Born to brew: Canada’s top spots for beer

Mill Street BrewpubOur microbreweries are the best way to taste for yourself this quintessential Canadian pastime

Let’s face it: Canada is a beer-swilling nation.

Bob and Doug McKenzie, the comedic “Second City” siblings, personified our penchant for tossing back a cool one on a hot day. Perhaps it’s our British roots or a reflection of our northern “terroir”-after all, western Canada is one of the best places in the world to grow the six-row malting barley that goes into a great beer. But we’ve come a long way from Bob and Doug’s two-fours of stubby brown bottles.

Top spots for beer & breweries in Canada

Our love affair with suds has birthed a new generation of beer aficionados, and some truly fine brewmasters who make their natural, unpasteurized “real beer” with nothing more than water, malted barley, yeast and hops. You’ll find them brewing up regional ales with character and style at microbreweries and brewpubs, coast to thirsty coast.

YellowBelly Brewery & Public House, St. John’s, NL: Five floors of historic ambiance in downtown St. John’s make the location of this new brewpub almost as impressive as the Fighting Irish Red Ale, quaffed with a burger or plate of crispy fried cod.

Bushwakker Brewpub, Regina, SK: Bushwakker’s is a Regina institution, set in the city’s Warehouse District. The Bushwakker logo-complete with Canada Goose-is an original Joe Fafard, and the local artist still pops in for a pint of Stubblejumper Pilsner or a blackberry mead, made with Lumsden Valley honey. Pair either with the brewpub’s pizza, burgers or Saskatchewan-style starters (perogies or cabbage rolls, anyone?).

Mill Street Brewpub, Toronto, ON: Toronto’s historic Distillery District is home to this popular brewpub, named Canadian Brewery of the Year for two years running. Imagine what this original Gooderham & Worts tankhouse might have looked like when it was distilling whiskey here a century ago, while sipping the house Original Organic Lager or famed Tankhouse Pale Ale, alongside a feast of Beer-b-Que ribs.

Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub, Victoria, BC: Canada’s oldest brewpub is one of the nicest places in the city to enjoy locally inspired cuisine. Try the wild salmon fish ‘n chips (served with the house-made malt vinegar) or an AAA steak, paired with a beefy Tsarist Imperial Stout. This pioneering pub, located on the harbour, also operates a lovely guesthouse.

Yaletown Brewing CompanyYaletown Brewing Company, Vancouver, BC: Brewpubs and old warehouse districts are made for each other, and Yaletown Brewing is a popular gathering place in this enclave of trendy loft living. It’s perhaps the only pub to pair its house-made brews with Singapore Street noodles, Sweet Yellow curry or Ma Po tofu, but it works.

Wild Rose Brewery & Taproom, Calgary, AB: This brewery’s current digs are in an old army Quonset building across from the popular Calgary Farmer’s Market. Take home a “party pig,” filled with a favourite like Velvet Fog or pair a coppery Wild Rose IPA with locally made pfefferwurst sausage, served with baked beans, sauerkraut and apple-braised cabbage.

Wildwood Grill & Brewpub, Calgary, AB: This is a longtime Calgary brewpub is known as much for the stylish dining room’s creative Canadian cuisine (including local dishes like Carmen Creek Bison rib eye and Sylvan Star Gouda croquette with grilled asparagus) as the lively brewpub downstairs.

Jasper Brewing Company, Jasper, AB: Kick off your ski boots or dump your mountain bike and try a signature Rockhopper IPA or Liftline Cream Ale, made with real glacial water and served with creative alpine fare: stout and chocolate sirloin made with Alberta beef, baked gnocchi with chorizo and a rosemary polenta tower.

Dieu du Ciel!, Montréal, QC: This Montréal brewpub and microbrewery is famed for its Pagan Blonde Ale, Horn of the Devil IPA, Last Will, Rigor Mortis ABT and Paradise white beer… getting the theme here? End it all with its dessert-style Aphrodisiac cocoa and vanilla-infused stout.

This article is written by Cinda Chavich, courtesy of the Canadian Tourism Commission. The text has been modified from the original. 

Looking to book a trip to Canada? Check out the Trip Builder where you can request a quote from over 104,000 travel agents who are waiting to offer you the best prices on trips to Toronto, Vancouver, or Canada!

Today's Top Articles:

Scroll to Top