Top 5 Places to Grab a Draft Beer

Bottled beer is all well and good for the home fridge, but in this blog’s humble opinion, going out should mean taking it up a notch. Any bar worth its salt has a few draft selections, and a few local places make it their business to offer good selection and quality, hard-to-find labels.

1. Beer Sellar
As you might imagine, a bar that calls itself “Beer Sellar” may have a few drafts to offer. But nothing can prepare you for the staggering 60 taps all lined up in a double row behind the bar. Standard domestics make an appearance alongside nearly every specialty beer your little heart could desire. Going to a Reds or Bengals game? Make a night of it and take the $5 round-trip water taxi. 301 Riverboat Row, Newport, (859) 431-6969, beersellar.net

2. Dutch’s Bar & Bottle Shop
The most visible part of Dutch’s is surely its impressive street-side beer window, but the real story is inside. The eight draft handles are in constant rotation with beers that represent each flavor’s best of the best. “We make sure that the beers on draft are the top offerings in whatever style,” explains co-owner Jay Ashmore. “So if we’re going to offer an IPA, it’s going to the one of the best IPA’s in the market.” 3378 Erie Ave., East Hyde Park, (513) 871-1446, dutchswine.com

3. The Lackman
This swanky shotgun-style bar takes its drafts very seriously. Lackman reserves a spot on its 14-handle draft lineup for a rotating “nitro pour,” a technique that uses nitrogen gas (instead of carbon dioxide) to achieve a much creamier result than a typical pour. You’ll also find Dogfish Head, Rogue, Goose Island, Rivertown, and plenty of other microbrew superstars. 1237 Vine St., Over-the-Rhine, (513) 381-0741, lackmanbar.com  

    4. Olives
    This bar with a hideaway basement restaurant is housed in the former Ludlow Garage in Clifton’s Gaslight District. You’ll find 18 beers on tap, ranging from the trusty Guinness and Blue Moon varieties to more specialized local options from Christian Moerlein and Hudepohl. The bar is pretty snazzy too, with floor-to-ceiling windows looking out on the street. 342 Ludlow Ave., Clifton, (513)221-4200, olivesonludlow.com

    5. Keystone Bar & Grill
    A nice location (on a historic corner of Covington’s Greenup Street) plus thoughtful draft selections (such as Bells, Dogfish Head, and Great Lakes) make Keystone a perfect after-work spot. But the real draw is the bar food, which comes in the form of eight different quesadillas and a whopping 11 varieties of mac and cheese. 313 Greenup St., Covington, (859) 261-6777, keystonebar.com

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