“Maybe it’s the times we’ve had, the lazy days and the crazes and the fads” – Suede.
As a teenager, it was Harp Lager in Bangor, Northern Ireland. In my twenties, I started off drinking continental lagers while based in Bournemouth, England. Late twenties my tipple was always a Guinness. These days, amalgamate the shebang – variety is the spice of life. Contemporarily, I drink beer to enjoy it and to sample different types of beer. I’m very diverse now in the beer stakes – I love to try new ones – I hate repetition now. I hate the boring. Craft Beer became the new fad. Craft Beer is the new buzz.
I always covered bars and beers on my previous incarnation, “Thirsty Thursdays”, on my main travel blog, Don’t Stop Living. These days – mine’s an obscure one – what’s the craziest beer you got? I’m always looking for an oddball.
My latest craze is for “Real Ale Pubs”, “Craft Beer Pubs” and any bars that serve beer that doesn’t seem to be the commercial over marketed generic trash like Carlsberg (probably the worst beer imaginable) or Bud “None the” Wiser. Even generic local Polish lagers, Okocim, Królewskie, Żywiec and Kasztelan don’t do much for me anymore (though admittedly as a carryout they are cheap). Spice it up a bit, give me a treat. On arrival back in wondrous Warsaw in November 2016, it was time to sample the delights and charms of a new up and coming scene…real beer bars! I frequented all of these pre-COVID-19 so apologies if they are not there any more, or times have changed.
I was pleasantly surprised by just how many Craft Beer style bars there are in Poland – it’s a fad, a craze and a fashion and Poland does it well. It does it much better than Northern Ireland or Hong Kong for sure. We all mature in life. The world changed from my halcyon days sipping illegal tins of Harp, Miller Pilsner, Steiger and Tennence [sic] on the streets of Bangor and Belfast. Today as I sip another different beer for the first time, I realise my taste buds have aged remarkably. The fanatacism hasn’t.
“On the eve of a golden age I’m told; at the end of the rainbow, there’s no gold” – Jonny Blair.
In short, I am now a craft beer geek, a brewery enthusiast and a new bar frequenter. If it is new, then it is exciting. If it is old, then it is boring. When did this transformation from generic crackaday lager lout to refined profound wacaday craft beer geek occur? Well it has been gradual. It happened little by little, staggered over a period of years. In England from 2003 – 2007, I often frequented real ale pubs. I attended beer festivals. From 2007 – 2011 when I was travelling hardcore and living in the land down under, I also sampled many and various ales.
“The lights go out and I can’t be saved. Tides that I tried to swim against” – Coldplay.
Since 2011, I have been intrigued by Craft Beer and just unusual beers, new tastes. I rarely say no to a new beer. This list (which I will continue to update) contains not just the best craft beer bars in Warszawa, but my favourite ones and all ones that I have been in…also they are in no particular order. It’s not a top 10 hits – it’s just an ongoing list. Get some zlotych in your pockets and out you go.
“Buttoned in your favourite coat, stepping out to a different world…and you might be home late” – Ocean Colour Scene.
1.Chmielarnia Marszałkowska, Politechnika
With two venues in the city, Chmielarnia caught my eye a few times and it was only a matter of time before I ventured in. They are constantly changing their beers on tap, always lots of variety and some really quirky names.
They had some really good sours beers recently and a “The Blogger” beer which was my tipple. As a bonus, there is WiFi, live football on TV and even a Nepalese restaurant attached to it! The food is good too!
Address: Chmielarnia Marszałkowska, Marszałkowska 10/16, 00-590 Warszawa.
Getting There: Tram stop almost outside it (Plac Unii Lubelskiej), Metro Politechnika 4 minute walk.
2.Chmielarnia Twarda, Mirów, Wola
The second Chmielarnia is of course with the same menu, style and appeal but has a different feel as this one is in a basement and is in a more business district, near Warsaw Spire. I often have a curry or Nepalese dish when I go here.
3.Artezan Craft Beer Pub, Śródmieście
Out on its own and brewing its own beer, I love Artezan Pub. It might be hard to find and the least advertised on this list, but it’s one of the best real ale joints in Poland. Tucked away shyly between Świętokrzyska and Centrum, as part of a swanky apartment complex, this is well worth the adventure.
Good staff, great beer and a nice décor.
Address: Stanisława Moniuszki 1A, 00-014 Warszawa
Getting there: I get out at Świętokrzyska Metro and dander it.
Website / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Artezan.pub/
4.Piw Paw Mazowieczka, Śródmieście
Piw Paw’s contribution to this list is that it has the largest range of draught beer in Warszawa – with a range of 60 – 80 beers on tap on every given day, you’ll be spoilt for choice. Also they have three different venue locations in Warszawa so I am putting them all on.
The walls are decorated with beer bottle tops, there is WiFi and a social ambience and they have some light snacks, grzane piwo (hot beer) in the winter and an option to order food from outside joints (pizza for instance).
Address: Mazowiecka 9, 00-052 Warszawa.
Getiing there: It’s a very short walk from Nowy-Swiat Uniwersytet Metro Station.
Website / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PiwPaw-Mazowiecka-920199478070260/
5.Piw Paw Foksal, Śródmieście
The PiwPaw on Foksal has an interesting downstairs basement with many alcoves and nooks and crannies, arguably a good spot to get cosy and kiss and cuddle. I celebrated my 38th birthday in this one.
Address: Foksal 16, 00-372 Warszawa
Getting there: I usually get out at Nowy-Swiat Uniwerystet Metro and dander it.
Website / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/piwpawfoksal/
6.Piw Paw Parkingowa, Centrum
Probably the most central Piw Paw is the one near Metro Centrum and just a short walk from Warszawa Centralna. This Piw Paw is located on the corner of Parkingowa and Żurawia. Beers on tap? OVER 100. Seriously!
Address: Żurawia 32/34, 00-515 Warszawa
Getting there: Get out of the Metro at Metro Centrum and walk it.
Website / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/piwpawsklep
I had just arrived back in Warszawa for only my fourth visit, with no plans to move here and stay (I was sleeping in the Oki Doki hostel), when I got a text message. This message comes in from my friend Piotr Pawelski saying “what are you doing tonight? Can you meet us in Cześć Bar at 19.00?” And so I did, in December 2016. Cześć means hello/hi!
We get there for what is a 9 year reunion with Piotr, and then Kamil joins us, also a three year reunion and we get drinking through most of the 8 beers on the menu at Cześć. I’ve popped in a few times since.
Address: Grzybowska 2, 00-131 Warszawa
Getting there: Get a tram till that there Królewska 05 stop and dander it for 4 minutes.
Website / Facebook: https://czesc.ontap.pl/ / https://www.facebook.com/CzescQualitap/
The name of this place is the one that ropes you in. I always remember that Michael Palin’s codeword was “Jaberwocky” when he did his “Around the world in 80 days” adventure in the 1980s. They even have a sign up on the wall saying “Johny Beer Good”. A great spot on the trendaday Nowogrodzka Street.
Address: Nowogrodzka 12, 00-511 Warszawa
Getting there: Short dander from Metro Centrum.
Website / Facebook: https://www.jabeerwocky.com/index.php/pl/nasze-bary/warszawa/centrum / https://www.facebook.com/Jabeerwocky.Warszawa/
Hoppiness is very central, just a few minutes walk from Centrum Metro station and on the main Chmielnia Street which leads all the way to Nowy Swiat. They normally have at least one strong dark stout, an ale and a lager.
Address: Chmielna 27/31/76, 00-932 Warszawa
Getting there: Again a very short dander from Metro Centrum.
Website / Facebook: https://www.delivery.hoppiness.pl/ / https://www.facebook.com/HoppinessMultitap/
Brewdog is the most commercial on this list and also one of the dearest. One time I walked in and ordered the first beer that took my fancy and it was a whopping 18 zloty for a small 330ml glass. For that reason, I’ll just pop in for one beer now and then just to see what new beers are on the menu.
11.Same Krafty & Vis a Vis, Old Town / Stare Miasto
I didn’t know whether to whack the Same Crafty on this list twice or not, as in essence it is two separate bars. They are on the same street, opposite each other but both have a slightly different atmosphere. So I have put them both in as one here, so I recommend popping into both for a pint and then choose your best one to spend the rest of the night in.
Address: Nowomiejska 10, 00-271 Warszawa
Getting there: Nearest Metro is Ratusz Arsenal, but I usually dander down through the Stare Miasto after a bus trip.
Website / Facebook: https://samekrafty.pl/ / https://www.facebook.com/samekraftyvisavis/ and https://www.facebook.com/samekrafty/
12.The Alchemist, Centrum
When my friends Mark and Dervla came to visit me, around St. Patrick’s Day, they made me aware of a pub I had never heard of. Mark loves his craft beers too and they saw an advert for The Alchemist. This place is a bit special and reminded me of an underground craft beer bar in Sofia, Bulgaria a few years back. Basically, the craic with this one is that you go inside and they give you a card that looks like this:
You top up the card with as many zlotys as you want. Then you get the glasses by the beer taps and top them up yourself. The beauty of this is that if you want to sample every beer they have, you can easily just have a small glass of each one.
They also have Prosecco on tap. You should visit this at least once for the novelty of it – the only downside, obviously is that it is dearer than the others. Expect a full beer pint to cost around 20 zloty – a shock for anyone backpacking Poland who is used to the 4 zloty bargains of Pijalnia Piwo I Wodka.
Address: Plac Pilsudskiego 3, Metropolitan Building, 00-078 Warszawa
Getting there: It’s close to Metro Ratusz Arsenał and Krakowskie Przedmiescie street.
Website / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Alchemist/137471536622047 and http://thealchemist.pl/
13.Cuda na Kiju, Nowy Świat, Centrum
As I type this up, memories return. On my one year anniversary of living in Poland, July 2017 I organised a casual drink here and ended up trying about 5 of their craft beers. It’s a super bar with a location over the main road and junction at the palm tree in front of Nowy Świat. Cuda na Kiju translates as “miracles on the stick”.
Address: Nowy Świat 6/12, 00-497 Warszawa
Getting there: It’s not close to a metro, but has tram and bus stops right in front.
Website / Facebook: https://cuda.pizza/ and https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cuda-na-Kiju/134158880106112
14.Kufle i Kapsle, Nowogrodzka, Centrum
Kufle i Kapsle is another “chain” on the list, well if you can call it that. They opened one on Nowogrodza (which I usually call “New Garden Street”, perhaps wrongly). This was once voted the best bar in Poland – yes in the whole country. After that success, they opened another one in Marymont. Naturally as a Craft Beer geek, I ended up in both.
15.Kufle i Kapsle, Marymont / Żoliborz
The other Kufle i Kapsle is one for the tourists to check out as it is away from all the main tourist spots and is mostly just for locals. It is is Warszawa’s Żoliborz district. You need to head to Metro Marymont and check out the secret little beer zone here. I love this one!
Address: Księdza Jerzego Popiełuszki 21/paw. 1, 01-595 Warszawa
Getting there: Get to Metro Marymont – 2 minute walk.
Website / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kufleikapslezoliborz
16.Piwna Sprawa, Bielany
Since I moved to Warszawa, I have actually lived in six different parts of the city, yes I am a nomad even in the same city. I used to live in Bielany which is very locally Polish – it’s quite far from the city centre. It was a real surprise that there is a quite excellent Craft Beer Pub here – Piwna Sprawa. I love it! Also – excellent staff and fast Wi-Fi plus they put the Legia Warszawa matches on for us a few times.
Address: Wólczyńska 3, 01-840 Warszawa
Getting there: Tough one but worth it – bus 112 and 116 stop nearby, and trams 35, 33 and 10 are also pretty close. It will be worth the jaunt.
Website / Facebook: https://facebook.com/piwnasprawa
17.Maryensztadt Craft Beer, Stare Miasto/Old Town
Maryensztadt / Mary’s Town is a little hideaway in a smaller square off the main old town square in Warszawa’s iconic old town. I really like this one as it is big, cost, has Wi-Fi always friendly staff and the beers were always very eclectic.
Address: Maryensztadt Craft Beer, Szeroki Dunaj, Stare Miasto/Old Town, 11, 00-255 Warszawa
Getting there: Nearest metro is Ratusz Arsenal, but just get to the Old Town by tram or bus and walk through it.
Website / Facebook: http://www.restauracjamaryensztadt.pl/pl
Named after Quentin and a place to smosha hookah/shisha, this is the oddball on the list. Also the last time I was in, most of the staff were from Ukraine. Although I have been in this bar a few times, I couldn’t find any photos from it. Notably, they have a beer of the day on Happy Hours Monday to Friday.
Address: Parkingowa 0, 00-511 Warszawa
Getting there: 2 minute walk from Metro Centrum. Opposite the Piw Paw at Parkingowa.
Website / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/www.tarantino.club
19.Piwna Wola, Wola
I love this place as it has a football theme based around Legia Warszawa. As well as a few craft beers on tap and a choice of over 50 types of bottled beer (from Poland and beyond), the walls have tickets and pictures from Legia Warszawa matches. It is quite small and compact but a real gem and definitely off the wheaten craic.
(photos to be added soon!!)
Address: Nowolipie 25-23, 00-146 Warszawa
Getting there: Get a tram to Nowolipki.
Website / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Piwna-Wola-113058576881846/
20.Czeska Piviarnia, Marymont
The only “Czech” pub on the list is Czeska Piviarnia. This one is near the Kufle i Kapsle in Marymont and they are both part of a trendy little bar complex. The Czech one is up the stairs and has about 8 beers on tap. It’s small and compact but it does show football.
Address: Księdza Jerzego Popiełuszki 19/21/lokal 29, 01-595 Warszawa
Getting there: Get to Metro Marymont – 2 minute walk.
Website / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/czeskapiviarnia
21.Craft Beer Muranów, Muranów
Craft Beer Muranów was one of the last bars I was in before the 2020 Coronavirus lockdown occured. We popped in pre and post match of Poland v. Moldova ladies team at the nearby football stadium home of Polonia Warszawa.
Address: Gen. W. Andersa 23, 00-159 Warszawa.
How to get there: Get off at tram stop Wilanow, or even dander down from Metro Ratusz Arsenal.
22.Drugie Dno, Ochota
Drugie Dno was a local haunt for me for only 5 months in 2019 when I lived in Ochota. I had a small room in a tight flatshare there and didn’t really like that flat, though the location was excellent. Some nights, I’d be out and about in Ochota and Central Warszawa. Drugie Dno was my local Craft Beer bar as well as having Wi-Fi and some delicious light meals to order such as quesadilla.
Address: Tarczyńska 5/9, 02-025 Warszawa
Getting there: Not too easy – it can be dandered from Metro Rondo Daszynskiego, or any tram or bus passing by the intersection of Plac Zawiszy.
Website / Facebook: http://ochota.drugiedno.pl/en/homepage/
That’s all for now – I will continue to add more to, and update this list as time goes on. Currently, I miss such establishments in my new city. Once lockdown ends in the next few months of 2021, I can’t wait to go back to some of these epic joints. I hope they will all survive and still be there waiting for us. I haven’t written enough about my drinking experiences in Poland really and I do want to write more, but it is a busy life – I am a blogger of multiple sites, I am a travel writer, an author, a teacher and I have a lot of projects so it’s little by little! Also – if your Craft Beer bar is NOT on this list and you want to be on it – simply email me or message me on Facebook and I’ll visit it and add it. I am an honest and approachable blogger and I write for passion and from the heart. Here are some of my other bar and drinking posts from life in Poland –
Piątkowe Picie: Top 5 Irish Pubs in Warsaw (Warszawa)
Piątkowe Picie: Exploring The Bars and Cafes of Nowa Praga, Warsaw’s Coolest District
Piątkowe Picie: Best Bars on a Thirsty Friday in Starogard Gdański
Piątkowe Picie: My Favourite 12 Bars, Cafes and Restaurants in Bydgoszcz
Piątkowe Picie: A Night Out With Pub Crawl Gdańsk
Piątkowe Picie: The Best 10 Bars in Biskupiec, Mazury Province
Piątkowe Picie: A Night Out at Browar Kociewski, Starogard Gdański
Piątkowe Picie: Attending the 5th Festival Piwa at Browar Kociewski, Starogard Gdański
Piątkowe Picie: Touring the Bars and Cafes in Tczew, Kociewie
Piątkowe Picie: My Favourite 20 Bars in Gdańsk Stare Miasto, Ultimate Drinking Guide
Piątkowe Picie: The First Eight Socialist, Communist, PRL Themed Bars I Drank in in Poland
Piątkowe Picie: Celebrating Dzień Świętego Patryka, St. Patrick’s Day at Irlandzki Pub, Warsaw
Piątkowe Picie: Drinking in Brush Barber Shop, Łódź, the Best Cocktail Bar In Poland
Piątkowe Picie: The Best Bars and Cafes in Kętrzyn, Mazury Province
Piątkowe Picie: The Best Cafes in Białowieża, Poland
Piątkowe Picie: My Favourite Bars and Cafes in Płock, Poland
Piątkowe Picie: Best Bars in Gliwice, Śląsk Province
Sláinte! Down Yer Neck! Na Zdrowie! Cheers!
Here are some videos from my time drinking in these brilliant beer bars in Warszawa, the vibrant Polish capital: