Craft Beer Market is exactly what it says on the tin. There are over 100 craft beers from around the world on tap and a few more in bottle form, just in case you like a bit of variety. They also have a full food menu (think American/Canadian comfort food), some extremely friendly staff to look after you, and a ridiculous amount of seating. My suggestion would be to sit at the bar if there are just a couple of you as the bartenders are good for discussing beer and sourcing suggestions. Plus, they have a multitude of HD screens if you are looking to catch the game.
Food: ★★★☆☆ Service: ★★★★☆ Atmosphere: ★★★★☆ Value: ★★★★☆ Overall: ★★★☆☆
Meet them here! Seriously, there isn’t much around other than a couple of coffee shops and another pub style place. If you are planning on a bit of food and drink, might as well be at CBM. That being said, you could also go for a wander in Legacy Liquor which is just around the corner and has a truly outstanding selection of booze and beers.
What to drink?
A bit of a switch up in my normal order as the drink is definitely the focus. If you are feeling experimental (and really, who wouldn’t be after seeing the endless row of taps?), take a look at the seasonal flights on offer. You get six 4oz servings for a reasonable price and they are set up in an order to ensure you get the most out of each beer. I tried the local flight and discovered that I loved the local Vancouver dark porter – not one I’d have picked otherwise assuming I’d even have noticed it in the sea of options.
The beers are served in a number of sizes which is damn tempting when you are faced with the question of having one more- – get a schooner which is roughly half a pint so you don’t feel like you a really had another whole drink. I believe you can also make up your own flights although pricing may be depending on which beers you choose.
What about food?
They have a range of options from burgers to ribs to comfort classics – and even the odd salad or two. I was feeling ravenous so ended up with a waldorf salad, the house special burger, a tray of buffalo wings glazed with a maple bacon syrup, and some poutine. In hindsight, that might have been a tad too much…
The salad was surprisingly good as far as salads go – the ingredients were fresh and crunchy and the dressing was on the light side which suited me just fine. The hot wings weren’t nearly hot enough but I can’t fault the cooking on the chicken – they boasted a crispy skin and tender meat which is spot on. The burger was absolutely massive which was something I had forgotten after getting accustomed to UK portion sizes. The pretzel bun was one of the best I’ve ever had and the toppings had some punch (I got it loaded with bacon and jalapenos). The main drawback was the patty which was sadly overcooked – the beef had potential but would have really shined had the patty boasted some pink.
The poutine was a disappointment. The fries and curds were just fine but the gravy lacked something – ah flavour! I was a bit spoiled having had a couple of top class poutiness in the previous week but that’s no excuse for the poor showing by CBM.
Worth the dosh?
Overall, yes. The beer selection is a definite value add and the food prices are quite reasonable. I had an absolute feast and paid around $40 including tip but you could easily get away with about half that for a burger and a couple of beers. I’d happily go back next time I’m in Vancouver.
Find Craft Beer Market here