"No Miller, no Coors, No Bud."
Those six words, spoken by Mikey, one of Growler USA’s awesome barkeeps, sums up the beer program at this High Street destination perfectly. There is a distinct focus at Growler USA on the craft in craft beer, meaning there’s little room for ‘American Lager.’ And that makes this a destination with seeking out. Populating their ever-rotating taps is an eclectic mix of styles and clear evidence that brewing beer is a creative art. You’ll find experimental brews, like Santa Fe’s Chicken Killer Barleywine, New Belgium's HPA and The Bruery’s So Happens It’s Tuesday, alongside more well-known names, like LaCumbre, Goose Island, Bell's and Firestone Walker, but "no Miller, no Coors, no Bud." Arizona breweries get heavy representation as well. I’ve seen Tombstone, Goldwater, Shop, 12 West, Freak N’ and Barrio all in just the past few months.
Growler USA has a fairly active social media presence. They update their Twitter daily with new tapings (there are usually 3 - 4 new additions every day) and they host special events fairly regularly. Out-of-state brewers visit often (I scored a Ballast Point T-shirt from a rep a few months ago) and they have tap take-overs generally every month.
Growler USA advertises “100 Taps.” I’ve found that they rotate the inventory so often, it usually numbers around 90 active taps at any one time, but who’s complaining? With such wide variety, half the fun is just perusing the menu basking in your good fortune that places like this exist in Arizona.
What to Expect
Growler USA occupies a central location in Phoenix’s High Street. High Street itself projects an air of sophistication—perhaps the result of its north Phoenix/Scottsdale location—and Growler USA likewise presents a clean, open, ‘industrial lite’ setting. Dive bar this ain’t. The polished maple-top bar, which seats perhaps 15 – 20, occupies a majority of the space. The rest of the interior features traditional tables, a raised community table, and seating at a pass-through window. Growler USA features two patio areas, one facing High Street’s main drag which makes it perfect for people-watching, and a second more enclosed patio which features fire pits.
The focus here is naturally on the beer, but they do offer a small selection of wines and ciders on tap. There also offer a very small selection of non-alcoholic beverages.
Growler USA serves a menu of elevated pub-grub. Standout items include Buffalo Chicken Dip, Caesar Salad and Blackened Tacos.
5415 East High Street, Suite 101
Phoenix, AZ 85054