Al's of Hampden / Pizza Boy Brewing
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Active Beers: 77
Beer Ratings: 1,387
Beer Avg: 3.95
Taps: 102 / Bottles: 350
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
Ratings: 89 | Reviews: 67 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by Slatetank:
4.45/5 rDev +0.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I visited Al's for lunch today. Do you like Pizza and Craft Beer? You will like Al's then. The atmosphere of a nice corner pizza shop, clean, well-lit and easy to understand menus. The coolers flank the counter which has several pies displayed and the taps are in plain view.
The selection is the real reason to go. They have about 12 or more taps mostly craft and such bottled selections as Troeg's (even scratch and Nugget currently)Stone, DFH, Green Flash, Bell's, St Bernardus, Samuel Smiths and the list goes on...
The service is fast friendly, no-nonsense and they have a handle on what they sell, recommending and helping with new items.
The quality and value is top notch as both are hard to find fault with I appreciate the freshness of the selections and pricing is very reasonable. I found the buffalo wing pizza to be tasty and it was served hot. The food is worth it for portion sizes and I would only criticize by saying it didn't taste like buffalo wings on the pizza, just chicken slices, but tasty and filling.
I appreciated the variety of menu choices: 4 kinds of pies-neopolitan, white, deep dish and specialty, easy to read beer and food menus with prices under each selection. I enjoyed the visit and they were able to provide good service while there was a lunch rush-recommended
04-09-2009 20:12:19 | More by Slatetank
More User Reviews:
4.13/5 rDev -6.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
Review based on new place, would have been slightly higher for old one. First of all the beer selection is outstanding. Usually at least 20+ Pizza Boys on tap, of all styles and very good to excellent quality. The remaining 70-80 taps available feature mainly American craft beers with lots of PA breweries and an excellent representation of the remainder of the U.S., at least what Al can get, with several rarieties/one-offs on at most times. The foreign selection is limited. There are a few rare bottles and a couple of Pizza Boy bottles for sale, in house consumption only. Al's offers a relatively small but impressive selection of bottles to go and most drafts are available in 32 & 64 oz growlers, bottles and growlers are very reasonably priced. Food is pretty much pizza shop menu, but is very good and the menu is extensive, but in about 6 years of visiting Al's the menu has changed very little if at all. They used to have some special dinner nights at the old place but not at the new one. My main complaint is the service, never found the bartenders/servers to be rude in any way but some can be less than engaging to say the least when it comes to beer. I don't think this is all their fault, as the way the ordering system is set up they don't have time to chit-chat or even really answer questions at certain times. And when I say I have a problem with the service it's how the place is set up for ordering. The best analogy I can give is if you ever been to Max's on Broadway in Baltimore, similar in size comparing Max's main bar only to Al's (Max's probably holds a few more), both offer pub style service order beer and food at the bar and both have 100 taps. Just imagine if everyone had to order at Max's at just 2 registers at the bar, it would be a nightmare of lines, which is what Al's becomes many nights and weekends and especially any special event (wasn't as much of a problem at old place as popularity wasn't as great). Also the lack of sample sizes or half pours also is a big drawback (samples were available at the old place). All that being said Al's is hands down the best place for beer between Philly and Pitts in PA. Al's has always presented a unique vibe with outstanding beer, with some refinement this could be worldclass. May come down to Al having to decide between pizza shop and beer bar/brewery.
04-17-2014 02:17:36 | More by DrBier
4.55/5 rDev +2.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25 | $$
Finally made a visit to Al's and it lives up to the hype- large, open atmosphere with a quieter, more family oriented room to the back. The pizza was tasty, but what you're really here for are the brews, and there's plenty, including a lot of their own stuff. Excellent organization on digital boards- there's so many that you end up with quite a tiny font! The in-house beers were all I had on my first visit, and they all were excellent.
There's separate ordering for food and drinks, only thing that I think is a downfall is not offering samples... and that has been mentioned before. Al's puts out a lot of high abv brews, and not being able to purchase a 4oz. glass (I'm not even talking about free pours!) is a real shame- hopefully they'll think about doing this in the future!
Other than that quirk, I loved it, and will definitely be back again. Oh, and I forgot to mention that they have a nice selection of bottles to go as well.... can't beat that
03-03-2014 20:01:43 | More by Shandycan
4.95/5 rDev +12%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$
I love this place and drive up every week like clockwork. I've always found the staff to be friendly, prompt and knowledgable. The owner often stops and chats with each of the customers and answers questions when time permits.
I appreciate the "order at the bar" policy they have. It makes ordering so much simpler and efficient. No sitting around waiting for a server! I was a little confused about the procedure when I went for the first time, so I just went to the take out counter and asked. I also appreciate that they ID me and check my ID against the credit card I leave to run the tab. I've had a credit card stolen before and fixing that is a mess. As for seating, usually you can just seat yourself, but on busier nights a staff member will seat you as soon as one opens and is cleaned off.
I enjoy the selection and even though I tend to be picky about which "flavor" of beer I drink, I am ALWAYS able to find something! I also like the large selection of ciders and malt beverages since I'm not always in the mood for a beer. They have a lot of sour beers which aren't my thing, but seem to balance them well with the other selections.
The food is fantastic. The wings are the best I've ever had and are always fresh and juicy. I ask for extra celery with my orders because they only come with four pieces. The feta, spinich, and tomato white pizza is my favorite. Great to take home and reheat too!
It can get a little noisy during televised sporting events. Also, there is a "family friendly" corner which I bring my kids to, but also appreciate that it is a ways away from the bar for the visits where I don't. It has a couple video games and a claw machine.
02-24-2014 22:04:02 | More by girlwithnojeep
Al's of Hampden / Pizza Boy Brewing in Enola, PA
97 out of 100 based on 89 ratings.