Ratings: 24 | Reviews: 20 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by BeerBelcher:
2.8/5 rDev -25.1%
I recently moved to Columbus, and it has impressed me as being the chain-restaurant capital of the universe. This isn't a priori a bad thing, but a chain brewpub prompts for me association with Gordon Biersch, which isn't a good thing. Still, I had high hopes for this place as I stopped in with Flyer for a beer.
IMO, brewpubs are polarized; either they are rather upscale, or complete dives. And, I've found, that the more upscale the brewpub, generally the less interesting and more pedestrian their beer. I think that's because an affluent consumer tends to THINK they like craft beer; whether they really do or not is a different matter. With this hypothesis in mind, I was both dismayed and pleased by how nice the decor of BJs was. Still, it did not portend well for the beer quality.
They had a pretty wide selection of beer; I even saw they medaled at GABF...although this was in 1996 (and the bar was risen considerably since then). The place was busy; service at the bar was glacial and fairly vacuous. I had one beer - a "Belgian Wheat Grand Cru," which appeared to be a misunderstanding of Belgian styles; it tasted as though someone tried to make Blue Moon "big." Weird, not that great, and combined with the relatively lousy service, Flyer and I were motivated to move on to the Rusty Bucket on Polaris.
While I'm kind of panning this place, I should mention that I'm planning on returning on Friday. The food looked good, and despite my experience, BJs is more desirable than other area dining choices my wife will try to foist on me, such as Cheesecake Factory (ugh...I hate that place).
05-05-2009 14:43:24 | More by BeerBelcher
More User Reviews:
4/5 rDev +7%
BJ's is one of the better chain breweries out there. My wife and I frequent the one in Polaris-Columbus, although now that we've been to some local bars we like their laid-back atmosphere better, as opposed to the chain feeling of BJ's.
However, BJ's delivers. Service is almost impeccably good, seating is ample and comfortable, food is more than nice (for a chain) and beers are generally excellent. Their Piranha IPA is up to par with your favorite hoppy IPA, their Jeremiah Red is a pleasant lighter version of an Arrogant Bastard-style strong ale and their Tatonka stout is an awesomely drinkable Imperial Stout.
They also have some guest taps, I'm a fan of Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale, almost always available there.
09-16-2010 02:36:19 | More by DoubleSimcoe
3.75/5 rDev +0.3%
A nice set up, nice sports bar with a big screen made of four tv's with two on the side, nice selection of sports. The service was good, it was great, but adequate and average. On tap were all of bj's beers plus a few guest beers, stone brewing and some ciders were present. The beer was good, nice looks and taste, true to the styles. Not a huge selection but enough to keep you interested. Nice big menu a couple of pages look with good food. Overal a very enjoyable expierence and a place i would for sure go back to.
07-23-2010 20:09:44 | More by goblue3509
3.9/5 rDev +4.3%
I've hit this place several times now with the wife. I'd say this one is more of a restaurant than a brew pub for sure, but still has pretty solid brew for the most part.
The atmosphere is mainly a trendy sports bar. A huge big screen that can be divided up into nine seperate tvs behind the bar and has tv's through out the place. A lot of red and black to go with the modern look. The bar is pretty huge with a lot of wood.
Service wise I think it all depends on the individual server. I've hardly ever sat with an empty glass and they seem to be on top of it for the most part.
Selection wise its nothing terrible. All of their beers are on tap which is usually right around ten. It appears that they have 8 or so year round brews with a couple seasonal. A handful of other brews on tap, which seem to never change that the other guys have already mentioned.
I think the food is pretty solid. A great deep dish pizza. Every thing I've ordered has been pretty solid.
07-17-2010 06:07:31 | More by nrbw23
3.38/5 rDev -9.6%
I've been to many BJ's and this one keeps up with the standards of the others. Food is great and worth the trip up I71 alone. The beer is usually consistently good but not out of this world. Their Pale Ale is probably the best that BJ's produces. Beer knowledge of the staff is hit or miss. The bartenders know their stuff but some of the waitstaff seems clueless to beer.
I would recommend BJ's to anyone at almost any city. It's a good way to help expand your "domestic only" friends to better beer.
05-08-2010 16:34:58 | More by sdsurfer217
3.95/5 rDev +5.6%
For a while when this place first opened my wife and I had the luxury of living less than 10 minutes away, and we would be here at least twice a week.
The restaurant is very large inside, dark, all hard wood floors (be careful, they tend to over-wax sometimes!). There are many flat screen TVs stationed around but they are unobtrusive except for the largest ones above the bar.
There is a self-seating bar area with standing tables and a row of booths in front of the actual bar. The rest is dedicated to dining.
My first misconception about BJ's was that they brewed all their beers at each location, but in fact most/all is brought in from another location. They have two tanks at the far corner but it is unclear if they are actually used for beer (I think at least one is for their home-made root beer, which is outstanding btw).
They have 6 or 7 full-time beers that are their own brand that you can get year-round. All are Belgian based in style and/or composition. I like/enjoy most of their beers, but all except the IPA are extremely sweet for my taste. My favorite is their Piranha Pale Ale, one of my favorite easy-drinking pale ales.
They used to have a very good rotating list of seasonals. When BJ's first opened it seemed that they offered two seasonals that changed every month. Lately they seem to have whittled these down to 2 or 3 for the year. I hear that some of the other western locations have better selections though. If you get a chance to try their Oatmeal Stout it won't disappoint. Another good one was their Maibock.
They have another 4-10 taps dedicated to outside beers, and they also offer a fairly impressive list of bottled Belgian beers as well.
The staff seems to know their own beer very well, are very attentive and friendly. I wouldn't necessarily trust them on other beer though. Case in point:
I was on a kick trying a bunch of the Belgians they had bottled of. I ordered a Duvel and the server insisted on pouring it for me. At the time I was more of a beer novice, but even then I knew not to quickly pour a beer straight into the center of a glass at height unless you want a large head. Well Duvel turns out to be one of the worst beers to pour in such a manner. I was left with 10% beer and 90% head in a pint (I know now they should have given me different glassware as well). The bottle even says directly on it, "Pour unhurriedly!"
Needless to say my server apologized, let me keep the remaining Duvel in that bottle, and brought me a new one free of charge (which I poured myself). Like I said, good service, even if they aren't extremely knowledgeable.
The food is amazing for the type of restaurant that it is. Mostly American style fare, they have delicious salads and sandwiches, a two page list of appetizers, and some of the best pizzas you'll ever get in a chain restaurant. Deep-dish says it all.
Overall I really enjoy BJ's, though to be honest they were much more of a dinner destination for me when they first opened, the last couple years have seemed to show a decline in beer selection and quality of the drafts (the beers seem more flat nowadays).
TIP: call ahead or prepare to wait on Fridays and Saturdays. They've been known to have 3 hour wait times after work on Friday nights.
TIP: They offer half-gallon growlers for $11 flat which includes the glass growler. About as cheap as it gets for a growler.
04-01-2010 05:06:10 | More by Spider889
BJ's Restaurant in Columbus, OH
86 out of 100 based on 24 ratings.