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Great Dane Pub & Brewing Company (Hilldale)

Not Rated.
Great Dane Pub & Brewing Company (Hilldale)Great Dane Pub & Brewing Company (Hilldale)
BEER AVG
4.3/5
Based on:
1 Beers
3 Ratings
Place Score: 91
Ratings: 26
Reviews: 14
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 8.4%
Taps: 16
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

357 Price Place
Madison, Wisconsin, 53705
United States
phone: (608) 661-9400

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @greatdanepub

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: NeroFiddled on 01-19-2007)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 26 | Reviews: 14 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by woodychandler:
Photo of woodychandler
4/5  rDev -1.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Transcribed from notes dated Su, 15 Aug 2010.

Forget CAPT Morgan's "Calling All CAPTs" campaign - I am now officially CAPT Clueless, having completely glossed over this place on Friday and only noticed it inadvertently as the bus made the wide right turn onto Midvale off of University on my return trip to Old CHI.

If Iron Hill (Wlimington, DE) was their location on steroids, this was The Dane on growth hormones! F**ksake, but this was one big dog. Aligned at an angle to the corner of Price Place, the entry had a short vestibule which opened onto the m.d.s. straight ahead, but still aligned to the corner.

The best way to describe the interior would be to think of it as a baseball diamond with the entry/mds as Home Plate. On the exterior, patio seating ran down the 1st and 3rd base sides. On the interior, the 3rd base side was lined with booths, extending around to left field, all along the windows. On the extent of the left field patio was a blue-felt pool table (!). The restaurant area was along 1st base side with booths in front of the windows and standard tables and chairs in the center. The lavs were behind the bar (call it Pitcher's Mound)/

Beer: Eleven (11) dedicated Great Dane taps, plus Miller Lite, Strongbow and Emerald Isle Stout on N2 .

Service: Fantastic! Friendly, forthcoming, unobtrusive, plus bring your best Portugese.

Bottom Line: A bit too upscale for yours truly, but still worth visiting.

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Photo of craft_shannie
2.96/5  rDev -26.9%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 3 | service: 2.75 | selection: 3 | food: 3

Stopped in for pints & appetizers before seeing a film at Sundance theater. Bar was relatively packed w. ppl and chatter for being so early on a Friday night. Service was very slow & disinterested. Ordered New Glarus Strawberry Rhubarb & Great Dane's Emerald Isle Stout. The stout may have been one of the worst I've ever had. Very disappointed w. this visit.

Photo of crossovert
3.83/5  rDev -5.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Got some samples and some food to go from here the other day. It is your typical brewpub franchise location. Very nice furnishings but very boring. Big place, could have a party there but the bar was pretty timid.

They had about 10 house beers and 3 guests. You could get samplers of everything but the Raspberry tart. The beers are pretty god to pretty shitty. Don't try an IPA form these guys they totally mislabel their west-coast ipas.

The service was good and the food was pretty good. I just ordered a chicken sandwich so I can't say too much.

Photo of bigkingken
4.48/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

The outside was unassuming, it reminded me a lot of Lennies in Bloomington, but the interior was outstanding. Two levels, outdoor patios, amazing woodwork, a giant horseshoe bar and a ton of seating make this a diamond in the rough.

Some of the best and most innovative food I’ve ever had anywhere is served here at this outstanding brewpub. One of the sides they offer is a garlic plantain mash that I found absolutely delicious. My Mom didn’t quite agree, so I ate all of hers too! The Cuban sandwich I had featured both deli ham and pulled pork, and while it could have used a touch of mustard, it was fantastic. The only thing I wasn’t blown away by was the dessert. The carrot cake came highly recommended, and was a bit of an inside-out version with layers of cream cheese inside and the walnuts on top. It was good, but it was subpar for a carrot cake.

I hate to sound like a broken record, but the beer here is outstanding. They offer cask ale varieties, which is always a huge plus in my book. I thoroughly enjoyed everything I tried, but the Scottish Ale prevailed above all others. It had a strong caramel flavor and a wonderful finish that left me wanting more. One of my favorites of all-time.

Excellent and prompt service. Unfortunately, our waitress wasn’t a cheesecake fan, or the dessert she recommended may have put them over the top…

Photo of ndolover
4.13/5  rDev +2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Located on the west side of Madison in a shopping area you could miss this place very easily. Essentially it has the same beers and food as the Great Dane dowtown. Unfortunately, the Great Dane downtown is the gold standard for brewpubs.

To be frank I find that a few of their beers miss the mark. However, they usually have some really good examples and are not afraid to serve up something crazy...like 10 year old Barley Wine.

The food is really good for pub fare. I like the fact that they offer a sustain a burger. Essentially, a burger that you can pay $1 more for and is locally raised beef, whole grain bread, etc.

The service is always solid. I brought my twin 2 year old boys and they knew enough to put us in a room to ourselves. The waitstaff was very patient with the process.

Long story short...If you are in town I would go to the downtown location. However, if you are closer to the Westside, don't feel that you need to go downtown to have a good time and enjoy good beers. Check this place out!

Photo of beerwolf77
3.74/5  rDev -7.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Yet another stop on the bus tour of drunkenss passed off as a bachelor party.

I've been to all the Great Dane locations now and this one is no different really.

Brew pub meets upscale restaurant. Dark wood, tons of tables, huge wrap around bar. Beer selection consists of all the GD stuff and a handful of guest taps. Notably Raspberry tart from NG.

We didn't order food but I've eaten at most of the GD locales and it's always good.

Nothing much here that stands out. It's a chain brew pub. Take it or leave it.

Photo of dirtylou
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

The 4th installment of the great dane empire (if you count the airport). Ignore the earlier reviews about not having Dane beer on tap - that law was thrown out years ago.

I've probably been here 15 times - it's location lends itself well to a combination with a film at Sundance or lunch if working in the research park area.

The food is roughly the same as downtown - not outstanding, but a diverse menu that hits more than it misses.

The building is huge - its actually 2 bars under one roof and it seems like the back bar has the better tap lines. Unfortunately, much like the other great dane locations, the atmosphere is pretty terrible. It's a yuppie area for sure, but the back bar has obnoxiously loud DJ music on the weekends.

The beer selection is vastly superior to the Fitchburg location (horrible place) and really not far off the pace of the downtown location. The main differences seem to be a year-round IIPA and Marzen. Texas Speedbump IPA on cask was a seasonal (seriously - i've never not seen this offered so lets just add it to the list) along with a belgian dark and a couple other pales.

I definitely wouldnt tell someone to seek this out, but it does provide situational advantages as there are no real alternatives on the west side of town.

Photo of mklinger
4.24/5  rDev +4.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Stopped here on my way out of town. It's located in a strip mall that looks like it can't be great, but it's standard nice pub inside. Lots of wood, long bar with mirrors. We sat at the bar. Other seating wasn't all that extensive but seemed fine.

Beer selection and quality that we had was great! 14 taps with 2 cask conditioned hand pumps. We had the Texas Speedway IPA (all Amarillo hops) and the Black Earth Porter, both cask conditioned. They were both spectacular! The bartender who initially waited on us was fine and chatted about the beer some -- not great beer knowledge but not bad. She knew some of the malts in the beers and could talk about them but wasn't sure about process. Still I take that as pretty darned good for a waitress/bartender. Also chatted with the manager some. We were trying to decide which growler to buy to take home to my dad. He knew alot about the brewing process they used, gave us probably half a dozen tastes of beers we were considering, and sat a drank a couple with us -- great guy. They also sold pint glass, but who needs another shaker pint glass? However, their cask beers was served in imperial pint glasses. I asked if he would sell me a couple. He said no problem, wrapped em up, gave me the same price as the shaker pints. Great deal. We didn't eat, but everything else was a good experience.

Photo of Ek0nomik
4.33/5  rDev +6.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

I stopped here today after work and last weekend. First, their food selection is quite good. They have a lot of interesting items on the menu, including some of your fail safes. Pizza, burgers, sandwiches, fish. It's all here.

Tonight when I visited we went to the back of the place. It was pretty dark, but maybe that's what they were going for back there.

They have a pretty nice beer selection. An IPA, an IIPA, German pilsner, wheat, stout, porter and maybe a few more. The IIPA that I had was pretty tasty.

The service here was good. Nothing above and beyond, but good nonetheless.

Photo of Beejay
4/5  rDev -1.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Not a bad place at all.. We went with a very large group so I am sure that impacts this review a bit. Plus I was not paying so.. No idea on the prices. I got one of their samplers, stout, belgian dubbel, cask porter, and their scottish ale. I really liked the porter and th scottish.. the dubbel was a little hoppy but still good, however their stout was sadly lacking.

Food was original, creative, and tasty. And considering the size of our group the waitstaff did a great job making sure we were all taken care of.

Make sure you try their porter milk shake. I is pretty awesome.. but beware, throw too much beer on top of that, and you may be in for an unhappy ending.

-cheers

Photo of aggiearcher13
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

They are serving their own beers here now, have been for a few months. Since sometime in the spring if I recall correctly.

A: It really depends on where you sit. Near the bar, it's a sports bar atmosphere. Outdoor patio is nice (when it's not 10 degrees outside).

Q: Good food, good beer.

S: They helped me out with some grain one time for a milk stout I was making (I ran out of roasted barley), which I really appreciate. The service has always been prompt, usually good-looking, and has good advice on the food/beer selections.

S: Good selection, anything you're thirsting for they have. The Peck's Pilsener is great, so is their double IPA and the scotch ale. Some others leave a little to be desired, but I think most people will find something they like here.

F: There is quite a range of food so whatever you crave they probably have. I like the fish tacos with the habanero fire salsa a lot.

V: The beer prices are very reasonable, the food can be a little pricey depending on what you get.

Photo of Atron67
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

HAd some really good beers on tap, although untill tehy can get some Wi state law changed, they cant have their own beers on taps.
Spotted Cow, Belgian Red from NEw Glarus, Hacker Pschorr hefeweizen, tyranana bitter woman IPA, Leinies Big Eddy, Ale asylum Hopalicious and some other stuff on tap, a little expensive at 5 a beer, but they are the larger pints.
Food was pretty good. and it arrived really quickly which was great. the server was quick and energetic. the place was pretty nice too, big doors, and lots of bar space

Im updating my review to show that they now serve their own beers with the laws changed. they seem to be running smoother and i like their work on cask ales

Photo of NeroFiddled
4/5  rDev -1.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

14 taps, 2 hand pumps... few from Lakefront, a couple from Lake Louie, just one from New Glarus when I was there. I'm thinking there might have been an Ale Asylum too, but I'm not sure now. And an average assortment of regular type stuff to round that out.

Big open entrance. Tall ceilings. Tall booths in the front window, with some smaller, enclosed booths tucked in the back corner. Larger dining room behind. It's brand new so it all looks good. Nice kind of cherry-colored wood. Very mainstream though; and a bit cavernous. I've never been there at night, but I'd imagine the sound just bounces around like a speakerbox.

Great food. I love the African peanut stew, or whatever it is. And the Indian Vegetable Curry. And the Veggie Burrito. It all seems fresher, and not as greasy as the stuff you find at so many other places. It's just good, everyday food that's done really well.

So, overall... Well done. Well organized. And a pretty damned fine place, but don't expect any Dane beer just yet. And, in comparison to the original by the capital, this one seems very corporate. It's a nice place to meet for a business meeting though.

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Great Dane Pub & Brewing Company (Hilldale) in Madison, WI
91 out of 100 based on 26 ratings.