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pub with best beer selection?

Hey there, I'm wondering if anyone has found bars/pubs around Austin with really extensive beer selections... (extra points for a great variety on draught too). I'm looking for places that are also pleasant to hang out in for a cozy evening, so you can leave out anything on East Sixth that's overflowing with sweaty co-eds. :) Thanks!

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  1. BB Rovers out on Jollyville Rd. Great selection of bottled some draught, didn't notice which ones. It has been forever since I have been there but you might check out The Draught House on Medical Parkway (south Burnet Rd)

    1. Best beer selections in town are:

      The Ginger Man. A TX chain at 4th & Lavaca. Not your typical 6th Street crowd. Parking can be a pain.

      The Draught House. On Medical Parkway in central Austin. Great atmosphere. People bring lawn chairs and hang out in the parking lot. Real friendly, local crowd. They're also a brewpub, but the in-house beers are kind of hit-or-miss for me.

      The Flying Saucer. A chain, located in the Triangle in central Austin. I'm really conflicted on this place. Best selection in town, I think, and all perfectly served. Good specials, too. But the waitresses dress in these short little skirts, which I think is kind of skeevy, and while they're all well trained and knowledgeable, about half of them are more interested in hustling tips. Plus it's always crowded and poorly laid out - way too many 6 or 8 tops.

      3 Replies
      1. re: brentwood

        thanks! I'll have to try this Draught House. any place where you can bring your own lawn chairs is my style!

        1. re: brentwood

          surprised dog and duck pub was left off. Not quite as extensive a draught selection as Gingerman, but very good.
          Fish and Chips, and other pub fare is served.

          1. re: brentwood

            The Ginger Man is actually slightly closer to 3rd than to 4th, on Lavaca. Plenty of parking is available at City Hall for $5 flat rate after 5 pm, and that's only 1 1/2 blocks away. On-street parking can definitely be a pain in that area.

          2. I'm partial to BB Rovers as well. Used to live at that place a few years back. Great selection of beer and pretty decent food as well. Very casual. They'll occasionally rotate different imports on draft; chocolate beer, something from Pierre Celis, etc.

            1. Hi,

              I appreciate Crown and Anchor's selection. And the pricing - specials every day for the entire day. Sunday's a bargain with no pint pricier than $2.75, I think. Food is greasy bar food - and the nachos are yummy. Wouldn't call it cozy - but I like the typically, ahem, older grad student crowd.

              1. Opal Divine's has a pretty impressive beer selection, decent bartenders (who seem to know what they're doing), and a perfectly acceptable menu.....I think they have two locations, one on West Sixth Street, and another on North Mopac. There might be another one somewhere in town, just outside my realm of recognition.

                2 Replies
                1. re: marfaboy

                  I've found that all the waitstaff at the Opal Divine's on North Mopac treat beer very seriously. There's a wide selection and they'll let you sample brews.

                  1. re: marfaboy

                    The third Opal Divine's is at Penn Field, on S. Congress near Ben White.

                  2. Having been transferred here from Dallas I like both Flying Saucer and the Gingerman. The locations here aren't quite as "broken in" as the one's in Dallas and Ft Worth Locations. I like them moslty because they had some nitrogen push beers. Saucers are being franchised across the country. I think the original Saucer owner is Shannon Wynne, the guys parents started Six Flags.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: FoodEquipmentGuy

                      The Ginger Man in Austin is not "broken in" because they were forced to move recently. Their great building on 4th was scheduled for demolition, so they moved to 301 Lavaca, which is unfortunately not quite as charming as the old location. As a side note, I noticed that something was opening today in their old space, but didn't have time to check it out, so I'm not sure what's going on in there.

                      1. re: angusb

                        The old Ginger Man location is opening as Ghost Room, some sort of music club:


                      2. re: FoodEquipmentGuy

                        Some may disagree with me, but the Flying Saucer is not a franchise chain. It is privately owned and managed, which I think contributes to the success. There are currently 14 locations from Texas to the Carolinas, and I believe they do quite a bit of research before committing to add new locations. The Austin location could do with some improvement regarding service and interior layout, but the selection of beer is always impressive.

                      3. An update - I don't really get Twitter, but if you want to chase down some awesome rare beers, you should definitely follow the feeds of the Draught House, the Saucer, and the Ginger Man:


                        This Saturday (1/9/10) is the Saucer's 2nd Anniversary and there are some brilliant selections lined up to be tapped.

                        1. What are people's thoughts on North by Northwest, Lovejoys, Uncle Billys and any of the Little Woodrows? Im visiting Austin for the first time in a couple weeks and I plan on hitting the best beer/food places in and around town. Also on my list is "best tex mex breakfast joint" and "best brisket" but I guess Ill save those for other threads. However, if theres a good beer place that also has good Brisket (Uncle Billy's?) that would be a bonus of course...

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Insidious Rex

                            I can't speak to NXNW, or the food selection at Lovejoy's or Little Woodrow's (though there is a food trailer outside of the one on W 6th), but I'd generally take a pass on the food at Uncle Billy's. I've eaten there three times, and I'd say it's a great place for beer, but not so much anything else.

                            1. re: Insidious Rex

                              I've never been a big fan of the Lovejoy's brews, but both Uncle Billy's and NXNW do good in-house brews. I agree that the BBQ at Uncle Billy's isn't anything special. Maybe try the Green Mesquite, a block or two down the road? Draught House also brews their own beer.

                              None of the Little Woodrow's serve food, as far as I know. Some have semi-permanent food trailers outside. It's a Houston/Austin chain, and it can be fun if the weather is nice. Avoid the Parmer location, which is not subject to the city smoking ban (unless you smoke - then by all means, go nuts!)

                            2. off-the-beaten-path department -

                              try the Dig Pub in Cedar Park - http://thedigpub.com/ - at least 20 beers on draught - from Dogfish to Franziskaner - and many more bottled.

                              for "beer-scootin'" - head down the road to New Braunfels - the Frisenhaus Biergarten - features a variety of German draft beers, as well as the $18.99 "One boot beer"