St., Almonte


In nearby Almonte, a must-visit is Crooked Mile Brewing Company, a hip, hot and happening brewery where they’re crafting British-inspired ales that will hit the spot after a long drive. Try their Standing Stone English IPA for a citrusy pick-me-up!


  1. Dairy Distillery

34 Industrial Dr., Almonte


Also in Almonte is a brand-new distillery that is making waves in both the distilling and agriculture worlds. Dairy Distillery combines science with alcohol production to create “Vodkow,” a vodka made from dairy permeate. Don’t miss trying this unique product in beautiful Almonte, the friendly town!


  1. Braumeister Brewing Co.

19 Moore St., Carleton Place


A short drive from Almonte is Carleton Place’s newest brewery, Braumeister Brewing Company, a Bavarian-inspired brewery where everything German is embraced, from the brews to the food. Enjoy authentic German pretzels with Bavarian mustards, German and Polish sausages, and a variety of cheese. Braumeister’s flagship beers includes Märzen, a traditional Bavarian beer and Helles, a traditional German-styled lager brewed in the style of the beers found in Munich beer halls and beer gardens throughout Bavaria.


  1. Stalwart Brewing Company

10 High St., Carleton Place


Also in Carleton Place is Stalwart Brewing Company, where you can expect a one-of-a-kind experience that combines a love for vinyl, hard rock, and – you guessed it – beer. Stalwart’s beers come with funky and unique names like Bad Moon Rye Stout, Big Papa Peach, Zigzagger IP, or Dr. Feelgood. 


Golf Here: From Carleton Place, you can make the short detour to Mississippi Golf Club, located in the beautiful and nearby hamlet of Appleton. This scenic course is the perfect place to stop for a quick nine before heading back out to the (grueling) brewery trail.


  1. Ashton Brewing Company

113 Old Mill Rd., Beckwith


The drive to the small village of Ashton Station will be worth the time to visit Ashton Brewing Company. Only minutes from downtown Carleton Place, you can enjoy a fresh pint and a traditional English meal at Ashton Brewing Company, the first original English pub in the heart of the Ottawa Valley.


  1. Top Shelf Distillers

14 Warren Cr., Perth


Don’t miss a chance to go #bottomsup at Top Shelf Distillers, a small-batch distillery that’s resurrected the whisky tradition in Perth, the small town that was once home to half-a-dozen distilleries in the early 1800s. At Top Shelf you’ll find small-batch gin, vodka, moonshine, and soon whisky will join the list of available products.


Golf Here: While you’re in historic Perth, you’ll want to take a couple of hours to play on Canada’s oldest golf course. Perth Golf Course offers a challenging 18-hole, or two 9-hole courses that are just right for every skill level. Just outside of town are Mapleview Golf & Country Club, both excellent choices for unwinding on the green.


  1. Weatherhead Brew Co.

29 Beckwith St. E., Perth

Perth’s newest brewery has combined a love of beer with local history to create a business that’s steeped in both. Weatherhead’s name pays tribute to a local historical figure, with its very own pirate tale to add some interest. Visit their rustic and beautifully restored historic building and indulge in a pint or two on large, beer-hall tables in their tap room.


  1. Perth Brewery

121 Dufferin St., Perth


Wet your thistle at Perth Brewery, Perth’s first brewery, and a favourite for locals and visitors to the region. Situated right on Highway 7 in Perth, this family-run craft brewery offers more than 10 different kinds of beer, so a taste for adventure is a must when stopping here. Sample their mocha stout, Bonfire Black Lager, or the popular local favourite, the Oh Canada Maple Ale.


  1. Ugly Apple Cider

1940 Con. 4B Dalhousie, Lanark


Experience cider in its pure, unadulterated form at Ugly Apple Cider. Here, cider is made without carbonation, and without any additions beyond apples sourced from wild apple trees. The result is a dry, sour, and complex beverage that’s reminiscent of a good old-fashioned British “scrumpy” or German “apfelwein.” An experience for those with discriminating palates!


Golf Here: Lanark Timber Run Golf Course is located only 15 minutes from Ugly Apple’s rural location, situated on Lanark Highlands’ typical rugged terrain, and along the banks of the Clyde River. This 18-hole, par 69 golf course will challenge every golfer, from novice to experienced.


  1. 4 Degrees Brewing Company

275 Brockville St., Smiths Falls


Totally worth the drive! Don’t cut your trip short before making the short drive from Perth to Smiths Falls, where you can enjoy a cold, refreshing brew at 4 Degrees Brewing Company. At 4 Degrees, their beers are named after local events and experiences in Smiths Falls, and are a one-of-a-kind take on traditional recipes. Their cool and funky interior is the perfect place to relax with a pint (or two), and enjoy some local snacks to fill you up after a full day of Lanark County adventure.