Desert Companion

Get Crafty

A primer on where to sip true craft brews

Brewery: For the purist who wants to go straight to the source. Tenaya Creek Brewing in the Historic Westside is a standard-bearer. And HUDL Brewing Company is one of the fresher faces on the newly established Brewery Row in Downtown’s Arts District (more on that below).

Brewpub: Simply a restaurant and brewery combo. Scenic Brewing Company and Big Dog’s rate higher than most. But sometimes it gets creative. To wit: Brewery Row’s Able Baker Brewing has a separate food operation called Arts District Kitchen, brought to you by the folks from 595 Craft & Kitchen.

Restaurants with craft beer: 595 has been one of the city’s leading examples since it opened. Ditto Aces & Ales’ two spots and Pub 365 inside the Tuscany (the latter inducing maximum enthusiast lather with its Unicorn List bottle/can rarities).

Bottle shops: Yes, Total Wine is a technically a bottle shop. You could say the same for Speedee Mart, which dedicates one full refrigerator to regional independent beer per location. But at a place like Khoury’s Fine Wine & Spirits near Henderson, you’re encouraged to drink the beer you just bought, or share or trade one you brought. You can also order a pint from one of Khoury’s 20 taps.

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Tap/draft room: It’s a bar, but it’s not. The ethos of a draftroom is usually based on savoring beer, not getting tanked. CraftHaus Arts District and Hop Nuts Tivoli Village are true taprooms. Some have longnecks and pop tops on offer — most famously, Beer Zombies’ three locations and SerVehZah off Main Street.

Districts: For barhopping efficiency. Henderson’s industrial-park Booze District claims three true-blue breweries (CraftHaus, Big Beat, Astronomy Aleworks). Nine breweries and taprooms populate the more urban Brewery Row. Honorable mention: Water Street District’s neighboring brewery duo, Lovelady and Mojave.

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