North Carolina boasts the largest number of craft breweries of any Southern state, with more than 203 breweries and brewpubs from the mountains to the coast. Recently added to the ranks is Mill Whistle Brewing, which opened its Beaufort doors in 2016, becoming the first craft brewery in Carteret County. With this one-barrel nano brew house, brewmaster Tom Backman (a longtime home brewer turned pro), has introduced The Crystal Coast to a line of palatable products that range from pale ales to porters. The beers are inspired by local lore with names as unique as the beer itself. A local favorite is Girl in a Rum Barrel, an American stout aged with juniper for a hint of barrel-aged spiced rum and named after the storied young girl laid to rest in Beaufort’s Old Burying Ground.
Mill Whistle Brewing is located on the former Safrit Lumber Mill site, which operated in this nestled Beaufort location for 100 years. The brewery’s name is an homage to the steam whistle that announced the shift end at the mill. Although the original does not sing anymore, a replica of the whistle blows every day outside in the bier garden at 4:45pm, right on time with its predecessor’s schedule.
April 2017 marks the brewery’s one-year anniversary, so if you’re looking to wet your whistle, get hoppin’ and plan a trip to Mill Whistle Brewing the next time you’re at The Crystal Coast.
Location: 1354 Lennoxville Rd, Beaufort, NC 28516