The Toronto craft beer market is ever growing, just like the City of Toronto itself. This diverse city also offers a delicious diversity in its craft beer.
Author: Anne-Marie Marais
Pictures: Anne-Marie Marais
Much like Toronto itself, the craft beer scene is split into west side and east side. Yonge Street divides the city into east and west and each side offers a delectable variety of craft breweries. Many of the city’s craft breweries can be easily found on foot and by public transit, so one can indulge, and there is no need to be worried about driving. Fun for all.
How about a tour of some craft breweries in Toronto? First make sure to have the Craft Beer Passport app downloaded to help discover some local bars and breweries and enjoy a $2 craft beer at each stop.
On the east side a variety of unique tasting rooms await visitors.
Starting off at Left Field Brewery, which is a little bit off the main roads, it offers a fine selection of craft specialities that will tempt all beer palates. Family and dog friendly, this brewery is inspired by a love of beer and baseball. Of their core beers the Greenwood IPA is a must try along with their Smalls Hazy Pale Ale.
Head south east and find the Japanese inspired Godspeed Brewery. A beautiful spot to stop to enjoy a beer and some food. Their green tea beers, made with the green tea leaves harvested every year from their Brewmaster’s tea field in Japan, are an amazing taste sensation. Yuzu Saison with Japanese Cirtus and Ochame Green Tea IPA are just a start for a tasting journey here.
Rorschach Brewing Co. is a short bus ride south and stroll west. This brewery offers a wonderful variety of beers found only at the brewery and possibly some local restaurants. A perfect place to stop anytime, but the summer months open up the chance to enjoy a drink or two on their lovely rooftop patio. With beers that go up as high as 11% ABV, it can be quite a trip!
A short walk west to Blacklab Brewing will have visitors welcomed by a few dogs that have stopped in with their beer drinking owners. A beautiful space to enjoy a beer or two including their Sitting Pretty APA with Rye and Poppins The Indestructible.
An east side brewery tour doesn’t have to stop there, but there is still the west and some say the West is Best…
A short walk from various transit options, including the UP Express, from the airport to the city centre, Halo Brewery is a quaint stop on any beer tour. Enjoy a flight here that might include New Wave IPA, Shapeshifter Sour IPA, Magic Missile Dry Hopped Pale Ale and possibly the Ion Cannon Sour Gose With Strawberry and Kiwi.
Head southwest to Henderson Brewing found in a unique area of Toronto. Right beside the newly opened Museum of Contemporary Art, Henderson’s has definitely contributed to the change in this neighbourhood. If the timing of a visit is right, at the mid-month point, they celebrate the Ides of that month with a new release. Ides or not, the craft selection will produce a favourite for visitors like Henderson’s Best Amber Ale or the UPA Toronto Style IPA.
No visit to Toronto is complete without a visit to Bellwoods Brewery. With a fantastic indoor space and outdoor patio, this popular place can get busy and lines up are possible. Maybe plan a weekday visit. Jelly King Dry Hopped Sour and Jutsu Pale Ale are just two of the popular choices.
Great Lakes Brewery may be bit further west from the city centre but is worth a stop on any beer tour. It’s still accessible by transit, or by car, however a few of their staple beers can be found in our LCBO (Liquor Store) if the brewery isn’t convenient. Their beers are easy to spot as their beer can art if quite fun along with creative names like Octopus Wants to Fight IPA, Canuck Pale Ale, As Far Back as I Can Remember, Pompous Ass English Ale and Over My Dad Body Pilsner to just name a few. A visit to the brewery will introduce beer lovers to even more unique creations.
The other option with all of these breweries, and many others, is to attend one of the various Toronto craft beer fests that occur throughout the year, no matter the season. One stop to take in all the beer goodness of the city and surrounding cities.
In Toronto, east to west and north to south, the beer is good no matter what direction it comes from.
Website: Long Legs Travel