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16 Places to Drink Craft Beer in Vancouver Right Now

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To celebrate Vancouver Craft Beer Week 2014, we asked Chuck Hallett, one of the province's finest craft beer experts, to put together your essential guide to drinking craft beer in the city.
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When not attempting to single-handedly financially support the local brewing industry through personal consumption, Chuck spouts off on his award-winning beer-themed blog: BarleyMowat.com. If you're in a good beer bar reading this, odds are he's sitting next to you. Be polite and say hi.


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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Parallel 49 Brewing Co.

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Such is the expansion in the local beer scene that P49 is both one of the older breweries on this list and only just recently celebrated its second birthday. A large welcoming tasting lounge lets you sample their regular lineup and several of the never-ending stream of oddities that burst forth from brewmaster Graham With's imagination on a regular basis. There's no kitchen, but food carts have a habit of showing up when you get hungry.

Storm Brewing

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Also clustered near P49 and Powell Street is one of Vancouver's original craft breweries. Owner/Brewer James Walton has been producing high quality, no-comprise beer here since 1995. Storm also lacks a tasting lounge, but the sour barrel-aged Flanders Red is a must-try.

Bomber Brewing

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Newly opened, Bomber Brewing's cosy tasting lounge lets beer fans sample their expanding West Coast-themed lineup. A pilsner, ESB and obligatory IPA comprise the core offerings, with a couple of one-offs usually available.

Biercraft Tap And Tapas

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While BC beer is some of the best in the world, Belgium has been producing excellent ale since time immemorial. Biercraft's two locations offer up a mix of Belgian and BC beers on tap and knowledgeable, friendly staff provide guidance to both the taps and their deep cellar list.

Tangent Cafe

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A recent addition to the BC craft beer scene, Tangent Cafe demonstrates that raw number of taps isn't all you need to contend. Ten carefully curated taps offer up a mix of rare beers alongside their more mundane brethren. Pair with an East meets West Malaysian/Canadian menu.

St. Augustine's Craft Brew House & Kitchen

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Perennial winner of the silver medal for Best Beer Bar in Vancouver, St Augustine's actually boasts more taps than The Alibi Room and a similar lineup of rare ales. Its convenient location just off the Expo Skytrain makes this an ideal stop for an afternoon pint while out exploring Vancouver's eastern fringes.

Portland Craft

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You don't have to travel all the way to Portland, Oregon to see what makes it the craft beer mecca of the world; Main Street's Portland Craft brings the best of the US to Canada. 16 taps of American craft beer (and one or two locals for good balance) play off a menu that takes food cues from Portlandia (e.g. "Put A Bird On It (Fried chicken and waffles)). Portland Craft can get quite busy in the late evening on Fridays and Saturdays, so go early or call ahead.

BierCraft

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While BC beer is some of the best in the world, Belgium has been producing excellent ale since time immemorial. Biercraft's two locations offer up a mix of Belgian and BC beers on tap and knowledgeable, friendly staff provide  guidance to both the taps and their deep cellar list.

33 Acres Brewing Company

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Imagine a sleek Scandinavian Coffee House selling solidly produced sessional ales and lagers and you might have pictured 33 Acres. A sleek white-and-concrete interior kept immaculately clean makes you wonder whether or not you've slipped into an art gallery by mistake, then you realize that you have... The beer is the art. Highlights include Merckx (Saison) and Sunshine (French Blanche).

Brassneck Brewery

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The cosy, wood-lined tasting lounge is owner Nigel Springthorpe's way of encouraging you to say "Well, okay, just one more" a few more times than you might otherwise. Since he also owns the Alibi Room, you could say that Nigel knows a thing or two about running a bar. Luckily, Brewmaster Conrad Gmoser also knows a thing or two about brewing beer. A constantly changing array of quality taps is backed by one or two regulars offering something for everyone. Definitely try Passive Aggressive (NW Pale Ale)

Tap & Barrel

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Boasting not one, but two locations on Vancouver's iconic seawall, Tap & Barrel might very well lay claim to the best patios in town on which to consume craft beer. The broad-not-deep selection of all-BC beer (and wine) on 20+ taps should have something for everyone. Expect a long wait on sunny weekends but there are worse places to hang out than the Sea Wall.

Alibi Room

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This is where craft beer in BC started. Back in 2006, owner Nigel Springthorpe converted a down-market after-work hangout for the city's film industry set into a temple to All Things Beer. Boasting over 50 taps plus 3 permanent casks, if you're looking for a rare beer in BC, this is where you'll find it. Go early, as it can become crowded within an hour of the 5pm opening.

Wildebeest

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Good beer and fine dining DO mix. Wildebeest's meat-focused, seasonally-directed menu offers up the best of the beast, while a well-curated six tap list, which frequently features rare Quebecois beer, compliments the heavy sustenance. Don't miss the bottle list which includes several of BC's best - and hardest to find - vintage beers. Reservations are recommended.

Rogue Kitchen & Wetbar

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Some bars have great beers, some have a great view, but few are worth visiting simply for the room. Rogue is the exception to that rule. Lofty 30 foot ceilings and an ornate interior hark back to the days when the room was part of a train station. The excellent beer and well-executed American menu only add to the charm.

Steamworks Brewing Company

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One of Vancouver's original brewpubs, Steamworks has been serving up good beer at the corner of Cordova and Water since pawn shops were more common in the area than high-end boutiques. While most of the beer is no longer produced on site (Steamworks recently opened a massive brewery in neighbouring Burnaby), the recipes haven't changed.

Tap & Barrel

Copy Link
Boasting not one, but two locations on Vancouver's iconic seawall, Tap & Barrel might very well lay claim to the best patios in town on which to consume craft beer. The broad-not-deep selection of all-BC beer (and wine) on 20+ taps should have something for everyone. Expect a long wait on sunny weekends but there are worse places to hang out than the Sea Wall.

Parallel 49 Brewing Co.

Such is the expansion in the local beer scene that P49 is both one of the older breweries on this list and only just recently celebrated its second birthday. A large welcoming tasting lounge lets you sample their regular lineup and several of the never-ending stream of oddities that burst forth from brewmaster Graham With's imagination on a regular basis. There's no kitchen, but food carts have a habit of showing up when you get hungry.

Storm Brewing

Also clustered near P49 and Powell Street is one of Vancouver's original craft breweries. Owner/Brewer James Walton has been producing high quality, no-comprise beer here since 1995. Storm also lacks a tasting lounge, but the sour barrel-aged Flanders Red is a must-try.

Bomber Brewing

Newly opened, Bomber Brewing's cosy tasting lounge lets beer fans sample their expanding West Coast-themed lineup. A pilsner, ESB and obligatory IPA comprise the core offerings, with a couple of one-offs usually available.

Biercraft Tap And Tapas

While BC beer is some of the best in the world, Belgium has been producing excellent ale since time immemorial. Biercraft's two locations offer up a mix of Belgian and BC beers on tap and knowledgeable, friendly staff provide guidance to both the taps and their deep cellar list.

Tangent Cafe

A recent addition to the BC craft beer scene, Tangent Cafe demonstrates that raw number of taps isn't all you need to contend. Ten carefully curated taps offer up a mix of rare beers alongside their more mundane brethren. Pair with an East meets West Malaysian/Canadian menu.

St. Augustine's Craft Brew House & Kitchen

Perennial winner of the silver medal for Best Beer Bar in Vancouver, St Augustine's actually boasts more taps than The Alibi Room and a similar lineup of rare ales. Its convenient location just off the Expo Skytrain makes this an ideal stop for an afternoon pint while out exploring Vancouver's eastern fringes.

Portland Craft

You don't have to travel all the way to Portland, Oregon to see what makes it the craft beer mecca of the world; Main Street's Portland Craft brings the best of the US to Canada. 16 taps of American craft beer (and one or two locals for good balance) play off a menu that takes food cues from Portlandia (e.g. "Put A Bird On It (Fried chicken and waffles)). Portland Craft can get quite busy in the late evening on Fridays and Saturdays, so go early or call ahead.

BierCraft

While BC beer is some of the best in the world, Belgium has been producing excellent ale since time immemorial. Biercraft's two locations offer up a mix of Belgian and BC beers on tap and knowledgeable, friendly staff provide  guidance to both the taps and their deep cellar list.

33 Acres Brewing Company

Imagine a sleek Scandinavian Coffee House selling solidly produced sessional ales and lagers and you might have pictured 33 Acres. A sleek white-and-concrete interior kept immaculately clean makes you wonder whether or not you've slipped into an art gallery by mistake, then you realize that you have... The beer is the art. Highlights include Merckx (Saison) and Sunshine (French Blanche).

Brassneck Brewery

The cosy, wood-lined tasting lounge is owner Nigel Springthorpe's way of encouraging you to say "Well, okay, just one more" a few more times than you might otherwise. Since he also owns the Alibi Room, you could say that Nigel knows a thing or two about running a bar. Luckily, Brewmaster Conrad Gmoser also knows a thing or two about brewing beer. A constantly changing array of quality taps is backed by one or two regulars offering something for everyone. Definitely try Passive Aggressive (NW Pale Ale)

Tap & Barrel

Boasting not one, but two locations on Vancouver's iconic seawall, Tap & Barrel might very well lay claim to the best patios in town on which to consume craft beer. The broad-not-deep selection of all-BC beer (and wine) on 20+ taps should have something for everyone. Expect a long wait on sunny weekends but there are worse places to hang out than the Sea Wall.

Alibi Room

This is where craft beer in BC started. Back in 2006, owner Nigel Springthorpe converted a down-market after-work hangout for the city's film industry set into a temple to All Things Beer. Boasting over 50 taps plus 3 permanent casks, if you're looking for a rare beer in BC, this is where you'll find it. Go early, as it can become crowded within an hour of the 5pm opening.

Wildebeest

Good beer and fine dining DO mix. Wildebeest's meat-focused, seasonally-directed menu offers up the best of the beast, while a well-curated six tap list, which frequently features rare Quebecois beer, compliments the heavy sustenance. Don't miss the bottle list which includes several of BC's best - and hardest to find - vintage beers. Reservations are recommended.

Rogue Kitchen & Wetbar

Some bars have great beers, some have a great view, but few are worth visiting simply for the room. Rogue is the exception to that rule. Lofty 30 foot ceilings and an ornate interior hark back to the days when the room was part of a train station. The excellent beer and well-executed American menu only add to the charm.

Steamworks Brewing Company

One of Vancouver's original brewpubs, Steamworks has been serving up good beer at the corner of Cordova and Water since pawn shops were more common in the area than high-end boutiques. While most of the beer is no longer produced on site (Steamworks recently opened a massive brewery in neighbouring Burnaby), the recipes haven't changed.

Tap & Barrel