Nightlife review: Lincoln’s White Elm Brewing Company is a welcoming, dog-friendly environment

White Elm Brewing Company

Where: 720 Van Dorn St., Lincoln

Hours: 4 to 8 p.m. Monday, 4 to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 3 p.m. to midnight Friday, noon to midnight Saturday, 2 to 8 p.m. Sunday

Info: 402-261-6078 or


I’m becoming a bit of a regular at White Elm Brewing Company in Lincoln, which I’ve visited two times in as many weeks.

The laid-back brewery and taproom in southwest Lincoln is a pretty great hangout spot.

It’s kid-friendly, dog-friendly and just all-around friendly. The staff is helpful and knowledgeable, and they seem to really get to know their patrons and make them feel comfortable.

Plus, if all that isn’t enough, White Elm also has good beer — and plenty of it.

When I visited, White Elm had about a dozen beers on tap — and good variety, too. There were saisons, lagers, fruit beers, porters, pale ales and IPAs. And the beers themselves had unique flavors, like a hibiscus saison and key lime pie IPA. Plus, I can confirm that the Blueberry Smash beer, advertised as tasting like “liquid blueberry muffins,” actually tastes like blueberry muffins.

I also tried the Skinny Legs IPA and the Peach Smash.

The Skinny Legs IPA is about 6.5% alcohol by volume, and White Elm bills it as having hints of melon, stone fruit, citrus and peach. I’m not usually a fan of IPAs, but this is one of the few I like because it’s easy to drink and has hints of fruitiness.

I also got the Peach Smash, billed as a Bellini beer. In case you’ve never experienced the joy of having a Bellini before, they’re made with Prosecco sparkling wine and peach puree or nectar. White Elm’s Peach Smash has a hint of peach, which makes it a light, refreshing beer that is perfect for summer.

No matter your taste in beer, White Elm offers enough variety that there should be something on the menu for you.

The taproom itself is also a very comfortable place to settle in for a beer or two. There is plenty of seating along the large bar, at tables and at some couches and chairs by the entrance. The décor itself is warm, welcoming and a bit funky, with quirky light fixtures and fun artwork.

In general, hanging out at White Elm feels like spending an evening at your friend’s house — if your friend had really good taste in décor, made lots of beer and had food trucks. Did I mention that White Elm frequently has food trucks? On one of the nights I visited, for example, Muchachos food truck was serving up delicious burrito bowls. Beer and burritos — I’m sold.

In addition to food truck offerings, White Elm has also added a weekly pop-up farm stand where people can come buy fresh fruits and vegetables from Willow Way Farms.

That’s one of the things I like best about White Elm — its support of local businesses like Willow Way Farms and Muchachos. By allowing these businesses to set up shop at its taproom, White Elm projects a small-town, neighborly vibe that’s sometimes hard to find in bigger cities like Lincoln.

A community-minded brewery with good beer — I’ll drink to that.