Raise a glass at these fine Montreal microbreweries

Can't make it to Munich for Oktoberfest? Don't worry! Microbreweries have flourished around Montreal in recent years. No matter where you are in the city, local artisanal beers are only a few Metro stops away, and well worth discovering! [Image credit: iStock.com/5PH]

Brasseur de Montréal

1
1485, rue Ottawa, Montréal, QC H3C 1S9

Located in Griffintown since 2008 – one of the house beers was named after the neighbourhood – this microbrewery also has a restaurant that offers contemporary local cuisine. Served in bottles with remarkably colourful labels, their brews are cool and refreshing. From blonde to red, with stout, amber and brown for good measure, the beer-makers take their inspiration from the British Isles and Belgium. Daring flavours include lime, ginger, rooibos and even absinthe. This chain has a second establishment, located in Old Montreal.

Benelux

2
245, Rue Sherbrooke O, Montréal, QC H2X 1X7

This downtown microbrewery has a variety of beers on tap, including a special edition aged for two years in a red wine cask. Everyone will find a specimen to their liking on a menu that includes a 4% Citrus Pale Ale, a 4.8% Stout, an 8% Triple Saison Rye, and IPA Double at a staggering 8.5%, as well as a few others. Food-wise, the approach is quick and easy: various paninis and hot dogs. Good to know: there is another Benelux in Verdun.

Brasserie Artisanale l'Amère à Boire Inc

3
2049 rue Saint-Denis, Montréal, QC H2X 3K8

Established in 1996 in a busy downtown neighbourhood, this brewery makes its own European-inspired beers on-site. You get to choose from a rainbow of beer colours inspired by brews from Germany, Denmark, the Czech Republic and Britain. Whether you choose an ale or a lager, with further options of coffee, hazelnut and caramel accents, you'll probably also want to try one of their dishes: tapas, fish and chips, or a burger (with beef, pulled pork, rabbit or venison).

Brasserie Harricana

4
95, rue Jean-Talon O, Montréal, QC H2R 2W8

Opened in late 2014, Little Italy's Brasserie Harricana serves beer in 8-ounce glasses that are specially chosen to maintain your drink's temperature and freshness. Artisanal beers, including 10 house brews – but also ciders, house-made sodas, bourbon and rum – are listed on the drinks menu. Quebec-style cuisine is available and served à la carte, with a buffet available at lunchtime, and a brunch during the weekend. Special events are scheduled regularly; some are held weekly and others, like their Oktoberfest celebration, are one-time affairs.

McAuslan Brewery

5
5080, rue St-Ambroise, Montréal, QC H4C 2G1

One of the city's oldest microbreweries, McAuslan was established in Saint-Henri in 1989. Over the years, the business grew to add a pub, a shop, and a terrace located along the Lachine Canal, which opens whenever weather allows. McAuslan brews 15 varieties of St-Ambroise, including several seasonal beers, as well as both Griffons, including the gold-medalist blonde. Pale ale, blonde, red, black oats, apricot, raspberry, maple, Russian Imperial Stout, Scotch Ale, India Pale Ale, Oak Aged Pale Ale and others, their wide range of flavours covers all tastes.

3 Brasseurs

6
105, rue Saint-Paul E, Montréal, QC H2Y 1G7

This is probably the best-known brand of the lot, because it's been around since 1985. With restaurant service at each of its addresses, this establishment is positioned to offer great food-beer pairings. The blonde goes well with sauerkraut, while the amber is a match for bavette. The blanche finds its place alongside salmon filet, the brown connects with burgers, and the IPA will go down especially well if you order lamb shank. Of course, all of them are winners with the flammekueches, their famous Alsatian pizza-style pies. There are two other locations: one downtown, and the other on the Plateau.

Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel

7
29, av Laurier O, Montréal, QC H2T 2N2

Dieu du ciel is an ode to the joy of beer. The label was born in Montreal in the '90s, and has built a fine beer catalogue over the years. The amusing names of their brews are often wordplays on a religious theme. You can enjoy the Blanche du Paradis or fall for a Corne du Diable, along with Moralité, Mea culpa, Exorciste, and Péché Mortel, each one more tempting than the last. Several ciders are availabe, and you can expect to be surprised by flavours like date, yuzu and chili pepper, cocoa and vanilla, or cinnamon and cloves.

L'Espace Public-Brasseurs De Quartier

8
3632, rue Ontario E, Montréal, QC H1W 1R7

This microbrewery with a cultural bent opened in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve in 2012. Besides serving up house-brewed beers, the place offers local residents a meeting place for artists, and puts an exhibition space at their disposal. Patrons can enjoy a drink while admiring an art show. The beer selection usually features eight different varieties, which might include, for example, a ginger blanche, an American Sour, an English pale ale, or a Flanders red. Although snacks are available, you are allowed to bring your own food.

Microbrasserie Helm

9
273, rue Bernard O, Montréal, QC H2V 1T5

This Mile End microbrewery showcases Quebec products, and aims for local and responsible sourcing, whether for the grain in its house-made beer, or food ingredients for its meals. Nine beers are brewed on-site in large, stainless steel vats; also look for a few other special brews listed on their chalkboard. Brisset and Glutenberg beers are available, as well as wine, cider and liquor. Their tempting food menu includes pork schnitzel meatballs with Esplanade beer, a venison cheeseburger, and hot chicken braised in du Parc beer.

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