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Reviews on PubCrawler from pvs
Other Reviews by this User
 
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Reviews By
pvs

Beer Reviews
(18)

Restaurant Reviews
(0)






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18
Beer Reviews from pvs
   
Average Rating
Beer Quality
Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Good
Great Good Good Good

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Great Good Good Good Great

Establishment: Jimmy Armstrong's Saloon, New York, NY

New York's Upper West Side is a desert for beer lovers and good bar mavens. Jimmy Armstrong's fills the void. You'll never find anything AMAZING here, just the standard micros and major-micros in good shape in a very pleasant atmosphere with good-to-excellent food. It is THE place to go if you want to tank up before or after the opera or a movie at the Walter Reade.

(10/21/2002)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Awesome! Awesome! Awesome! Great Awesome!

Establishment: Trap Rock Restaurant and Brewery, Berkeley Heights, NJ

OK. Unlike some others, I'm not promiscuous with the "awesome" rating, and this is the one place in New Jersey that is worthy of awe on almost all counts. It is not a "friendly" place--I can't help but think that when we bring our four-year-old we are not endearing ourselves to management. But my wife is something of a foie gras maven, and what other brewpub in the country does foie gras so well (and differently every time)? Crabcakes, steaks, pork, duck... beautifully and creatively presented. The ingredients are impeccably fresh and the preparations imaginative and varied. (The plates arrive and I laugh in delight at how the dish has been "built.") The beers? There are styles across the board, and they vary from merely excellent to brilliant, with the fatter, more alcoholic beers offering more room for expression. Even the heavy ales don't get sodden--they're light on their feet and briskly hopped. The "tragedy" when I go here is that, not being an alcoholic--and driving from Brooklyn--I cannot drink my fill of every beer, order a bottle or two from the fairly-priced and playful wine list, and dip into the good whiskey selection. The upside is that beers are available in the taster and in smaller glasses.

The downside? Well, I'd like my daughter to feel more at home. Other than that, it would be churlish to complain. I live in Brooklyn and have tried every brewpub within a 200-mile radius. Nowadays I treat myself to a bimonthly pilgrimage to Trap Rock.

(07/15/2002)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Awesome! N/A N/A N/A N/A

Establishment: Cottrell Brewing Company, Pawcatuck, CT

I tried this ale at beer bar with a bunch of other New England brews. It just leapt out of the pack. No mistaking its American lineage (most clearly manifest in the hopping), but the body makes it special. A superbly rounded ale. Make more!

(07/15/2002)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Awesome! Awesome! Great Great Great

Establishment: Waterfront Ale House, Brooklyn, NY

Before, I talk about this place--isn't that story below wonderful? Man oh man, you don't hear many love stories among beer geeks. Anyway, this is a special place. Very friendly service (some out of work actors, etc.), ever-fascinating specials from places like Southampton and the latest weird Belgian outpost, and food ranging from decent to excellent. (I once had a soggy. oil logged fish & chips here though that I'll never forget or forgive.) You really can't lose at this nice, nice place.

(02/04/2001)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Great Great Great Great Great

Establishment: New England Brewing Company d/b/a/ The Brewhouse, Norwalk, CT

An old standby. when i tried the gold stock many years ago, i thought it was perfumey and weird, but i've come to love it, especially on draft. the amber continue to be reliable (some think it overhopped; i disagree strongly), the stout more than decent, and the seasonals certainly worth a taste. (they're hit or miss, but they're always drinkable.) good food, spacious, well-located for families on a museum outing, easy to reach from i-95 (albeit easy to drive past, too)--it's still one of the best beer spots in beer-poor ct.

(02/02/2001)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Good N/A N/A Good N/A

Establishment: Thomas Hooker was Troutbrook Brewing Company, Hartford, CT

It seems the brewer has decamped and the brewery right now serves only the basic pale ale and a bunch of guest brews. That said, a few of the guest brews are better than what they'd been serving. Call ahead--this is rapidly turning into a yuppie beer bar instead of a brewpub.

(02/02/2001)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Good Great Great Great Great

Establishment: Gaslight Brewery and Restaurant, South Orange, NJ

Bad times are possible anywhere, but I've only had very pleasant experiences here. The beer is good, not exceptional, but there are always other things on tap and in bottles. On my last visit, a Dunkel Weizen was probably the only thing I'd order again, although the sweetish porter was a pleasant change from all the overroasted, overhopped dark ales that currently go by that name in the U.S. The food is made with care. I'm not sure this place is worth a special trip, but it's a certainly inviting if you're nearby.

(02/02/2001)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Lousy Good So So Lousy Lousy

Establishment: Red Brick Station / White Marsh Brewing Company, Baltimore, MD

Taste-alike Ringwood yeast beers in a place that's yuppie hell. Bartenders know zip about the beer. You can get better ales anywhere in the Baltimore area. Must to avoid.

(01/10/2001)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
So So Good Lousy So So So So

Establishment: Times Square Brewery, New York, NY

The beer--well... I've actually had one or two decent lagers. Not much body but clean. (Others have reported infections, but all four I tried were at least drinkable.) But the food is ATROCIOUS and my sense is that the wait staff is embarrassed to serve it. Or should be. Bartenders downstairs are just rude. Avoid.

(09/20/2000)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Great Great Lousy Good Good

Establishment: Triumph Brewing Company, Princeton, NJ

I'd heard not so good things about these beers, but I was impressed with the selection (immense) and the trueness to style. I happily imbibed every beer on the taster, even the lighter ones, and then ordered a pint of the IPA. That was to finish the lunch, which was dry, blah, and overpriced. The place was quiet when I was there at lunch; I can't speak of what it's like when busy.

(09/18/2000)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A

Establishment: Davidson Brothers Restaurant and Brewery, Glens Falls, NY

The comments below suggested a find, but a visit last week was among the most unpleasant experiences of my brewpub-hopping life. The bartender ignored me for ten minutes, only coming over when I placed my two-year-old on the bar stool to tell me that I wasn't allowed to do that. I used the opportunity to ask for a sampler; he replied that the bar was "too crowded" to give samplers. As someone who has visited over 300 brewpubs, I can say that that's the first time I've ever been refused a taste of multiple beers. And any brewpub with more than 7 on draft that refuses to give samplers is promoting alcoholism and should be closed by the state liquor commission. I did, however, try two beers, the IPA and "oatmeal stout." The former was overhopped even for the style and betrayed the usual one-dimensional Peter Austin flavor attributes, but I must admit that it was more drinkable with food (and age?) the next night at the Inn at Friends Lake in Warren County (highly recommended--reserve in advance). The stout, however, was undrinkable, like the contents of an ashtray, and so overhopped that it reminded me of neophyte Oregon brewers in the mid '80s eager to wow undiscriminating drinkers with their cojones. On balance, I'd say that this place isn't even worth a detour from I-87. It's an ugly experience.

(08/30/2000)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
So So Great So So Lousy So So

Establishment: Brickskeller, Washington, DC

I know many people consider this a DC treasure, but my experiences here have been increasingly grim. Poor, surly service is the rule (they are often understaffed), the food is iffy, and the beer is not reliably in good condition or up-to-date with regard to seasonals. You can certainly find a lot of good Belgian and German bottled beers, but the American micro selection is largely nine-month-old taste-alike Californian ales. Plus, I find the lack of taps depressing.

(04/05/2000)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Great Great Great Great Great

Establishment: Riverrun, New York, NY

What a pleasant place. More than a dozen taps--nothing that will stun you but all of it well-chosen. (Today there were two from Magic Hat, Sierra, Harpoon IPA, some Brooklyns, one Southampton, etc.) Nice bartenders. You can taste anything. Laid-back, lotsa regulars. Absolutely no downside.

(03/21/2000)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Great Great Great Great Great

Establishment: Antone's Tap, Cranford, NJ

Very nice people and a good range of brews (although it broke my heart to see so many of those taps given over to Coors and its ilk--but what can you do?). They're happy to give you tastes of anything. This is a good place to sample the fine Climax brews. (As I write, there's a superb Abbey Dubbel on tap.)

(02/16/2000)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Good Great Good Good Good

Establishment: Harvest Moon Brewery / Cafe, New Brunswick, NJ

Many beers, most of them fine. The lightest beer was actually well hopped (but slightly astringent); the IPA was unbalanced. The brewer does better with the dark beers, I think. A so-called cask-conditioned brown ale was magnificent (although maybe too coffee-grounds-ish for a brown ale) and I'd order the porter again. The stout was a little sweet for my taste, but it was the only thing on my sampler tray I left unfinished. I sat in the lovely, airy upstairs dining room and had good service and a decent duck quesadilla. I don't know if I'd go 50 miles for this beer, but I'd certainly stop by when I'm within 20.

(02/16/2000)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
So So Good Good Good Good

Establishment: JJ Bitting Brewing Company, Woodbridge, NJ

From the previous comments, I'd expected the beer would be special, but it's mostly blah. I tried all six on draft: two watery (by design) light lagers; a not-bad but uninteresting raspberry wheat; a hoppier ale without enough body and an acrid finish; a nondescript amber; and a very good, mild, creamy oatmeal stout with just a touch of sweetness. The stout is the only thing I'd order again, but even that was a tad on the undemonstrative side. These are polite beers, not badly made but not worth going even a couple of miles out of your way for. A very nice old edifice, tastefully converted. My sandwich was decent. But I left feeling like a beer.

(02/11/2000)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Lousy Good So So So So Lousy

Establishment: Carnegie Hill Brewing Company, New York, NY

Hands down the worst beer I've ever had at a brewpub anywhere--and that includes places where they brew beer with malt extract. It's all dishwater, with no body or mouthfeel at all. Only one of the beers was truly unservable--acrid and reeking of disinfectant. But the others, including the darks, were nearly indistinguishable. This is a place for yuppies on the make, not people who want to drink real ales.

(02/07/2000)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Lousy Good So So So So Lousy

Establishment: Carnegie Hill Brewing Company, New York, NY

Hands down the worst beer I've ever had at a brewpub anywhere--and that includes places where they brew beer with malt extract. It's all dishwater, with no body or mouthfeel at all. Only one of the beers was truly unservable--acrid and reeking of disinfectant. But the others, including the darks, were nearly indistinguishable. This is a place for yuppies on the make, not people who want to drink real ales.

(02/07/2000)














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