Boston brewing fans should head to Harpoon for some beer and twists

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BOSTON -- It's become a main staple of the Seaport District: the Harpoon Brewery and Beer Hall.

Seeing the large operation in action has become a popular stop, and visitors have been flocking to take the brewery tour. However, if you "love that dirty water" in Boston, you won't find it at Harpoon because the water has been purified and filtered to make what has become among the most popular craft beers in America.

"There's a lot of love that goes into every aspect," said Dan Washburn, who has the catchy title of "beer captain" at Harpoon. "There is a whole history here, 30 years."

Guests line up in the vast and decorative Harpoon brew hall, patterned after the communal German halls meant to promote a festive atmosphere. From there, they can see how the operation works.

At Harpoon, visitors walk through the factory and see the bottling process, including the custom built "keg racker," which makes one keg of beer every 18 seconds.

But the favorite tour stop is what those at Harpoon call the "speed dating for beers" -- the tasting room. About a dozen brewed varieties are on tap for guests to try.

And the tour has an added twist at the end that you won't want to miss. Harpoon has become renowned for their giant soft pretzels, and the bakers "actually boil them in our IPA," Washburn said.

Learning the craft behind the brew and seeing the operation in motion is the reason the staff at Harpoon says you will want to raise your glass.

"It's great beer and great pretzels," Washburn said.

The Harpoon Brewery is located at 306 Northern Ave. in Boston. Tours are offered every day and cost $5. Children are not permitted on the weekends. To find out more click here.