Alberta Beer Exchange – A Different Kind Of Growler Bar

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Pre-filled Growlers, Grab & Go

Have you been to the Alberta Beer Exchange yet? They’re a growler bar, but you can’t bring your own empty growlers to fill with beer like pretty much every other place in Calgary that fills them. What makes the Alberta Beer Exchange different is they pre-fill their growlers with beer to have them ready and waiting for customers to come in, pay for, and go. No waiting, no troubles with foam, just convenience. ABX carries 24 different beers available for purchase ‘on tap’, most of which are local brews but they do occasionally carry beer from other places too. For $0.75 cents you can purchase a 3oz sampler to taste any of the beers they have available. If you have any questions about any of the beer, the staffers are very friendly and knowledgeable – ask away.

The first time you visit for a fill, you’ll pay a refundable deposit ($20 for 32oz, $40 for 64oz) for their growler plus the cost of whatever beer you’re buying. When you’re done with it, just bring the growler back and exchange it for another pre-filled growler and you’re set. No having to worry about cleaning them, they take care of that too.

Alberta Beer Exchange Growler Bar

Their growler menu also shows how much of each beer they have left.

What Is A Growler?

A growler is a 64oz container used to transport beer. ABX has two sizes, 64oz growlers, as well as smaller 32oz sizes. The 32oz sizes are sometimes called a growlette, howler, squealer, meowler, crowler, or simply a mini-growler. One 64oz growler holds about 4 pints of beer.

ABX growlers are made of stainless steel and they’re double walled. They’re impervious to sunlight (bad for beer), virtually indestructible, and when they fill them up they do it in an oxygen-free environment so the beer is kept under pressure. Your beer will stay colder, longer, and if left sealed it’ll be fresh for weeks. Each growler comes with a label that contains a best before date and some other information about the beer.

Alberta Beer Exchange Metal Double Walled Sealed Growler

They Have More Than Just Growlers

Alberta Beer Exchange also has one of the largest selections of canned beer I’ve ever seen. They’re available for purchase as single cans for $3 – $6 each, and most of them are tallboys. The selection of breweries varies but most were Canadian as far as I could tell. Lots of local selection.

Alberta Beer Exchange Beer Fridge

They also have a nice selection of spirits and liqueurs, most of which are locally made in Alberta. Confluence Distilling, Burwood Distillery, Wild Life Distillery, Eau Claire Distillery, Park Distillery etc.

Alberta Beer Exchange Spirits

There’s also a selection of wine available but I didn’t look too closely at them. Not much of a wine person. If you want to know more, you’ll have to visit in person!

Alberta Beer Exchange Store and Wine Selection

Alberta Beer Exchange Sodas

You can also find non-alcoholic Annex Ale Project sodas too.


Pretty cool to see someone trying something new! According to the Alberta Beer Exchange website, they’re the only business in Alberta with this kind of setup, and possibly the only ones in North America. Check them out.


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