What a time to be alive! In past generations, going out for a beer meant going to the closest watering hole, ordering a generic beer, and swigging back whatever brownish beverage was given. Today, we live in a golden age of craft breweries, where beer is finally given the respect it deserves.

It is seen in the same light as wines always have been, with subtleties and variances that make each brew distinct. Here are our favorite craft breweries in Orange County.

Taps Brewery

Taps Brewery started out with just a man and a desire to bring refinement to the beer world. He sought inspiration in the world famous breweries of Germany, and brought back a passion for brewing that eventually led to a full service restaurant and tap room. Since opening the first Taps location in 1999, they have brought home more than 100 medals from the Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup. Grab a beer and a bite or take a tour of the brewery and enjoy a brew made with love!

Network Brewery

Have you ever tried a beer and thought, “I could do that?” So you go out and buy the necessities for a home brewery, discover a real talent, and find that others love what you’re making too? That’s what happened with the founders of Network Brewery. What began as a home operation is now a thriving tap room in Santa Ana. Join the Network Club for exclusive discounts and early releases on new creations!

Bravus

Did we already mention what a great time it is to be alive? Today, beer lovers who would rather not endure the “side effects” of beer now have options! For many years, fans of IPAs and stouts and ales who, for whatever reason, don’t drink alcohol were reduced to watching from the sidelines as others enjoyed their suds. Perhaps a bar had a can of O’Douls lying around in the back room. But now, there is a whole world of opportunity in the form of craft non-alcoholic beers! At Bravus, non-alcoholic beer is the name of the game. Their mission is to create beers without the ABV that are every bit as tasty as their alcoholic equivalents. So enjoy as many Bravus IPAs as you want without the guilt or worry at North America’s first brewery dedicated to non-acoholic beers!

We think it’s time to sit back with a cold one. How about you? Do you have another favorite brewery around Irvine? Let us know on Facebook or Instagram. And keep following our blog here for more Orange County originals!