Best Places to Live

Missoula, MT

Population: 75,034
Photo: Michael Fajardo

Missoula, MT, may be "out there," but it's worth the trip if you enjoy wide open spaces, big mountains, history and culture, and bold brews.

Bayern Brewing, which opened in 1987, is the only German brewery in the Rocky Mountains. It's a real-deal German brewery, owned by brewmaster Jugen Knoller, who started making beer when he was 16. The brewery has a tasting room where at least six of its beers are always on tap and go nicely with snacks like pretzels, landjaegers (Bavarian beef jerky) and of course, brats.

The Taproom at Big Sky Brewery is a don't miss on the western beer circuit. They produce beers that are both fun to drink and say. Moose Drool, Scape Goat and Trout Slayer are three examples.

The Kettlehouse Brewing Company has a pair of locations in Missoula; both feature working breweries and taprooms. They have six mainstays, three of which are available only in the taprooms and a variety of seasonal beers.

*Photo: Michael Fajardo