The craft revolution took Moscow by storm in 2015. To help you navigate the increasingly sophisticated craft bar scene we’ve selected seven spots to experience Russian craft beer culture.
Vse Tvoi Druzya
Craft beer bar with a cult status
This tiny bar off Tverskaya Ulitsa was opened by members of the Russian rap group ILWT and is packed almost every night. It focuses on Russian-produced craft beer and cider, but also sells some imported brews from 200 rubles ($3.50). Try the persimmon-flavored golden ale “Ruka Boga” (Hand of God) by St. Petersburg’s Bakunin brewery for 250 rubles ($4.30).
Craft and burgers
Varka was the first craft bar around Taganskaya
metro station, which has now turned
into something of a craft Mecca—nowhere
else in the city is the concentration of craft
bars so high. The selection here is constantly
changing, with both Russian and
imported craft beer on offer. Try a milky
Black Jack chocolate stout by Moscow’s ID
brewery for 200 rubles ($3.50).
Craft & Draft
Perfect bar to take your parents out
The first bar to open in the famous “craft yard” on Taganskaya, which it now shares with Cans & Beer and HLSTK, Craft & Draft looks like an old-fashioned pub. The 20 beers on tap are supplemented by almost 100 types of bottled brews. Don’t miss the Mango Mayhem IPA by Moscow’s Beer Bros Brewery (BBB) for 250 rubles ($4.30). The food is decent, try the “cray” blue-cheese burger for 500 rubles ($8.70) or a large burger with tomato chutney and mashed potatoes (550 rubles).
Cans & Beer
The writing on the wall
Opened by and for street artists, you can try your hand at graffiti yourself here. Draft beers include rare Norwegian brew Nogne Session IPA for 390 rubles ($6.70).
Craft beer in a steam bath
Parka (not to be confused with Varka,
partially owned by the same people) is a
craft bar designed like a Russian bathhouse.
“Parka” refers to being “steamed” at
a bath. You can sit on the stepped benches
or at a table downstairs. Besides the ubiquitous
IPAs and APAs, try the “Clockwork
Orange”-inspired Moloko+ chocolate stout
for 250 rubles ($4.30).
Straight from the Urals
Jawsspot isn’t just another craft beer place
—it’s a bar that belongs to one of the most
popular brewers in Russia, the Sverdlovsk
region’s Jaws. Original brews with witty
names like Nuclear Laundry IPA (240
rubles) or Looking for a Human (260 rubles)
and about a dozen others are all on tap.
There’s also great bar food and a balcony
with a view of Lubyanka and the FSB headquarters.
Pioneers of the craft beer movement
Glavpivmag’s owners started with a stall at
Rybny Market at Novokuznetskaya and then
opened this proper place, located in a street
leading off Chistoprudny Bulvar. Glavpivmag
consists of two rooms: a beer store and a bar
with a minimalist, no-nonsense aesthetic.
Here they specialize in craft beer made by
producers from around Russia. There are 40
varieties on tap – including Red Maniac, a
chili-infused IPA for 280 rubles ($4.90) – and
around 100 from their selection of bottled
ales. There’s food available too if you need to
line your stomach: burgers, fish and chips
and special biscuits. Flush with its recent
success, Glavpivmag recently opened a second
location on Tverskaya Ulitsa.