02/13/2015 05:28 EST | Updated 04/15/2015 05:59 EDT

Montreal Spots For The Best Local Craft Beers

There's real beer excitement bubbling up in Montreal these days as locals leave the generic taste of megabrews behind in favour of terroir flavours. We've gathered a list of beer bars for you that reflects both the folks who broke Quebecois craft ground here decades ago, and the bright lights adding new dimensions to the scene. From sours to IPAs, to saisons and stouts, Quebec microbrewers are putting happy hops on tap in beautiful bars that focus on local product all over the city, giving you great reasons to get out in the snow and go exploring.

Vices et Versa, Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie

The recent expansion and 10 year anniversary celebration reflect the ongoing love Montrealer's have for Vices et Versa. With a constantly rotating list of over 30 Quebec beers on tap and a daily menu featuring local meats, cheese and produce, a friendly staff who love to talk about beers and share samples, and a weekly traditional fiddle jam, Vices is an exceptional place to experience the goodness and welcome of Quebec culture.

Station HO.ST, Village

Quebec's Hopfenstark brewery has built themselves a home in Montreal with their own excellent beers on tap, exciting tap takeovers from around the world, and a careful collection of whiskey's to match.

Brasserie Harricana, Mile Ex

New on the scene, Harricana offers a short list of exclusive beers and a few local selections, served in glasses deigned for sipping -- no pints here -- poured for patrons sitting comfy in low, leather-covered farmhouse chairs. The room looks like you're wearing rose coloured glasses and the edibles are thoughtfully designed for sharing: a great date place.

Réservoir, Plateau

Another classy classic, tucked off St Laurent with a second floor looking out over the cobblestones of Duluth. The copper color of the kegs glints with the brick and wood, and the flavors of the house-made beer reflect the same kind of bright, easy-going, good-looking Montreal night.

Dieu du Ciel, Mile End

The mad, wise, beloved uncle of the local brew scene, this small bar is the humble home of some of the most lauded craft beers in Canada. Try the hibiscus, or the aphrodisiac stout, or the spice road, and you'll start to get a taste of all the innovation happening here at Dieu du Ciel.

Broue Pub Brouhaha, Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie

This cozy old beer bar with its creaking ancient barn door balances a chalkboard list of cool Quebec selections with a mega book of amazing and rare beers from around the world. They make a serious poutine en plus.

Benelux, Downtown + Verdun

The bar that broke the decades long dry spell in Verdun with beer brewed right in the neighbourhood! The downtown Benelux is a friendly, rowdy mix of techy professionals and students eating sausages, all sipping truly good house beer. The Verdun outpost pours their own list of bright hoppy flavours and both have big patios perfect for summer sipping.

Le Cheval Blanc, Quartier Latin

A lovingly maintained bit of local beer history, and the makers of one of the most popular beers in town, Le Cheval Blanc is an institution. In 1986 Le Cheval Blanc became the first licensed brewpub in Montreal and it's excellent list of affordable beers remains a testament to its heritage.

Brasseur de Montreal, St-Henri

A dog-friendly patio a little off the beaten path in St-Henri serving beers made with a dedication to flavor, and to reducing their overall carbon footprint with "eco-beers."

EtOH, Villeray

Up on the tiptop of Parc Jarry there are some interesting things happening, and not least among them is EtOH. A large, simple laid-back room occasionally brightened by live music and always home to a cool curated list of unusual local beers from tiny quirky brewers.

Isle de Garde, Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie

Another dim, sexy new version of the beer bar, Isle de Garde has been jumping since it opened in 2014 and the beer menu is the main reason why. But the mac and cheese stuffed inside a grilled cheese helps too!

Le Saint Houblon, Quartier Latin

A fun spot pouring the delicious beers of Brasseurs Illimitées -- Simple Malt, made in St Eustache, the Saint is a great new addition to the Festival neighbourhood. And for Brasseurs Illimitées -- Simple Malt lovers, there is more good news: they announced the purchase of Le Petit Medley just this week, so one of the important home bases for Quebec chansons will now have a truly local Quebec beer on tap. Something to sing about for sure.


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