When people think of Boulder the first images that come to mind are often mountains, canyons, scenic bike paths, and rolling open spaces. For Boulder locals one of, if not the first, image to pop-up is that of a frothy microbrew set against the backdrop of the Flatirons. With all of the hiking, climbing, triathalon running, and cycling Boulder locals do it’s no wonder that brew-pubs are their favorite form of retreat and respite.
Topping out our list, BRU offers a cozy, tucked-away feel, exceptional food, and unique brews that are fast making a name for themselves, including Obitus American Brown Ale and the Loch Wee Heavy Scotch Ale.
Also featured, the popular Avery Brewing Company, which is packed to the brim on any given night because its brews are to-die-for-delicious. Avery is always churning out amazing seasonals, such as their hard-hitting Rumpkin Pumpkin Ale and offer staples such as the refreshing White Rascal and drinkable Karma. The new facility offers beer enthusiasts to dine on their cajun-inspired cuisine upstairs and have a riotous good time in the downstairs taproom.
Looking for a brew-pub with a bit more, shall we say, class? Fate Brewing Company is a bistro style pub and offers a more “up-scale” vibe, as well as extravagant dishes to pair with your beer. West Flanders, located on Pearl Street, offers a luxurious view of the Boulder downtown and allows to you recline in cush booths as you sip your cares away.
West Flanders Brewing Company, conveniently located on Pearl Street, opened in September of 2012 and has been making a name for itself with the local scene ever since. The Lion Heart Stout, Triple Lutz Belgium and Angry Monk are three of our favorite nectars due to their uniqueness and flavorful embodiment of their own particular beer category. The Angry Monk leans toward a Belgium, but we wager you’ll find it to be in a category all its own. What’s more, this brewery makes for the perfect large party location, offering a large event space upstairs that overlooks all of Pearl Street’s hustle and bustle.
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: West Flanders simplistic elegance, Pearl Street location, and complex beer ranks it on our list.
Hope’s expert tip: Be sure to indulge in The Angry Monk and a delicious beer pretzel.
The ambiance of Fate Brewing Company is that of laidback elegance and taste in more ways than one. Their food is designed to perfectly pair with their libations and an open, cheerful atmosphere makes this Boulder restaurant perfect for getting together after a long day, birthday parties or intimate dinners.”But what about the food?” you might be asking. Fate’s fare leaves nothing to be desired and blends bistro-style American cuisine with a bit of international flair. Country Fried Chicken Bites, delicious burgers such as their Mainstay, and savory entrees like the Shrimp and Grits give you you the option of eating some classed up comfort food while you sip your brew. Be sure to try the FATE Laimas, which was a 2014 Great American Beer Festival Gold Medal Winner. Cheers to that!
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: Fate’s classy atmosphere and eclectic food menu earn it a spot on our list.
Hope’s expert tip: Be sure to try the Ozo Coffee IPA featuring coffee flavors from one of Boulder’s favorite coffee shops.
A favorite after-work hangout, this spacious microbrewery is located in an historic warehouse a block from Pearl Street Mall. Multiple television sets broadcast sporting events so you can don your jerseys a cheer with a beer in hand. The drink menu features handcrafted brews, including root beer, ales, and stouts. The menu features Asaigo-artichoke cheese dip and tomato basil quesadillas to start and such delectables as brick-oven pizza, smoked chicken enchiladas, and brown ale-battered smoked fish and chips to follow. For the main event, some of their yummy brews include, the Special Dark, Indian Peaks Pale Ale, Old Elk Brown Ale, and St. James Irish Red Ale.
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: Walnut Brewery offers amazing beer options, delicious pub-grub, and awesome events.
Hope’s expert tip: Grab a pint of Indian Peaks Pale Ale and wash down one of the Walnut Brewery’s savory, brick-oven pizzas.
Very Nice Brewing Company is located in Nederland, Colorado just 30 minutes from Boulder and is one of the few dog-friendly bars in the area. If you’re traveling with your fur-baby, they are more than welcome to sit, lay, and loaf in Very Nice’s taproom, provided they are leashed and non-agressive. Another perks of this local favorite is their exceptional beer. Their Very Nice Pale Ale and Monk’s Phunk are two of the most drinkable, refreshing brews. Both are light on the hops but packs tons of flavor. Though food is not currently served in the taproom, Backcountry Pizza is located just upstairs and will gladly walk your pie down.
Located in Nederland’s charming and quirky downtown area, there’s no shortage of shopping and dining to be done after you’ve indulged in a brew or two.
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: Located just 20 minutes from Boulder in funky Nederland, Very Nice Brewery crafts great beer, allows you to bring your fur-friend, and offers exceptional service.
Hope’s expert tip: Be sure to check out their music nights where local musicians play in the intimate brewery setting.
With two locations just 20 minutes from Boulder in Lyons and Longmont, this local brew-pub favorite if one of the best places around to grab a delicious burger, beer, and dance the night away. The Tasty Weasel taproom boasts a large dance floor and stage on the second floor of the building so that you can eat down below and then enjoy the after-party up above. Local live bands as well as national known acts play every Saturday and Sunday at a minor cover charge. Don’t be surprised if one of Oskar’s local regulars asks you for a dance, since there are many people who come every week to kick up their heals are not shy when it comes to meeting strangers.
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: Oskar Blues’ live music, hearty soul food, and full-bodied brews rank it on our list.
Hope’s expert tip: You’ll be sure to have plenty of colorful and friendly local regulars to dance with at either of Oskar’s fine locations.
Twisted Pine is a provides live music, beer festivals, and killer happy hours which make it one of Boulder’s best spots to enjoy a happening night-life. Their pub-fair is fresh, filling, and reasonably priced. What’s more, they offer and cookie sampler, you heard right, cookie platter is pair with your various beers. Seriously, what could be better than cookies and beer? The Pine’s warehouse-like atmosphere seethes with a modern coziness and its tucked-away location, make you feel like you’ve discovered and unknown treasure of the Boulder beer world. Some of their most famous and loved brews include their Ghost Face Killah chili beer and the robust Big Shot Espresso Stout.
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: Twisted Pine offers unique beers, scrumptious sandwiches, and a cool wear house vibe perfect for an after-work meet up or drinks with friends.
Hope’s expert tip: Be sure to order the cookies and beer platter when available.
This pub is Colorado’s original microbrewery and produces the finest handcrafted brews using only natural ingredients. Sample the award-winning beers and witness the brewing process in action. The American menu features burgers, fries, fish and chips, and other pub favorites. Try a Boulder Porter milkshake for dessert. Free tours are offered Mondays to Fridays at 2pm and live music can be seen throughout the week. Moreover, in the spirit of giving back, Boulder Beer Company hosts several charity beer festivals per year. Some of their most notable beers include the Planet Porter, Mojo Risin’, Singletrack, Buffalo Gold and the oak aged Oatmeal Stout, Obovoid.
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: Boulder Beer Company’s tucked-away feeling, outdoor seating, and stellar brews earn it a spot on the top of our list.
Hope’s expert tip: Want beer for dessert? Try Boulder Beer Company’s Porter Milkshake.
This local brewery offers some of the best refreshments in the area and is perfect to visit after a long hike at Chautauqua Park. One of their most popular beers, the Colorado Kind Ale, is dry hopped deliciousness and should be paired with one of Southern Sun’s massive burgers or, our favorite, the grilled cheese. Hot wings and BBQ wings are a staple at this joint, as well as the delicious $1 tacos every Wednesday night. Choose from vegetarian or beef and eat late into the night since tacos service goes on well past pumpkin hour. Perfect place for a late-night snack.
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: Southern Sun’s out-of-the-way vibe, grilled cheese sandwiches, and perfectly paired brews rank it on our list.
Hope’s expert tip: Be sure to order and grilled cheese sandwich, the Colorado Kind Ale, and play a game at one of their large picnic tables.
Hands down, one of the best breweries you’ll ever visit; Avery Brewing Company offers an escape from the bars and pubs of downtown. The lively atmosphere immediately invites you to snuggle up with your honey, cheers with your friends, or just relax solo and sip in some solitude. A few of their signature brews include the hoppy India Pale Ale, the light Belgian-style White Rascal, and the nutty, savory, Elle’s Brown Ale. Avery’s new brewhouse is located on the outskirts of Boulder and offers a taproom downstairs, brewery tours, and an elegant dining room for those who prefer to sip their brew in a more intimate and quiet setting. Watch for release parties and special tappings throughout the year.
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: Avery’s fun events, exceptionally flavorful and unique beer, along with it’s cozy atmosphere make it the best brew-pub in town.
Hope’s expert tip: Grab a pint of Avery’s out-of-this-world, Out of Bounds Stout.
BRU is one of Boulder’s up-and-coming microbreweries, offering unique ale blends that pair perfectly with their savory food. An intimate spot for a holiday gathering with friends or to tuck yourself away on a cold winter’s night with your sweetheart, the beer and food warm the body and soul. Two of their best hand built ales include the Obitus American Brown Ale with its nutty aromas and approachable taste, along with the Loche Wee Heavy Scotch Ale for those who love their beer sweet and malty. Wanna try as much beer as possible? Be sure to indulge in their sampler complete with five delicious brews for you to critique.
Recommended for Brew Pubs because: BRU combines great food and unique beer to provide their guests with an intimate tasting experience.
Hope’s expert tip: BRU has one of the most affordable Happy Hours in the area, so be sure to take advantage.