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Hikers Guide to the Urban Ale Trail

September 4, 2014 by Fara Illich

mainGet ready to hike the Urban Ale Trail Sept. 20 from 1-6 p.m., a walkable beer tasting tour from Downtown Phoenix to uptown, exploring amazing craft beers and great local cuisine along the way.

With 25 “beer stops” in all, you might need some planning. Luckily, we’ve done the orienteering for you, listing a few routes ranging from easy to advanced, depending on your “hiking” ability.

Be one of the first 300 people to reach the Urban Ale Trail base camp – District American Kitchen and Wine Bar – and receive a free commemorative growler!

The Van Buren Corridor (Easy)

Start at the District American Kitchen and Wine Bar and for $2 each, try the Sonoran White Chocolate Ale, Phoenix Ale Camelback IPA and Mother Road Gold Kolsch. The featured snack is Devils on Horseback (Bacon Wrapped Dates.) Located at 320 N. 3rd St.

easy trail

Cross Third Street and enter the Arizona Center where you’ll find Brick Restaurant. For $2, sample the North Mountain Cream Ale, Four Peaks Kilt Lifter and Four Peaks Hefeweizen. The snack is Brick’s Signature Flat Bread. Located at 455 N. 3rd St.

Head west on Van Buren Street and you’ll see Crescent Ballroom on the corner of Second Avenue. Snack on some chips and salsa and wash it down with $2 samples of Four Peaks Kilt Lifter and Odell IPA. Located at 308 N. 2nd Ave.

The Downtown Switchbacks (Moderate)

alesquareFrom District American Kitchen and Wine Bar, walk one block west to Second Street and head south to Adams Street. Steve’s Greenhouse Grill is featuring  $3 samples of Papago Orange Blossom, Oak Creek Nut Brown and Humboldt Hemp Ale. Eat a Soft Pretzel with Spicy Beer Cheese for energy. Located at 139 E. Adams St.

Follow your compass west on Adams Street and head south on First Avenue. You’ll find respite at Tom’s Tavern & 1929 Grill located at 2 N. Central Ave. Beer and snack samples will be announced soon.

Walk across the street south to CityScape Phoenix and find Copper Blues. For $2, get a taste of Four Peaks Sunbru Kolsch, Hacker-Pschorr Bavarian Marzen and SanTan Hefeweizen. Some Spicy Chicharrones will put some pep in your step. Located at 50 W. Jefferson St.

Don’t wander too far. Next door is the Corner CityScape, formerly known as Chloe’s Corner. Try $2 SanTan Devil’s Ale, Borderlands Prickly Wheat and the Grand Canyon Pilsner. You might need some homemade Trail Mix to keep your strength up. Located at 50 W. Jefferson St.

Cross Central Avenue to the east and you’ll find Squid Ink Sushi Bar. For $3, taste Badlands Citra, Deschutes Fresh Squeezed IPA and Hakutsuru Sayuri Nigori Sake. Pork Gyozas create a perfect pairing of flavors. Located at 2 E. Jefferson St. on the street level of the Kimpton Palomar Phoenix.

Just up the hill (or stairs) is Tilted Kilt Pub & Eatery with $2 Samples of Guinness Stout, Harp Lager and Smithwick’s Ale paired with Irish Nachos. Located at 2 E. Jefferson St.

ModerateNext to Gold’s Gym is V’s Barbershop CityScape – a barber with beer! Try $3 samples of Kona Longboard Lager, Mudshark Full Moon Belgian White and Four Peaks Kilt Lifter while noshing on some mini pretzels. Get a free shoe polish puck (pre-oiled polishing pad) while supplies last. Located at 1 E. Washington St.

Go down the escalator to The Strand Urban Italian for a $3 Johnny Appleseed Cider, Deschutes Chainbreaker White IPA and SanTan Devil’s Ale. Feeling fatigued? A Caprese Bruschetta will act as an energy bar. Located at 2 E. Jefferson St.

Next door find The Arrogant Butcher with $2 Samples of SanTan Hefeweizen, Lumberyard Knotty Pine Pale Ale and Prescott Ponderosa IPA. Pretzels & Fondue are the perfect salty snack. Located at 2 E. Jefferson St.

Head east on Jefferson to Hard Rock Cafe Phoenix for $2 Four Peaks Kilt Lifter, Four Peaks 8th Street Pale Ale or Four Peaks Lefty’s Lager. Try some signature Rockin’ Wings and Vegetarian Spring Rolls. Located at 3 S. Second St.

The final stretch is a 10-minute walk to The Duce, the southernmost destination on the trail and good camping spot for the night. Once you’ve made it, reward yourself with a $2 Schlamm (Schlitz and Hamm’s Lagers), Chi-town Schlamm (Old Style Lager, Organic Prairie Vodka and lemonade) or a Bloody Schlamm (Schlitz and Hamm’s, Bloody Mary mix and citrus on ice.) Duce Dip and Mac and Cheese Muffins make for a fine meal around the campfire. Located at 525 S. Central Ave.

Uptown Pinnacle (Advanced)

hikerguyFrom District American Kitchen and Wine Bar, walk one block west to Second Street and head north. Once you hit Pierce Street, you’ll see Phoenix Public Market Cafe. Try $2 samples of Oskar Blues Mama’s LittleYella Pils, Phoenix Public Market Amber and Left Hand Milk Stout Nitro. Recharge your batteries with some Chips and Fire Roasted Salsa. Located at 14 E. Pierce St.

Just across First Street to the east you’ll find The Turf Public House with $3 samples of SanTan Mr. Pineapple, Lumberyard IPA and Grand Canyon Sunset Amber Ale. You’ll definitely need some Fried Pickles to hike the next leg of the trail. Located at 705 N. 1st St.

One block east of The Turf, turn north on Second Street and follow the trail to Angels Trumpet Ale House. For $3, try any craft beer taps numbered 1 through 31, which are always changing. Pair your brew with a Meat and Cheese Skewer. Located at 810 N. 2nd St.

From there, it’s just a short bike ride or 10-minute walk east on Garfield Street to Mother Bunch Brewery. Choose from a selection of 20 different Arizona craft beers for $2 each, while enjoying Gougere and Roasted Garlic Crostini. Located at 825 N. 7th St.

Walk or bike one block north up Seventh Street and turn west on Roosevelt Street to Carly’s Bistro, where you’ll be greeted with $2 samples of Lumberyard Knotty Pine Pale Ale, Dragoon Stronghold Session Ale and Deschutes Fresh Squeezed IPA. A little Hummus and Pita never hurt either. Located at 128 E. Roosevelt St.

bikeadvancedNext door is Short Leash Sit…Stay with $3 samples of Marble Pilsner, Ballast Point Big Eye IPA and Santa Fe Imperial Java Stout. For a snack, try the Pimento Cheese Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing, Sausage Meatballs with Naan Wedges or a Brioche Doughnut with Chocolate Icing. Located at 110 E. Roosevelt St.

Head west on Roosevelt to Central Avenue and hop on the light rail. It’s time to hit Fez in midtown. Get off at the Indian School Road and Central Avenue rail station and walk south one block. Sip a $2 Shiner White Wing Belgian Ale, Four Peaks 8th Street Pale Ale or Stella Artois Cider. By now you’re probably running out of steam and need some Hummus and Kisra Bread. Located at 3815 N. Central Ave.

Walk about three blocks north to Central Wine on the opposite side of the street from Fez. For $3, sample THAT Roadrash IPA, OHSO Handlebar Hefeweizen and Anchor Steam. Snack on some Truffle Chips and rest up. Located at 4236 N. Central Ave.

Get back on the light rail and head to the Campbell and Central Avenue rail station where Hula’s Modern Tiki is located just one block north. Taste $3 samples of Kona Longboard Lager, Kona Big Wave Golden Ale, Kona Firerock Pale Ale or Kona Castaway, all while snacking on Hawaiian Ceviche. Located at 4700 N. Central Ave.

Next door to the north is Maizie’s Cafe and Bistro with $2 samples of Phoenix Ale Fretzy’s Unfiltered Pale Ale, Oak Creek Amber Ale and SanTan Oktoberfest Lager. Bratwurst sliders on a pretzel roll with peppers and onions compliment the samples nicely. Located at 4750 N. Central Ave.

Keep trucking north until you reach the Central Avenue and Camelback Road light rail station. It’s time to get back on the train for a final push to the summit. Just a block west of the light rail station is uptown’s newest venue The Newton, where you can rest your weary bones at First Draft Book Bar inside Changing Hands Bookstore, sampling $3 North Coast Scrimshaw Pilsner, Bell’s Two Hearted Ale and the Rogue Shakespeare Oatmeal Stout. Reward your ascent to the top with a Pretzel with Spicy Mustard from MJ Bread. Located at 300 W. Camelback Rd.