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FOOD AND DRINK

2 MIN

The Perfect Pour: Eight Great Beer Bars in Toronto

Craft beer has blown up in Toronto over the past few years and, as a result, there’s no shortage of places to sample the local hops and session ales, as well as hard-to-find import and special releases. Here is the definitive list of the best places to soak up the suds.

Bellwoods Brewery
Between its sparse and impossibly cool interior design and seemingly non-stop special releases of buzz-worthy beers, Bellwoods Brewery tops the lists of mandatory beer bars. This small-batch craft beer haven can be a bit of a tough place to get a table, so hit it early. If you get there by 7, you might even hit the “witching hours,” when pints are discounted. As an added bonus, it’s in a vibrant neighbourhood, perfect to do a little tour and make a night of it.

www.bellwoodsbrewery.com

124 Ossington Avenue, 416-535-4586

Beerbistro
One of the first beer bars out of the gate in Toronto, Beerbistro has been going strong for over a decade for good reason: it still has one of the best selections of locals and imports to be found anywhere in the city. Add to this a perfect, central location, duck-fat fries and other great snacks, and a sleek, modern design and it’s clear these guys got it right in the first place.

www.beerbistro.com

18 King Street East, 416-861-9872

C’est What
Located in the charming St. Lawrence Market area, cozy lower-level C’est What is practically a Toronto institution, especially for purists who love all things cask. With its emphasis on local beers and its pioneering experiments in interesting flavours, the bar is perfect for the beer-lover with an adventurous palate.

www.cestwhat.com

67 Front Street East, 416-867-9499

Bar Hop
Hiding in plain sight in a sea of nightclubs, King West’s Bar Hop is a welcome haven from the crowds and the velvet ropes. It also boasts a beautiful rustic atmosphere, killer tunes, an amazing beer selection, over-flowing bowls of mussels, and a perfectly curated whisky selection for those who want to end their beer adventure with a little brown liquor.

www.barhopbar.com

391 King Street West, 647-352-7476

Wvrst
Home to Toronto’s best sausage party, Wvrst, delivers up some of the city’s best pints and bottles in a lean and modern beerhall atmosphere in the heart of the lively King and Portland area. As an added bonus, it’s one of the city’s greatest places to catch a game.

www.wvrst.com

609 King Street West, 416-703-7775

Bar Volo
Midtown is lucky to have Bar Volo, a dark, little place with a great patio and a slightly bohemian aesthetic that trumps every other beer bar for its stunning selection of cask-conditioned beers and rare imports. The owners’ obsessive approach to beer has paid off with loyal, congenial regulars that convene in its packed tap room.

www.barvolo.com

587 Yonge Street, 416-928-0008

Wise Bar
An outlier for a few different reasons, the understated and slightly far-flung Wise Bar deserves consideration for the traveler who wants to see how the locals live, since the bar caters to die-hard west-end beer lovers who appreciate a small, but perfect selection of craft beers in a quiet, café-like atmosphere.

https://www.facebook.com/wisebartoronto

1007 Bloor Street West, 416-519-3139

The Monarch Tavern
For a little respite from the crowds in Little Italy, duck down Clinton Street and hit the upstairs bar at the laid-back Monarch Tavern for fresh and contemporary beers in an old school atmosphere. The game’s always on and it’s a great place to bend elbows with the regulars and sample local offerings.

www.themonarchtavern.com

12 Clinton Street, 416-531-5833

Published Tuesday, February 10th 2015

Header image credit: Courtesy Bar Volo

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