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Feel the wind in your hair as you roll from one craft brewery to another—no U-lock needed.
There are a number of ways to tour the high population of craft breweries and microbreweries in Metro Vancouver (by foot and shuttle being just two of them), but by bike has to win for being the most fun and time efficient. Not only is cycling good for you (endorphins!) and convenient (designated bike routes!), it’s also a clever way to clear your head before your next brew stop in case you’ve had one too many sips of that much-stronger-than-it-has-any-business-being Flanders Red Ale.
Luckily for Vancouverites, Canadian Craft Tours is making it even easier for imbibers to go from brewery to brewery by two wheels this spring with the recent introduction of its guided beer bike tours. Now available for booking in North Vancouver, the jaunt involves a 15-passenger cycle bike—equipped with a rain/sun roof, seatbelts and steering wheel—that takes participants to three breweries in two hours.
“They’re so much fun,” says Joscelyn Werner, sales and marketing lead at Canadian Craft, which offers a range of guided brewery, wine and food tours by minibus and foot in cities across Western Canada. “We can’t wait to be able to do something with our guests that’s outdoors.”
The cycle bikes’ seats are arranged around a bar-top table and each one is positioned above its own pair of pedals. (You may have seen similar models rolling around cities like Calgary and Portland.) A Canadian Craft guide will drive the bike by steering, braking and controlling the headlights and turning signals, so participants may enjoy a beer or three without worry. (Plus, the bikes are equipped with a motor for all those pesky hills, so, really, you’re not working very hard.)
Despite the presence of a mobile bar-top, however, drinking while on the bikes is not permitted. “In B.C., it’s probably going to be a while until that is a possibility,” says Werner.
The beer bike tours in North Vancouver include stops at places like Streetcar Brewing, Tap and Barrel and House of Funk Brewing Co. (Canadian Craft is also working on a wine bike tour for this area that will spotlight businesses like The Gull Bar and Kitchen and Finch and Barley.) Beer bike tours will come to Port Moody in May, where Werner is hoping to have passengers picked up by bike at a SkyTrain station before departing for stops like Moody Ales and Twin Sails Brewing.
The 15-passenger cycle bikes are custom-made in Europe for Canadian Craft. Werner says the company has plans to expand the fleet should the beer bike tours prove successful. “We’re going to see how these ones go, but we definitely want to have them in more cities eventually,” she says.
Canadian Craft’s guided beer bike tours are available for daily public tours and private parties. Prices range from $35 to $45 a person online.