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The Blue Tusk

Not Rated.
The Blue TuskThe Blue Tusk
BA SCORE
95
world-class

80 Ratings
Ratings: 80
Reviews: 59
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 9.56%
Taps: 66
Bottles: 0
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

165 Walton St
Syracuse, New York, 13202-1224
United States
phone: (315) 472-1934

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @thebluetusk

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 80 | Reviews: 59 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Edwaka01:
Photo of Edwaka01
3.86/5  rDev -10%

Came here after eating and getting a flight and being thoroughly disappointed with the beer at Empire to drink a good beer before heading home.
A - Went in mid-day Tuesday - it's a nice place, but I don't think I can accurately rate the vibe, I've heard it gets pretty damn collegy at night.

Q - Great beers all over, and some pretty crappy ones too!

S - Bartender somewhat unwillingly answered a couple questions I had, although to be fair, he did answer them.

S - Decent representation of NY beers and craft beers in general, but not many beers that I can't find at most beer stores in NY. Maybe 5 or so beers out of 60ish that surprised and excited me.

10oz or 20oz pours for most beers, 10oz pours for the specialty beer section. Prices varied with the different brews of course, but none were cheap.

Edwaka01, Feb 01, 2012
More User Reviews:
Photo of nyyfanatic213
5/5  rDev +16.6%

nyyfanatic213, Aug 16, 2014
Photo of Kmichaud
5/5  rDev +16.6%

Kmichaud, Aug 03, 2014
Photo of ClavisAurea
5/5  rDev +16.6%

Best beer bar in Syracuse hands down. outside seating is wonderful when the upstate NY weather is nice (see the picture). dozens of taps and bottles available for anyone's tastes. Last time I was there they had a limited edition collection of craft brewery's collaborations. I had an english bitter that was a damn fine example of the style. super refreshing.

ClavisAurea, Aug 02, 2014
Photo of K_Diggity
3.75/5  rDev -12.6%

K_Diggity, Jul 27, 2014
Photo of Mikus
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Mikus, Jul 23, 2014
Photo of Eweimer1
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Eweimer1, Jul 22, 2014
Photo of Roguer
4.01/5  rDev -6.5%

Bar decor is fine, but there's a preppy, want-to-be upscale vibe to the place that is a bit off-putting. The occasional live band is nice, and the booths are excellently appointed. The bathroom is a near disaster area.

Beer quality is certainly exceptional. Most of the selections are American craft, but there are a number of excellent import taps, as well. The is guaranteed to be a beer here on tap that you like, and quite possibly something you cannot easily get elsewhere.

Service has been really hit or miss. Some of the bartenders have been friendly, while others have been detached. Bartenders always seem busy, even with a small crowd.

Selection follows quality: 69 taps. A very small handful are domestic AALs, but the vast, vast majority are craft from around the US and the world.

Food is really tasty, although they focus on deli-style food for the most part, so the selection is not huge.

Beer and food prices get a little pricey pretty quick, but there are reasonable choices available, as well.

Roguer, Jul 20, 2014
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4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Jaybirdbrew, Jul 06, 2014
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4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

irishpride, Jul 05, 2014
Photo of barbaraeliza
3.75/5  rDev -12.6%

barbaraeliza, Jun 13, 2014
Photo of voxhumana
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

voxhumana, Apr 23, 2014
Photo of AMCimpi
5/5  rDev +16.6%

AMCimpi, Apr 17, 2014
Photo of MadScientist
4/5  rDev -6.8%

MadScientist, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of dwoolley1
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

dwoolley1, Feb 25, 2014
Photo of boszormeny
3.75/5  rDev -12.6%

boszormeny, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of vonnegut21
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

vonnegut21, Jan 09, 2014
Photo of MichaelStoutBeard
5/5  rDev +16.6%

MichaelStoutBeard, Jan 08, 2014
Photo of MichaelStoudBeard
5/5  rDev +16.6%

MichaelStoudBeard, Jan 08, 2014
Photo of Baab200
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

Baab200, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of Mock_Weeze
5/5  rDev +16.6%

Mock_Weeze, Dec 03, 2013
Photo of jasonmmccormick
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

jasonmmccormick, Nov 23, 2013
Photo of BillRoth
4/5  rDev -6.8%

BillRoth, Oct 20, 2013
Photo of Lawl3ss
3.9/5  rDev -9.1%

Up front- This is definitely not my favorite bar, but I'll try to give it a fair evaluation.

I'll stop but the Blue Tusk a few times a year, and it is probably the best option for BAs if you're in Armory square in Syracuse now that Clark's has closed; however be prepared for the greek society sardine can if you try to go on anything resembling an evening or weekend while SU is in session (hence the low atmosphere rating, despite the relatively nice decor.) They also tend to take themselves a bit too seriously, IMO.

Plenty of selection here, though you'll see more than a few macrobrews and some of the larger "craft" breweries like Sam Adams and Magic Hat have more taps than I'd like. Lots of locals and the larger national craft offerings are well represented, though turnover can be somewhat slow in my experience and they tend to have a bunch of selections from the same breweries. 65+ taps and a decent bottle list give you plenty to choose from, however.

Service is good if it's slow, but the place always seems to be understaffed whenever it gets busy, and don't expect to order drinks more than twice if you sit down for dinner on the weekend. The bar and wait staff are generally decently knowledgeable, but you have to catch them when it's not busy.

I've only eaten here a couple times, but the food is pretty good, if pricey ($8-$12 for a sandwich sans side.) The menu is dominated by artisan sandwiches, though they have a few other things like quesadillas and salads. Again, too pretentious for my liking, and not very pub-esque. I was never wowed by any of the food, though I haven't tried many of the more "select" offerings.

Overall, it's a decent bet if you want a large beer selection and food and you're in Armory square, and prices are about on par for the locale. It's got a bad case of the Syracuse I-want-to-be-upscale flu, however, and is only partly successful.

Personally, I prefer Empire Brewery for food and J. Ryan's, which is about four blocks away off of Hannover Square, for beer, but this place is popular with the business crowd during the day and the college kids at night.

Lawl3ss, Jan 10, 2012
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The Blue Tusk in Syracuse, NY
95 out of 100 based on 80 ratings.