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Best Pubs in Calgary: Winter Edition

Best Pubs in Calgary: Winter

Best Winter Pubs in Calgary: the Local 510 (Photo: courtesy of Local 510)

Alberta weather can be unforgiving from November to March, but nothing warms you up faster than a stop in at one of the best winter pubs in Calgary. We searched the city for the friendliest, coziest spots to spend a frosty night, and present to you the list below to make sure you never go cold again.

See the list of the 7 best winter pubs in Calgary »

17 Avenue SW’s Ship & Anchor is one of the best landmarks on Calgary’s pub scene. It’s a darkly lit English-style pub with plenty of UK football scarves proudly showcased above the bar. Several local beers are on tap and the pub fare is plentiful and affordable—they even serve several delicious vegetarian options, which is a rarity for a pub. It’s the locals’ go-to for a solid hangover breakfast, to watch soccer and catch live music. The corner stage plays host to several of the city’s best local bands, and the Saturday afternoon jams and free Wednesday night shows are normally packed.
• The Ship & Anchor, 534 17 Avenue SW, 403-245-3333, shipandanchor.com
• Map and reviews

#6 BEST WINTER PUB IN CALGARY: Barley Mill Neighbourhood Pub
Located across from Eau Claire Market, the building housing this downtown Calgary pub dates back to 1886 when the area was first being developed. The attractive space has maintained its vintage charm, though the menu and drink lists have thankfully been updated. The busy spot is a regular haunt for those working around Eau Claire and in the downtown core. On a cold day, try the beef dip sandwich or bison shepherd’s pie.
• Barley Mill Neighbourhood Pub, 201 Barclay Parade SW, 403-290-1500, barleymill.net
Map and reviews

#5 BEST WINTER PUB IN CALGARY: Hop in Brew Pub House
A charming pub located in a historic Calgary home in the Beltline area. The house has a university club atmosphere, with pool tables on the top floor, narrow staircases and a clientele comprised largely of students (though the city’s independent artists and beer snobs flock here as well). With an impressive selection of unique bottled and tap beers—we love the Edmonton’s Alley Kat brews—the Hop in Brew is a treasure trove for those who know their suds. The house is warm and inviting, and the kitchen churns out rich, cheese-heavy pizzas.
• Hop in Brew Pub House, 213 12 Avenue SW, 403-266-2595
• Map and reviews

This two-level bar is styled after a classic English pub, and gets extra cozy on a winter night. Several beers are on tap, and there’s a solid pub-fare menu and a lively clientele. The Kensington is a considered one of the best neighbourhood pubs in Calgary’s Kensington and Sunnyside districts.
• The Kensington Pub, 207 10A Street SW, 403-270-4505, kensingtonpub.com
Map and reviews

Local 510 is the hippest winter pub on the list, but it’s one of our favourites. Located on the corner of 4th Street and 17th Avenue SW, this joint is situated in one of Calgary’s busiest shopping and dining hubs. The clientele is diverse, but skews younger and artistic. Wood panelling and a rustic chandelier set the tone for a warm space on a cold winter night. Bands play throughout the month, free of charge, and the traditional meatloaf with mashed potatoes (with a pint of Anchor Steam on the side) make for a hearty meal when it’s frosty outside.
• Local 510, 510 17 Avenue SW., 403-229-4036, localtavern.ca
• Map and reviews

From the traditional dark wood and leather interior to the robust beer list, Oak Tree Tavern exudes a classic pub atmosphere. The menu features stick-to-your-ribs fare, including the requisite burgers, but they also have some more unusual options like fries covered in spicy curry sauce and tempura battered, deep-fried tuna sushi rolls. More than 30 kinds of beer are available, including a couple gluten-free brews.
• Oak Tree Tavern, 124B 10 St NW, 403-270-3347, www.oaktreetavern.com
• Map and reviews

This new beer hall exclusively carries North American craft beers (over 70 on tap and 25 bottles) and the menu includes items from their rotisserie as well as UK-style savoury pies. The clientele is a mix of uptown business-types and young foodies. The menu is designed by chef Justin Leboe of the celebrated 17th Avenue restaurant, Model Milk.
• National Beer Hall, 550 17 Avenue SW., 403-229-0226, ntnl.ca
• Map and reviews


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