Photography & travel tips from an award-winning photographer, educator & wanderlust

If you find yourself in Libby, Montana

Welcome to Libby, Montana – a town of over 2600 people. This town will be forever known as the “town changed by asbestos”. The history is often tragic, but the best we can do is learn from the past and try to move on into happier, maltier, hoppier future.

Introducing Cabinet Mountain Brewing Company, which established itself in Libby over two years ago. They rightfully pride themselves in being Libby’s only brewery and the only Montana brewery to be owned exclusively by women. Girl Power!

Let’s take a look at their modern, yet homey decor and ambiance. Speaking of modern, one of the neatest things about this Brewery is that it is housed inside one of the oldest buildings in town. The brick wall behind the bar is over 106 years old! Talk about rare!

This place calls itself “Libby’s living room” and it wasn’t hard to figure out why – people were relaxing with a book or on their phone/computer/tablet devices. There was outdoor seating as well, for people watching, though not many of them were walking by (middle of the afternoon on a Monday).  The place looked clean, inviting and you can observe the brewing operation right from your chair – always very impressive with large, shiny tanks and smell of brew in the air.

We used to come to this town frequently before our second venture to work in South Korea. Never did we think that in a few years, this town would be home to award winning beers. So, what’s on tap?

Cabinet Mountain Brewing by

Cabinet Mountain Brewing by

Cabinet Mountain Brewing by

The thing about a young brewery is that they are not always consistent in their beer selection. At times, you have some great brews, while others are immature. What my elementary palate and my husbands mature palates were able to discern is that all of the beers at CMBC were strong and true to their style. Despite the fact that it’s a female-owned brewery, our hats go down to Shawn (no last name given), who is their brewer. Well done!

My personal favorite was their:

Peak Baggin’ Pale Ale—This bright amber-hued ale has a touch of citrus on the nose.  Northwest hops are upfront boasting flavors of grapefruit and orange, and a moderate bitterness is balanced by the sweetness of caramel malts.   ABV=5.8%     IBU=30″

Filipina bar maid that is working there, Gyrlie, is super nice and is a pleasure to talk to if you’re feeling like chatting.

Cabinet Mountain Brewing by www.allaponomareva.comThe last cool thing about this place is their “Where are you from?” section, which visitors happily fill out with chalk. Unfortunately, there was no more space left for our mark, but it was great to see a brewery, which values its costumers from close or far away and wants to advertise it. By the way they have a special on Wednesdays for all the Canadians out there!

If you find yourself in or around Libby, Montana, do come in and have a tasty brew! We sure did!

Cabinet Mountain Brewing Company

Address: 206 Mineral Ave, Libby, MT 59923

Phone: (406) 293-2739

Like this post? Like beer? Read more about Montana Breweries here. 

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  1. I am known to love a good beer! Which sadly I am deprevied of in Korea! Hahaha unless I want to spend an arm and a leg for one! I especially love micro breweries like this one! If we ever find ourselves in this part of the US we will check it out!

  2. What a fascinating little place! I love all the small details you captured, especially the ‘Where are you from’ chalkboard. There must be some really interesting messages written there.
    Thank you for sharing!

  3. I love visiting microbreweries- we have quite a few in Scotland these days and they always have the best beer! It’s one of the things that I miss most about home. That looks like the cutest location- would love to go there for a post work pint tonight but unfortunately it’ll be hite or soju for me since I live in Korea!

  4. I love breweries. Unfortunately, in Korea the good beers are so expensive. In Amsterdam there’s this brewery and it is housed in a windmill. It’s one of the coolest breweries I have been. The beer is good too.

  5. Montana is certainly a state that I’m dying to visit. I would love to do an extended Utah, Montana and Wyoming trip. I won’t be visiting any time soon, but I’ll keep this post and brewery in mind for future reference! Thanks for sharing your lovely photos, too.

  6. Hey Alla! I never asked but are you from the States too? I have yet to go to Montana but I’m making it my mission to see more of the USA. Microbreweries that are female powered are good in my book! Too bad I’m gluten sensitive or else I’d be all about it!

    • yes, Izzy, I grew up in Delaware, but my husband and I vacation in Montana every summer, where his family is from. Montana is a must visit, especially during the summer, when there is dry heat, lots of river floating and Glacier National Park’s “Going to the Sun Road” is not overcome with snow and is open!

  7. I love how this brewery is the only Montana Brewery to be run by women! Everything looks amazing and I like how you can take samples. Which one was your favorite? Great photography as always! 😀

  8. The only exposure I had with craft beer was in Manila… in a relatively new and still unknown laboratory (that’s how they call the place) because they do their own coffee and beer. Interesting. and reading about it here just confirms that there are better beer alternatives around the world aside from the readily available commercial beers we have. Cheers!

    • Wendy, dont you live in Seoul? The Craft Beer scene is exploding there, with notable places such as Magpie Brewery, Craftworks, Ka-brew, 7brau and more. if you can, get a sampler, otherwise you might be in for a surprise.

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