Due South Brewing Co.

2900 High Ridge Road #3, Boynton Beach; 561-463-2337, duesouthbrewing.com
Open noon-10 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday and Sunday, noon-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday
Free tours 1 and 3 p.m. weekends, $10 VIP tours 2 p.m. Saturdays

Due South Brewing in Boynton Beach focuses on making American ales and nothing else.

Owner Mike Halker, an Army veteran, wanted to make wine at home for his wife, when a store clerk steered him toward suds.

¿I was getting supplies and the guy says, `You don¿t want to make wine. Takes too long,¿¿ Halker said.

So, in 2005, he started trying to brew a beer his wife would enjoy. That¿s how the Due South Caramel Cream Ale came about, and Halker says it¿s become the brewery¿s flagship ale.

The company opened in May, just in time for American Craft Beer Week. Halker says his focus so far is to fill kegs for distribution rather than bring in a crowd of tasters.

Due South ales are on tap throughout Boynton Beach and as far as South Miami. (Courtesy/Due South Brewing)

It’s hard to believe this is only the second brewery to open in South Florida (Tequesta has the first). In any case, Mike Halker of Due South was right on schedule with his new brewery, opened the weekend before American Craft Beer Week.

Due South has been bringing food trucks onto brewing grounds on weekends and taking over taps at brewpubs all along the tri-county strip. Thanks to Halker’s working with Brown Distributors, Boynton Beach’s newest tap heads appear as far south as the World of Beer in Dadeland, Miami.

Traditional-lager folks may be tired of hearing this craft-beer craze all the time, but the industry is only getting started in South Florida. Tampa has a strong presence nation-wide with Cigar City brews; it’ll still be a while till Palm Beach’s Due South can break the North.

-- @mariamurriel

Photos: Spring Break in Fort Lauderdale