Over the last few years, beer has slowly been losing market share to spirits. However, sales of craft beer rose by 7.9% in 2021, and the number of regional craft breweries also ticked upward by 1.4%, according to statistics from the Brewers Association.
Given the healthy state of the craft beer market, it’s no wonder that you’ll find plenty of local breweries on Oahu to enjoy.
Below, you’ll find our list of the 11 best breweries on Oahu. Consider this your map for sipping your way through Oahu, one craft brew at a time. To keep the party going, we’ve also included some honorable mentions—spots that don’t brew their own but still make a great stop for craft brew enthusiasts.
#1: Hana Koa Brewing Co.
962 Kawaiahao St.
Honolulu, HI 96814
Founded by husband-and-wife duo Josh Kopp and Chrissie Pinney in late 2019, Hana Koa opened just a few months before the pandemic shut-downs—but they’re thriving today in their Kakaako location. There were 17 beers on tap when we visited recently, plus several can pours and new releases waiting in the wings.
In addition to brewing great beer, Hana Koa is also a brewery with a mission—”to curate a safe and inclusive space for people from all walks of life to come together and enjoy the same things: good food, great beer, and incredible people.” You can see their commitment to this mission in everything they do, including their limited-edition brews that benefit causes like suicide prevention, cancer treatment, and dog rescue—among many others. So, as you raise a glass at Hana Koa, you’re also raising a glass to the community they’re both building and supporting.
#2: Beer Lab HI
University Taproom (original location)
1010 University Ave., B-1
Honolulu, HI 96826
98-1005 Moanalua Rd., #884
Aiea, HI 96701
94-515 Uke’e St. #310
Waipahu, HI 96797
Imagine what would happen if a crew of beer-obsessed scientists went into the laboratory to have some fun, and you’ll have a sense of what’s coming out of Beer Lab HI. Founded around the concepts of constant change, experimentation, and small batch brews—and inspired by early craft innovator Dogfish Head Brewing—Beer Lab was started by three friends who met while working as engineers at Pearl Harbor. Beer Lab has now grown to three locations, and you can find their beer on tap at a number of restaurants and bars around Oahu.
PS – If you’re an aspiring homebrewer, you can order malts, hops, and yeast online from Beer Lab’s Department of Zymurgy for pickup at their Waipio Brewery.
#3: Aloha Beer Company
700 Queen St.,
Honolulu, HI 96813
(Central Pacific Bank Lobby)
220 S King St. Suite 101,
Honolulu, HI 96813
2155 Kalakaua Ave.,
Honolulu, Hawaii 96815
Spend any time talking about Oahu’s craft beer scene, and the name Dave Campbell is bound to come up. Raised on Oahu, Campbell founded Oahu’s legendary homebrew store, Homebrew in Paradise. He also mentored a number of the brewers and owners whose craft breweries are featured on this list today.
Along with local businessman Steve Sombrero, Campbell launched Aloha Beer Company in Kakaako in 2016. Their goal was to 1) restart the brand, originally featured at Big Aloha Brewing at Sam Choy’s Breakfast, Lunch & Crab and brewed in California, and 2) bring the actual brewing home to Oahu.
Among Aloha’s locations, our favorite is the Kakaako Brewery for its dog-friendly patio. Bring your pup and meet your co-workers or friends for a pau hana drink. You’ll enjoy happy hour pricing Sunday–Thursday from 2:30–5:30 pm, as well as a lively atmosphere made even more fun by the dogspotting.
Aloha also operates a late-night speakeasy upstairs called Hi Brau. In contrast to the brewery downstairs, it’s focused on craft cocktails, and it’s also available for private events.
#4: Broken Boundary Brewery
740 Moowaa St., Suite A
Honolulu, HI 96817
With the opening of Broken Boundary, Kalihi has fast become a one-stop shop for beer lovers of all stripes. Homebrewers can stop by Homebrew in Paradise to pick up all the supplies they need for their next project. And those who are happy enough to simply drink their beer can pop into Broken Boundary in the very same building and grab a pint. (Or both!)
The brewery, founded by current Homebrew in Paradise owner Bill Sumrow and brewer Chris Cook, focuses on beers anchored in tradition, yet enhanced with new ways of combining ingredients and techniques. The results? Familiar brews with a twist that will leave you wanting more.
#5: Waikiki Brewing Company
Waikiki Brew Pub
1945 Kalakaua Ave.
Honolulu, HI 96815
Kakaako Brew Pub
831 Queen St.
Honolulu, HI 96813
If you’re wandering around Waikiki, looking for something that screams authentic, what better than a beer brewed right there, in the thick of it all? That’s what you’ll find at
Waikiki Brewing Company. The brewery opened its first location along Kalakaua Avenue in 2015. Since then, the operation has grown to two locations on Oahu, plus two locations on Maui.
The original Waikiki location has some great perks, including military and kamaaina discounts, plus a dog-friendly patio where even your pooch can score a meal.
#6: Honolulu Beerworks
328 Cooke St.
Honolulu Beerworks has been one of the stalwarts of the Oahu craft beer scene, ever since husband-and-wife team Geoff and Charmayne Seideman opened in 2014 in Kakaako. In addition to an extensive tap list, their Kakaako location also serves food.
Can’t make it to the brewery? If you’re in Hawaii, you’re in luck! You’ll find Honolulu Beerworks’ offerings distributed all across Hawaii, both on draft and in cans. Check their website for a full list of locations.
#7: Lokahi Brewing Company
1160 S King St.
Honolulu, HI 96814
When Lokahi Brewing launched in 2021, they had four of their own beers on tap, including a Honey Macadamia Nut Brown. Today, they’ve got all eight tap lines going, plus more options in cans. Dan Coronado and Rick Best started as homebrewers before coming together to build Lohaki—literally. The two did a majority of the build-out themselves, transforming the building that used to house Precision Radio into the airy, two-level space it’s become today.
If you want to give Lokahi’s brews a try, stop by during their Saturday-Sunday brunch. They serve both sweet (mochi waffles) and savory (huevos rancheros) options to satisfy all palates.
#8: Lanikai Brewing Company
167 Hamakua Dr.
Kailua, HI 96734
When it comes to their brewing philosophy, Lanikai takes its inspiration from the Hawaiian Islands, with brews focused on local ingredients, like ohia lehua honey, pikake flowers, and mamaki.
Plus, any non-beer drinkers traveling in your crowd can test out Lanikai’s line of spirits. In addition to lemongrass gin and macadamia nut amaretto, Lanikai has also started making pineapple swipe. This liquor originated in plantation times when workers would mash up pineapples and sugar and let the concoction ferment in the sun. Lanikai’s swipe comes in three flavors—pineapple, pineapple and lilikoi, and pineapple and mango—and it will offer you a unique taste of Hawaii’s history brought into present day.
#9: Maui Brewing Company
2300 Kalakaua Ave.
Honolulu, HI 96815
573 Kailua Rd., Suite 105
Kailua, HI 96734
If you want to sample the brews from Hawaii’s largest craft brewery, Maui Brewing Company is happy to save you a trip to the Valley Isle. You’ll find two MBC locations on Oahu: one in Waikiki and one in Kailua.
The Waikiki space, located in the Waikiki Beachcomber, offers an expansive patio with plenty of room to spread out and enjoy the 36 brews on tap. The Kailua location has a laidback, airy vibe throughout the indoor-outdoor space.
At both locations, you’ll find the staples that put Maui Brewing Co. on the map, like Big Swell IPA and Pineapple Mana Wheat, as well as their seasonal and experimental brews. Both locations serve food, and you won’t be disappointed by the wide selection on the menus.
#10: Kona Brewing Co.
7192 Kalanianaole Highway
Honolulu, Hawaii 96825
One of the most prominent beers you’ll see in Hawaii retail outlets, Kona Brewing ran afoul of craft brew fans by creating confusion over where their beer was actually brewed. (The answer? New Hampshire, Oregon, Tennessee, and Washington state.) Kona’s draft beer in Hawaii, however, was brewed in the Aloha State—and that continues to be true.
Location questions aside, Kona remains a popular beer and a dominant force on taps in Hawaii. Hop on over to their Kona Brewing Pub in Hawaii Kai to enjoy 48 taps of beer, a full menu, and a picturesque view of the Koko Marina.
#11: Inu Island Ales
46-174 Kahuhipa St.
Kaneohe, HI 96744
This smaller brewery opened in Kaneohe in 2017, in a space formerly used by the now-defunct Stewbum & Stonewall. (Inu means “drink” in Hawaiian.) Inu’s core line-up consists of hazy IPAs, fruited sours, stouts, and light lagers/pilsners, and you’ll find seven beers going at their tap room at any given time. Their space is on the smaller side—it’s more of an industrial space with a bar, a few tables, and some stools—but you can always get a crowler to go.
If you want to learn more about what makes Inu Island Ales tick, check out this interview with Keaka Eckhart, owner of Inu Island Ales, on the Art of Beer podcast:
Village Bottle Shop & Tasting Room
How many times have you looked at a six-pack of intriguing craft beer, your interest piqued but your wallet reluctant to commit to all six? For the ultimate fun in beer tasting, head to the Village Bottle Shop, which has an extensive collection of loosies to browse. (Did we mention you can also order ahead on their website for easy pickup?) Or, belly up to the bar, which features 26 taps, 8 of which are devoted to wine. You also can’t beat the location, right in the heart of Kakaako, which means it’s an easy stop between one of the area’s many breweries.
BREW’d Craft Pub
25 taps and a hearty, solid food menu make this gastropub in Kaimuki well worth a visit. When you’re looking for a low-key place to taste Hawaii’s best brews, plus some mainland stand-outs, Brew’d is your spot.
Pour Your Own
If you’re the type that prefers little tastes of a bunch of different beers—or you’re the type to date around a little before committing to a full pint—we’ve got two places for you to check out. Both offer a pour-your-own system that allows you to pay by the ounce. Serve yourself a few ounces or a whole pint for the ultimate DIY tasting experience:
- Grace in Growlers in Kailua (Untappd). They’ve got 14 taps, plus a considerable fridge of cans to go. BYO food.
- Off the Wall Craft Beer & Wine in the South Shore Market (Untappd). 24 local craft beers, red & white wines, kombucha, and ciders on tap, plus a kitchen dishing out a variety of foods from empanadas to pork adobo tacos.
Where Craft Beer Is Concerned, Oahu Has Options
It probably comes as no surprise that Oahu has the largest selection of craft breweries operating in Hawaii. However, would you have expected to find eleven breweries on the island of Oahu alone?! For craft brew fans spending anywhere from a week to a lifetime on Oahu, it’s good news. And, given the fact that these breweries are turning out new brews all the time, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to keep your taste buds busy while you’re on Oahu.
Considering a move to Oahu? If so, we’d be happy to help you get your belongings wherever they need to go on the Gathering Place. Just reach out to our Honolulu-based team to get started with a free quote. (And feel free to ask us about our favorite places to grab a pau hana beer!)