Get us in your inbox

Search
Meadhall
Photograph: Courtesy MeadhallMeadhall

The best beer bars in Boston

Grab some suds at one of Boston’s beer bars— from strong stouts to hazy IPAs, and every lager in between.

Written by
Cheryl Fenton
Written by
Eric Grossman
Advertising

Whether you’re a purist who prefers bare bones tasting rooms or you like your brew pubs with a scratch kitchen menu, the best beer bars in Boston have you covered. From microbreweries to innovative taprooms with collaborations on draft, these suds-centric hot spots deserve a place on your beer tour of Boston. You can also go straight to the source and check out the city’s highly rated craft breweries or, If beer isn't your thing, hit up the best wine bars and best cocktails bars in Boston.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best bars in Boston

The best of the city under one roof

Best craft beer bars in Boston

  • Bars
  • Beer bars
  • price 2 of 4

If your thing is Belgian and Belgian-style beers, Publick House has a top-notch selection. You’ll find an astounding collection of Trappist and Abbey Ales, Flemish sours, stouts, eisbocks and more. The draft list has three sections: Belgian-style, “Here” (regional craft beers) and “There” (elsewhere). You’ll find domestic brews from Fiddlehead, Jack’s Abby, Proclamation Ale, Citizen Cider, Oxbow Brewing and others. For sustenance with your strong beers, the menu is equally attractive, featuring a notorious five-cheese mac ‘n cheese (yes, you can add in everything from hot dogs to truffle cream) and a selection of moules frites with a choice of broth made from different local beers.

  • Restaurants
  • Beacon Hill

Chef Brian Poe takes a walk on the wild side, as he taps into the exotic delicacy department at his Tip Tap Room in Boston Back Bay. With a revolving board of the tips du jour (think elk and yak), the yin to the yang of the menu is the complementing immense selection of beers on tap. Their beverage program is heavily rooted in craft bourbons and 36 selections of beers on tap (a mix of local, domestic and international imports).

Advertising
  • Restaurants
  • Seafood
  • Seaport District
  • price 3 of 4

The team behind Row 34 is as enthusiastic about craft beer as they are about fresh seafood. The beer list features seafood-friendly options to pair with dishes. The rotating taps are always fresh and unique, often including rarities or exclusives. Breweries such as Bissell Brothers and Allagash have offered exclusive drafts here; regional breweries and other craft favorites are always on tap. For serious craft beer fans, repeat visits will likely introduce new beers every time.

  • Restaurants
  • American creative
  • Harvard Sq
  • price 3 of 4

A solid spot for upscale American fare, Russell House Tavern also has a worthy beer program. All of the taps feature New England craft breweries, and the extensive bottle list covers ample ground. You’ll also find nitro and cask selections, reserves, and interesting ciders. Pick up a growler of one of the harder-to-find options. After 9pm nightly, enjoy $1 oysters with your beers.

Advertising
  • Restaurants
  • Contemporary American
  • South Boston
  • price 3 of 4

Worden Hall is named after a 19th Century Saratoga Springs guest house, and the decor at this South Boston modern American restaurant reflects that town’s horse racing culture. In addition to its impressive list of more than 100 whiskeys, you’ll find 40 drafts and 75+ bottles of craft beer. Cask ales, sours, belgians, and hop-driven brews are available, plus a selection of seasonal and limited release options. New England craft breweries take up the bulk of the menu. Sit at the bar—covered with more than 12,000 shiny pennies—or on the patio, and enjoy upscale American comfort fare made with locally-sourced ingredients. 

  • Bars
  • Breweries
  • Kendall Sq
  • price 2 of 4

The oldest brewery/restaurant in the city, Cambridge Brewing Company is a well-oiled machine. They produce a range of crowd-pleasing beers in different styles—ambers, porters, English-style ales—as well as some unusual brews like a corn lager or a gin barrel-aged sour with cucumber. The setting is convivial, great for large groups. If you’re looking to try different styles from a single producer, CBC is the place. Enjoy a sampling of beers inside with a view of the brewing tanks or out on the front patio. A varied menu of upscale pub fare keeps the crowds satiated.

Advertising
  • Bars
  • Beer bars
  • Back Bay
  • price 2 of 4

Divey and kitschy, Bukowski Tavern exudes the attitude of its namesake author. By the looks of it, you might think you’d only find PBR and High Life, but the draught and bottle list are extensive and focused on hard-to-find craft beers. Much of the list features regional brews, and the styles represented will satisfy all tastes. If you can’t choose, chat with a knowledgeable bartender or just spin the Wheel of Beer and let fate decide.

  • Bars
  • Breweries
  • Downtown
  • price 2 of 4

A worker-owned brewery and pub, Democracy Brewing opened (appropriately) on July 4, 2018, and has been a fixture in the neighborhood ever since. Wash down their selections of malty, hoppy or light brews with snacks from their full scratch kitchen, including house-smoked wings, poutine, mac & cheese, or steak frites. They also offer take-away 32oz growlers for at-home imbibing. Aside from brewing, they host community events such as fundraisers, film screenings and live music within their event space. 

Advertising
  • Bars
  • Beer bars
  • Inman Sq
  • price 2 of 4

Lord Hobo Brewing crafts hoppy ales and IPAs like the popular Boom Sauce. Their Inman Square bar features their brews as well as one of the most thoughtfully-curated beer lists around. 40 taps and 30-plus bottles may be a relatively small offering, but the taps rotate frequently and feature craft brews from around the country alongside occasional rare and obscure beers. Lord Hobo’s new Seaport restaurant and taproom is a sprawling 3,500-square-foot space, with an outdoor patio that creates an oasis cut right into downtown. This spot not only has 16 rotating Lord Hobo beers (hello, taproom exclusives, core favorites and guest taps), but also a craft cocktail station.

Recommended
    You may also like
      Advertising