Friday, July 4, 2014

patios

due to a lack of space in the july/august edition of the bc craft beer news
my lengthy article on the best craft beer patios in vancouver got truncated
the whole article is available online
but i'm also copying it here

Summer time and the living is easy… not to mention best enjoyed on a patio!

In a departure from my usual format and just in time for summer 2014, I bring you the very best patios in Vancouver for enjoying craft beer. The list starts with larger patios and beer menus and goes on down to smaller (but no less enjoyable) venues, with smaller beer menus. Only the heat and the hours available to you will limit your time on these patios, so there is no rating system in this round of reviews. Enjoy!

Patio drinking tips: Look for session ales—those tasty lower alcohol beers that enable you to spend a long ‘session’ on a patio. Drink water! Go for a rinse cycle after every beer; your body will love you for it. Keep your drink out of the sunlight—no one likes a beer that goes skunky. Bring sunscreen to reapply as your patio time wears on and the sun moves. Wear sunglasses with UVA and UVB protection—both for your eyes and to hide the fact that you are totally people-watching!

Tap & Barrel (Olympic Village)
1 Athletes Way, Vancouver
604.551.0463
Web tapandbarrel.com
Facebook tapandbarrel
Twitter @tapandbarrel
Monday–Sunday 11 am – midnight
Weekend and holiday brunch 10 am – 3 pm
Taps 23 regular beer taps plus one rotating tap, and there’s also a cider on tap—all from British Columbia.
Size of pour 20 oz for $7/7.50.
Bottles 10 imports, including two gluten-free options.
Session beers available Yes. The current menu includes three beers under 5%.
Patio The patio is enormous! Or should I say patioS? There is a wraparound patio upstairs and a two-level wraparound patio downstairs. With excellent views of False Creek and all the happenings along the Seawall, not to mention a whole menu of BC beers and wines, this is one great place to lose an afternoon. And a great place for sun worshippers, as they don’t really have many umbrellas.

Tap & Barrel (Convention Centre)
1055 Canada Place, Vancouver
604.235.9TAP
Web, Facebook, Twitter As above.
Monday–Sunday 11 am – midnight
Weekend and holiday brunch 10am – 2pm
Taps 29 regular beer taps plus two rotating taps, and there’s both a cider tap and a nitro tap—all from British Columbia.
Size of pour 20 oz for $7/7.50.
Bottles Nine imports, including two gluten-free options.
Session beers available Yes. The current menu includes two beers under 5%.
Patio The patio is large, with lots of shade cover and views of the Burrard Inlet, the Northshore Mountains, and Stanley Park. Watch the float planes take off and land while you pat yourself on the back for drinking locally produced craft beers.

Yaletown Brew Pub
1111 Mainland Street, Vancouver
604.681.BREW (2739)
Web markjamesgroup.com
Facebook YBC Yaletown Brewing Company - Official Page
Twitter @YBC_brewing
Sunday–Wednesday 11:30 am – midnight
Thursday 11:30 am – 1 am
Friday–Saturday 11:30 am – 3 am
Taps They have seven regular beers and two seasonals on tap in both the restaurant and the pub. You can only get YBC beer on-site, and they do growler fills.
Size of pour 16 oz.
Bottles Yes several, but they’re not craft beer.
Session beers available Not generally, but the seasonal may be.
Patio Not just one, but three patios. A small one with communal tables outside the pub, and two large patios that wrap around the restaurant, all perfect for watching the pretty people wander around Yaletown.

Steamworks Brew Pub
375 Water Street, Vancouver
604.689.2739
Web steamworks.com
Facebook Steamworks
Twitter @SteamworksPub
Monday–Sunday From 11:30 am on…
Taps Eight taps of beer brewed in-house, using steam.
Size of pour 16 oz, 20 oz, 24 oz
Bottles No
Session beers available Yes. The Cascadia Golden Ale is 4%.
Patio Right in the hustle and bustle of Gastown. If you are sitting street-side on the patio, you have a great view of all the goings-on. If you are water-side, you can enjoy the sights and sounds of a working harbour. It’s a win-win. Plenty of umbrellas for the shade lovers, and decent sun most of the day for the sun worshippers.

Rogue Kitchen and Wetbar (Gastown)
601 W Cordova Street, Vancouver
(inside Waterfront Station)
604.678.8000
Web roguewetbar.com
Facebook RogueWetbar
Twitter @roguewetbar
Sunday–Thursday 11:30 am – midnight
Friday and Saturday 11:30 am – 1 am
Taps Rotating taps of 14 craft beers and one cider, in a mixture of local and imported brews.
Size of pour Five 4 oz tasters for $7.99; 16 oz sleeves and 20 oz pints, as well as pitchers, for varying prices.
Bottles Three import bottles, including one gluten-free offering, plus four macro-brewed bottles.
Session beers available Currently there are four beers below 5% on the rotating menu.
Patio Located right at Waterfront Station, the patio boasts a great view of all the Cordova Street action, so it’s a great people watching spot. The downside of this is that you will be approached by panhandlers if you are sitting on the outside of the patio. The crazy craned umbrellas move at any angle imaginable, so if you crave shade, you’ll be happy all afternoon and evening long.

Local Public Eatery
2210 Cornwall Avenue, Vancouver
604.734.3589
Web localkits.com
Facebook Local Public Eatery Kitsilano
Twitter @LOCALKits
Monday–Thursday 11 am – 1 am
Friday 11 am – 2 am
Saturday 10 am – 2 am
Sunday 10 am – 1 am
Taps Rotating taps of craft beers, four permanently serving craft beer and one serving cider (six permanently serving non-craft beers).
Size of pour Sleeves and pitchers.
Bottles Yes, but only one (of eight) is a craft beer.
Session beers available Depending on the rotational tap, there could be
Patio Right out on Cornwall Avenue, this is a great people watching spot. You have to be early to snag a seat on this very popular patio, though!

Chill Winston
3 Alexander Street, Vancouver
604.288.9575
Web chillwinston.com
Facebook Chill Winston
Twitter @chillwinston
Monday–Sunday 11 am – 1 am
Taps Six craft beers, two ciders
Bottles 18 bottles of local and imported beers, mostly craft, including two gluten-free choices.
Session beers available Currently a couple on the menu.
Patio A good-sized patio, right in Gastown where three roads meet (sounds very Oedipal). It is a really great peoplewatching spot, and very popular—so best to call ahead for a reservation.

St. Augustine’s
2360 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
604.569.1911
Web staugustinesvancouver.com
Facebook St. Augustine’s
Twitter @StAugustinesVan
Sunday–Thursday 11 am – 1 am
Friday and Saturday 11 am – 3 am
Brunch Weekends and holidays 11 am – 3 pm
Taps 60+ rotating taps of local and imported craft beers and ciders. See their live tap list for a current listing (and how much is left in the keg).
Size of pour 14 oz for $5.75-$8, taster paddles of four 5 oz glasses.
Bottles No.
Session beers available Currently 10 beers below 5% on the rotating menu.
Patio It’s not a large patio. In fact you’d be hard pressed to fit more than two people at all but one of the tables. But what it lacks in size it makes up for in sheer choice of beers on tap. And if you are a fan of the Skytrain, you can watch one go by approximately every two minutes.

BierCraft Tap and Tapas (Commercial Drive)
1191 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
604.254.2437
Web biercraft.com
Facebook BierCraft
Twitter @biercraft
Monday–Tuesday 11 am – 11:30 pm
Wednesday–Thursday 11 am – 12 am
Friday 11 am – 1 am
Saturday 10 am – 1 am
Sunday 10 am – 11:30 pm
Taps Over 20 taps of local and imported craft beers.
Size of pour Up to 20 oz, depending on the beer.
Bottles Over 100 bottles of mostly imported Belgian beers.
Session beers available Currently two taps and several bottles are under 5%.
Patio A long, narrow patio down the south side of the restaurant, so only the first few tables offer an interactive view of Commercial Drive. But then, not everyone wants to be watched while they slurp up beer after beer!

BierCraft Bistro (Cambie Street)
3305 Cambie Street, Vancouver
604.874.6900
Web, Facebook, Twitter As above.
Monday–Thursday 11:30 am – 12 am
Friday 11:30 am – 1 pm
Saturday 10 am – 1 pm
Sunday 10 am – 12 am
Taps 22 taps of local and imported craft beer.
Bottles Over 100 bottles of mostly imported Belgian beers.
Session beers available Currently three taps and several bottles under 5%.
Patio Just a few tables big, this is a really cute patio. Right on Cambie Street, it offers people watching opportunities without being too overwhelmingly traffic-noisy.

The Whip Gallery Cafe
209 East 6th Avenue,Vancouver
604.874.4687
Web thewhiprestaurant.com
Facebook The Whip Gallery Restaurant
Twitter @WhipRestaurant
Monday–Thursday 10 am – 1 am
Friday 10 am – 2 am
Saturday 9 am – 2 am
Sunday 9 am – 1 am
Taps Six regular taps of local craft beers, one rotating tap, and one rotating cask.
Size of pour 16 oz for $5.50, 20 oz for $6.50, and pitchers for $19.50.
Bottles Regularly on the menu are 10 canned beers, 19 bottles, and 9 share bottles of local and imported beers.
Session beers available Two beers under 5% on the regular menu.
Patio It ain’t large, but it’s pretty. Just off Main Street, the people watching is still enjoyable without the traffic noise. And there are hops growing on the patio—I love that!

Tangent Cafe
2095 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
604.558.4641
Web tangentcafe.ca
Facebook facebook.com/pages/Tangent-Cafe/420386921358640
Twitter @TangentCafe
Monday and Tuesday 8 am – 3 pm
Wednesday and Thursday 8 am – 12 am
Friday and Saturday 8 am – 1 am
Sunday 8 am – 10 pm
Taps 10 rotating craft beer taps.
Size of pour 16 oz (smaller for high-alcohol beers).
Bottles Quite a decent list of local and Belgian beers (including a cider and a gluten-free beer).
Session beers available It is a rotating menu and not available on-line, so you will just have to try your luck! They do love their Belgian beers though, so expect to find one or two.
Patio Quite a small patio, but it’s south facing, so it gets plenty of sun. An excellent place for brunch—you might just want to have brunch run into lupper and spend the whole day quaffing Belgian beers in the sunshine.

Falconetti’s East Side Grill
1812 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
604.251.7287
Web falconettis.com
Facebook Falconettis
Twitter @Falconettis
Monday–Thursday 11:30 am – 1 am
Friday and Saturday 11:30 am – 2 am
Sunday 11:30 am – 1 am
Taps 10 taps of local craft beer.
Size of pour Sleeves and pitchers.
Bottles 18 bottles of craft and macro beers, plus Strongbow cider.
Session beers available Not currently, but there are several choices sitting right at 5%.
Patio It’s a second storey patio overlooking Commercial Drive—so it’s more of a ‘see’ than a ‘be seen’ kind of place. The heightened elevation means that you get the late afternoon and evening sun a little longer. Alas, from May through September they do not accept reservations for the patio.

Alibi Room
157 Alexander Street Vancouver
604.623.3383
Web alibi.ca
Twitter @alibiroom
Monday–Thursday 5 pm – 11:30 pm
Friday 5 pm – 12:30 am
Saturday 10 am – 12:30 am (brunch 10 am – 2:45 pm)
Sunday 10 am – 11:30 pm (brunch 10 am – 2:45 pm)
Taps 50, and if you’re lucky one of them is a ‘one-off’ keg Nigel managed to score, sourced from across BC and the US.
Size of pour 6 oz, 10 oz, 16-20 oz depending on ABV. Flight of four 6 oz tasters.
Bottles No.
Session beers available The menu is constantly rotating, so there just may be.
Patio Very small, but joined with garage doors that open up into the main area so it feels like you’re outside even if you aren’t quite. The Alibi is not in a bustling part of town, so the people watching is better inside the bar than on the street. But really, with a beer list as long and delicious as the Alibi’s, your attention will be riveted by what you are drinking.

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