I am pretty spent, a good day in the office followed by a good night of brewery hopping makes me think sleep's not a bad idea. However, I did want to pass on some notes for good places to find when you're in Phoenix, for whatever reason.
Tops Liquors - If you live in Phoenix and like beer, I sure hope you've been here. This is a bottle shop that simply must be visited by those who like great drinks - from beer to whiskey, tequila and more. Best selection I've seen in the city, hands down.
Four Peaks Brewing Co. - I went here with co-worker Adrianne (and friend), and the beers, atmosphere and food were all top-notch. The brewery is located in an old warehouse, high ceilings and open floor space - really, it's pretty spectacular, I wish I'd had my camera. I tried both their IPAs and was quite satisfied, the Popper Burger (topped with cream cheese and jalapeños) really topping off the already good experience. The service wasn't in a hurry, but all was good when the it was time to go.
Papago Brewing Co. - I went here mainly for the Cantillon Kriek, a treat I'm not accustomed to in NorCal. This may be my favorite bar in the city, great taps and amazing bottled beer selection, complemented by a pretty good service staff (Mel seems to know more about beer than almost any barkeep I've seen). I enjoyed my Kriek and met a wonderful lady who offered to introduce me to a new bar - and I'm happy I joined.
British Open Pub (same strip mall as Papago) - This is a bar a very nice woman (Adi, I believe her name was) introduced me to. Weinstephaner on tap, with several other great European beers (better than Guinness options, if you catch my drift), complemented with a pretty impressive import bottle selection. The bar just worked, and the barkeep (Amy) was friendly and knowledgeable. Besides the beer, patrons can enjoy darts, pool and arcade games - again, this bar just worked for me.
Another great place I discovered in Phoenix today was Tortas El Guero, where I had lunch. I come from California, a place proud with their Mexican food, but I'd not had a torta as good as this. The bread was fresh, lightly toasted, and the adobada was simply exceptional. Seriously, if you're in the city, find this place (2518 N. 16th St) and have yourself a great meal served at the right (low) price.
One day in Phoenix, filled with great beer and great food. What more can you ask for?