Shazam! You’ll Be In A Whole New World!

Ridgeline Craft Beverage Trail

The Ridgeline Craft Beverage Trail features six of Gaston and Cleveland County’s breweries, distilleries and wineries. Each has its own unique feel and culture, which was our favorite part of this trail. It’s a great representation of what makes Gaston and Cleveland Counties so special.  Starting in Belmont, we’ve put together a guide and itinerary to help you experience these diverse places and people. Along the way, we’ve layered in a few activities to make for a full day of fun and exploration.

To visit every destination on the RCBT it is a two day outing that starts on Saturday. It can be a lot of tastings and most definitely a banquette of phenomenal food. With eight craft producers to visit please have a designated driver in your crew, and you can show your appreciation by picking up their food tab for them along the trail. They will not be disappointed. 

Speaking of food on the RCBT, our first stop is Primal Brewery. It works best if you get to the Brewery as soon as they open in order to give you enough time to experience every stop.

Keying off the warmth and feel of the Huntersville location, the new three-story restaurant, production, packaging, and taproom is put together with attention to details that will make this a go-to gathering place for locals, as well as a destination for beer travelers from around the state.

To complement the award-winning beers that will be produced in Belmont, Primal has acquired Tim “The Brew Chef” Schafer to head up the culinary creations to be served on site. Tim “The Brew Chef,” is a nationally recognized beer personality and a leading authority on cooking with beer. Heck, you can drop the “beer personalty” Tim is an all-around personality! 

You have to do a little planning to start off the day, because the next stop is Muddy River Distilling. They do not have a tasting room, and offer tours at 1, 2, and 3pm on Saturdays only. The gift ship is open Thursday – Sat 11am to 5pm. Muddy River is the oldest legal rum distillery in the Carolinas, and the owners Robbie & Caroline will love to share the story passion and determination they put into bringing you their selection of distilled products.

After the tour double back to Belmont and sneak on into Jekyll & Hyde. If you enter on Glenway Street through the triple wooden doors you’ll be facing one of the most unique bars you’ll ever see. Steampunk, Craft Cocktails, Steampunk, In House Craft Beers, Steampunk, English Pub inspired Menu.

You can sit at the bar, grab a flat top table, or (here comes the sneaky part) head to the right of the bar and go towards the restrooms. Between the restrooms will be a bookcase, pull it out. Shazam! You‘ll be in a whole new world! Large indoor dining space, second tasting bar, and a large outdoor dining area. If you go up the stairs you’ll step into the private event area.  It’s worth exploring.

While you are at Jekyll & Hyde you’ll want to try some of the apps or if you’re like me, maybe a linner. That’s my meal between lunch and dinner. It’s a good 30-minute drive to stop number four. 

Ole Dallas is a craft microbrewery owned by a team of friends and their families passionate about beer and their community. “Rethink what you drink.” The friends at Ole Dallas will also make you rethink what a taproom is. In this casual space you’ll experience some of the best live music in the Piedmont and (drumroll please) professional wrestling! If you want to stop by Ole Dallas during the week, check the hours on Facebook, they tend to open later and stay open later than most breweries.

We typically can’t get out of a tasting room any faster than 2 hours, if you’re the same way, it’s probably time to find a place for the evening in downtown Gastonia and relax, you’re only halfway through the tour. Our top recommendations include Esquire Hotel, Courtyard by Marriot, Hampton by Hilton, and the Hilton Garden Inn. 

For the final four stops you can wait for our November the Destination Magazine to hit the street, or you can go to for a digital conclusion to your craft beverage journey.

Gaston County offers visitors a variety of attractions to enhance your trip including museums, botanical gardens, extreme sports, hiking, dining and entertainment parks, art and history and more.