Pub crawls are great for a variety of reasons:
- Socializing – Meeting new people.
- Evangelizing – Spreading awareness about all things Beer.
- Sampling – A chance to taste several beers and food over the course of the event.
- Session Drinking – Slow paced and Endurance being the Key Performance Incentives for a crawl! Who can make it to the finish?
Beer is a wonderful social lubricant and it fosters great camaraderie, as a result. Pub crawls aren’t just for Beer aficionados. They are open to all those who are curious about Beer.
Bangalore with it’s 19 Brewpubs (Bangalore’s Brewpub Listing) is great that way for doing mini-crawls. Traffic, schedules and time don’t allow you to add more than 3-4 venues along the route.
If you are interested in being part of a min crawl (2-10 persons), please contact me – Contact
In mid September, a fellow member, Nimish Gupta from the Bengaluru Thirst Club (BTC) and myself agreed to do an impromptu mini-crawl to satisfy our Craft Beer cravings. We selected a 8km crawl that more or less followed the Bangalore Metro and chose the following brewpubs:
- Start -3 Monkeys Brewpub – Old Madras Road
- Pit Stop – Toit Brewpub
- Finish -Arbor Brewing Company India
From a logistics perspective, these were all within easy reach of each other. All three were selected for the following reasons:
- Consistently great brews.
- Varied Styles
- Great Food
Our group of 8 started out at 12pm and ended the crawl at 11:30pm – that’s what we like to call Session Drinking and this is what happened that afternoon. We had a few people drop out midway and others joining us for the tail end of the crawl.
3 Monkeys Brewpub
3 Monkeys Brewpub has a club like ambiance which is great if you want to shake the blues away at any time of day but the star attraction here is the variety of expertly brewed European styled brews. If you are fan of German Bocks (lagers that are stronger than traditional lagers up to 8% ABV) and Belgian/English ales then this is the place to be!
Martin Bernard, who hails from Quebec, Canada is the resident brewmaster. He sat with us and answered questions while we went through a sampler set and some of the items on the food menu. I helped guide people through the samplers and added in some useful facts about Beer/Craft Beer.
The Belgian Session Ale and their Hefeweizen are the brews for you. Cider lovers who like a cider on the tart/sour side, 3 Monkeys has a Mango Cider made with freshly squeezed Alphonso mangoes. These are lighter in body and on the sweeter/maltier side with low hop content. Ciders are never made with hops and are basically fermented fruity brews.
Medium/Full Bodied Brews
These vary depending on the brewpubs brewing schedule but typically the Hopfenweizen is a wheat ale loaded with hops – IPA and Hefeweizen lovers make note! If you like a stronger wheat beer then try the Weizenbock – same notes as a wheat ale but with a higher alcohol content with slightly sweeter notes coming from caramelized malt that is also used along with wheat. 3 Monkeys also offers a Dopplebock – a much stronger version of a bock (dopple meaning double) and the version at 3 Monkeys is dark with a heavy malt character, sweet/fruity with low bitterness. You can literally taste how strong this brew is so drink this one responsibly or you may find yourself doing silly things on the dance floor or dancing on tables!
Specials – These vary – Some of my favorites include the Irish Red, Scotch Ale and Wheat IPA. Watch out for Sours which are barrel aged in the near future!
The star of the show was their pickled Beef – spicy and sour – this is a perfect companion for Craft Beer. 3 Monkeys does some wonderful pizzas and platters – options for both herbivores and carnivores alike. They also the most authentic version of a Canadian styled Poutine – Potatoes with gravy and cheese curds.
Loyalty Program – The Beerocrat
Sign up for the Beerocrat program – you pay a one time sign up free. Benefits include discounted prices on all craft brews as well some freebies. Ask your server about the program and sign up!
3 Monkeys Brewpub – Zomato Link
We finished our session here around 3:30 pm and proceeded to our next pit stop – Toit
When you mention the word Craft Beer and Bangalore, Toit is usually the first name to roll of people’s tongues. Cosy interiors, great pub food and best of all quality craft beer. Toit does European style ales and they do these really well. They have one seasonal/special along with 5 staple beers on tap.
Bonus – We got a chance to say hello to co-founders Sibi Venkatraju, Arun George and Mukesh Tolani and thank them for looking after us. If you’re ever at Toit, you’ll usually see Sibi and Arun wandering around. Don’t be shy – go say hello to them!
Tintin Toit – light bodied with citrus and coriander notes. Toit Weiss – sweet, medium bodies with plenty of banana and clove notes. The Basmatic Blonde – is similar to a lager, crispy and light bodied, slightly sweet with low hop character.
Medium/Full Bodied Brews
The Colonial IPA (India Pale Ale)– Medium bodied with the bitterness/flavor of Hops dominating the finish and my personal favorite The Toit Red – Caramel notes balanced with a hoppy finish.The Dark Knight – Full bodied with the flavor from the dark roasted malts shining through – subtle hints of chocolate and coffee with a nice creamy mouthfeel with a dry finish.
Specials – These vary from time to time so keep an eye out for these. My favorites include the Wheat IPA and Chocolate Porter.
For appetizers, do try their Potato Skins, Baked Nachos, the Chicken Piccata, Sunuvachik and their Beef skewers. Mains – You cannot go wrong with their wood fired pizzas and my recommendations for mains include the Bacon Wrapped Chicken and the Toit Steak.
Loyalty Program – The Kudix Club
Toit has an wonderful loyalty program that is App based. Download the Toit app, join the Kudix club, log in your activity. For every ten beers, you get one free. The app also shows you what’s on tap and what events are in store. If you love souvenirs, there is a good collection of mugs, coasters, decals, lighters and tees available for purchase. The display is located at the entrance. Ask your server for details.
Toit Brewpub – Zomato Link
We lost a few troopers after Toit but we had more people joining us at the next stop – Arbor Brewing Company
Arbor Brewing Company
If you find yourself in the MG Road area, then this is one brewpub you will not want to miss. Located on the third floor, this brewpub direct from Michigan has a really long bar counter, several seating options scattered around the massive expanse, including an outdoor terrace. If you love American styled craft beers, Arbor is the place to be.
No Parking Pilsner – a light bodied German style lager with plenty of carbonation and a mild earthy hop finish. The Smooth Criminal – Honey Lavender ale is one of my favorites – made with honey and fresh flowers makes it easy drinking ale.
Medium/Full Bodied Brews
The Raging Elephant – The best American style IPA (India Pale Ale) in town. Heavily loaded with flowery/citrusy hops, this will tickle your palate and leave a lasting bitter finish. This is my favorite IPA in Bangalore.
The Phat Abbot Tripel – Belgian styled ale with plenty of slighty sweet, spicy, fruity notes that dominate this full bodied strong ale. Michael Faricy’s Irish Stout is full bodied with a rich creamy nitrogen head and loads of flavor – chocolate and coffee notes from the roasted malt.
Specials: Arbor rotates specials on a frequent basis and sometimes has more than one. My favorites are the Double IPA, Baltic Porter and Cold War Coffee Stout.
For appetizers – The Sweet Potato Fries, Champignon Al Ajillo, Bacon Chilli Cheese Fries (with Beef), German Sausage Platter, Brandied Beef Steak and the Flaming Chicken are not to be missed. Mains – Try the Arborger and The Steak Tenderloin and thier Pizzas.
Loyalty Program – The Mug Club
Arbor also has a paid loyalty program called The Mug Club and they also have t-shirts on sale. Ask your server for more details.
Arbor Brewing Company – Zomato Link
We ended up staying till Arbor closed. Ten odd hours of Craft Beer wasn’t the least bit exhausting or boring. You’ve got to pace yourself and realize that Craft Beer is all about quality NOT quantity. The object here is to remain standing, socialize and remember your evening. Always drink responsibly and don’t forget to re-hydrate in between with a glass of water!
If you think you’d like to be a part of a crawl, please comment below, drop me a note on the “Contact” section of the blog or via my Facebook/Twitter/Instagram accounts (listed below)
Cheers and Stay Frothy!