Empire Brewing Company
Active Beers: 27
Beer Ratings: 374
Beer Avg: 3.7
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 55 | Reviews: 45 | Show All Ratings:
3.7/5 rDev -8.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$
Worth a trip if you are in Syracuse. Tons of beer selection and right downtown. Food was great. Came here with a group of ten people. Service was quick and polite. Enjoyed our meals and the brews. There were enough beers that everyone in the group could find something they liked
12-04-2013 22:56:05 | More by boszormeny
4/5 rDev -1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
A nice brewpub in the hip side of downtown Syracuse.
Good beer selection. I concentrated on their drafts. The Rye IPA and Brown Ale were my favorites.
The Morracan Chili is worth it. Followed by the Bently Burger another good choice.
Ambiance was great. Busy, especially the weekend we visited. (The Orange B-ball playing Georgetown for the last time, their 61st meeting).
Empire is well worth dropping by for a pint and a bite.
06-06-2013 02:32:32 | More by jaz58
4.53/5 rDev +12.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25 | $$
Empire Brewing was great. Cool atmosphere. You walk into a basement below the street down a steel step staircase. Exposed brick and dark browns give this a great atmosphere. The bar tender was friendly and knowledgeable. I didn't have a bad beer here and was thoroughly impressed with each beer I tried. I had:
-local grind (coffee stout)
-American strong ale (unbelievable. So tasty and complex)
-Liv and let Rye (RyePA)
All of them were delicious and refreshing. They won a GABF Gold in 2002 for their Oktoberfest. An office after party came in about my third beer in which was pretty annoying as they were ordering martinis, cosmos, and Jack and diets, but all in all a good energy at the bar. Food was good and unique which is essential at a beer bar. If you are in Syracuse, give it a go!
04-15-2013 23:50:21 | More by mparnell0202
4.78/5 rDev +18.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $
Amazing selection. Very reasonable prices. Great beers. My only complaint is that you can't pick and choose the beers you want in a flight. They pick them for you. I did not eat here but next time I go I will. Every beer I tried was good. I will come back here again and again. Definitely a hidden gem in Syracuse. The staff was so nice. I got a free flight because someone ordered one and didn't want it I guess. The bartender gave it to m because he noticed that I sampled different beers going from light to dark. Even the light beer was good.
12-30-2012 04:15:28 | More by derekdenim
2.78/5 rDev -31.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 2.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 2 | food: 5 | $$
Great food, great atmosphere.
A - The place is gorgeous. Cool subway entrance off the street down a level to a waiting area, inside is pristine. Low light, brick/mod decor. Makes you think you're somewhere cooler than Syracuse.
Made the mistake of sitting and eating at the bar, where an extremely low-brow nitwit would not leave my girlfriend and I alone, even while we were clearly eating and not into hearing of how awesome his band was and how the beers here needed more yeast. He fell asleep at the bar 10 minutes later and was asked to leave. He should have been cut off long ago.
Q - This low rating is for the beers. We split one of their flights, which I'll complain about under selection, but anyhow...I found the stout okay - not great, and the winter warmer "tog grogg" a little over spiced. Those were by FAR the best two beers. Amber ale, Skinny Atlas Light, Deep Purple, and their Pale were all really horrible. I'd heard really god things about this place so maybe I'm being too harsh, but they were not good.
S - Half-present waitress/bartender. Had a short one-liner to toss out about each beer, nothing more. Went to eat her lunch in between giving us drinks, taking order, and bringing food, thats all we saw of her. Nobdy else to replace her while she sat at the other end of the bar stuffing face.
S - They had a decent number of beers that enticed me, however we were FORCED to include 4 beers of their choosing on our flight of 6 total beers. Amber, Pale, were pretty bad, the stout was drinkable, and then they have the stupidity/balls to include Skinny Atlas Light. This is literally a better version of Bud Light, but still pretty horrible. Why the ()&*@ would you force craft beer lovers to drink this? I get that they make it because they don't have the backbone to tell BMC drinkers to screw off and order a real beer, but to force this atrocity upon everyone who orders a flight is a real dick move.
F - I'll probably go back here, and if I do, it's only because the food was awesome. I got the Mediterranean platter - olives, feta, falafel, hummus, baba ganoush, and pita bread. What a meal. This was yesterday and I'm still sorry I ate it all, but I couldn't stop.
02-01-2012 13:01:46 | More by Edwaka01
3.93/5 rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
the worst kept secrect in syracuse. this place is always packed and for good reason. underground facility with dim lighting, mod style furnishings, and a wide range of house made and local guest beers on tap. they have all the standard beers, a light ale, a pale, a brown, and ipa, and a stout, which are all just fine, but they also have some impressive bigger beers and seasonal selections. their wheat wine comes to mind. food is new orleans influenced, creative, and quite good. ive had many items from this menu and never been let down. crawfish nola is my favorite. they do cool events, like lobster on new years and various beer events. its all a bit pricey, but so is everyhting downtown. i like this place a lot
01-12-2012 22:51:40 | More by StonedTrippin
4.28/5 rDev +5.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$
First, this place is below street level, so you have to look for the way down. Second, we could not find a parking space on the road, so we parked at the parking garage around the block and walked. It's not far. However, it is definitely worth the effort.
We were seated quickly; it took a while before our waitress to get to us, because the place was quite busy. That's a good sign, though. You know the atmosphere is good when you're at a brewpub and you see a party of nine women coming in to eat, none of them with beer. You know they're there because it's a great place. (I know women like beer too, I just say this because this specific group did not have beer.)
Our waitress told us of the beer sampler - six beers, four standard and two of choice. I ordered this, of course; but the waitress liked the hefe-weizen, which I did not order, so when my sampler arrived there were seven beers, not six. She wanted my opinion of the hefe, which was quite good. All the beers were above average quality, and the samples were larger than expected. Good thing I can hold my alcohol well.
Now on to the food. My wife ordered a Tuesday pasta special, which had olives,feta cheese, and garlic. She absolutely loved it, and it was loaded with garlic. It was a good thing I had made review notes of the beer before it arrived, there was that much.
I got the elk burger with Swiss cheese (no mushrooms) and blue corn corn bread. The burger was not done enough, but that was easily fixed. When I got it back, it was perfect. Delicious, did not need any salt or condiments. And the corn bread was great by itself, even better with the maple butter that came with it.
Prices were reasonable. A six beer sampler for $10, the elk burger and one side for $12, my wife's pasta for $12. Average prices, above average food. We were in Syracuse for two nights. I am not sorry we chose this place as one of our dinner choices.
10-05-2011 01:04:03 | More by connecticutpoet
4.1/5 rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
For the beer enthusiast, no trip to the Armory Square nightlife district is complete without a stop in to the Empire Brewpub. Tucked away in a cellar-like setting just off of Walton St. seems the perfect getaway from the cramped and noisy streetscape.
A covered set of medal stairs go underground to a chasm of exposed brick, stonework, metal tables and a handsome stainless steel storefront. Once inside, the hostess and bar greets with about 20 seats, pockets of flanking rooms for table seating, and an elevated patio upstairs that overlooks Walton St.
The rotation of taps inlcude 8-10, six or so being perminant while a few seasonals and special releases filter through. On this visit, these beers were offered: Skinny Atlas Light, Summer Lager (Seasonal), Pale Ale, Amber Ale, Black Magic Stout, Brown Ale, India Pale Ale, Aphro White, Cream Ale (Nitro), Maple Porter, and Wheatwine (Special Release). All seemed above average to good in quality with the standouts to me were the Brown Ale and Wheatwine.
Where our waitress was well equipped to answer the basic answers to questions that we threw at her, we didn't probe her for too many details beyond what an average waitress at a brewpub should know. She was eager to help us and greeted us with a smile and kind word with each visit to our table.
The gormet-style food was prepared by their 'performance' kitchen with exposed views for customers in a sleek and well lit display. The lobster bisque and Thai chicken salad were certainly satisfactory for my lunch time visit. The chefs seem to take pride in the quality of locally grown ingredients as well as their artistic display.
The decor of the restaurant and brewery is very artistic as the outside brick texture continues inwards. Understated woods, exposed ductwork, and structure gives a slight warehouse character while the earthen color scheme, local artwork, track lighting, stainless steel, and interesting architectural elements keep you peaking around the next corner. More storefront windows also pear into the brewery component where carefully polished brew kettles, mash tuns, and fermenters proudly boast the process of the beer that I have in my hand. The entire brewhouse is very well lit and clean throughout.
If not for the slightly insufficient parking on the street, I would almost always make Empire a stop when in the area. But as it is, I suggest off-peak hours such as mid afternoons or week nights.
06-29-2011 15:32:20 | More by BEERchitect
4.05/5 rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
Below street level in the main "bar and resturant" part of Syracuse, Empire Brewing has a large bar and lots of seating. The decor was modern with open brick. Outside was standing room floating tables.
Selection was mostly their own brewed beers which where pretty tasty. The IPA was a bitter hop bomb. I ordered the fish tacos which where also excellent. The menu was nice and not as highly priced as many reviews on here lead you to believe. Most sandwiches where $8 or $9.
Excellent brew pub. Deffinatly recommend to those in Syracuse.
06-23-2011 01:52:50 | More by UDbeernut
4.15/5 rDev +2.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 5 | $$
Empire is a great brewpub. In terms of the beer, what they brew is just fine. None of it blows me away, none of it really disappoints me (with one or two exceptions), but you know you can always get something satisfying. They also fill growlers of anything they brew, so that's awesome, and relatively cheap fills, too. But, for those that love real ales, I've never seen anything on cask.
In addition to their beer, they have some mixed drinks and wine, though I've never bothered to get any. Their FOOD, however, is really, really exceptional. If their beer is good then their food is great. Very great. Plus, they work to locally source as many ingredients as possible, and work with local farms, so they're really on the ball as far as being a responsible eating establishment. In terms of the restaurant aspect of the place, it's a nice atmosphere and the service is adequate to excellent, never bad. Can't go wrong here.
All in all, a great place to go if you're looking for high-quality food and a good, local beer to boot.
04-19-2011 02:39:27 | More by fmccormi
Empire Brewing Company in Syracuse, NY
90 out of 100 based on 55 ratings.