Hoppy Endings In Vancouver - Canada's Craft Beer Capital

26 February 2016

There must be something in the water in the Pacific Northwest. Down in Oregon, Portland proudly proclaims its status as the craft beer capital of the world with over 60 breweries, and the state hosts the annual Oregon Brewers Festival with around 85,000 hops-mad attendees each year. Further north in Washington State, Seattle is another beer city frothing about its brewpubs, taprooms, IPAs and dedicated beer festivals. Over the border in Canada, Vancouver is also experiencing an ale-fuelled revolution with a record number of breweries making the city the biggest producer of craft beer in Canada.

 The glass-enclosed keg room at Vancouver's Craft Beer Market. (Image: Craft Beer Market)

The pre-Prohibition-era stream known as ‘Brewery Creek’ is flowing once again with a new crop of breweries in Vancouver’s Mount Pleasant neighbourhood. Brewery Creek used to supply the water wheels for beer and soft drink producers in the area before Prohibition laws shut down production. Now you can tackle a local tipple at 33 Acres, Main Street Brewing Company, Brassneck and Red Truck Brewery in Vancouver’s hoppy hub.

With even more craft brewery openings slated this year, there will be over 130 breweries in British Columbia (over 50 in Vancouver alone), making B.C. a mecca for beer aficionados. Big Rock Urban Brewery has opened in Brewery Creek where you can taste the Vancouver beer that’s crafted exclusively for the local market, book a tour ($CAD10 pp with samples), or fill your ‘growler’ (a refillable amber glass bottle to transport your tap beer).

Steel Toad Brewpub & Dining Hall is another addition to the Vancouver gastropub scene that’s located in the historic Opsal Steel building with small-batch craft beers brewed and sold exclusively on site.  Don’t miss happy hour on weekdays from 3 to 6pm for $CAD5 Steel Toad draft beers.


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We're thinking the same thing. Beer o'clock...

A photo posted by CRAFT Vancouver (@craftbeeryvr) on

Craft Beer Market more than lives up to its moniker with 140 taps – the largest selection of draft beer in Canada. The False Creek restaurant and bar within the Salt Building in Olympic Village pairs local food with the perfect pint to great acclaim. Check out the draft lines that cross the ceiling into the enclosed glass keg room.

How hoppy will your weekend be? #TGIPA #ISA #IPA #IIPA A photo posted by Central City Brewers (@centralcitybrew) on

Central City Brew Pub + Restaurant, situated across from BC Place Stadium and Roger’s Arena in downtown Vancouver, opened in July last year. Red Racer Restaurant (named for Central City’s Red Racer beers) has 14 limited release beers from its Surrey, B.C. brewery within the range of 40 local craft beers on tap. There’s also wine taps and a wine wall along with slow-smoked barbecue burgers.

If this has whet your appetite to try them all, you could always book a Beer and Food Tour to sample the craft beer scene. Jump on board the Vancouver Brewery Tours 12-seater van for a four-hour, behind-the-scenes look at three local breweries, plenty of beer tastings and even a slap-up meal at Big Rock Urban Eatery to finish. Cheers to that!

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Visit your local Flight Centre store or call 131 600 for more advice and the latest deals on travelling to Vancouver.

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Cassandra Laffey

Consumed with unrequited wanderlust, I get my fix in 24/7 cities and hippie retreats. I'm still looking for the ultimate combo of secluded beach and major metropolis, and my happy place is a 5-star hotel room all to myself - sigh.