Where to Drink in Tucson, Arizona

Discussion in 'Article Comments' started by BeerAdvocate, Aug 2, 2016.

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  1. BeerAdvocate

    BeerAdvocate Admin (16,842) Aug 23, 1996 Massachusetts

    Tucson has culinary chops, so it’s not surprising to find a thriving dining scene where local breweries play their part, thanks in part to a wave of new brewery openings.

    Read the full article: Where to Drink in Tucson, Arizona
    #1 BeerAdvocate, Aug 2, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 11, 2017
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  2. DrnknBuddy

    DrnknBuddy Initiate (15) Feb 14, 2017 Arizona

    It's nice to hear the history of brewing in Tucson. I can't believe it took 100 years, until 1988 to start brewing again. Now we have a plethora of options to find beers and liquor made locally. I'm looking forward to checking out some of these breweries that I didn't know existed. Only problem I noticed with this article is that there is now only one Thunder Canyon Brewery in existence as they have closed their Foothills Mall location.

    Great job giving us a heads up on where to support our local breweries!
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  3. meefmoff

    meefmoff Devotee (469) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts

    I moved to Tucson in 1995 and Nimbus seemed like about the coolest place we could have imagined. They used to just have a couple of couches set up by their loading dock which passed as their "tap room", and they were ahead of the curve in having a bunch of old school games on hand to play (I remember Rock 'em Sock 'em Robots most clearly). It really felt special to go there.

    Nimbus Pale Ale was crazily bitter and delicious and that Monkey Shine strong ale was indeed dangerous. I feel like the only other game in "town" at that point was Breckenridge Brewery in Phoenix and we always thought their beer seemed "thin" somehow. They certainly managed to cash in since then, so I'm gad to hear Nimbus is still trucking along too.
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  4. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Poo-Bah (2,124) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Society Trader

    Tucson is booming and let's not forget the awesome beers coming out of Tombstone thanks to @honkey. :beers:
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  5. tzieser

    tzieser Meyvn (1,159) Nov 21, 2006 New Jersey

    I'd like to add a few "honorable mentions" that weren't on this list. They might not be the best "beer bars" per se but they're good spots to get a pint:
    • Union Public House
    • Reilly Craft Pizza
    • R Bar
    • The Loft (movie theater that has classic films and good beer on tap)
    • Casa Video (they do growler fills of locals and also has a separate craft bar now...and their foreign film selection is still the best I've ever seen)
    • AZ Pizza Company (Sabino Canyon location)
    • Risky Business
    • Saguaro Corners (probably the most beautiful, picturesque place on my list)

    There is also a HUGE amount of dive bars where you can also get a decent beer (but let's be honest, a good dive bar is all about the drinks and/or drink specials)
    • The Shelter
    • The Buffet (ranked #1 dive bar in the country a few years ago)
    • The Mint
    • The Meet Rack
    • The Bambi (my personal favorite)
    • Bay Horse Tavern
    • Liquor Barrel Saloon

    Oh yeah, and when you're hungover, go to Poco & Mom's for the best huevos rancheros or carne seca you've ever had. Also be sure to go to Filibertos, Los Betos, Nicos, Ponchos, Guero Canelo, BK Carne Asada for lunch. All at once (just kidding). They also have a Blake's Lotaburger now (amazing chain from NM specializing in green chile burgers) but I'll always prefer In-N-Out over any fast food chain in the world.

    That's a great story. I'm from Massachusetts originally and lived in Arizona 2012-2015 (lived in Chanlder for a year before I moved down to Tucson). I gotta say, I miss that city dearly. I really miss driving up Mount Lemmon the most.

    Unfortunately, I gotta say Nimbus has gone downhill quite a bit. I heard rumors before I moved away that they might be going out of business soon. It would be sad to see, as you mentioned they did a ton for the brewing community way before it got where it is today.
    #5 tzieser, Feb 21, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2018
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  6. meefmoff

    meefmoff Devotee (469) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts

    That's too bad about Nimbus. But a hearty second to your references to driving up Mt. Lemon, Nico's (I used to live right around the corner) and the Shelter!!! Used to love going to shows at the Rialto and Club Congress too.

    When people ask "what is a hipster exactly"? One possible answer to the question is the clientele at the Shelter :slight_smile:
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  7. tzieser

    tzieser Meyvn (1,159) Nov 21, 2006 New Jersey

    Absolutely! The Shelter knew about hipsters before hipsters existed (HAH sorry I had to). Seriously though, I've never seen such an amazing collection of JFK/Nixon memorabilia at a private business. Some of the stuff there would put the JFK Library to shame. Nico's has like 25+ locations now but damn are their burritos amazing.

    I'm risking running this thread off topic, but I keep thinking of new places to keep it on-topic. If any of you drive up to Mt. Lemmon and want a pint check out Sawmill Run or Iron Door Restaurant. Iron Door was a pretty average beer selection but the food was great and I got a bottle of Paulaner Salvator and watched literally hundreds of different hummingbirds swarm the feeders. Sawmill Run was a bit better for beer; I got a Bell's Two Hearted that was absolutely delicious (I swear, altitude makes things taste better...~9,100 ft will do that)
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  8. meefmoff

    meefmoff Devotee (469) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts

    Since this is a zombie thread from 2016 I think you should have free reign to take full control :slight_smile:
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