Front Pourch Brewing Review
|Location||1611 W. Whispering Wind Dr. Ste. 7 Phoenix, AZ|
|Phone Number||(623) 277-0526|
|Hours||M-CLOSED, T-Th 3-9 pm, F 1-9 pm, Sat 12-9 pm, Sun 12-7 pm|
Front Pourch Brewing opened their family-owned craft beer taproom in North Phoenix in 2019. We visited this location multiple times during spring/summer 2022.
According to an interview by realtor Shelley Sakala, Randy and Trevor Bolstrom started brewing beer on their front porch in Cave Creek. Randy’s wife (Diana) daughter, (Emily McMenemy) and some family friends are also involved in the business. Trevor is the establishment’s head brewer.
Let me share my notes with you so you’ll know what to expect from your visit…
The Place: Front Pourch Brewing in North Phoenix
When you live in a gigantic metro area like Phoenix, AZ you get used to driving. We think nothing of driving 20 minutes to shop for clothes, 30 minutes to attend a concert or maybe an hour to get superlative pork products.
So when a craft brewery opens in our own neck of the woods, we are overjoyed. That means we can stop by on a whim instead of having to plan an entire day around the visit.
Even though Front Pourch Brewing has been open since 2018, somehow we didn’t hear of it until sometime in 2020. But you know what happened that year. So it’s been on the list of places we’d like to visit for a while now.
We finally made the short trek a few times this year, and let me tell you: it was worth the wait.
Like several other independent craft brewers in north Phoenix, Front Pourch Brewing has made its home in an industrial park. My guess is small business owners opt for these out-of-the-way locations due to affordable rents. The advantage to being a little out of the way is that it’s quiet and peaceful.
It seems like CenPho and Downtown Breweries get all the love from the media. But a lot of Phoenicians make their homes in the north valley, or as some people call it, “South Flagstaff.” For us, FPB is conveniently situated in the Norterra area, between Highway 101 and Happy Valley Road.
Cozy Up to the Bar
When you drive up to Front Pourch Brewing, you might have to look around a bit to find it. It is in a long building with other businesses and doesn’t have a very large sign. But keep your eyes peeled and you’ll find it.
There is free parking right out front, but the spaces are somewhat limited. I expect finding a good spot is more challenging during busy times, but we had no trouble on weekday afternoons.
There was even some shade from trees! If you have spent any time in Phoenix, you know that shady parking spots are worth their weight in gold. OK, that doesn’t make sense, but you know what I mean.
Play a Game & Bring the Kids
Walking into the taproom, it’s obvious the proprietors have put a lot of thought and care into welcoming their patrons. In an AZ Central article, McMenemy said the family did much of the build-out in the 4,000 square foot space that comprises suite 7. Much of the decor was constructed with wood salvaged from a friend’s old barn in Oregon.
Warm, mellow light spills from overhead repurposed wooden basket lamps. The overall vibe is rustic Southwest mixed with cozy front porch.
The bar and sidewall have been custom-built to resemble an old West storefront. A decorative corrugated metal beer fermenter reaches from floor to ceiling in one corner.
Although the decor is purposely themed, the whimsy is more collector than theme park.
Off to one side, two dart boards stand ready for friendly competition. Since Front Pourch Brewing is kid-friendly, why not bring them along and let them hang out In an attached area on the other side of the bar is a room with table games.
There’s plenty of room at the bar with about 12 stools and another 12+ tables in the public area. You can check out the brewing equipment that sits to the left of the bar behind a secondary bar seating area.
The location doesn’t have any outdoor seating, but the interior is so inviting that you won’t miss it (especially when it’s 112 degrees outside).
Now let’s talk about the main event: craft beer.
Honestly, on our first visit, we enjoyed our selections but were somehow a bit underwhelmed. Maybe we were having a bad day because, on subsequent visits, we found some really unique brews that were very true to type.
Most of the beer names contain references to movies. It’s fun to try to place which flick goes with which brew.
Here’s what we tried…
Front Pourch Brewing Beer Reviews
|Ashman NE Hazy IPA 7.7%/? IBU|
Juicy peaches and funky citrus
|Juicy peaches and funky citrus|
|Chime Time Fruited Blonde Ale 5.3%/? IBU||Crisp & refreshing with bitter lime, and sweet cherry.|
|The French Taunter Saison 7.2%/30||Medium body with lots of spice and a little banana. Great farmhouse style Saison! *Favorite of the Day*|
|Hattori Hopzo American IPA 6.5%/? IBU||Hoppy, herbal/piney.|
|It Ain’t Space Science Hazy IPA 8.4%/40||Grassy aromas with dank citrus flavors on a medium-bodied IPA. Hazy lovers will go nuts.|
|McRandy’s Irish Red Ale 6.3%/20||Toasty caramel sweetness balanced by a subtle bitter edge.|
|Nellsonnn!!! IPA 7.2%/? IBU||Hazy, citrus and juicy melon|
|Peripheral American Pale Ale 5.2%/56||Floral aromas and flavors, slight citrus sweetness, fresh hops, pretty bitter on finish.|
|Pourch Porter 6.0%/? IBU||Dark brown, heavy body. Not sweet but lots of roasty caramel flavors, slight vanilla and coffee.|
|Shift Yeah! American Stout 7%./27||Collaboration with Shift Caffeine–Malty sweet, chocolate, could’ve used a little more bitter flavor to balance sweetness|
|Steve Mash Imperial/Double NE /Hazy IPA 8.3%/?IBU||Hazy, citrusy, well-balanced especially for high ABV *Favorite of the Day*|
Front Pourch Brewing is a cool, cozy spot to hunker down for an hour or an afternoon. You won’t run out of interesting craft brews to sample, either. We’ve been impressed with their IPAs as well as the Blonde Ales and (especially) the Saison we sampled.
Bring your favorite takeout food and the kids for a relaxed evening of sipping.
Here are a few more facts about Front Pourch Brewing to prepare you for your visit:
- CLOSED Mondays
- Trivia quiz game held on Tuesdays from 6:30 to 8:30 pm
- No food prepared there but food trucks visit most evenings-see the schedule on this local brewery’s Facebook page.
- Free wi-fi
- No patio and NOT dog-friendly
- Background music consists mostly of classic rock and oldies
- Cans and crowlers of cold FPB beer is available to take home
- Beer sampler available with 6×5 oz. glasses
- Printed menus list a revolving selection of house-made brews
- Close enough to several other breweries to make a beer crawl