Mills River Beer Guide: Your Mills River guide to beer, beer bars, breweries and brewpubs

Latest reviews from Mills River

“Visited 3/2020. Place is beautiful and HUGE. Big parking lots so coming by car is easy... and probably only option. Lots of people everywhere around facilities. Had a quick stop so only small meal and their anniversary IPA. Definitely understand why this is popular place but still.. not for me.“
VastActiv 102 days ago
“Amazing facility that has a beautifully and well thought out production area (for those interested, I highly recommend the tour). Great food with a wide variety of beer in draft, including brewpub exclusives. Amazingly impressive and thoughtful decor and architecture.“
Lothore 396 days ago
“Impressive grounds, service, and food. Lots of SN one-offs and brewery only releases to try as well. Enjoyed the self guided tour as well. Will have to take a guided one next time around.“
piscator34 429 days ago
“Like others have mentioned, awesome place. Arriving to place is like driving to some big mansion. Shiny huge building has brewery, gift shop and large taproom. Oval bar had good service and I think 21 taps. They have some NC one-offs available. You can get the flights of four. Didn't eat except cheese cake which was good. Gift shop has sixpacks and 0'75 ltr rare Trips in the Wood bottles (20 usd). Probably finest brewery (poshy way) where I ever been.“
TBone 843 days ago
“Came here on 6.3.2018. What a place! When we drove through the gate, it felt like entering a posh Country Club. After driving up for a little while, you see the big palace. Unfortunately it was late and dark and I have not seen the brewery. The restaurant is world class, the beer selection outstanding and the food selection was quite unique (variety of small dishes). I had a tropical Torpedo and a classic Torpedo, fantastic beer quality. I need to come back to visit this place during the day.“
Schlenkerla 857 days ago
“The Taj Mahal of brewery taprooms I've visited. Excellent selection of their flagship as well as seasonal/specialty beers. The beer prices are very reasonable. The food portions are expensive small plates but everything I have had in multiple visits is excellent. The wait staff is happy to please and readily brings beer samples to help you choose. There is a great outdoor garden area, the main restaurant and taproom, a second bar area upstairs with a balcony , a separate outdoor restaurant, and guided or self-guided tours. Long waits for a table during peak dining hours. You can smell the sweet, malty wort smell as soon as you getting of the car in the parking lot. This is my favorite place to have a few beers and a light meal when in the area.“
jhsnitz1 905 days ago
“Crowded with a 90 minute wait for a table at peak times. Selection is good with some beers not in the stores, service is great and food excellent and the portions not too big.“
Luvystypotables 1064 days ago
“This place has out-Disneylanded New Glarus. You know you’re in for something special when you turn right past the airport onto Sierra Nevada Way and start seeing old mash tuns and other brewing equipment standing randomly in a field or used for bridge posts. Then you arrive at the massive complex of building with grain silos and fermenters towering towards the sky. The copper brew kettles come into view as you get closer. The first thing you see in the taproom is the large oval bar, jam paccked with people at 11 AM opening midweek, holy cow. But there are more seats facing the open kitchens (plural), and then of course there is the Back Porch (with table service) overlooking the organic gardens and walking paths, where you can watch grain trucks coming and going all day. I wish they would blast headbanger music really loudly in the otherwise peaceful gardens, but maybe I’m just getting old. Multiple one-off beers here, most are very drinkable, and flights of four two-0unce pours for six bucks are a good way to try them. Apps are tastier than the main plates, but all the food is interesting. Servers are going at full tilt from start to finish, so there is precious little chatting here. Very worthwhile visit. Next time I’ll do an organized tour. This place proves that you can be a giant corporation with megabucks and still be pro-craft beer, in stark contrast to some other Corporations in town That Shall Not Be Named.“
Travlr 1073 days ago
“Amazing location in the foothills, huge outdoor pavilion/garden/amphitheater. Great tap selection, great food, activities for the kids, live music. Didn’t even miss not doing the guided tour (age 12+ only). Absolutely a must-see.“
desurfer 1097 days ago
“We stopped in on the drive back to Cincinnati from Charleston on a hot Saturday afternoon. I wasn’t quite prepared for the scale of this place. The parking lot is enormous, the facility itself is, too, and the crowds were overwhelming. If not for that last part, I’d probably have liked it more. You can take a self-guided or formal tour. There are grounds behind the place with a playground, garden, games, patio, and amphitheater. The restaurant space is massive. There’s a large hall upstairs with its own bar. There are multiple bars on the patio. Not every bar had every beer, but the overall list was about 20, about 14 of which were seasonal - and most of those were the 2017 Beer Camp selections, because we visited shortly after those released. The food we got was just the quick counter on the patio because we couldn’t wait an hour for a table. This is absolutely worth visiting if you’re in Asheville or driving through I-26, but be prepared to spend some time here. Try to seek out a less crowded time, if you can. It’s massive.“
phaleslu 1125 days ago
“Whoa, what can you say about this facility?? Insane!! A must stop for any beer lover. The food was great, the beers are solid, and the grounds are spectacular.....“
50belair 1141 days ago
“Top 3 spot to visit in the area. A massive taproom with a ton of bar seating as well as sit down areas. We sat in the bar area. Prompt service from a knowledgeable waitress. About 20 beers. About half normal stuff and half pilot batch or seasonal. A wonderful food menu. We shared the skewers, pizza. And pork belly bites. Pork belly bites were amazing. A large and beautiful back deck with amphitheatre. Definitely a wonderful place. Flights of everything on draft and grade A bathrooms, too“
Homer321 1154 days ago
“Really nice facility... this place is massive. The food is good the beer is good... this place is likely awesome in the summer time! Value is a probably the only low side as the tapas style food is a bit pricey for the hungry beer drinker (although extremely tasty!).“
Doofgoblin 1335 days ago
“Huge brewery in a LEED certified building. A great selection of beer, many that I have never seen available anywhere else. Also some unusual bottles available in the gift shop. Food was very good -nice tapas menu. The place was packed when we visited. Had to wait about 40 minutes to get a table, but we enjoyed shopping in the gift shop and drinking a beer while we waited. Overall it was an excellent experience to visit this place.“
BeerdedDave 1430 days ago
“(Visited 06/2015): Sierra Nevada’s North Carolina brewery is located in Fletcher/Mills River, about 25 minutes from Asheville on Sierra Nevada Way, off 26. There is a very large parking lot in front of the building.

The facade of the brewery is modern-looking with lots of large windows. There is an outside patio and bar in the back of the complex, plus walking paths and even an amphitheater. Inside the main entrance opens to a greeting area, with a gift/bottle shop adjacent to it. The dining area is large and open with a bar toward the front, and table seating throughout the rest of the space. Lots of light throughout, wood and hanging lights. The bar has a large illuminated set of tanks behind it with signs listing the beers attached to it.

Sierra Nevada has a pretty robust draught list, numbering around 20. Many flagship beers like Bigfoot plus seasonals and one-offs. Samplers are available. On our visit the selections included an Asheville Brewers Alliance Beer Week Summer Ale, Hoptinite IPA, a couple Beer Camp beers and an English Mild. Lots of bottles available to-go as well, including some rarer stuff like Rain Check.

Service during the visit was very good. Our server was prompt and attentive, as well as knowledgeable about the beers. Checkout at the gift shop was good too.

Food at Sierra Nevada is enjoyable. We split some different plates and everything was tasty.

Overall this place is one of the best brewery experiences I have had in terms of being the total package. I would definitely go again on a future Asheville visit.“
Dogbrick 1480 days ago
“This place is just massive. As soon as you start driving up the expensive, lengthy driveway you know you’re in for a spectacle. Think of Sierra Nevada’s new brewery as a tourist attraction more than a place to hang out and have some beers. The place is stunning with every detail given attention. We just did the self guided tour and found it fascinating. The beer list is basically what can be expected from breweries this size. It was certainly satisfactory.“
NachlamSie 1535 days ago
“This was well worth the trip. I’ve never taken a "big brewery" tour before but it was free, included 8 samples of their core beers and one on-site only small batch brew. The taproom rocks, they had 30th anniversary bottles still in stock! so I bought a few. Really happy with this place. Had a nice time. Sure, huge brewery now and not realy craft anymore but they did a good job.“
AdamChandler 1545 days ago
“I knew it would be a nice place, as the Chico location is nice, with a better than expected tap list and good food, but they really outdid themselves here. Sitting on a beautiful huge gated property, this place looks beautiful down to the bricks in the driveway/parking lot. There’s a ton of seating inside and out, and a garden/amphitheater/walking path out back. The beer list is extensive, if a little ipa heavy, and of good quality. Food was even better than expected.“
slowrunner77 1557 days ago
“was there on good Friday. was totally blown away from the moment we hit the driveway to the time we left. got there just after noon and it was bustling and within 30 minutes the place as packed. no tours available they are booked for sometime so we made our way on our own. the big wrap around bar with a staff that knows their stuff. flights to 1/2 pours to pints and growlers. everything is immaculate. the food was great, the beers were spot on. the gift store has some special releases my friend grabbed one. as we walked on our own tour the place is spotless got to see quite abit of the facility but not the brewing side. outdoors has its own bar great set up with a stage, a dog area, the only drawback I seen was the minimal parking lot but then I found a space. I cannot brag on this place enough I will go back time and again.“
tmongoose 1566 days ago
“Visited on a Tuesday just after they opened. Driving here was a pretty cool experience. They have well manicured landscaping all along probably a quarter mile or more driveway up to the facility. It felt like driving up to the home of a super rich person’s home that really loved beer. There were metalwork hops decorating posts all over the place along the private road. Once you reach the facility, it’s massive. For the size of the building, I’m surprised at the size of the parking lot. It seemed pretty small. Being there right at open I had no trouble parking, but I could see that being an issue at some point. This place was so cool! Inside they have a huge tap room with a wrap around bar in the center of the room with some fermenters in the middle of it. Both sides of the bar had their own sets of taps, but they seemed to be the same on either side, at least on my visit. They had a lot of one-offs on tap along with 3 barrel aged beers and allow flights. Four 2 oz pours for $6 and you can include one high gravity beer per flight. During my visit, that only included the barrel aged beers. While here, I highly recommend visiting the retail shop. They had several bottles of their very limited beers. I picked up 4 750s of beers I had never seen before and left some there. Service here was excellent. I couldn’t have asked for anything more without getting my tab paid off by the bartender. Very knowledgeable and kept beers in front of us. This place is world class, and a must stop if you are in Asheville.“
JStax 1578 days ago
“Incredible architecture and manicured grounds as well. Surprised there weren’t more rarities on tap, but can’t complain about the variety. This place is amazing.“
kathouse 1587 days ago
“A magnificent facility! About 21 taps with a good range of ’regular’ SN beers as well as at least a few rarities. Very good food - gourmet rather than pub fare but with (small) serving sizes and high prices to match. Free tours must be schedulted in advance.“
chinchill 1654 days ago
“Definitely one of the best brewery/taproom experiences out there. Fantastic atmosphere, lots of brewery exclusives, and even a few retired bottles of some of their older stuff. It’s really one of the great experiences out there and one of the reasons I love craft beer so much.“
DiarmaidBHK 1654 days ago
“Wow this place is huge! Great locally sourced food, great selection, some of which is only available here. Another Asheville must visit.“
magsinva 1654 days ago
“It was dark when we were driving in, but they had beautiful lighting throughout. Once we arrived, the place was full, but we got one of the last tables. I had a Pale Ale, because you do. Also a chocolate chili stout and a barrel agreed Bigfoot. All were terrific! The food was great, too! Some unusual flavors like an Apple butter gorgonzola pizza! Just a really cool place and a lot of fun! No, it’s not your little mom and pop craft beer experience. Of course it isn’t! It’s Sierra Nevada.“
smoosh 1664 days ago
“Wish I’d said it first...but yes "briandorry55"..."craft beer mecca"! This is without a doubt the crème de la crème of American craftbeer breweries. No disrespect to Stone...who I love...but this totally blows away the Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens (and no!). Took me 3 tries over 1 year to even get a reservation for the 90 min tour and tasting (actually booked it over 3 days of trying while traveling in the Yukon 2 months before!) It is truly difficult to describe the beauty and creativity of this place. The details are ridiculous...and the overall amazing. I love the copper clad tanks and the hop room and the whole tour and tasting...but just as good the back patio and stage and gardens and out back bar. Heck...just the approach road is spectacular! SN Mills River is without a doubt a craftbeer destination...worth a trip by itself...but leave at least 2 extra days...because you’re in freakin "Craftville", NC for goodness sakes!“
PRBeer 1720 days ago
“I’ll admit this and Wicked Weed were my must visits during a long weekend in Asheville. The large brewery is about 20 minutes south of the city, beautiful grounds and architecture. Sadly we were too late to schedule a real tour but they offer a self-guided tour down a very long hallway showing guests the basics of beer production and SN history. The restaurant offers indoor/outdoor seating and has around 18 beers on draft; both regular SN beers and some brewery exclusives. Food is all sourced locally. We shared some appetizers and 2 flights, all were excellent. The giftshop offers typical swag and beers to go. Overall a must visit, especially if you can schedule a tour 2 months in advance. Next time we will do just that!“
radio_nowhere 1764 days ago
“Dang near perfect. It’s Disney World and Willy Wonka (minus the children killing) mixed together. The food was outstanding and the service was attentive and friendly without being fake. Lots of brewer only beer, and the self guided tour is fun if you can’t get on the guided tour. Take time to explore the grounds, too, with lots of walking trails.“
Suttree 1818 days ago
“Well, this is it folks - the destination brewery. Gorgeous new facility just outside of Asheville. Features a lively taproom with maybe a couple of dozen offerings made up of the old standards (fresh versions) and several examples of more limited stuff (Beer Camp). We did not eat at the restaurant, but the menu looks awesome - inventive and cutting edge (warning - they were on a 2-hour wait by 11:30am) . Also didn’t get to do a tour because they book solid TWO MONTHS in advance. Several tour options are available In addition to the standard free tour (the Beer Geek tour, for example!). There’s a great deck/porch off the back of the restaurant and an outdoor amphitheater for performances - what a place to burn an afternoon. Also a small gift shop which offers some additional bottles that aren’t available in the taproom. I dinged ’em a couple of points for slow service, but overall this is a fantastic visit and well worth a trip (or a detour).“
Bacchus66 1830 days ago
“An incredible facility that reminds me of a Napa Valley estate. The food is great, and they have a nice-sized draft list, including some options only made there. Service is good, as is the value. A must-stop if you;re in the Asheville area.“
b3shine 1873 days ago
“This is craft beer mecca. A beautiful self-sustaining kingdom crafted by a beer legend. Maybe this place is "corporatey" as far as craft beer destinations go...but so what, if it’s corporatey, it’s in the best way possible. It’s big, it’s flashy, but it is beautifully done in every detail and sustainable in every way they could manage. The free tour is phenomenal. Sorry if you have to book it ahead of time, you have to do the same thing at great restaurants, get over it and plan ahead. The tour is long and detailed and really gave me a newfound respect for the brewery and it’s founder. Playing in the hop freezer was awesome...hearing about Ken Grossman’s journey and his vision for this place was really amazing and inspiring. The tour concluded with a generous tasting of 8 beers at a beautiful bar. The gift shop has everything you could imagine including a great selection of Sierra Nevada bottles that included plenty of stuff I’ve never seen anywhere else, including a six-pack six-year vertical of Bigfoot (seriously, who does this!?)...on our second visit, the restaurant had just opened. I expected typical unenthusiastic pub-fare, but I guess I should have known ended up being one of the best meals we’ve had in our two week-long trips to the Asheville area, and we actually stopped for lunch again before we headed home to Florida...with the "Cauliflower Steak" being my surprise favorite, what a genius dish and the entire menu is inventive and delicious. If I could knock off any points it would be that most of the draft list is pretty regular offerings, but ya know what? It’s all fresh and it’s all really solid or better because that’s what SN does...and Barrel-Aged Narwhal and Barrel-Aged Bigfoot were on both times we went, and I’ll take that all day. Book a tour, enjoy the tasting, spend some money in the gift shop, and eat a fantastic meal at the restaurant...I don’t see how anybody could leave this place unimpressed. I could live here.“
BrianDorry55 1873 days ago
“People seem enamoured of this place and I’m not sure why. It is huge and corporatey. While nice, it doesn’t really deliver the local craft beer experience. We looked into getting a tour (which you have to book on-line in advance) and they were booked out for a month. They have bus parking. We enjoyed our experience with friends. The food and service were decent enough. They were out of a couple of the beers we wanted to try but had plenty of others. Just not my preferred craft experience. This place is corporatey enough that you could take non-beer people here and they would find something non-threatening while you snuck a couple of ratings in.“
tia 1917 days ago
“The tour is by reservation ONLY. The restaurant/brewpub is coming soon, but not open yet. It seems like, in a few months, they plan for this to be a real destination, but right now, it is only a gift shop and a tour of the production facility if you book ahead online. Great looking place though. Nice gift shop. I bet it will be really fun once it is done and ready. 5 minute drive from the airport if you have a reason to be there. Got a brewery only beer and a couple of new seasonals in singles (plus a snap bracelet version of a can coozie), so I was happy I made the short drive. Difficult to rate until they have everything open, but this is where I settled. “
ben4321 2008 days ago
“Craft Beer Mecca. I will update this more when things start to take shape, but it looks like it will be amazing. I got to go on a private sneak peek tour, and was just blown away.“
jbruner 2172 days ago