Closest to the bridge is the Kirribilli Hotel. Here you'll find an oversized blackboard highlighting the current selection of beers from both near and afar. One of the best bargain nights to be had in the craft beer world exists here Tuesday nights, where you can nab a schooner for a fiver. Quite a decent range too with about eight or nine taps pouring out frosty artisan ales.
Blackboard at the Kirribilli Hotel showcasing current tap selections
North Sydney is known as a bustling business district during the day, however there are significantly less people to be found once the sun goes down. One venue that always seems to attract punters is the historic Rag & Famish Hotel. To please beer connoisseurs, an entire font at the bar is dedicated to craft beer. Prices are quite reasonable as well, generally just under $10 a pint. Venture here on a Thursday night and you can enjoy 2-for-1 steaks to accompany your beverage. Another good offering is the 'three burgers and three beers for $20.' Pretty self explanatory really, you get three slider burgers served up with any three beers of your choice to wash them down (which is great as selecting one is often problematic!)
The craft beer font taking up prime real estate on the corner of the bar at the Rag & Famish
If you're having dinner on the famous Willoughby Road stretch in Crows Nest and a pre or post dinner ale is in order, head to The Hayberry. A new bar which only opened in September, you'll find a rotating selection of four beers on tap. Pricing is simple as well - $10 for a pint and $5 half pints for whichever drop you desire. Even if you're not dining at one of the other restaurants in Crows Nest, The Hayberry itself offers a tempting selection of American food. If you're bored and thirsty on a Sunday afternoon (or just thirsty), head here for a 'Sunday sesh' with other like minded punters. The intimate beer garden out the back provides a perfect setting if the sun is shining.
Pint of refreshing ale in The Hayberry's Beer Garden
Around the corner in Cammeray, you'll find the slick Cammeray Craft. This is a slightly more upmarket restaurant option than the pubs/bars that have already been mentioned. With six beers on tap changing regularly and a number of fine dining options on the menu, you're taste buds are sure to be satisfied. The prices are a bit more expensive here, however throughout the week you can get quite a good deal. On a Tuesday or Wednesday night, $25 will land you your choice of grass fed steak (T-bone, sirloin or scotch fillet) and a schooner of your choice from the taps. For the real foodie, keep an eye out for the beergustation dinners that are regularly held.
Tucked away in the Naremburn shops is Flat Rock Brew Café, an absolute hidden gem of the north shore. Flat Rock has a small nano-brewery on site, so you'll always find some (extremely) locally brewed beers on tap. A total of eight taps exhibit a selection of Flat Rock's brews along with a number of guest beers, with another simple pricing structure of $10 a pint. The blackboard situated near the entrance will inform you what is currently available. Head here on Thursday for the hugely popular curry night, featuring a different Indian delight each week. Outside of what is flowing on tap, Flat Rock also features the most comprehensive list of bottled craft beer on the north shore. With regular additions coming in every week, be sure to check with bar staff if there's anything new that hasn't made it onto the printed menu yet.
If you're after a much bigger venue and on the eastern side of the M1, head to The Oaks Hotel. Here you'll find a couple of craft selections on tap and a variety of drinking areas to suit all tastes. Hide away in the Sports Bar and make a few wagers, dance up a storm in the front bar on the weekends or while away the evening under the lights of the oak tree in the beer garden. In 2014 The Oaks has also featured a 'Six States' of beer dinner series. This has consisted of an event every two months, with each dinner highlighting beers from one state paired with food dishes all sharing a common them or ingredient. Recent ones have included Western Australia and chocolate, New South Wales and pork or Queensland and seafood.
Beer matched with Crab and Oaks Slaw Sliders at the Queensland and seafood beer dinner
If drinking out isn't your forte and you feel like a night at home, you're in luck. Beer Cartel in Artarmon is famous for having one of the biggest and best selections of beer out of any store in Australia, with over 1000 beers available online and in store. In addition to the copious bottles on offer, there are also two fresh kegs on draught allowing enthusiasts to take home a freshly poured growler (1.89L) or squealer (945mL).