The Best Pubs in Calgary, Alberta

Wherever there is a thriving craft-beer scene, you're guaranteed to find a wealth of excellent brews
Wherever there is a thriving craft-beer scene, you're guaranteed to find a wealth of excellent brews | © Robert Briggs / Alamy
Photo of Kathryn Beeson
2 October 2020

There are few things in this world that beat a good pub, but, luckily, in Calgary, you’re spoilt for choice! To narrow things down, we’ve asked our local insiders for their top recommendations.

The Hose and Hound Neighbourhood Pub

Pub, Pub Grub, $$$
Map View
Poutine is a fast food that originated in Quebec, Canada
© Lee Brown / Alamy Stock Photo

Housed in a former firehouse and decorated with memorabilia from way back then, The Hose and Hound is Inglewood’s one-stop shop for all things social. Whether you’re looking for a place for a casual date, meal out, after-work drinks or a catch-up with friends, this neighborhood pub just works. Expect a convivial atmosphere and a menu filled with pub grub favorites, including burgers, nachos, classic poutine, stuffed Yorkies and a selection of snacks and finger foods. Recommended by local insider Yamila Godoy

Bear and Kilt Freehouse

Pub, Pub Grub
Map View
gonzalo-esteguy-cy60lDsVYJo-unsplash
© Gonzalo Esteguy / Unsplash

If you’re looking for sustenance after a hard day sightseeing or exploring the city, make the city center’s Bear and Kilt Freehouse your first port of call. Perfectly placed right beside the Calgary Tower, this basement pub always has a good range of local craft beers on, plus an extensive, hearty and reasonably-priced food menu that will leave even the hungriest of punters sated. If you’re not eating, grab a couple of drinks and shoot some pool, or get a couple of rounds of darts in. Recommended by local insider Yamila Godoy

The Pig and Duke Neighbourhood Pub

Pub, Pub Grub, $$$
Map View
Double cheeseburger with french fries
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Downtown’s Pig and Duke is half neighborhood pub, half good-naturedly loud sports bar. People gather here to watch the hockey and cheer on their team, so come during playoff season if you’re looking for a buzz about the place. There’s an outside patio, making this a good option for sipping cold beer on hot summers’ afternoons – and with a good selection of regional craft options on offer, you’ll be spoilt for choice drinks-wise. If you’re hungry, there’s a sandwich- and burger-based menu. Alternatively, order a sharing platter for you and your friends to snack on as you watch the game. Recommended by local insider Stuart Forster

Last Best Brewing and Distilling

Brewery
Map View
© Lindsay Fendt / Alamy

If you’re all about discovering Calgary’s thriving craft beer scene, Last Best Brewing and Distilling’s tap house should be a priority destination for you. Discover Last Best’s range of popular, characterful beers by ordering a tasting flight, and perhaps move onto a pint of your favorite – their IPAs are usually very flavorsome, though you could also opt for one of their more unusual options, including dark lagers, milds, sours and pales. If you’re not big on the hops, try one of their gin-based house cocktails, and perhaps enjoy a bite from the pizza- and burger-based menu. Recommended by local insider Stuart Forster

Jamesons Pub

Pub, Pub Grub, $$$
Map View
Bartender pouring whisky in a glass
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If there’s one thing more certain than death and taxes, it’s that, no matter which city you travel to, there’ll be an Irish-themed bar somewhere nearby. Local favorite Jamesons offers drinks, food and fun times to locals, students and tourists alike. Come for some quality comfort food – pizza, burgers and a big list of sharing options are the stars here – and stay for a couple of drinks. House brew and Alberta craft are available, as are good old-fashioned Buds and Kokanees for your cold-lager fix. Recommended by local insider Coco Hiu Tung Yuen

Hudsons Canadian Tap House

Pub, Pub Grub, $$$
Map View
Waiter pours red wine
© sykono / Getty Images

Hudsons is a small, Alberta-based chain of pubs with branches in Edmonton, Calgary, Lethbridge and Saskatoon. At its Shawnessy-based Calgary location, you can expect a warm welcome, friendly service and a reliably good selection of beers – you’ll find a selection of well-known standards, plus local craft and a few of Hudsons’ house brews too. A reasonable wine list and a tempting selection of Canadian whiskies are also available – alongside a food menu filled with all of your pub-grub favorites. Our local insider recommends the wings and mini doughnuts as sharing options. Recommended by local insider Coco Hiu Tung Yuen

These recommendations were updated on October 2, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.