The Lion’s Head Smoke and Brew Pub has just been listed as one of the eight best pubs in the province of British Columbia. Located a five-minute drive from downtown Castlegar in the community of Robson, the Lion’s Head is no stranger to media attention, having been featured by various publications including the Adventure Journal, which showcased it last year saying it’s most likely the only pub in North America with a natural rock climbing wall in its backyard.
The latest article to shine a spotlight on the Lion’s Head is called “8 B.C. Pubs To Put On Your Bucket List and it appeared on Vancouver Is Awesome a few weeks ago. In it, writer Rob Mangelsdorf shares a “list of unique and charming pubs around the province that we think you should venture off the beaten track to visit if you haven’t already done so.”
He goes on to list such classic establishments as the Dinghy Dock Pub in Nanaimo, the Hummingbird Pub on Galiano Island, 17 Mile House Pub in Sooke and of course the Lion’s Head in Castlegar. These are the places where our ancestors would feel comfortable Mangelsdorf writes. “Before our phones and the Internet connected us, our forefathers (and foremothers) had to swing by the pub to find out all the latest juicy gossip in town. Thankfully, some traditions never die, and if you want to put your finger on the pulse of a place, the pub is where to do it.”
We can speak from experience that, indeed, the Lion’s Head is where locals go to share stories from the work week, debrief after a particularly fun ski or bike outing, or tell tall fish tales. But when it comes to beer offerings, we defer to the experts to decide who the best slingers are and Mangelsdorf definitely knows his stuff. He’s an author at The Growler, British Columbia’s craft beer guide and has written on topics ranging from the secret life of tap handles to “Mead: rotten bee puke has never tasted so good.“
In his “8 B.C. Pubs To Put On Your Bucket List” article he shares a bit of the history of the Lion’s Head. It was established in 1986 and Troy Pyett and Carly Hadfield, daughter of Spinnakers founder Paul Hadfield, bought it in 2009. They “changed its focus to craft beer immediately, facing a customer backlash when their small stock of Budweiser bottles ran out in the first hour before they sold any of the craft beer they had on tap. But they stuck to their cheeky motto: ‘Converting Bud drinkers and vegetarians since 2009,’ and it paid off. The Lion’s Head is in a large Tudor-style building set in a picturesque location in front of a large granite rock face. It has two sunny patios, while the interior features huge saw-blade chandeliers, wood floors, and a hand-built fossil rock bar. In addition to craft beer and cider, the Lion’s Head has an excellent kitchen, featuring a variety of meats that are smoked right on-site.”
To read the article in its entirety, log on to the story on Vancouver Is Awesome at: 8 B.C. Pubs To Put On Your Bucket List.