In a town as effortlessly cool as Leipzig, craft beer is easy to find on the menu. Here are 5 of the best craft beer bars in Leipzig:
Leipzig, with its unhurried atmosphere and increasingly large population of creative types, has all the markings of a craft beer hotpot. Call it what you will – ‘the new Berlin’ or ‘Hypezig’ spring to mind – but Leipzig stills remains true to itself, with a style that is at times a little less extrovert than the German capital. This is reflected in Leipzig’s growing craft beer scene, specialising in both hard working, honest micro breweries, old beer halls with yellowing paint and hard-to-find dark and dingy pubs with a thoughtful range of special beers. No matter where you go, you’ll find a unique take on craft beer that is as bespoke as the decor. Here are 5 of the best craft beer bars in Leipzig:
Dr Hops is a relative newcomer in Leipzig’s craft beer scene but already it is seen as one of the best. Unlike many other craft places who might ship in a few craft bottles, the team not only brew all their own beers, they also go out of their way to come up with new recipes almost weekly. This means that as well as the stalwart pilsners there are salted caramel imperial stouts and double fruited sours with mango and pineapple – if you are serious about beer this is the place to head to first in Leipzig. What makes it even more enjoyable is the location. The bar itself is cosy and intimate – this is not a huge hall like we have come to expect from some well-known craft beer brands – and is ideally positioned for exploring the southern district of Connewitz, which is packed full of cultural centres and excellent shabby-chic pubs.
Fairly centrally located, Goldhopfen is a great place to while away a few hours. The aesthetic is, let’s say, classic modern Leipzig – that is murals on the walls, random furniture, and crumbling ceilings. Your mum and dad might not like it, but for the large student population Goldhopfen is home, with a great selection of beers sourced from around Germany and beyond (including the aforementioned Synde Brau). The selection could be a bit better to be honest but the bar makes up for it with a great atmosphere, helped by lovely staff, good music and little touches like a choice of board games that will keep you there long enough to probably try all the beers on offer.
For many craft beer aficionado, Synde Brau will be heaven. From the shiny micro-brewery coppers to the honest and dependable range of beers and logos that look like your bearded mate’s tattoo, this is craft beers by the book. Founded in 2017, the whole brewing process, from recipe development to labelling, takes place in house. Brewery tours are on offer and there is also a classic tap room to try the beers on draft where the decor is working brewery rather than fancy hipster (although arguably it’s the same effect) and there is a worthy attention to detail that runs through everything. Anyone hoping for fantastical beers that have watermelon ice cream tones and the essence of burnt avocado might be disappointed – these are solid and reliable IPAs, pilsners and stouts with minimal BS, although the 10% Barley Wine is probably more of an acquired taste.
Hohe Str. 13
Brauhaus an der Thomaskirche
Touristy city centres tend to specialise in overpriced big brand beer that capitalises on passing trade. Brauhaus an der Thomaskirche may be in the old city centre but it is a hidden gem for a more traditional take on craft beer, with a 250,000 litre annual capacity for brewing beer, starting from grinding wheat malt and barley all the way through to fermentation. Everything is naturally in line with the German Purity Law of 1516 and the beers are served unfiltered and unstrained. The quality beers, including a smoky, caramelly Christmas brew, are excellent, and in stark contrast to the overpriced and not great Italian food that they have chosen to offer as an accompaniment – we would recommend liquid refreshment only here.
Rorschach Bar in the laid-back Connewitz district neither brews onsite or has a vast selection of beers that will have you standing at the bar for half an hour trying to decide. What it does do excellently however is refine the drinking experience with impeccable service and a focused selection of quality beers. We tried a Zwönitzer India Pale Ale, brewed in the nearby small town of Zwönitz by a small company that has so far managed to pick up several craft beer awards. Rorschach Bar itself has a noir, cocktail bar aesthetic with spindly downlit table bulbs that make it feel like you’ve landed on the set of a David Lynch film. For anyone looking for good beer without the pubby atmosphere, Rorschach Bar is a great find.