Review of Airport Bars

Last updated: 13 junio 2004
ABQ Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA
ALB Albany Airport, Albany, New York USA
ATL Hartsfield Airport, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
AUS Austin, Texas, USA
CUR Brandweer - Curaçao, Netherlands Antilles
CVG Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
DAL Love Field, Dallas, Texas, USA
DSM Des Moines, Iowa, USA
DCA Washington National, Washington, D.C., USA
DEN Denver International (DIA), Denver, Colorado, USA
DFW Dallas/Ft. Worth - Texas, USA
FRA Frankfurt International - Frankfurt, Hesse, Germany
HSV Huntsville, Alabama, USA
LGA La Guardia, New York, New York, USA
MCI KCI, Kansas City, Missouri, USA
MCO Orlando International, Orlando, Florida, USA
MKE Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA
PDX Portland, Oregon, USA
PHL Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
STL Lambert Field, St. Louis, Missouri, USA
SLC Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
SAN San Diego International, California, USA
SFO San Francisco International, San Francisco, California, USA
TOR Pearson International, Toronto, Ontario, CANADA
YVR Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Located in Concourse "E" of the Atlanta Hartsfield Airport (ATL), the Images Bar and Grille has two draughts and lots of chain-smokers. On tap is Sam Adams and Red Brick. The Red Brick has a hazy, dark amber color accompanied by a light body, thin to moderate mouthfeel, and an even balance. Very light hops are noticeable amid the light malty flavor which finishes with a dry, caramel flavor. Pints are $4 and 22 ounce glasses $5. Over by Gate D8 you'll find Sojourners Lounge that also features Red Brick Ale on draught.

Search out the Host Marriot Arriba Margarita around gate 5 of Austin's Municipal Airport(AUS) to find a scarce tap handle of all malt beer. The Pete's Wicked Ale is $3.50 a pint at their small wooded bar. You won't mind the sports games blasting from the TV, you'll just be glad you found a real beer.

In Concourse 'C', Terminal 3 of Cincinnati's Municipal Airport (CVG) you'll find the Oldenburg Brewing Company represented near the Delta Connection (Comair) gates. The small, eight-place bar is adjacent to a Pizza Hut. Four Oldenburg beers are on tap. Located at the center of the terminal, there is no gate visibility but most gate announcements can be heard. In 2000 the Oldenburg was experiencing many business changes so it's future availability is uncertain.

Only a few miles from the brewery, (CUR) offers one draft 8 ounce Amstel Lager for $2 (3.50 NAF), all within the security area. Also available here at Curaçao's Brandweer airport is Heineken Lager in 8 ounce "stubby" cans. No televisions are available for entertainment but passengers can watch the Dutch and American surveillance (spy) planes come and go. Tourists should remember, "eternal vigilance is the price of paradise."

At Dallas' second largest airport, Love Field (DAL) is the One Star Brew Pub. Definitely NOT a brewpub, it does offer a comfortable wait at an attractive "dimpled" copper bar with four TVs, all across the aisle from McDonald's. The drinkable beers include Sam Adams Boston Lager, Heineken Lager, Shiner Bock, and Fosters Lager. Sorry, no ales. Prices run $3.75 for about a pint. Watch the bartenders closely or else you'll end up with a very cold, frosty mug that's better suited for the lighter beers that are also available.

At the center of the Des Moines, Iowa terminal, between Concourse A and B, lies a six-place bar serving Sam Adams Boston Lager for $3.45 for a 12-ounce mug. The non-smoking bar offers NFL games on TV's blasting sound. (CVG)

A ninety minute stop-over in Frankfurt, Germany (FRA) provided just enough time to go through the Frankfurt Flughafen Bar beer list. The Dortmunder Union Siegel Pils was hoppy and light-bodied. The Binding Römer Pils was straw-colored, with medium carbonation and a light hop aroma, flavor and aftertaste. The Henniger Export was a light gold color with a hoppy palate, smooth mouth feel and 5.5% v/v. The König Pils appeared light gold with excellent head and a sharp hop flavor. The Schöfferhofer Weizen Kristal was golden, well carbonated and possessed an intense wheat aroma and flavor, it finished with a clean aftertaste. With an exchange rate of 1.62 DM to the U.S. Dollar this beer topped the price list at $8.00. The Hefeweizen from the same brewery was a hazy gold with good carbonation, smooth body and a slightly tart aftertaste. In observing the surroundings, two cultural differences were immediately apparent. Every bottle of beer is freshness dated on its label. Unlike its American counterparts which keep passengers wondering about their flights' status, the lounge contains a wall-mounted information display to provide up-to-the-minute flight information. Overall, not a bad place to enjoy a stop-over.

Finally some drinkable beers are available while traveling through the Big Apple via La Guardia ( LGA). In the middle of the US Air Terminal lies Anton's New York Bar & Grill in the Food Court between Gates 1-11 and Gates 11-22. The view of the ramp is great but the obnoxious television blaring soap operas and news could drive one to drink (more). Fortunately two draughts are on hand to make the wait bearable: Murphy's Irish Stout and Brooklyn Pilsner. The local brew offers a crisp hoppy flavor with a medium body and a moderate hop finish. There is just a hint of sulfur, probably from the hops used and certainly not a distraction. The mugs are plastic and chilled. The bartender does warn patrons on their first round so people don't hurl their first 12 ounce curl over their shoulder inadvertently. Prices are $4.05 after taxes so things could be worse.

Missouri is famous for only one of it's breweries but at Kansas City International (MCI) Terminal B is Premium Spirits Air Pub between gates 29 and 30. Sam Adams Boston Lager now is the sole survivor of the craft beer lineup as all Boulevard beers were removed when the dedicated Boulevard bar went in at Terminal "C". A 22 ounce glass costs $5. The same selection is offered in Terminal A at Gate 7. All the bars in the airport are "breathing friendly." The Boulevard bar offers all the standard Boulevard beers along with snacks, and pizzas from the adjacent Pizza Hut.

Terminal 'E' at San Francisco International ( SFO) had nada, but the Fog Bank Bar offered some relief. Four draft micros included Anchor Steam, Widmer Hefeweizen and Gordon Bierch Maerzen., all at $5.50 for 20 ounces. 12 ounce glasses were $4.50.

At Toronto's Pearson International (TOR) Concourse E (in the sticks). Narrow terminal with a few seats but direct visibility of the nearby gates. Upper Canada Brown Ale on draught for about $4.50 CDN. Once onboard Air Canada cans of Labatt Blue, Molson Dry, Molson Canadiene, and Molson Ice are available for $5 CDN ($4 USD).

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