The Blind Pig Co.
Taps: 28 / Bottles: 100
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 33 | Reviews: 27 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by bluemoonswoon:
4.29/5 rDev -4.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $
Stopped in here on a recent trip to Champaign. Beerflyed the area and found this place.
Walking into the place was certainly something else. It's incredible how dark this place is yet manages not to feel the least bit dank. Pretty larger bar. Has an outdoor seating area on the street, to join the countless others on this strip. When you step inside you feel like the bar is closing around you the further you walk in. Big fat wooden table tops, big fat wooden bar with big fat wooden awnings directly above, with big fat wooden crossbeams above that. The place feels at once massive and tiny and overall, disarmingly comfortable and cozy. Authentic dart boards line the back wall that lead to a sort of dilapidated bathroom that smelled a bit too much like old pee for my tastes, but sort of adds to the charm of the place in certain respects. Sitting at the bar I barely noticed that there was an entirely separate room from the main seating area. This room is a great deal brighter, except of course for the three massive wooden booths that are swaddled by more wooden awnings and lattice work. Apart from this there are more dart boards and by then the place takes on a sort of loungey character with overstuffed, buttoned down vinyl upholstered barrel chairs and booths. Really my kind of place in terms of atmosphere, could spend night after night in here alone or with a group of friends, this place lends itself equally to both. Oh yeah the beer. Not to much to be said here that hasn't already been said. Easily the pick of the litter in terms of selection, while they won't always carry what the big boys in Chicago are able to get their hands on they still bring in a good amount of beer on tap (about 15-20) and bottles (75 or more that I could count) plus an occasional rarity (they had Double Crooked Tree when I stopped by). Also the price is hard to beat considering what you would pay in the city. Service was adequate, though sometimes I had to do that move where I push my empty glass to the edge of the bar to get the bartenders attention. This on a particularly slow Friday evening. Other than these minor inconveniences, and really I was in no hurry, I just wanted another tasty beer, this place is just about flawless.
04-21-2009 01:32:26 | More by bluemoonswoon
More User Reviews:
4.64/5 rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | $
I really really wish I appreciated beer more when I went to college at U of I. I frequented this place my junior and senior year and it was even better than I remembered when I went back a few weeks ago.
The place is dimly lit with wood accents everywhere. The bar is on the left side of the building and the rest is seating. Tall tables, short tables, booths and an area to play darts with lots of chairs. Pretty great set up. Not dirty at all, except for the hipsters, and the place was very well kept.
The service was great. Even for a late Friday night (We got there around 11:30) the service at the bar was quick and the bartenders were knowledgeable about the tap selections and what was in/out/coming up/etc.
There was a large number of taps that were 98% craft. It was great. The selection was a great mix of Illinois locals (Flossmoor, Two Brothers, etc.) and other beers from coast to coast (Sculpin comes to mind, love draft Sculpin). The actually had Sculpin on cask earlier in the night, but that was kicked before we got there.
The prices for drafts were all $5 or $6 for nice pint glasses. When applicable they did use proper glassware. The bottles were a little above MSRP, but not by much which was surprising. I paid $15 for a Boulevard Chocolate Ale as a nightcap which was more than reasonable for a beer that's not on the shelf anymore.
Overall I loved this place and wish I had a place like this right next door like I did in college. If one comes my I wont take advantage of it like I did the Blind Pig during my college days.
12-10-2011 00:25:05 | More by Treebs
4.5/5 rDev +0.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $
So this place has not had a review in almost two years, even though it is the best bar in Central Illinois and one of the best in America according to BA?
The wife and I are living in Decatur for a while and it sucks in here, so we decided to check Champaign out. Man, what a difference! 45 miles and a world away. Where Decatur is all ghetto and blight, Champaign has a cool little downtown with tons of bars and restaurants.
The Blind Pig is one of the best, both in ambience and beer selection. Super laid-back joint across from Radio Maria and right where all the action is. Dark inside, with lots of wood and dim lights. Cozy and quiet, almost no music or noise. Pretty empty on a Tuesday evening at around 6pm.
Friendly bartender and great selection of beer, with 26 taps and highlights such as Stone Double Dry Hopped IPA, Stone Belgo Anise Imperial Stout, Lost Abbey Serpent Stout, Smuttynose Imperial Stout, Dieu du Ciel Epices... plus Delirium, Lindeman's and some quality Euros. Also Guinness, PBR and Bud Light.
If anything, I missed a bit of variety (barleywines, DIPA's) and bigger beers, but it's fine. And the prices! $4 for most everything, including Lost Abbey (I had two glasses).
The bottle selection is very good too, with Port Brewing, Lost Abbey, Big Sky, Boulevard and some pricey vintages, all divided in styles.
No food, though, so eat beforehand or afterwards to soak up all the high-octane. The beers we tasted were damn fresh and served in nice glassware, so the Pig gets extra points for that.
One of the best bars in the US? Why not. This is Central Illinois, after all! I look forward to going back and back again as long as we are stuck in Decatur.
07-21-2011 00:59:22 | More by DoubleSimcoe
4.43/5 rDev -1.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Wow, what to say about this place...if you only have time to visit one bar in Champaign, go here. This is the best beer bar i've been to in downstate IL, and it's up there with Chicago beer meccas like the Map Room, Hopleaf, & Local Option.
Others have described the place well, and all I have to say this is the most authentic British Pub atmosphere i've experienced in the US. Nothing slick about it, just the feeling that it's been here for decades, and will be for decades to come. Dark with rustic wood everywhere, heavy beams overhead lined with dusty bottles of obscure beers. A second room with old-timey darts and amazing woodwork on the three enclosed booths in the back. Simple yet effective in terms of atmosphere, Blind Pig is the real deal.
There was no one else at the back when we came in, so I chatted with Jason the bartender for awhile. He was beer savvy and was a great guy to talk to. He mentioned that the new brewing operation a block away was on the verge of brewing their 1st batch, and the space was super small, requiring some customized equipment. Moylans Hopsickle and Port Panzer were on draft. Two casks were also nice to see, although one was out. Bottle list was well rounded with a few gems, in a perfect world they would get rid of the macros, and put some traditional Lambics and even more diverse styles on there.
It felt like home the minute I sat down, and was a really comfortable place to enjoy a beer (or three). The crowd was low key and seemed to be enjoying the beer selection also. Will make a point to return in the future!
09-08-2009 17:38:47 | More by emerge077
The Blind Pig Co. in Champaign, IL
97 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.