Beer Guide: The Best of Bend, OR Breweries

Although I may not frequent Bend’s breweries as much as I used to before becoming a dad several years ago, I have many great memories exploring Bend’s brew scene with friends and family. If you’re in the area and have time for a few great beers—even if you can’t tell an IPA from a Pilsner—here are six of my favorite local breweries to stop and enjoy a drink.

Bend, OR: Birthplace of Craft Brews

The brewery scene in Bend is one of the reasons why craft beer has exploded across the country. Not to pat ourselves on the back, but this is the town where it all started with the first initial craft breweries. You won’t see Deschutes on my list (although I love them, I love these six breweries more), but a lot of people credit them for pioneering craft beer as a whole. 

Fun fact: Bend’s heavy involvement in craft brewing acted as inspiration to Jim and Max Bendis when they decided to create Ablis CBD with the same craft mindset—small batches, high quality, and small community. This helped shape the ethos of Ablis…and it helped Bend make a name for itself as the city with top-notch craft breweries.

There are plenty of craft beers now created in Bend, but it’s neat to know that there are a few that were here from the start. If you want to see where the craft brewery boom began, visit Bend! I personally consider this the beer mecca of America…and trust me, it’s worth a pilgrimage. 

6 Great Breweries to Experience in Bend 

A lot of the breweries in town are really about the experience. They have the whole shebang: food, drinks, events. Here are a few of my favorites that I recommend putting at the top of your Bend, OR brewery bucket list. (Have a few brews and try to say that ten times fast!).

1. Silver Moon Brewing

24 NW Greenwood Ave, Bend, OR


This local brewery’s tagline says it all: “Same Great Beer. Same S***ty Location.” It’s what they’re known for. Although the exterior of Silver Moon looks like it could be a dive bar, it’s one of the best tasting rooms in town. 

They call it “the Moon”. 

The walls of the Moon have seen a lot since the building first opened in the 50s—It’s been everything from a furniture store to a machine shop with a strip bar (!!). Its unusual history only adds to Silver Moon’s awesome atmosphere as a down-to-earth, small-town brewery that packs a punch in every sip. 

Jam-packed with random knowledge? Mark your calendar for “Trivia on the Moon”, but keep an eye out for the competition: My Ablis friends, Chad and Parker. They were “year-long champs” in 2020 (mainly because they won the last game before the weekly event was put on hiatus due to COVID-19, and nobody had an opportunity to dethrone them!). 

If you’re hungry, they have great food here (I like to order the fried pickles with their house-made ranch). Our team at Ablis has also collaborated on a few beverages with Silver Moon Brewing in the past, but even if that wasn’t the case, they’d still be my favorite brewery in Bend. 

Go to drink: Mango Pale Ale

Visit Silver Moon Brewing

2. Bend Brewing Company

1019 NW Brooks St, Bend OR


When things warm up in Oregon, I’d suggest hitting the patio at my second favorite brewery, which just so happens to be the second-oldest brewery in town: Bend Brewing Company. They have a smaller, local feel, which is one of my favorite things about them. 

At Bend Brewing, you’ll find rotating brews (give them a phone call to find out what’s currently on tap) and a great atmosphere for drinking beer with your friends. 

Go to drink: Tropic Pines IPA

Visit Bend Brewing Company

3. Crux Fermentation Project

1441 SW Chandler Ave. #100, Bend, OR 


This tucked-away pub is really something special: a brewery restaurant experience like no other. They have a very well-maintained craft focus, and when you dine in the pub, you’re able to walk right past the different tanks and things they use to brew their beer. 

Crux definitely creates amazing drinks—Probably because the people who started it was passionate about the beer above all else. Pro tip: If you see the El Santo stand in their courtyard, grab a bite to eat. You won’t regret it!

Go to drink: Battlestar

Visit Crux Fermentation Project

4. 10 Barrel Brewing Co.

West Side — 1135 NW Galveston Ave


East Side — 62950 NE 18th St 


They may have “sold out” to Anheuser-Busch, but in my eyes, 10 Barrel Brewing Co. simply pursued their dreams and won out by becoming the bigger brewery that they always wanted to be. At the end of the day, they kept their spirit and culture when they joined forces with Anheuser-Busch, and they continue to feel like a small-town brew pub even if they’re technically owned by “the big guys” 

10 Barrel loves to bring the community together with events and great brews on tap at their two locations: West Side and East Side. If you have to choose just one, I’d suggest heading to my favorite: the East location, in the industrial district. 

Go to drink: Pearl IPA

Visit 10 Barrel Brewing Co.

5. Cascade Lakes Brewing Co.

1441 SW Chandler Ave. #100, Bend, OR 


This local brewery has been around for a long time. When I first started drinking, one of the first drinks I had was their Blond Bombshell! There’s no doubt that this brewery is a staple in my life and in Bend, OR. 

They started out in Central Oregon in 1994 and haven’t stopped brewing delicious beer since. Although their brewpub in Bend isn’t open right now, you can still visit their Redmond location for patio dining and great beer. 

Go to drink: Blonde Bombshell

Visit Cascade Lakes Brewing

6. Wild Ride Brewing

332 SW 5th St., Redmond, OR


Wild Ride is a little outside of Bend, close to where I live in Redmond. The owner, Brian Mitchell, is interested in producing the best product possible, which I believe he does. I love the beers that Wild Ride has created so far. 

For a long time, this was Redmond’s only brewery. It was opened in 2014 by three friends who simply loved beer, and although none of them knew anything about brewing, they’ve found brewmasters that continue to create award-winning beers for Wild Ride Brewing. 

Go to drink: 3 Sisters American Red Ale 

Visit Wild Ride Brewing

Awesome Beer Events in Oregon 

Zwickelmania — All across Oregon

If you can’t tell, we’re really passionate about beer here in Oregon. “Zwickelmania” is named after a “Zwickel”: the port on a bright tank, which carbonates the beer. Visitors can go in and out of the breweries tasting samples, which is a great way to get a taste of the Bend brewery scene (almost all of the breweries in town participate). 

Bend Brewfest — Bend, OR 

This craft beer festival offers some of the best beers in the country, as well as the best beers in our city. Bend Brewfest is three days with craft beer, food trucks, live music, and good times. It’s located right across from the Deschutes River in the Old Mill District, which is an awesome area that’s also filled with different shops and restaurants you can enjoy, too. 

Tentatively scheduled for August 19-21, 2021

Bend Ale Trail 

If you still have time to explore, trek the “largest beer trail in the West”. You can download a “passport” from their website, then visit a few participating breweries to receive a prize. Visit Bend began the Bend Ale Trail in 2010 with 6 breweries, and has since expanded to include 22 breweries. 

When you’re traversing the trail or visiting one of my six favorite breweries, remember to have fun, stay safe, and keep an eye out for Ablis CBD on the menu. We always love partnering on new creations with our local breweries. 

Cheers, friends! 

About Us CBD Education

Staying True To Our Craft Beverage Roots: CBD drinks at Ablis

I started making CBD beverages with my son Max in 2014, and we were essentially creating a new product category. CBD tinctures and gummies were becoming available, but a craft beverage with CBD was unheard of.

Luckily, we’d been down that road before. Ablis was born out of a long tradition of innovative craft beverage making at our distillery in Bend, Oregon, where we had been producing award-winning liquors, Crater Lake Spirits. 

That experience, along with our commitment to using only 100% all-natural ingredients, has made Ablis a success.

25 Years In the Making

Bend is home to a large, old-growth juniper forest. These ancient trees tower over you, and in the springtime, the fragrance of the juniper berries is unmistakable. If you’ve never smelt it, it’s bright, woody, peppery, and sweet all at the same time. 

One day in 1995, as I was running through the juniper forest and taking in the fresh smell, I started wondering why no one had created gin using these juniper berries. (Juniper is the main ingredient in gin, in case you didn’t know.)  

That’s how I started dreaming up ideas for all-natural spirits, which is what we continue to do today at Crater Lake Spirits.

I had no previous experience in distilling, and craft spirits were not even a thing at the time. But the difference between a dreamer and a doer is that a dreamer dreams and a doer does. And so I decided not just to be a dreamer and figure it out. 

A little market research told me that there was more demand for spirits other than gin, like vodka and whiskey, so we started distilling and infusing spirits with flavors inspired by our natural surroundings like hazelnut, hot pepper blends, and seasonal berries. 

There have been many hurdles to overcome along the way. For example, we actually had to change the law to create spirits tasting rooms. 

But over the last 25 years, we’ve crafted countless all-natural flavor profiles and built a bounty of knowledge that has carried over into our newest endeavor, Ablis CBD. 

Our Philosophy

Like Crater Lake Spirits, we’re committed to using 100% all-natural ingredients in Ablis’ CBD infusions. 

Big beverage brands use chemists and artificial flavors to make their products, but we prefer a more artisanal approach. Ablis is an extension of the expertise and care that led to the success of Crater Lake Spirits, and we only use ingredients that we’re willing to consume ourselves.

Related: We’re Ablis And This Is Our Story

We’re always the first to taste a new flavor, and when we feel like we have a winner, we start producing it in small batches and putting it out in the market for feedback. In the end, our customers are the ones who decide Ablis’ winning flavor combinations. It’s always been that way, and it always will be. 

Sure, it might be more lucrative to outsource our production and use artificial ingredients instead of natural ones, but that’s not what we’re about. Our mission, even as we grow, is to make the best possible product. No cutting corners. No short-changing our customers. It’s been that way with Crater Lake Spirits, and the same goes for Ablis. 

Perfecting Our Process

Our ingredients are simple, but our process is complex. 

Crafting CBD beverages isn’t just a matter of throwing everything in a bucket and mixing it together. The key to making Ablis is something called “nano-emulsification.” It’s what makes Ablis work as both a standalone product, or as the base for the occasional CBD cocktail. 

Related: Five CBD Cocktails You Can Make At Home

Backing up for a second, emulsification, in general, is the process of mixing two liquids that normally don’t mix like oil and water. It involves breaking down one of the liquids into tiny, evenly distributed particles. Nano-emulsification means the particles have to be even smaller. 

CBD doesn’t blend with water, even when it comes in powdered form, rather than an oil. Without breaking down the CBD into even smaller particles, it will eventually separate from the water. It not only ruins the mouthfeel of the beverage, but you don’t get the CBD you paid for because it gets stuck to the container. 

It’s possible to nano-emulsify CBD to the point that it can stay blended with water. But sugar, including the natural sugars from our fruit concentrates, adds another layer of complication. 

It’s taken us five years to develop our patent-pending process for emulsifying CBD with water and sugar. It takes very specific steps in exactly the right order, with calculated ratios, not to mention the necessary equipment. Plus, we have to make sure Ablis has a long shelf life without adding any preservatives.

It’s been a live and learn process, and it would have been impossible without the depth of knowledge we gained through Crater Lake Spirits. 

Going Forward

We believe in creating all-natural products forever, and Ablis is no exception. It’s true for our CBD beverages, as well as the rest of our ever-expanding CBD product line. 

As Ablis grows, we’ll stick to our philosophy and continue perfecting our process with each batch.