The beer scene in Las Vegas is thriving. There are many great bars, casinos and restaurants where thirsty visitors can sit back with a glass of their favorite suds – whether it be a craft brew or a bottle of Bud. Here are some of the best!
Aces & Ales (3740 S. Nellis Blvd. and 2801 N. Tenaya Way)
Leave the Strip and head to where locals go for great beer in Vegas. Inspired by the classic gastropubs of London, the owners here are dedicated to serving an array of carefully chosen brews. Aces & Ales has two locations: on the east side at 3740 S. Nellis Blvd. with 22 draft beers and on the west side at 2801 N. Tenaya Way with 50 draft beers. Selections are rotated regularly to ensure freshness. You'll find pilsners, imperial stouts, reds, hefeweizens, and IPAs all served in traditional glassware. Plus, both Aces & Ales feature more than 150 bottled beers – including many "vintage" and "limited" selections.
Big Dog's Brewing Company
Just a short drive from the Las Vegas Strip are the two spirited establishments that make up Big Dog's Brewing Company: Big Dog's Draft House at 4543 N. Rancho Dr. and Big Dog's Cafe & Casino at 6390 W. Sahara Ave. Brewing in Las Vegas since the early '90s, this company is known for its whimsical dog-inspired beer names. There are seven signature brews on tap at all times – the Leglifter Light, the Tailwagger Wheat, the Holy Cow! Original Pale Ale, the Red Hydrant Ale (a 2006 and 2010 World Beer Cup gold medal winner), the 38 Special, the Black Lab Stout and the Dirty Dog IPA. The War Dog Imperial IPA and the Lake Mead Monster Double Red are two seasonal brews available during the month of September. The atmosphere at both places is always friendly and fun. Mingle with locals, watch sports or join in one of the company's year-round tastings, tapping parties, brewmaster dinners or beer festivals.
Ellis Island Casino and Microbrewery
Also located off the Strip, this microbrewery is something of a hidden gem. Head a block east on Flamingo Road (behind Bally's) to 4178 Koval Lane. Inside you'll discover a maze of stainless steel tanks where four delicious concoctions are created: a light, an amber, a weiss (a beer made with a larger than normal amount of wheat malt) and a stout. You can also enjoy seasonal brews. Plus, the Ellis Island Microbrewery produces an old-fashioned, all-natural root beer. Voted No. 1 in Nevada and No. 9 in the country by the National Brewers Association in past rankings, the beers here are all created by brewmaster Joe Pickett.
Crown & Anchor
Located a couple of miles east of the Strip at 1350 E. Tropicana Ave., this is one of Las Vegas' most beloved British pubs and it's open 24 hours, so you can get a cold one at any time of the day. There are more than 30 imported beers on tap and the menu is laden with traditional favorites like cottage pies, Cornish pasties and sausage rolls. A roast dinner is also served every Sunday, and if you go during happy hour, which runs from 3 - 6 p.m., you can take advantage of cheap draught beer specials.
Hofbräuhaus Las Vegas
There's no more fitting place to guzzle beer than at Hofbräuhaus, a faithful reproduction of the centuries-old beer hall in Munich. It's also situated near the Strip at 4510 Paradise Road, just across from the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. You can partake in beer brewed from recipes handed down by the Duke of Bavaria more than 400 years ago as well as listen to live Bavarian-style music played by the band Die Rotzlöffl.
The Pub at Monte Carlo
This industrial-style watering hole with 35 big-screen TVs is situated in the resort's Street of Dreams shopping promenade. The array of large kegs bar are sure to impress you – as will The Pub's beer menu, which boasts more than 300 selections to choose from. You'll be overwhelmed while trying to pick from the list of bottled, draught and locally brewed beers that feature all varieties of ales along with hefeweizens, IPAs, ciders, porters, stouts and more. And if you're truly feeling thirsty, you can order a 64-ounce drink!
Public House at The Venetian
Public House is home to the first beer cicerone (think sommelier, but for beer) in the state of Nevada. He'll help you choose among Public House's four-page beer menu to find the brew for you. The restaurant also has a great selection of artisanal brews. It's not just the beer that makes Public House a place to visit, great food can also be found here. Whether you want a snack (try the "devils on horseback," tender dates stuffed with blue cheese and wrapped in bacon) or a new take on chicken and waffles (deep-fried quail and bacon-braised kale), Public House has great food to pair with great food.
Rí Rá in The Shoppes at Mandalay Place inside Mandalay Bay
A 500-pound statue of St. Patrick presides over the merriment in this authentic Irish pub. Eleven premium imports (including Guinness, of course) and up to seven craft beers from the U.S. are on tap. There are also about 100 bottled beers from around the world available at Rí Rá.
Triple 7 Restaurant and Microbrewery at Main Street Station
Looking for an award-winning beer experience in downtown Las Vegas? At Triple 7, the ingredients are hand-selected and the recipes have been developed with painstaking care over the years. The High Roller Gold, a wheat beer, is the brewpub's flagship creation. More adventurous drinkers may want to go for the Marker Pale Ale or the distinctive Vienna-style Royal Red Lager. The Blackchip Porter, named for a $100 black gaming chip, is made by blending five malts and perfect for dark beer lovers. There's also a monthly rotation of brewmaster specials, like the Oktoberfest Bier, Raspberry Wheat, Black Cherry Stout and India Pale Ale. It's hard to beat Triple 7 when comes to price.
Yard House at Town Square Las Vegas or Red Rock Casino, Resort & Spa
Both Yard House locations have center bars with a seemingly endless number of tap handles. Every kind of beer you could possibly imagine is available – ranging from crafts and ciders to classic lagers and obscure ales. To enter the restaurant, you'll pass through the keg room, which often houses as many as 5,000 gallons of beer at one time. Three to five miles of tap lines stretch overhead in the dining room to link the keg room to the center bar. Beers can be ordered by the shorty, goblet, pint or half yard.
If you are willing to drive, you should also check out:
Boulder Dam Brewing Company (453 Nevada Way, Boulder City)
Located in the heart of historic Boulder City, it's a long drive to get here…but one that's definitely worth making. Todd Cook started brewing beer in 2002 with a home setup he'd received from a friend. His first few tries were bad, but then he triumphed with a porter, which is a dark sweet beer. A few years later, his dad asked what his dream career would be, and Cook answered that he'd like to run a small brewery. With his parents' help, Cook opened the Boulder Dam Brewing Company in early 2007. It's truly a family business now with his children and his sister's family also pitching in. Generally, Cook makes six different beers at a time, ranging from rich stouts to pale ales – and there's not an additive or preservative to be found in any of them. Two of the most popular ones are the Hell's Hole Hefeweizen, which is served with an orange slice, and the High Scaler IPA.