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Sydney’s Five Best Pubs For Craft Beer Lovers

Posted by Matt Jenkin on

Now now, we're not saying these pubs are literally Sydneys five best pubs for craft beer, we mean these five pubs are five of the best and honestly you must check them out! Maybe in one epic Friday day to night pub crawl.

Start with some early arvo bowls and a hearty ale at the Petersham Bowlo, next head into The Rocks to sink a few schoons as the sun sets behind the harbour bridge at the Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel. As dinner nears, bus it to The DOG in Randwick for an epic pub feed and great beer selection. On to the home stretch, head to The Taphouse in Surry Hills for arguably one of the best and always ahead of the game beer selections on draught. Lastly, cap it off at Bitter Phew on Oxford St, nightclubs a ready, for one last go of their irresistible taps.

The Taphouse, Surry Hills

The Taphouse boldly state 'ownership matters' and 'freshness matters'. That's why they have such a penchant for tap beer (even making it there namesake), and showcase a diverse range of local, independently-owned beers over their sixty taps. "We're pretty sure we have a beer for every occasion -- and that every occasion calls for a quality beer" - Taphouse.

Example Tap List:

La Sirène Brewing - Belle D'Orange: 5% Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Blizzard Brewing Company - Powder Pale Ale: 5% Pale Ale

Dainton Family Brewery - Passionfruit Belgian Pale Ale: 4.3% Pale Ale

Stone & Wood - Dunkelweizen: 5.5% Dunkelweizen

Two Birds Brewing - Taco: 5.2% Pale Ale

Bruny Island Beer Co - Two Frogs: 8.5% IPA

Mr Banks Brewing co - Session Juice: 4% IPA

Wayward Brewing - Ripasso: 5% Sour

Hawkers Beer - West Coast IPA: 7.2% IPA

Wolf Of The Willows - New World Pilsner: 5% Pilsner

Firestone Walker Brewing Company - Agrestic: 6.6% American Wild Ale

Firestone Walker Brewing Company - Bretta Rosé: 5.3% American Wild Ale

Firestone Walker Brewing Company - Krieky Bones Batch 4 (2017): 6.3% Sour

Firestone Walker Brewing Company - Helldorado (2017): 12.8% Barleywine

Brasserie Cantillon - Gueuze 100% Lambic Bio: 5% Lambic

Gueuzerie Tilquin - Gueuze Tilquin – Draft Version: 5.3% Lambic

Gueuzerie Tilquin - Stout Rullquin: 7% Sour - Ale

Brouwerij Boon - Geuze Boon Sélection: 6.3% Lambic

Anderson Valley Brewing Company - Experimental Pilot Brew: Sour Brown Ale: 6.1% Sour

Anderson Valley Brewing Company - Featherleggy Bulrusher Sour Stout: 5.8% Sour

Wolf Of The Willows - Lark Barrel Aged Imperial JSP: 11.2% Porter

King River Brewing - Mabon Doppelbock: 6.6% Bock

Two Birds Brewing - Sunset Ale: 4.6% Red Ale

Nomad Brewing Co. - Collaroy Gold: 5% Golden Ale

Hawkers Beer - Lager: 4.2% Lager

Batlow Cider Company - Batlow Cloudy Cider: 4.2% Cider

Stone & Wood - Pacific Ale: 4.4% Pale Ale

The Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel - Three Sheets: 4.9% Pale Ale

Balter Brewing Company - XPA: 5% Pale Ale

Capital Brewing Co - Rock Hopper: 6.2% IPA

Bitter Phew, Darlinghurst

Escape the bustle of Oxford Street and head upstairs into a little slice of beer paradise. Sit at the large bar, unwind with your favourite beer while watching the world go by on Oxford Street or head out the back to the keg garden.

Bitter Phew have 12 taps rotating with the purpose and passion of making the world of craft beer accessible to Sydneysiders. They welcome all beer enthusiasts to come in and experience their selection of the finest local and international boutique beers.

However, fresh, tasty craft beer and somewhere comfortable and pleasing to drink is not their only vice, and they know everyone else has other indulgences too. Bitter Phew have also strived to ensure their wine selection, bourbon, whisk(e)y and cocktail menu are on par with the level of quality they offer in their beers. So no matter what you feel like on the night, you are sure to walk away satisfied. If you are after food their good friends at Mr Crackles and BL Burgers deliver to your seat or table.

Example Tap List:

Het Uiltje - Mosaic Mammoth: 8% IPA

Newstead Brewing Co. - Killer Brown Coffee Brown Ale: 5.2% Brown AleEkim Brewing Co. - After Battle Pale: 5.4% Pale Ale

WarPigs Brewpub - Kenn Lee’s Revenge: 11% Stout

Little Bang Brewing Co – SNEIPA: 6% Sour

WarPigs Brewpub - House of Dongo: 5.6% Brown Ale

WarPigs Brewpub - Eternal Needler: 5.2% Wheat Beer

The Grifter Brewing Company - Big Sur: 6.7% IPA

Mikkeller – Spontanrosehip: 7.7% Lambic

Willie Smith's Cider Makers - Drought Aid: 5.4% Cider

Moon Dog Craft Brewery - Love Tap Lager: 5% Lager

Het Uiltje - Dr. Raptor: 9.2% IIPA

Petersham Bowling Club, Petersham

Established in 1896, the Petersham Bowling & Recreation Club (the PBC) is one of the oldest clubs in NSW, with a rich and interesting history. A few years ago the club was snatched from the jaws of property developers intent on building town houses on the site. Now the PBC is a vibrant, dynamic and creative, poker machine-free community club with a strong commitment to environmental sustainability.

Bring your mates for a drink and some barefoot bowls. Bring the kids for a play while you listen to some great music on a Sunday afternoon. Come to a gig and support Sydney’s live music scene. Get involved as a volunteer or just come and enjoy the friendly atmosphere. Everyone is welcome at the PBC!

Example Tap List:

6 core beers that rarely change:

Stone & Wood Pacific Ale

Young Henry's Lager

Grifter Pale Ale

Coopers Pale Ale

Willie Smith Organic Cider

Young Henry's Real Ale (hand pump)

Plus six additional rotating taps. Manager, Penny, details "I usually only buy one keg so the rotation is high (depending on the beer). I try and always have a dark, a red/amber, an IPA and a sour - the other 2 taps could be anything."

Two Metre Tall Forester Amber Ale

Grifter Serpents Kiss

Badlands Caretaker Pale Ale

Prancing Pony Imposter IPA

Rocket Science Red Planet

Riverside Milk Moustache Stout

The Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel, The Rocks

Being Sydney's oldest continuously licensed hotel, The Lord Nelson knows a thing or two about beer and they brew great in house ales that flow freshly on tap in the classic hotel that make you feel you've step 100 plus year back in time upon entry.

Relax while you enjoy one of their six 100% natural award winning Mainstay ales or regular Seasonal Ales - all brewed in house - and soak up the old world feel of the Bar. Come in for lunch or dinner and enjoy their delicious pub fare or simply snack on a pork pie or ploughman's lunch.

Example Tap List:

Three Sheets - Australian Pale Ale: 4.9% alc/vol.

Lifted florals of citrus with a balanced malty dry finish. Our House Favourite here at The Lord.

Quayle Ale - Summer Ale: 4.5% alc/vol.

Refreshing easy drinking ale with subtle flavours and aromas. Nice introduction to our natural Ales with high drinkability.

Trafalgar Pale Ale - English Bitter: 4.2% alc/vol.

Malty on the palate with a long dry finish. A great session ale.

Victory Bitter - British Pale Ale: 5.0% alc/vol.

Malty with caramel overtones generously hopped for a spicy bitter finish. Beautiful British style ale.

Old Admiral - Old Ale: 6.1% alc/vol.

Strong full bodied and malt driven serious ale with plenty of flavour.

Nelson's Blood - Porter: 4.9% alc/vol.

Rich creamy with a smooth roasted finish. If you like Irish stouts you'll love this.

As well as a steady round of seasonal ales: 111, Anileation, 2IC, Broadside, Royal Red, One Eyed Rye, Double Nelson, Dead Ahead, Backburner, Fleet Wheat, Swagman's Sack, Fifty Fifty, Nelspresso, HAṔE, Quarter Decked, The MacGillivray, Mac Nelson, Brew 5000 and Peking Poppi.

The Duke Of Gloucester, Randwick

I may be slightly biased as this is my local, but that aside, this is a great pub with a wholesome and diverse tap selection, great staff, and classic, delicious pub food with irresistible meal deals such as two for one Tuesdays, two for one steak Fridays, and $22 Sunday roast. I've had many a great night a The DOG, its where I developed and still hone the sesh rig I so diligently maintain. The craft taps are constantly revolving with great beers and the classic staples still hold their ground, a place for breaded crafty connoisseurs and hi-vis, hardworking dad-stubbled VB fiends alike.

Example Tap List:

Moon Dog Craft Brewery - Old Mate: 5% Pale Ale

The Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel - Three Sheets: 4.9% Pale Ale

Feral Brewing Company - Hop Hog: 5.8% IPA

4 Pines Brewing Company - Pacific Ale: 3.5% Pale Ale

Coopers - Extra Strong Vintage Ale: 7.5% Strong Ale

Dad & Dave's Brewing - #3 Dad's Pils: 4.2% Pilsner

Balmain Brewing Company - Pale Ale: 4.9% Pale Ale

Rocks Brewing Co - The Governor: 4.5% Golden Ale

Holgate Brewhouse - Norton Lager: 4.3% Lager

4 Pines Brewing Company - Indian Summer Ale: 4.2% Pale Ale

Capital Brewing Co - Trail Pale Ale: 4.7% Pale Ale

Rocks Brewing Co - XPA: 4.6% Pale Ale

Rocks Brewing Co - The Butcher: 5% Porter

Wayward Brewing - Cherry, Cherry: 6.5% Sour

Australian Brewery - Grisette: 5% Table Beer

Sydney Brewery - Albion Ale: 5.2% Pale Ale

Moon Dog Craft Brewery - Love Tap Lager: 5% Lager

Young Henry's - Cloudy Cider: 4.6% Cider

Sydney Brewery - Manly Perry: 4.5% Cider

Mountain Goat Beer - Pale Ale: 5.2% Pale Ale

Stone & Wood - Pacific Ale: 4.4% Pale Ale

Guinness - Guinness Draught: 4.2% Stout

Hahn Brewing - Super Dry: 4.6% Lager

Australian Brewery - Seis Hermanos Lager: 4.5% Lager

Riverside Brewing Company - '69' Summer Ale: 4.6% Pale Wheat Ale

Sydney Beer Co. - Lager: 4.5% Lager

Granite Belt Cider Co. - Treehouse Cider: 4.8% Cider

Young Henry's Brewing Company - Newtowner: 4.8% Pale Ale

Fixation Brewing Co - Fixation IPA: 6.4% IPA

Cascade Brewery Co - Cascade Premium Light: 2.6% Lager

Castlemaine Perkins - XXXX Gold: 3.5% Lager

Coopers Brewery - Original Pale Ale: 4.5% Pale Ale

Tooheys Brewing (Lion Nathan) - Old: 4.4% Dark Ale

Tooheys Brewing (Lion Nathan) - New: 4.6% Lager

Carlton & United Breweries - Resch's Draught: 5% Lager

Carlton & United Breweries - Victoria Bitter (VB): 4.9% Lager

Carlton & United Breweries - Carlton Draught: 4.6% Lager

Well there you have it, summer is here so get out to one of these great venues and enjoy an ice cold beer! You'll find me tonight at The Dog for their glorious two for one dinner and Schoon of Wayward 'Cherry, Cherry'!

NOTE: all tap lists are as of Nov - Dec 2018 and may or may not still be on tap. The tap lists are mainly there to show the calibre of beers and care taken in curating the quality, diverse, and unique rotating taps at these fine venues.*



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