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Frankfurt isn’t at the top of the list for most visitors to Germany. You’re most likely to end up in Frankfurt on a layover. Germany has a strong beer culture, of course, but Frankfurt is actually better known for cider, particularly on the south side of the Main River. Despite this, there are still a few decent places to drink craft beer in Frankfurt. Unfortunately, they are scattered all over the city, but they are there if you hunt for them. Here’s my guide to Frankfurt’s craft beer.
The best craft beer in Frankfurt, Germany
naïv has everything a solid craft beer bar should have: a decent selection, good food, and a nice patio. The bar is located in Frankfurt’s historic Altstadt, near the Römer (town hall).
As you might expect, the sunny patio is crowded on warm days, but I managed to find a spot. Nobody was inside the bar.
naïv has 7 taps, plus a huge selection of great bottles from Germany, Europe, and North America. There is also a bottle shop next door, where you can get these bottles to take away. The bar hosts beer festivals & other events.
As for the food, burgers, sandwiches, and frankfurters (of course) dominate the menu. This suited me fine, as I’d been craving a good burger. I had one with blue cheese, bacon, and fig onion jam. It was excellent, as were the fries.
Wir Komplizen is not a bar you will accidentally stumble upon in Frankfurt. It’s located in a quiet, leafy area in the northeastern part of the city. You can get to the area on tram 12 or 18. Even from there, you’ll have to look down a bit of an alleyway to find it.
Once you do find Wir Komplizen, you’ll be in heaven. Do you like beer? Do you like cake? Then you’ll be happy at Wir Komplizen.
It’s part cafe, part beer bar. It’s all delicious. There are 10 taps of beer, plus a dozen or so bottles. The beers tended to be on the lighter side, perhaps because it was summertime, though there were a couple of porters. They also do 0.1 liter pours, unlike everywhere else, so Wir Komplizen is a good place to sample.
I arrived just before a thunderstorm hit, so I took refuge from the rain with a very nice piece of cheesecake and a couple of beers. Wir Komplizen is not the easiest craft beer bar in Frankfurt to get to, but it’s worth the trip.
Drinksmith Neighbourhood Bar
Drinksmith Neighbourhood Bar is located on the south side of the Main, not far from the Museum Embankment. It’s in a hip area with other interesting looking bars and restaurants.
Run by a South African, t’s a cool place with a laid back vibe. There are outside tables in front of the building, but it also has huge open windows for fresh air.
There are a handful of taps of craft beer, but cocktails are also popular. While the selection of beer might not be huge, Drinksmith focuses on quality. The IPA I had was one of the best I’ve had in Germany.
If you’re in Frankfurt on business or a quick layover, and you only have time to grab some bottles, Die Bierothek is your best option. Die Bierothek has hundreds of bottles available from all over the world.
It’s located in the Skyline Plaza shopping mall, which is just north of the train station. It’s on Floor EG, then in the very center of the building. Since it’s a mall, there’s not really much of a place to stand or sit inside, but you can drink there if you want. Otherwise, get some bottles to take back home or to your hotel.
BrauStil is a brewery located just to the north of central Frankfurt. It’s a neighborhood bar (so much so that it’s under a raised apartment block).
There’s a small indoor bar, but the bulk of the place is a large patio beer garden that is well-shaded by the building. BrauStil has 7 taps of their own beer, plus some snacks.
Yok Yok is an interesting place. It’s a bottle shop kiosk near the train station. As such, you might expect that a convenience store like this would just have a selection of beer that people take elsewhere. That’s not the case. Instead, patrons spill out onto the sidewalks, drinking beer before they do whatever else they have planned in Frankfurt’s Red Light District.
There aren’t any other good options around this area, so people make do with what’s around. It’s a place to people watch and be seen on a weekend night.
Chillers is the most American place for craft beer in Frankfurt.
The theme of the bar is California. As such, there’s no local craft beer, just bottles from the United States and United Kingdom, which is fine if that’s what you’re after.
The food menu consists of burgers & wings. Since it’s right on the edge of central Frankfurt in the area where all the skyscrapers are, it’s a popular place to drink after work.
Normalkneipe had the most intimate feel of anywhere I drank craft beer in Frankfurt. It’s located west of the train station, so it’s a bit out of the way, but at least the walk is through a suburban neighborhood with small parks.
Inside, you’ll find a limited selection of beer including a few German craft options, plus Brewdog, Kona, and Sierra Nevada, all served in proper glassware for the style. There’s not a lot of choice, but it’s a cool little bar with a divey living room feel to it. One warning: they do allow smoking inside.
Frankfurt isn’t known for its craft beer, nor will it be known for it soon. Unfortunately, the bars that are there are spread out, so it’s not particularly easy to get to all of them. But whether you’re in Frankfurt on a layover, for work, or you’re living in the city, there are at least a few good beer options to keep you satisfied.