Draft Magazine recently released its annual list of the 100 best beer bars in America, a list on which Columbus is notably absent.
While we may not have the biggest or best, there are some damn good beer bars in Columbus worth recognizing. Here are a few of my favorites.
The Big 3 B’s
These have been the most cited beer bars in Central Ohio for years – and for good reason!
- Bodega in the Short North is arguably the most popular and well-known beer bar in Columbus, boasting more than 50 beers on tap from an impressive range of breweries. Their Monday dollar grilled cheese night fed me through college.
- Bob’s Bar, the self-proclaimed “Cultural Hub of the Midwest,” doesn’t look like much from the outside, but surprises with well over 200 beers, a solid 36 of which are on draft.
- Brew’s Cafe is in Granville, about half an hour east of Columbus, but this bar is worth the trip. Not only does Brew’s have more than 30 great beers on tap, they also have TEN coolers of bottles behind the bar. I’m also obsessed with their spinach dip and pita.
These may not have the most draft lines or the biggest coolers, but these local favorites offer something special for beer lovers.
- Surly Girl Saloon has 24 taps and focuses on filling them with Ohio and women-owned breweries.
- St. James Tavern has only 13 taps, but each one is occupied with a top-notch brew, and St. James is often one of the first or only bars to feature specialty selections.
- 101 Beer Kitchen has a solid 20 taps and 50 bottles and a handy menu with detailed descriptions of each.
- The Daily Growler has an impressive 60 tap handles, but despite a few barstools and tables, its primary purpose is carry-out
- The Pint Room in Dublin has a drool-worthy 100 taps (25 Ohio-occupied), but I haven’t actually been to this bar yet.
The Chain Gang
While these may not be locally-based companies, the beer list at each of these chain establishments warrants a look!
- Northeast Ohio-based Winking Lizard Tavern (Crosswoods, Bethel and coming-soon Grandview) has hundreds of beers to enjoy, but its their World Tour that keeps local beer enthusiasts coming back to collect swag for consuming 50, 100 or 150 different beers at the bar.
- Florida-based World of Beer (Brewery District, Easton) lives up to its name with 40 different drafts and hundreds more bottles, plus a loyalty card program packed with prizes for trying new brews.
- West Virginia-founded Pies & Pints is new to the area, but impresses with a curated beer selection of 36 drafts, plus some damn good pizza.
What’s your favorite beer bar in Columbus?