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Reviews on PubCrawler from kirk struble
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Reviews By
kirk struble

Beer Reviews
(82)

Restaurant Reviews
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82
Beer Reviews from kirk struble
   

Review Page: [ 1 ] [ 2 ] [ 3 ] [ 4 ] [ ALL ]
Average Rating
Beer Quality
Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Great
Great Great Great Great

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

Establishment: Abbey Brewing Company, Miami Beach, FL

A bit of beer nirvana in Miami Beach? Who would have guessed? Thank God that I decided to do a quick pubcrawler search before visiting the area on vacation (always a good idea) or I would have been mired in a swamp of Bud Light Lime and overpriced frozen concoctions. The Abbey Brewing Company will remind you of your local pub and the friendliness of the staff (props to Brother Frank) will make you feel like it truly is. The solid array of four house brewed items (the IPA and the Bock were especially great) is complimented by an impressive list of guest drafts (Chimay Triple, Sierra Nevada Bigfoot, and even a cask-conditioned Hobgoblin.) Off the beaten club-going path, but that is the real point, isn't it? The fact that the rest of the area is such a barren beer wasteland does not automatically warrant such a glowing review....this place would be a standout in any locale.

(06/27/2009)

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

Establishment: American Flatbread Taproom was Burlington Hearth, Burlington, VT

Having never been to the Burlington outpost of American Flatbread during my many visits to the area I did not know what to expect in regards to the quality of the brews. Well, I sure was surprised. Even during a busy Sunday brunch of constructing what looked to be fine bloody marys (next time!) the bartender, Chad, went out of his way to let us sample every "Zero Gravity" house beer on the impressive menu. The Centennial Wheat IPA, an unfiltered hopped-up American Wheat Ale, was a standout among a great cast. It is obvious that the brewer here does not shy away from experimentation and even the Belgian styles could hold there own against many more commercially available products. Along with the house brews, Flatbread serves eight or so guest draft beers (Allagash, McNeill's, Unibroue)and seventy bottles (Jolly Pumpkin, Rochefort, et al.) We we definitely be back when time (the Vermont Brewery Challenge does not rest) permits. Top-notch operation.

(02/18/2008)

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

Establishment: Bobcat Cafe and Brewery, Bristol, VT

I am really having a hard time agreeing with all of the "awesome" reviews listed for the Bobcat Cafe from various other pubcrawlers. Awesome for Bristol, Vermont? Perhaps. But not up against many other Vermont brewpubs and certainly not nationwide. The beer is not offensive, mind you, but nothing really stands out, either. The main sticking point I have with the establishment, however, is the exorbitant prices they charge for their food. I live in New York City so I am no stranger to paying top dollar for my meals. But, when I am served a shallow bowl of beef stew that is on par with a can of Dinty Moore (or worse) and am charged close to 15 dollars for it I have a problem. No real reason to visit unless you are,like me, trying to fill in your Vermont Brewery Challenge Passport.

(02/03/2008)

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

Establishment: Eulogy Belgian Tavern, Philadelphia, PA

We only stopped in for a quick beer at Eulogy, but I am extremely glad we did. To be sure, I owe the daytime bartender (who was off duty at the time) a debt of gratitude for introducing me to Struise Pannepot, which has edged Rochefort 10 as my favorite Belgian ale. Next time I am in town I will certainly allow for more time to delve deeper into the impressive beer list.

(11/01/2007)

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

Establishment: Monk's Cafe, Philadelphia, PA

For years I had heard fellow beer drinkers sing the praises of Monk's Cafe and I was especially pleased to find out that the establishment lives up to the hype. Extremely cozy, but not cramped, it reminded me of some of the great bars I had been to when I visited Belgium. Indeed, with such a fine list of Belgian beer offerings it seemed as if I was transported back. We feasted on delicious mussels steamed in geuze, garlic and parsley and enjoyed such hard to find selections as Rodenbach Grand Cru (on draft!), Geants Goliath Tripel, Cantillon Cuvee des Champions,and Fantome Bris Bon Bons. The knowledgeable server aided us in pairing all our food courses with the beers. I will definitely return on my next trip to the City of Brotherly Love.

(11/01/2007)

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

Establishment: Triumph Brewing Company, Philadelphia, PA

It is not very often that I visit a brewpub that puts out a rauchweizendoppelbock (say that ten times fast), so I was very impressed, indeed, by the selection of ales and lagers at the Triumph Brewery. All too often one is presented with a brewpub's blonde, red and stout without much variation in taste. Thankfully, Triumph uses the fact that it is a small operation to its advantage and experiments with some of the more rare styles. The bartender was very knowledgeable and helpful to the point of letting us borrow the house copy of an old brewing book when we were discussing the origins of the Vienna lager style. A modern decor and an inventive menu almost make you forget that you are in a brewpub. Definitely worth the trip.

(09/09/2007)

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

Establishment: Great Lost Bear, Portland, ME

If nothing else, the Great Lost Bear is one-stop shopping for Maine breweries. Don't have time to go meandering all over the Pine Tree State to sample the richness of its malted barley offerings? Simply take an afternoon tour of the tap selection of the Bear. I arrived to find such Down East favorites as Stone Coast Knuckleball Bock, Sebago Frye's Leap I.P.A., Sheepscot Pemaquid Scottish Ale, and Geary's Hampshire Special Ale (cask-conditoned.) In all, a great visit...saved gas money and didn't have to ask a Mainer for directions.

(08/18/2007)

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

Establishment: Great Lost Bear, Portland, ME

If nothing else, the Great Lost Bear is one-stop shopping for Maine breweries. Don't have time to go meandering all over the Pine Tree State to sample the richness of its malted barley offerings? Simply take an afternoon tour of the tap selection of the Bear. I arrived to find such Down East favorites as Smuttynose "Big A" I.P.A., Stone Coast Knuckleball Bock, Sebago Frye's Leap I.P.A., Sheepscot Pemaquid Scottish Ale, and Geary's Hampshire Special Ale (cask-conditoned.) Wished we could have been seated closer to the bar area, however...the back room makes you feel like you are in Jackman. That said, it was a great visit...saved gas money and didn't have to ask a Mainer for directions.

(07/26/2007)

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

Establishment: Flying Saucer, Raleigh, NC

Well, the raising of North Carolina's limit on alcohol content in beers (in 2005)has certainly been well-received at the Flying Saucer as evidenced by their massive selection of high-octane brews. With such heavy hitters as Great Divide's Hercules Double IPA and Avery's "the Reverend" you'll also be happy the state legislature came to its senses. Served up in a boisterous beer-hall atmosphere with great service (are the waitresses always dressed as schoolgirls?),the Flying Saucer makes for a great night out with friends and fine ales & lagers.

(03/03/2007)

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

Establishment: Goose Island Beer Company - Wrigleyville, Chicago, IL

Avoid the Goose Island Beer Company on game day? I should be so lucky to have such a top-shelf beer establishment within steps of my beloved Yankee Stadium! Count your blessings....I'm sucking back Bud bottles while the denizens of Wrigleyville sip on such sumptuous offerings as Demolition, IPA, Dunkelwiezen, and Peres Jacques. We visited with a large group and the staff were more than accommodating and pleasant. I will definitely be back during my next swing through the Windy City.

(11/19/2006)

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

Establishment: Harpoon Brewery, Windsor, VT

The Windsor location of Harpoon Brewery features excellent facilities and beers in the former Catamount location (the logo still has not been changed on this site!)In addition, Harpoon gets extra points based on the fact that the seasonal selections, such as the Octoberfest, are served in thier style-specific glassware. Worth a stop if you are in the area.

(10/08/2006)

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

Establishment: McNeill's Brewery, Brattleboro, VT

I have been an ardent supporter of McNeill's for years and have always made an effort to stop by during my northward excursions through New England (foliage-based or otherwise.) Although my views in the past may have been founded on my somewhat limited experiences with brewpubs, I always felt McNeil's purveyed some of the best craft brews that the East Coast had to offer. That said, My most recent tastings, albeit of the bottled variety, led me to believe that the establishment had lost some of its luster. Specifically, a bottle of Dead Horse my brother brought me seemed, to put it mildly, kind of bland. Could it be, I thought, that I was naive to put them on such a high pedestal? Well, I am happy to report that a visit to Brattleboro and a sampling of the draft Summer IPA put my worried mind at ease. Mcneill's, shady as it may seem, is still a top-shelf operation.

(09/16/2006)

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

Establishment: Brewery Ommegang, Cooperstown, NY

The superb quality of Brewery Ommegang's liquid offerings was only exceeded by the fine hospitality we were shown during our visit. From the first moment we stepped into the Belgian-style farmhouse brewery we were treated like royalty. Sure, I've been on plenty of brewery tours before, but the staff at Ommegang made us feel like old friends. The experience was rounded out perfectly with the samplings of Hennepin, Rare Vos, Witte, Ommegang Abbey, and Three Philosophers. I was even able to bring home a couple of bottles of Hennepin from 2005 that were aged in the nearby Howe Caverns (do yourself a favor and pick up a couple if you visit...they are exquisite.) The only thing that could have made the trip better was if we were visiting the next weekend during the Belgium Comes to Cooperstown event, but there is always next year. Special thanks to Eric, Monica and Ken. Cheers!

(07/10/2006)

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

Establishment: Cafe d'Alsace, New York, NY

Finally, serious beer drinkers have an excellent restaurant that they can frequent where the beer list does not take a back seat to the wine list. Featuring over 118 entries, it encompasses styles such as lagers, Biere de Garde, Trappist ales, wheat beers, bocks and many others. To be a bit adventurous I sampled the Wostyntje Mustard Beer from Belgium with the duck sausage with green peppercorns to great results. As for dinner, the "beer sommelier" perfectly paired the Achel Trappist Bruin with the Alsatian Baeckoffe (a rustic casserole of oxtail, lamb shoulder, bacon, potatoes and onion.) One minor flaw was the fact that many of the bottles that I wanted to sample only came in larger, often 25oz, sizes. That, of course, is easily solved if you bring a couple more beer-loving guests along. The bistro was quite crowed at 7 pm on a Monday night, owing, undoubtedly to the recent two star review by the New York Times. If you plan to visit, and I highly recommend you do, reservations seem to be in order.

(06/07/2006)

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

Establishment: House Of Brews, New York City, NY

At first glance the beer list at the House of Brews is impressive, indeed, but after further inspection it really is not all that interesting. The 20 or so taps only feature 3 or 4 selections that are not readily available at numerous other area establishments (i.e. the Collins Bar.) It is great to see a Bear Republic and a Rogue line (Hop Rod Rye and American Amber Ale, respectively), but with all the great options available from those breweries why not switch them up occasionally? The bottle list falls into a similar trap, unfortunately. Sure, it is nice to have beers from countries such as Jamaica, Czech Republic, Singapore, the Philippines, Slovak Republic, Holland and China, but if they are all going to be the same style (light lagers) what is the point? A little variety can go a long way, as can pleasant service, but both were in short supply.

(05/22/2006)

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

Establishment: Pizza Port / Solana Beach Brewery, Solana Beach, CA

Pizza Port is, without question, one of the best brewpubs in the United States. How do they garner such an accolade you ask? The answer is simple: they have discovered and, indeed, perfected a formula that has eluded the owners of so many American brewpubs. First and, indeed, most important, they make exemplary beer. Anyone who has tasted the Swami IPA or Lou P. Lin Imperial IPA can tell that the brewers do not skimp on ingredients when they craft their product. Sure, it may cost more to fashion these high IBU brews, but they brew them anyway. Maybe I am in the minority on this one, but I am not averse to paying six dollars or more for a pint if I know the brewer has gone through the extra expense to put out a high quality product. So often it seems brewpub owners focus solely on the bottom line, insulting my taste buds with watered-down products. If only all establishments gave their customers some credit and attempted to furnish them with quality beer like the Pizza Port does. Second, they are not bogged down with their food menu. If only more brewpubs would pick one item (i.e. pizza) and make it well instead of trying to one-up each other with their recipes for the perfect spinach-artichoke dip brewpub dining would be a much more fufilling experience. Save the rest for T.G.I.Fridays and Applebees and choose an item that accents your beers. Serve it on paper plates off of picnic tables in a convivial atmosphere and presto! Magic! It seems simple, right? Why has the Pizza Port been the only one to figure it out, then? I guess I will have to continue travelling the 3000 miles to get it. And yes, it is well worth it, friends, well worth it.

(05/15/2006)

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

Establishment: Yard House, Long Beach, CA

With the sheer variety of beers on draft at this location, the Yardhouse of Long Beach serves as a great starting point to begin a California beer tour. Selections from West Coast heavy-hitters such as Stone, Anderson Valley, Bear Republic, North Coast, Lagunitas, and Sierra Nevada let you travel the state without leaving your barstool. The service was impeccable...each time our glasses were empty one of the bartenders, who seem to operate "by committee" behind the stick, was there to ask if we wanted another round. My one negative critique is that the large tap selection is somewhat gummed up with sub-par offerings from AB, Coors, and the 'usual suspects' from European breweries (you know who you are.) But, you do have to cater to the masses somewhat in this type of establishment. All in all a great first stop.

(05/15/2006)

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

Establishment: Oggi's Pizza and Brewing Company was Stuft Pizza, San Diego, CA

It has been a number of years since my last visit to Oggi's, but they certainly have not lost a step. I remembered the Torrey Pines as a fine example of a West Coast-style IPA and, to be sure, my memory served me correctly. In addition, the availablity of the Oggi's Hop Juice Imperial IPA was a welcome treat that only made the stay that much more enjoyable. Nice grapefruit hop overtones complemented by the 8% abv. Oh, I had some pizza too.

(05/15/2006)

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

Establishment: The Liar's Club, San Diego, CA

While it's unlikely that you'll find Betty White on the panel at this Liar's Club you are bound to find San Diego's best and brightest local breweries showcased here. From AleSmith, Alpine, Port Brewing, Stone and Green Flash the beer selection, both draft and bottle, is second to none. As if the tap selection alone was not enough of an indicator of the management's dedication to San Diego's craft beer scene the bartender went out of his way to furnish us with a pamphlet listing the locations of the area's brewpubs and breweries. That type of service always earns my respect and, whenever possible, a return visit.

(05/14/2006)

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

Establishment: Nice Matin, New York, NY

Nice Matin is, surely, more of a restaurant with a good beer list rather than a "beer bar" per se. Duvel on draft? Doubtful considering the fact that it is only available in bottles here in the States (and Belgium as far as I know.) As for the beer list, sure it is varied, but if you are going to serve Corsendonk in a Saison Dupont glass for nine dollars what's the point of an extensive list? I am, however, intrigued by the owner's newest opening on the east side, Cafe d' Alsace, which seems to be more "beer-centric."

(04/05/2006)

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

Establishment: Vol De Nuit, New York , NY

The entrance to Vol De Nuit is somewhat nondescript. In fact, for the longest time, my friends and I just referred to it as "that Belgian Beer Bar." However, that does not take away from the marvelous dimly-lit, cozy interior with a decidedly European cafe feel. The ambience certainly transports you to a different continent and the fine selection of both draft (Saison Dupont, La Chouffe, Chimay Triple, etal) and bottled Belgian ales (Kwak, Chimay Premiere, Duvel)keeps you there. Compliment your brew with an order of Belgian-style frites and you've got yourself a start to an excellent evening. Great batenders from Belgium round out the experience (listening to a conversation about cycling that does not revolve around Lance Armstrong or the Tour de France really makes you feel like you took a flisht to Brussels!) A perfect stop before or after a film at the IFC center on 6th and West 3rd. Skip the Stella and try something new.

(03/01/2006)

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

Establishment: Rock Bottom Brewery, Bethesda, MD

My intial apprehensions about visiting the Rock Bottom chains have, at least during my last two visits to seperate locations (Bethesda and Denver, CO), proven unfounded. The Bethesda branch offers a wide selection of brews that showcase a nice assortment of beer styles. I especially enjoyed the pale ale (nice citrusy hop notes) and the seasonal alt beer. Taken with the nitro-pour stout and the cask-conditioned red ale and you've got a great portfolio. I only wish we stayed here to watch the basketball game as the service at the nearby Willie & Reeds sports bar bordered on criminal (word to the wise...skip that joint.)Keep up the great work RB.

(02/22/2006)

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

Establishment: Dogfish Head Alehouse, Gaithersburg, MD

The Dogfish Head Alehouse, with its excellent beer selection,top-shelf service and high quality product, goes a long way to solidify the Dogfish Head Brewery's standing as the premiere purveyor of ales on the east coast. Featuring such draft mainstays as 60 Minute IPA, Rasion D'etre, and Indian Brown Ale, this establishment has something for everyone (even Miller Lite drinkers can settle down with a pint of Dogfish's own Lawnmower Light.) In an area saturated by the strip mall chain usual suspects, it's nice to know you can find a locale to enjoy a pint of something truly special. If the standard selection of ales does not intrigue you, the seasonal draft lines shine with such favorites as 120 Minute IPA, Raison D'extra and Midas Touch. In addition, the extremely knowledgable and genial barstaff go out of thier way to make you feel welcome and inform you of upcoming events and brews. Sure, the place itself looks as if it may have been an Applebees in a previous incarnation, but if that does not prove the theory of evolution I don't know what does. Definitely worth a visit.

(02/22/2006)

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

Establishment: Standings was Brewsky's, New York, NY

A combination beer bar and sports bar where I can sit back and enjoy a pint of Middle Ages Wailing Wench or Sixpoint Black Soul Porter, eat buffalo wings provided for free by the management and watch my beloved University of Connecticut Huskies on the multiple widescreen tvs? Somebody pinch me....I think I'm dreaming. I never got to Standings during its previous incarnation as Brewksy's, but judging by some of the more recent reviews that doesn't seem like such a bad thing. It hasn't been very crowded during my visits, but they seem to be offering quite a bit of incentives (the aforementioned free buffalo wings at game time) to change that. They post schedules of thier events at the bar, so check them out. Go Huskies!

(01/30/2006)

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

Establishment: Croxley Ales, New York, NY

With 30 draft lines and 75 or so bottles to choose from Croxley Ales will have something for everyone to enjoy. I was especially impressed by the knowledgeable bartender who had a great array of suggestions based on my particular tastes. One sticking point though: the beer menu and website both go out of thier way to state that they do NOT carry Bud, Coors or Miller. However, they currently feature Winter's Bourbon Cask Ale, an AB product, on draft. I don't mean to bust them, but false advertising is false advertising. Otherwise, a great spot for a pint.

(01/30/2006)


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