A Good Beer Blog


Have you read The Unbearable Nonsense of Craft Beer - A Rant in Nine Acts by Alan and Max yet? It's out on Kindle as well as Lulu.

Maureen Ogle said this about the book: "... immensely readable, sometimes slightly surreal rumination on beer in general and craft beer in particular. Funny, witty, but most important: Smart. The beer geeks will likely get all cranky about it, but Alan and Max are the masters of cranky..."

Ron Pattinson said: "I'm in a rather odd situation. Because I appear in the book. A fictional version of me. It's a weird feeling."


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Wes -

In Palo Alto I can walk to several bars that are pretty decent. In terms of "phony pubs" we have one down here that's not all bad. They serve only beer and wine, and have a rotating cast of taps that come through. The food's not bad, you can get some awesome curry fries. Not to mention we have Gordon Biersch, which is worth something.

TC -

It might just be a product of the Philadelphia area, but my past three residences have all been within easy walking distance of a good brew. While I view the bar a couple of blocks away as a big plus to my living establishment, I don't view it as a necessity. I bike everywhere, so anything within 3 miles is "close". Anything under about 7 miles is doable, though a bit far for just stopping by.

Currently, I'd say a live in a very bar heavy neighborhood. Within a 5-10 minute walk, I'd guess at about a dozen bars of some kind. I haven't been to them all--many of them, from the outside, look like BudMillerCoors places with the football game on and Lynyrd Skynyrd on too high. But there's one place with good local brews and a little old lady who makes sausages and pierogies and stuff. There's another place with a bit more of a national and international flair, but plenty of local craft nods and good eats. Oh, there's another place just next to the brewery, that's good, too, with a big fishtank and plenty of good drink, though no food. Oh, and then a local place with the BMC stuff but also some craft pale ales and pilsners, plus a pool table and great regulars.

The point is, I guess: I love living in Philadelphia. There are good bars EVERYWHERE.

Neil -

Portland, OR

I can walk to three brewpubs, about five bars that serve local craft beers and about ten more that serve the macro-crap. And that's only within a 20 minute walk. If I expand that to 45 minutes to an hour walk, there's about five times that many options.

But maybe that's why I moved here.

Bob -

Westampton, NJ

No bars within walking distance the closest being about 3 miles away. Although the Applebee’s is only 2 miles away if I want to walk along the highway.

Luckily I’ve got a liquor store with a modest selection of nonBudMillerCoors beers right around the corner and the owner is currently building a bigger liquor store right next to the old one.

RS -

I've moved a good bit in the last few years, from Boston, to Seattle, and then to Montreal. I've always tried to pick a place to live in the city where I could both walk to nights out and also to work. Here in Montreal, I'm fortunate enough to live a few blocks from the very popular brewpub Dieu du ciel...it's hard to do better for a local.

Jeffrey T Meyer -

The three legendary beer bars in Muncie are all less the 8 city blocks away. I can crawl home if I have too. 95 craft beer draft lines in all.

Thomas -

Here is my take on the topic.


Andy -

I am really lucky to work half a mile from the Cambridge Brewing Co. Sadly, there's nothing good within walking distance from my house, though. Well, except for my home brewery.

Al -

Sadly, no. I live in the newer development outside of town, and I'm not willing to walk that far to get to the downtown. Of course, there's only one bar in town at all, and certainly not a place for a beer geek looking for a quiet place to chill out. (If you like country music and karaoke though...)

DJ @ Fermentarium -

I can walk to two bars, and a third that was closed will reopen in the fall. The closest bar to me is actually built in my neighborhood by design, along with a few resturants and shops. It makes a huge difference at night, because you don't have to worry if a third beer will make you too tipsy. I always walk to and from the bar!

Alan -

That is a good point. If urban planners do not accomodate neighbourhood bars, are they implicitly risk managing drunk driving or are they just professionally oblivious to it?

brendan -

I live in Minneapolis proper and so I have no problem walking to a bar. If I lived in the 'burbs or a city that grew after wwII then I'd be screwed ala NJ.

Jacobs' work the death and life of American cities strongly argues for mixed use zoning rather than the nasty segregating of commercial and residential that leaves cities lifeless.

Ron Pattinson -

Let's think: I have half a dozen bars within a couple of hundred yards of my house. Within a 10 minute walk there must be 20 or so. Some are even worth the walk.

Queen of the Universe -

Boo, hiss...I wish I could walk! I grew up in Germany and that's the only thing we did to get around and stumble back home. I live in the DFW Metroplex, smack in the middle, so if I want great bars, I have to go 30 minutes in one direction or 45 in the other. It sucks. That's why as of late, I opt to stay home with a Holy Grail Ale...:)

Jinja -

I live in downtown Menlo Park, the next town over from Wes, your first comment author. I'm pretty sure he's talking about The Rose & Crown, which I love since they introduced the rotating list. They get some awesome, one keg only, special kegs, like 2007 and 2006 Old Stock and Firestone Walker Velvet Merkin.

I can walk there in about 20 minutes or so, as well as to all of the other bars in Palo Alto, and there are 4-5 places in Menlo Park where I can get a drink. But Menlo doesn't really have bars, except for one that's been around forever, the BBC, but rather restaurants that serve beer. So I'm glad the R&C which really is a beer bar is so close.

Stonch -

I'm within walking distance of several hundred pubs and bars I wouldn't mind drinking in.

Chris Johnson -

I live in Oklahoma City, and there are no bars within walking distance of where I live. The closest is Baker's Street Pub which is about 5 miles from my house...I guess I could walk, but my homebrew's keep me happy...it's still nice to get out though. It doesn't help that Oklahoma still has their weird 3.2% ABV beer laws!

Daron -

Unfortunately I cannot walk to any bars where I live in the suburbs of Rochester, Ny. There used to be one in walking distance if you dared to cross the pedestrian unfriendly 5 lane road, but they were put out of business because the landlord Wegmans Supermarkets decide they didn't want a bar in the same plaza as a grocery store (liability). (BOO! )There are several a few minutes away and YES I'd love to be able to walk to good pub.

Spencer -

Depends on what you mean by "walking distance." I work in downtown Ann Arbor, and often walk to work from home, about 1.5 miles (2.5km). There are 2 (was 3, soon will be 3 again) brewpubs within short walking distance of work, and a couple of good beer bars, too. There have been times when I was glad I didn't have to drive home, that's for sure.

The Beer Nut -

Like Stonch, I live within walking distance of several hundred pubs. Unlike Stonch, about five of them serve anything worth drinking, and only a couple of those are actually pleasant places to drink.

Knut Albert -

Oslo, Norway.
There are direct flights from here to a fair number of cities with pubs I would like to drink in.

Ben -

Portland, OR

Pretty much the same as Neil, Portland is pretty pub heavy (especially brewpubs). If you live in the city and not a suburb you're almost guaranteed to be in walking distance of a bar if not a brewpub. I'm lucky and some of my favorites are within walking distance.

zeb -

A related concept is the puburb - dividing a city into areas by local bar. http://caseyporn.com/blog/archives/000604.html

Dan -

Last year I moved from the UK to Ottawa ON.

Having grown up in a small village with 7 pubs in walking distance it was quite important to me to find some where to walk to here ;-)

Fortunately I managed it, but it took some doing. I have a couple of bars five minutes walk away, one of which only serves microbrewery beers.

Scott -

Alan - greetings from Oswego, NY (that's right - King Arthur's and C's Market). Yes I am lucky to live in the center of town, where I am surrounded by dozens of establishments, although not many others make their own product. This is more of a Joe 12-pack town. My favorite place is the Front Door Tavern, a great place to get a cold one and play the 10-cent bowling machine. Many people here work at the local aluminum plant, so you see a lot served in cans...

Bub -

I can walk to every bar I like in my city! That would be Montreal.

Woody Brown -

Currently live in South Korea and Can legally carry and enjoy a beer on the street (unlike in the states). Probably 50+ bars within a 10 minute walk. While I CAN walk to so many bars, I'm coming home in 3 weeks to start my 8 month Hike from San Francisco to Delaware to win a one beer bet hence the (onebeerbet.com) site that will be tracking me. LOVE your site, glad I found it!