Remember the days when you were lucky to find much more than Kokanee and Canadian on tap?
With the rise of craft brewing, Vancouverites have gotten used to choosing from dozens of local and international draft beers at bars and pubs around town. And Olympic Village on False Creek has been a big beneficiary of this sudsy surplus.
In the summer of 2012, Tap and Barrel, a 12,000-square-foot restaurant with dozens of craft beers on tap opened up right on the waterfront. Two levels of patios overlooking False Creek and downtown Vancouver offer a great vantage point for sipping some of the best local brews that British Columbia has to offer.
Meanwhile, Olympic Village’s Legacy Liquor Store, the largest private liquor store in the entire province, offers an astounding selection of craft beer from Vancouver, across Canada and around the world. Whole walls of shelving and refrigerator cases are dedicated to housing exotic brews virtually impossible to find elsewhere.
Now comes news of even more hoppy splendour in the Village. A mega-pub with 140 beers on tap – apparently the largest selection of draft beer in Canada – is set to open its doors on Nov. 7. The iconic red Salt Building in the heart of the Village will be home to the new venue called Craft Beer Market.
The 13,000-square-foot space has room for 400 seats, plus a 50-person patio. Inside, the architecture of the circa-1930 Salt Building, which was actually used for storing and packing salt back in the day, has been lovingly preserved.
The feel is of an airy, vintage warehouse, with rough-hewn timbers criss-crossing overhead and light filtering in from massive windows. The open space is dominated by a large, oval-shaped bar, with a pair of mezzanine areas overhead.
More than 50 local beers right from British Columbia will be available on tap, complementing a selection of suds from North America and around the world. (In fact, a full three kilometres of draft lines are required to feed the pub’s 300 kegs, which will be housed in a glass-walled keg room for all to admire.) The menu will try to go beyond typical pub fare to embrace fresh, local ingredients from our own backyard.
For beer drinkers with local leanings and a discriminating palate, Olympic Village is shaping up to be the one-stop pub crawl.
Fan of the local beer offerings around Olympic Village? Let us know below.
For more updates on craft beer and more in Vancouver and beyond, follow me on Twitter @RemyScalza.