The 10 Best Breweries in Vancouver
Featured destinations: Vancouver
Published 28 April 2017
Vancouver’s craft beer industry has exploded over the last half a decade. Nowadays, you’re more likely to find a range of local craft brews rather than mass-produced generic beers in any given restaurant or pub, and brewery tasting rooms continue to pop seemingly out of nowhere all over the city, quickly becoming the best places to socialize.
We have long-loved craft beer in Vancouver, and our long-standing local breweries are well worth a visit, including the popular brewpub Steamworks with its long line of award-winning beers, and the famous Granville Island Brewery. As an avid beer lover however, I recommend you get off the beaten path, visit one – or many – of the breweries on the list below, and get to see what Vancouver’s beer scene is really all about.
Brassneck Brewery image: Claus Gurumeta
Often credited as the standard of what microbreweries should look like, Brassneck Brewery was one of the first breweries to implement communal tables, a feature rarely seen in Vancouver beforehand, now common of most breweries, bars, and eateries. Their tasting room, an industrial-looking space of concrete, steel and wood, is literally built in the middle of the brewery, putting guests right in the heart of the action. Their small-batch brews allow Brassneck’s beer menu to rotate constantly and their unique creations are sold exclusively at their brewery/tasting room in Mount Pleasant, so you’ll have to visit them to try them out. Your visit will be likely be one of your favourite experiences in Vancouver though, so you won’t regret it!
Visit Brassneck at 2148 Main St, Vancouver
Green Leaf Brewing Co. image: Claus Gurumeta
Green Leaf Brewing Co.
During your visit to Vancouver, you will surely visit North Vancouver, home to many of the area’s main tourist attractions. While there, make sure to stop by my local the Green Leaf Brewing Co., located inside the lively Lonsdale Quay Market, a mere 12-minute ride from downtown Vancouver aboard the iconic Seabus. The Green Leaf brews a good beer selection and small-batch sours, as well as refreshing kombucha. They recently introduced a small food menu, but patrons are welcome to bring in food from the market’s food stands and enjoy their meal along with great beers, a welcoming atmosphere, and friendly service. The brewery also counts with an amazing view of the Vancouver skyline, best appreciated on a sunny day with a pint of Bitterleaf IPA on hand from their quaint patio.
Visit Green Leaf at Lonsdale Quay Market, North Vancouver
33 Acres Brewing Co. image: Claus Gurumeta
33 Acres Brewing Co.
A favourite hangout for many Vancouverites, 33 Acres Brewing has one of the city’s most beautiful tasting rooms: a clean, bright space that incorporates natural elements like wood, rocks, and greenery, as an ode to its home in the Pacific North West. 33 Acres is more than a brewery; yes, their range in beer is one of the best in the city, but regular visitors return time and time again for their coveted weekend brunch, and early birds can visit for a coffee fix as early as 9am, when the brewery doubles as a café. On weekdays, and after weekend brunch, a rotating schedule of some of the city’s best food trucks park just outside 33 Acres, allowing patrons that are there for the long run to fill their tummies in between tastings.
Visit 33 Acres at 15 West 8th Ave, Vancouver
Strange Fellows Brewing image: Claus Gurumeta
Strange Fellows Brewing
The weird and fabulous Strange Fellows Brewing has one of the most inventive brands in the craft beer world. Their beers are great; each branded with a unique character -a strange fellow- which represents the flavours of the brew itself: a juggler, a dragon, an owl, and a siren, amongst others. You’ll find Strange Fellows beers at liquor stores and many restaurants and bars around the city, but Strange Fellows’ tasting room has a great atmosphere, and often hosts nonsensical, imaginary celebrations which make daily life a little stranger. Definitely one for the books if you’re up for some silly fun and great beer.
Visit Strange Fellows at 1345 Clarke Dr, Vancouver
Andina Brewing Co. image: Claus Gurumeta
Andina Brewing Co.
As of the publish date of this post, Andina Brewing Co. is Vancouver’s newest brewery, and judging from its massive popularity, it’s clear that there is still room for new breweries to open up in the city – and that Vancouverites are open to new concepts when it comes to them. Owned and operated by a Colombian family, Andina is the first brewery in the city to incorporate a Latin flair in everything from their décor, to their beers (which use unique South American malt), and their hospitality – not to mention delicious ceviche made in-house. Andina is located in an industrial area now rebranded as “Yeast Van” due to its new many breweries; the bright yellow building housing the brewery has become an instant landmark, with its mural of a woman known as “La Pola,” a Colombian slang word for beer, smiling at its approaching guests. Salud!
Visit Andina at 1507 Powell St, VancouverOff the Rail Brewing image: Claus Gurumeta
Bomber Brewing Co. & Off the Rail Brewing
These two breweries are across the street from each other and worth visiting on the same go. Both of them are housed in tiny little spaces but have surprisingly large and varied beer selections. Bomber Brewing Co. is as Canadian as it gets, a brewery formed by three hockey-fans and branded after the Canadian-loved sport. Off the Rail Brewing on the other hand was born purely for the love of craft beer. The staples from both breweries can be found at eateries across the city, but their smaller batches are only sold at their tasting rooms and special events. On site at the brewery, you can taste creamy nitro beer options for an added treat.
Visit Bomber & Off the Rail at 1488 and 1351 Adanac St
Strathcona Beer Co. image: Claus Gurumeta
Strathcona Beer Co.
The slick, concrete-heavy tasting room of Strathcona Beer Co. is striking, and with a good selection of beers, a pizza kitchen, and one of the largest seating areas of any craft brewery in Vancouver, it is a great place to socialize. The beer selection of Strathcona is what really sets it apart, with a guaranteed dozen very different beers on tap at all times, you’ll have fun searching for your favourite brew!
Visit Strathcona Beer at 895 East Hastings St, Vancouver
R&B Brewing Co. image: Claus Gurumeta
R&B Brewing Co.
Located in East Vancouver’s historic Brewery Creek District, R&B is one of the city’s original microbreweries, dating back to 1997 – more than a decade ahead of Vancouver’s craft brewery revolution. R&B is unique for its casual, relaxed atmosphere: a large ale & pizza house with mismatched furniture, which at times feels like an eccentric aunt’s house rather than a pub. Their pizza is great, and their beer, which is also available at private liquor stores through the city, is varied. This unapologetically hipster haven will really make you feel at home, and if you wear a plaid shirt and a baseball cap, you’ll easily blend in as an East Van local.
Visit R&B at 54 East 4th Ave, Vancouver
Callister Brewing Co. image: Claus Gurumeta
Callister Brewing Co.
Callister Brewing Co. is the first co-working brewery in Canada, which means its tiny tasting room is home to four separate breweries, all of which operate under the same roof. This co-working concept allows talented brewers to grow their business by having access to brewing equipment and a commercial space that they might otherwise not be able to afford. The three “guest” breweries sign up for a year in order to pursue their dream, while we get to benefit from more creative beers being invented, and new breweries to look forward to on the horizon.
Visit Callister at 1338 Franklin St, Vancouver
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