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Top 5 Indy tours: taprooms, pubs and breweries

Indy has more than a dozen locally owned breweries and taprooms.
Indy has more than a dozen locally owned breweries and taprooms.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Whether you drink beer, craft brew, wine or water there is sustainable way to tour Indy’s taprooms, pubs and breweries. Hop aboard a bus, limo, trolley or mass transit bicycle. Leave driving to the designee. Mustaches optional.

Indy Brew Bus

Indy Brew Bus—Indy’s original brewery tour—offers craft brewery tours primarily in Downtown Indy historical and cultural districts complete with curbside pick-up at your hotel. Taproom stops include Sun King Brewery in Cole-Noble, Fountain Square Brewing Co., Flat 12 Bierwerks in Holy Cross and Indiana City Brewing Company on Irish Hill. Some brewery tours bus up to Bier Brewery in the burbs. Each tour visits four of the five taprooms. The Skipper and Gillian would be jealous of this three hour guided tour.

Who: 1-14 passengers, growlers in tote
What: single fare, open to the public; private parties available
When: Thursdays, 5:30-8:30pm. Fridays, 2-9:15pm. Saturdays, noon-8pm. Sundays, 1-4pm
Where: one of Downtown Indy’s hotels, bars, restaurants or residences
Cost: $30 per person. Pay online by credit card. Cash-only for walk-ups, space permitting.

Brewery Tours of Indianapolis

Brewery Tours of Indianapolis is another craft beer party bus. Brewery Tours pick up at Scotty’s Brewhouse in Downtown Indy and Thr3e Wisemen in Broad Ripple. Visit four of twelve taprooms in under four hours. Pop in craft brew joints, taprooms and full service restaurants like Black Acre in Irvington, Bier Brewery, Flat 12, Triton Brewing Company, Fountain Square Brewing Co., Sun King Brewery, and Indiana City Brewing Company. Encouraged to BYOG (bring your own growler) and fill the on board icebox.

Who: Up to 21 passengers, growlers in tote
What: single fare, open to the public; private parties available
When: Thursdays and Fridays, 5-9pm. Saturdays, 11:45am-3:15pm. Sundays, 12:30pm-4:30pm.
Where: Downtown Indy and Broad Ripple
Cost: $30 per person. Online by credit card, or cash-only for walk ups, space permitting.

HandleBar Indy

Trolley + bike + pub on wheels + pub-crawl = awesome. HandleBar Indy Pedal Pub pushes off 2014 in time for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. Travel green while wearing green and burn consumed liquid calories. Book your group’s pedal and pint tour now for availability beginning March 14. You and fifteen of your closest friends whether Type A control freaks or Type B let it roll peeps will earn sweat equity. Park and pedal from The HandleBar garage on Virginia Avenue.

Who: 8-16 cyclists plus 1-2 designated drivers
What: pedaling private party, BYOB, self-DJed, self-designed routes
When: Saturdays & Sundays, 10am-10pm. Weekdays, 5pm-10pm.
Where: Downtown Indy
Cost: $300-$400 via credit card or cash

Mustache Rides

Feeling silly? Party on the way to your destination via Mustache Rides, or shall we say Bustache ride? Buses transport fourteen passengers and provide complementary mustaches--Hulk or Geraldo? Mustache is “the facial hair that will get you there.”

Who: Up to 14 passengers with senses of humor
What: Private parties
When: anytime by appointment
Where: customized or pre-planned tours to Hoosier Park Racing & Casino, Indiana Grand Casino, Indiana University tailgates, Oliver Winery, and Indianapolis Colts tailgates, Klipsch Music Center.
Cost: $150-175 per hour

Broad Ripple Party Bus

Mardi Gras in style with family-owned and family friendly husband and wife team Jon and Sarah Henhapl who boast fun over fancy. Select one of seven modes and motifs for your kid-friendly or adult only party on wheels. Amenities include dance floors, lasers, fog machines, on board coolers, subwoofers, full bars and party tables all in the comfort of your own rolling revelry. No smoking.

Who: groups of kids and/or adults of 18-35 passengers
What: private parties by party bus, limo bus or trolley
When: anytime by appointment
Where: Broad Ripple, Indianapolis, West Lafayette, Shelbyville, Carmel, Noblesville, Anderson
Cost: $500-800 plus driver and fuel charges

Presently none of these tour transit options accommodates wheelchairs. A friendly reminder that all brewery tours require all participants including designated drivers to be age 21+ unless otherwise noted. Be responsible—don’t drive buzzed.

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