Cheers to Chandler's Craft Beer Scene
Posted on September 6, 2016 9:46 AM
Sometimes, nothing satisfies like a properly poured pint of craft beer. When that time comes, Chandler, AZ has you covered. The city has several breweries and drinking establishments with impressive craft beer menus.
SanTan Brewing Company
8 S. San Marcos Pl., Chandler
Phone: (480) 917-8700
Hours: Monday – Thursday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Friday – Saturday, 8 a.m. to 1 a.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Since 2007, SanTan Brewing Company has been brewing some of the Valley’s best craft beers, and although you can find them on draft at restaurants and bars throughout the Southwest, the best place to sample the award-winning lineup is still at the brewery and restaurant in Downtown Chandler. Stake a spot on one of two outdoor patios cooled by misters, or wait for a table in what was once the Valley National Bank (you can still see the metal vault and sit on benches made of safe deposit boxes).
The Devil’s Ale, a smooth American pale ale, and Mr. Pineapple, a crisp wheat infused with juice from Fair Trade Costa Rican pineapple farms, are arguably the two most popular offerings. If you’re new to craft beer, Epicenter Amber has been dubbed a “gateway ale” by the brewery. More experienced palettes may want to opt instead for the India pale ales—HopShock IPA and MoonJuice IPA—or darker beers like Negro Nitro, a black IPA; Gordo Stout, a nitro-infused dry Irish Stout; or the seasonal Sex Panther, a double chocolate porter.
Find something you like? You can take it home in a 32-ounce aluminum can growler called the Canzilla Crowler. (SanTan Brewing Company prefers aluminum to glass and even chooses to can its beers for distribution versus bottle them.) Or, you can find the brewery’s beers in most Valley grocery and liquor stores.
The Perch Pub & Brewery
232 S. Wall St., Chandler
Phone: (480) 773-7688
Hours: Monday – Friday, 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.; Saturday – Sunday, 9 a.m. to 1 a.m. (with breakfast served 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.)
The Perch Pub & Brewery has two things that set it apart from other area breweries: first, it has an amazing rooftop lounge with views of Downtown Chandler, and second, it more than 50 brightly-colored, tropical rescue birds in cages spread among the foliage on the brick patio.
But, the real draw is still the beer. There are more than 30 beers on tap, roughly half of which are house brews ranging in style from a pale ale to a black IPA, a gose, and a wheat wine. You’ll also find unique beer flavor at The Perch such as its Rosemary IPA and Lemongrass Double IPA. The remaining taps pour selections from guest breweries like Goose Island Beer Co., Odell Brewing Co., Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, and Two Brothers Brewing Company.
The beer menu changes regularly so you may want to check online before you go to see what’s on tap. Hint: Beers listed in green print have been added to the taps within the last 48 hours.
55 W. Chicago St., Chandler
Phone: (480) 699-7551
Hours: Daily, 3 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Located a stone’s throw from The Perch Pub Brewery, this sister property serves several of The Perch’s beers, including a few brewed by The Perch specifically for it, such as the 55 Chicago S’Wheat Home Chicago. That’s where the similarities end. 55 Chicago has a sleek, minimalist interior (and no birds) and brings in live music and DJs for dancing.
It also plays up its connection by address—the pub is named for its street address, 55 Chicago St.—to the Windy City. You’ll find deep dish pizza, lasagna, Chicago-style hot dogs, and hot Italian beef sandwiches on the menu.
The Hungry Monk
1760 W. Chandler Blvd., Chandler
Phone: (480) 963-8000
Hours: Monday – Thursday, 11 a.m. to 12 a.m., Friday – Saturday, 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m. to 12 a.m.
This neighborhood sports bar and restaurant is known for its impressive list of revolving craft beers. Available on tap and by the bottle, selections lean strongly in favor of West Coast and Arizona beers, including several beers from SanTan Brewing Company and Four Peaks Brewery in nearby Tempe. Overwhelmed by your 50-plus choices? The menu provides detailed information that can help narrow your choices.
Guest breweries are regularly featured at events like the monthly Beer and Bacon Night, special happy hours, beer tastings, and beer dinners, and The Hungry Monk also hosts occasional tasting events, pitting a dozen or so related beers against each other for the title of best brew. Special menus are often available for these events, featuring foods that pair well with the theme or beers.
BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse
3155 W. Chandler Blvd., Chandler
Phone: (480) 917-0631
Hours: Sunday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Monday – Thursday, 11 a.m. to 12 a.m.; Friday, 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 1 a.m.
Don’t let the fact that BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse is a chain of roughly 175 restaurants in 22 states mislead you—it puts out some seriously good brews, some of which are developed in its Chandler brewery. (The Magnolia’s Peach, which took a gold at the Great American Beer Festival in the Fruit Wheat Beer category, came from Chandler.)
On your first visit, consider ordering one of the signature beers, BJ’s Brewhouse Blonde and Jeremiah Red. Both are what you’d expect; the Blonde is a light, German Kolsch-style beer while the Irish-style Jeremiah Red delivers the strong punch of five imported malts. Also popular are the LightSwitch Lager, BJ’s PM Porter, Tatonka Stout, HopStorm IPA, and Piranha Pale Ale.
In addition to the 11 beers that are always on tap, BJ’s rounds out its offerings with seasonal beers, experimental beers, limited edition Brewmaster’s Reserve beers, and its Annual Grand Cru.