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California Brew Haus

Not Rated.
California Brew HausCalifornia Brew Haus
BA SCORE
-
no score

7 Ratings
Ratings: 7
Reviews: 6
rAvg: 3.58
pDev: 9.22%
Taps: --
Bottles: --
Cask:
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

402 Ridge Rd. West
Rochester, New York, 14615
United States
phone: (585) 621-1480

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Notes:
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(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 7 | Reviews: 6 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of LutherBrau
3/5  rDev -16.2%

Photo of BruChef
3.9/5  rDev +8.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I have to be honest... i love this place. Its a total dive with tons of personality. Located on the industrial strip of 104/ridge road west, the murals on the outside boasting the number of drafts and bottled beers is totally misleading but never the less the truth is substantial enough. The draft selection is, well, eh... Guinness and some macros. The bottled beer selection however is great. Plus they have a discount section of the cooler (basically a "need to get rid of it shelf") for less than 3 dollars. They basically have Sierra Nevada, Sam Adams and Saranac's whole year round line up available plus some other totally random u.s. micros along with some imports from Germany, Scotland and Ireland. All beers i have ever ordered were under five bucks.

The atmosphere makes this bar great for me as well, as i am a sucker for dive bars with even the slightest selection of decent beers. they have a couple of dart boards, pool table, used to have a foosball table although they may have just moved it, pinball machines, touch screens and they also used to have darkstalkers, a classic capcom street fighterstyle game that never took off. All this is surrounded by old breweriana: cans, advertisements and neon signs all dating way back. And you gotta love the novelty dispenser machine in the mens bathroom. Did i also mention that there is live music here. As a local musician myself that has performed here i must say that it is the place i like to perform at the most of all the places in rochester i have performed at.

Are there better beer bars in Rochester? Of course, but none with as much character as this one.

Photo of slander
3.64/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Sully'd mentioned this place once or twice but it just never clicked. And you know how non-beer people are regarding "knowing a place with good beer". The name California Brew Haus invokes something of an image, I suppose. I had to get some bearing from John before I could consider it seriously. Turns out, it's a ways down the road some from my hotel, so having trucked back from Buffalo early one night, I wandered over, 'cause, there's beer...

On entering, a long "L" shaped wood bar seating a dozen or so with a giant fat man watching me write on the end. A big 3 door glass front cooler holding the bottled selections sits on one end, and a deuce down on the other end. The barback counter between them holds tiered booze with strips of scratch off tickets extending out from the bottles there, and glassware below. Wood paneled ceilings and walls, mostly plastered with placards and bumper stickers, macro neons, signs, mirrors, brewery clockage... I think that's a hood of a Dundee Honey Brown car suspended over the bar. TV's above the far cooler and mounted behind me. Something in the way of a food menu there, seems to be of the fish fry and clams variety.

A side room holds a pair of pool tables angled and a pinball machine or three, Phil's golf game (Fore!), and electronic darts in a nook to the rear. Through the bar and down something rampish, a deceptively large rear room with a smaller bar there, some seating and a band playing there just now. It's rock and roll, man.

Guinness & a dozen taps of macro, and at least a dozen and a half empty handles from and center below the bar. Curious. Nearly 100 bottles and cans in the coolers three in front of me. About ¼ of them micros (8 from Sam Adams, 6 from Saranac including the impy stout & IPA, 4 from Anchor & Sierra Nevada, and Magic Hat, Mendocino, Pete's. Another ¼ of them decent imports, mostly on the German side (Augustiner Maximator & Edelstoff, Spaten Optimator & Lager, Dinkelacker Pils & Dark, Hacker-Pschorr Edelhell & Oktoberfest, Paulaner & Weihenstephan Hefe, Beck's & Dark, St. Pauli Girl & Dark), and then various this and that's (Carlsberg Pils & Elephant, Mackeson XXX Stout, McEwan's Scotch Ale, Theakston Old Peculier, Belhaven Scottish Ale, Dragon Stout, and 4 from Sam Smith). The remaining 1/2 are macros, maltos, ciders, and N/A's.

It was a toss up between Anchor OSA '07 and Mickey's Big Mouth. It was close but I went with the OSA, tasty as ever. I had another. Talked to the owner for a bit. He orders small quantities of a lot of different things and turns it over quickly, helped along by a "$2.50 beers" shelf to rotate things out when it's time. Used to do a lot more on tap, but it's not what the clientele wants so he does macro taps and micro and import bottles.

Well worn, blue collar, kind of corner bar, chock full of regular regulars. I had do dodge the hoochie radio station girls pushing tickets to something playing somewhere soon. Still, them OSA's were a welcome surprise.

Photo of Hoagie1973
3.73/5  rDev +4.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Not a bad place to hang. Mixed crowd of young & older.
Big enough that you can find another room to hang out in and get away from "that really drunk guy." Good venue for bands - big stage & plenty of room. Acoustics... maybe not so much.
Excellent selection of bottled beers, but nothing impressive as far as draft beer. Guiness is about the most exotic import on tap.
Overall a good place to hang. Pool tables, dart boards, an outside deck, and food.
Not the cleanest and not the fanciest (so I feel right at home).

Photo of animal69
4/5  rDev +11.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

this was the first bar i drank at in the rock when i came up here in '01, but i didn't have beer, nor did i the several times i watched bands play over the years, you'd never guess the place was that big from the street, it's your avg. corner bar that's usually full of your working class, except on weekends when the back room is packed with all types, not where i thought i'd sit down on sat. afternoon to shake off the snow and find a cooler filled with a divine assortment of craft & imports i had never tried ( over 75 bottle & at least 6 taps ), i sat for several hours and filled up on some sweet brews, and then it hit me, " i think i just found my new hangout", i definitely recommend it...

03/29/08 Edit: their matchbook boasts "200 brands of beer 32 taps"

Photo of CBFanWish
3.28/5  rDev -8.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

This is your tough-ass blue collar bar. They don't have a fancy imported bar or a dress code. No, this bar isn't your sissy bar. They have a great bottle selection with mircos and imports from everywhere. They also serve the big macro beers, well, because not everyone is like us. The service was about average. I was always handed my beer without waiting too long, and the prices were pretty decent also. This is a cool place to go. Leave your manners behind and come on down. Beware, there are some beers that are way past expired.

Photo of John
3.48/5  rDev -2.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Update 2/05

No more CB draughts on. Usually SNPA or Dundees Pale or Amber can be had. Bottled selection remains substantial.

This is a real no frills, blue collar bar. No froo-froo stuff here. This joint was a beer bar before the term "beer bar" was created. A decent selection of draughts with mix of (mostly) macros, micros and imports. They also have several draught beers made especially for them by a local microbrewery (Custom Brewcrafters), the Double Dutch Cream Porter alone is worth the trip. Very good selection of bottled beer...but a word of caution regarding the freshness. Friendly staff.

California Brew Haus in Rochester, NY
- out of 100 based on 7 ratings.