If you're in the area Magic Hat Brewery is definitely worth an hour of your time. That's all you need though an hour, it's a free guided or self-guided tour, and then you get to sample 4 of their beers (again it's free), and there's the obligatory gift shop.
I'd presumed that it would also be a beer hall, i.e. you can stop for an hour or 2 and have a couple of pints of beer. It isn't; it's the shop, the tour, the tasting bar, the gift shop, and a counter to fill growlers to go. This would/could be so much better if you were able to linger over a couple of glasses of beer.
We took the guided tour which was maybe 20 minutes, 30 tops. You're given a card which is stamped/crossed off each time you choose a beer to sample at the tasting bar, there's maybe 8 or 9 beers in total to try and it would have been nice to try all of them rather than just choose 4, especially as I made a couple of duff choices and didn't really like 2 of the beers I chose. I'd happily pay to take the tour if you got to sample all of the beers.
The 4 beers I tasted were; Elder Betty - a seasonal elderberry weiss - my favourite by a mile, Circus Boy - a hefeweizen - my second favourite, #9 - a not quite pale ale - not bad not the greatest beer I've ever had though, and Dream Machine - an IPL - my least favourite of the 4.
The gift shop is huge and it has all sorts of weird and wacky merchandise, no fitting rooms but the guy on the till said I could just use the ladies room to try on a couple of T's. It's all kinda psychedelic and 60's themed and dimly lit. and it has all sorts of paintings and artwork on the walls. It's nice to just browse the gift shop area with your beer samples, it's basically all set up in one large room - the gift shop with the tasting bar and growler bar along one wall, the tour leaves from one corner of the room and deposits you back in the gift shop at the end.
We enjoyed it, it certainly wasn't the best brewery tour we've taken at all, but it was entertaining and filled an hour or so. We bought a couple of T's and a couple of pint glasses, I'd have also bought some Elder Betty had we not been so near to the end of our holiday and so not much time to drink it before we headed home. I'd go again, just so I can taste 4 more of their beers!
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