The Year in Beer 2017

The craft-beer industry in our region is growing bigger and stronger every day. New breweries are opening with increasing frequency, while well-established ones, both big and small, are expanding production and distribution at home and across the country.

Brewers themselves are also pushing the industry forward with new approaches to modern, trendy and old-world beers, introducing consumers to a range of classic and creative styles and flavors. In this, our annual The Year in Beer feature, we present an overview of the expansion and innovation in our regional craft-beer community.

In the following pages you’ll read about happenings in the beer scene from October 2016 to October 2017, including the opening of 18 new breweries, 14 must-try beers from established breweries and exciting and inspiring stories about growth and expansion. Please join us in raising a pint to all of the brewers who are moving our local beer industry forward and making our region a national destination for stellar suds.

Writer Pete Dulin is the author of Kansas City Beer: A History of Brewing in the Heartland, KC Ale Trail, and Expedition of Thirst: Exploring Breweries, Wineries and Distilleries Across Central Kansas and Missouri.

Mallory Gnaegy is a part-time journalist, full-time publicist and wannabe chef who takes food-inspired adventures, often on bike, and she never lives by the motto, "Don't write with food in your mouth."

When Rose Hansen isn’t out chasing stories, she lives like a pioneer woman (of sorts) on a cattle farm in McDonald County, where she also practices a love/hate relationship with gardening.

Justin Phelps is a Certified Cicerone® as well as the owner and editor of, a beer website with a St. Louis focus. While he may be a marketing professional by day, he's a blogger, brewery hopper and beer enthusiast by night.

More Features articles.