McKenzie Brew House
Active Beers: 70
Beer Ratings: 642
Beer Avg: 3.74
Taps: / Bottles:
Cask: / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 55 | Reviews: 52 | Display Reviews Only:
3.15/5 rDev -19.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2 | selection: 4 | food: 3 | $$
This review is based on my latest visit (7-13-07). I didn't think I would be back after the Dude was released from his duties. My wife and I were going to go to Firewaters but after being told I couldn't come in with out dress shoes on (are you f'n kidding me? it's attached to a Hooter's!) we headed back down the road to McKenzie's. As far atmosphere goes it's the same as always. The place is too big and open, imo. Dining area is to the left when you walk in and the bar area is to the right. Huge rectangular bar with a bunch of TVs hanging all around. There are tables and booths on the bar side, also. The waitress we had on this particular evening was very difficult to find. She would disappear for 15-20 minutes at a time and didn't clear any glasses or plates away. "I'll be right back to get them" she kept saying. You would have thought there were ten people sitting at our table. The beers seemed to have fallen off a bit, too. I was afraid that would happen. The IPA I had was good, but fairly average. The Honey Maibock I had was horrible. Tasted like I licked the underside of my lawnmower and then drank the gas that was left in the tank. Yuck. We did have an appetizer, which was barely average. I haven't had much luck with the food in the past for some reason. Not sure if I will ever be back.
07-14-2007 18:20:42 | More by Imstillthegman
4.28/5 rDev +9.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I wrote this review prior to The Dude's departure and am only now getting caught up in transcribing my notes.
I simply do not get down here often enough, despite its convenience. Headed north on US Route 1, we made a left on PA202, and staying in the left lane, continued a mile on and Voila! As we pulled into the parking lot, The Dude's setup was fully visible in the left-hand window at ground level. The west side of the building was the front, with the entryway up a set of steps with stairs on each side of the climb. Once inside, there was a wide vestibule with the brewhouse again visible on the left side, but behind glass. Passing through a second set of double doors, a chalkboard on the right wall announced specials and the m.d.s. was dead ahead, manned by a seeming cadre of waitstaff.
We sat in the non-smoking area, off to the left, in an "L"-shape, with the kitchen fully visible along the east side of the building. To the left of the kitchen and accessed through the restaurant seating section, was The Oak Room, a semi-private meeting facility for groups of ten to thirty-five. The restaurant area was mainly restaurant-style tables and chairs, but set off by some booths.
To the right of the entry was the bar area. The wood-topped bar was to the right of the m.d.s., past the "Underground" entryway, and was a flattened heagonal shape. The back bar was an island in the center of the hexagon. The washrooms were on the bar side on the east side of the building. On the bar side, booths ran along the west window and there were high tables and chairs along the south wall, as well as a raised floor with high tables and chairs along the wall beside the washrooms. There was also an outdoor deck on the south side of the building.
To the right of the m.d.s. and down an immediate flight of steps was the "Underground Pub - Billiards & Games" area with its own square, centrally-positioned bar; three pool tables; a CD jukebox; and a couple of video games.
I had the tortilla-ecrusted chicken breast sandwich and Cuban Black Bean soup for lunch. As always, the beers were fantastic.
02-16-2007 16:42:12 | More by woodychandler
3.85/5 rDev -1.5%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$
I am basing this review on 2 visits. The most recent trip was with my Mom, sister Kate and friend carlosd74 around Thanksgiving. I was too occupied bonding happily with them rather than critiquing the place, but I had the pale ale which is very west-cost IPA-like and tasty.
My first visit was a quick hour at the bar during a Grey's Anatomy episode, a TV show which I had never watched before. I became engrossed in it waiting for my lettuce wraps. I had two pints of the pale ale on-tap. Its in the 5% range, brownish red in color. It was surprisingly of quality, with a real hoppy bite to it. Nicely balanced. I really enjoyed it! It went perfect with the lettuce wraps. I took a growler home in fact. I had to get the hell out of there however when the karoake started...shudder.
I would've 'cheers!' MacKenzies, but I've heard a lot of unfavorable stories regarding the firing of their brewer...sorry.
02-07-2007 07:39:06 | More by roan22
3.41/5 rDev -12.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | $$
After visiting Iron Hill Brewing Co. in West Chester on December 1, my wife and I made the short trip over to McKenzie Brew House for some after-dinner brews. We pulled in to the huge parking lot, and it looked pretty busy. My wife commented that the building looked like a chain brewpub, which I think it is.
The atmosphere was just that a huge, chain-type brewpub with lots of TVs strategically placed around the inside bar area. The bar itself was quite large (and full of people), so we found a nearby empty raised pub table and made ourselves comfortable. Overall, this brewpub was a bit too spacious and impersonal for me, but still comfortable.
After perusing the beer menu, which was at our table, we were greeted by a friendly female server who was also able to answer some questions about their beers. I decided to try their seasonal Funf Smoked Dopplebock on draught. I asked about the ABV%, and she wasnt sure, but found out for me, so that was cool. By the way, it was 7.2%. Their dopplebock packs a pretty weighty malty aroma combined with roasted, nutty and barley overtones. Not much of a hop presence here, but it did have a tinge of alcohol. There was also a very strong smoky aroma, giving it more of the characteristics of a porter than a dopplebock. It was served in a 16-oz. pint glass with a single finger creamy light brown head that virtually disappeared. Not a bad selection. My wife had their Unicorn Amber Ale, which she did not care for.
I decided to try another selection, so I went with their East Kent IPA, another seasonal draught offering from McKenzie. I went with a 12-oz. glass this time. It came to me in a tapered beer glass and appeared somewhat hazy with a blonde/light amber color and nice carbonation. There was a moderate hoppy aroma with citrus notes, but not as strong as other IPAs Ive had. It boasted a white frothy head that mostly diminished, but retained excellent lacing as the beer went down. This is an unfiltered IPA made with East Kent hops, as the name implies. At 67 IBUs, this offering had a decent spicy, biting hop flavor that stays with you at the back of your throat. It was definitely more spicy that fruity. Not a bad IPA, but not one of my favorites either.
Overall, I wouldnt go out of my way to go there again, but would likely stop in if I was driving through. The beer was pretty good, but we didnt have any food, so I cant comment on that. The service was very good and the atmosphere was just a little too cookie cutter for me to make a special trip there. But Id rather go to a chain that actually served decent craft brews that the typical American swill found at other restaurant chains.
12-03-2006 23:06:18 | More by ffejherb
4.35/5 rDev +11.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I visited this pub about a year ago and didn't really think the beers were too outstanding, but I have changed my mind for the better after this visit.
I tried McKenzie Light Lager, Unicorn Amber Ale, Wicked Will's Pale Ale, Shane's Gold, Black Lab Stout, a Belgian, a Double-Bock and East Kent Goldings Ale. So, at 8 beers, it wasn't a bad selection at all. I could find no flaws with any of the beers, so it was extremely hard picking out favorites. My two favorites would have to be the Outmeal Stout and the East Kent Goldings Ale. Black Lab Stout is one of their regular beers and very drinkable, roasty, stout with chocolate and licorice notes. The East Kent Goldings had a very good aroma, body, and mouthfeel and was a specialty beer. The belgian was good, but not outstanding. The double-bock was nice. Other than the black lab stout, out of the regular beers, I thought that Shane's Gold, a Czech pilsner with an incredible spicy fresh hop aroma was excellent.
The brewpub is in a large newer style building with high celings in the bar area with tables along the walls. There is a nice outdoor deck if you are visiting in the summer. We got excellent service from our waitress, which i think may be due partly to the fact that the saturday evening crowd had not yet showed up (by about 6 pm) so there were plenty of waitstaff for each customer. I ordered a dinner special, the mahi mahi with plum sauce, cilantro pesto and baby corn and shiitake mushrooms for $15.95. Very tasty and worth every penny.
There is another bar in a downstairs area that has games including 4 or 5 pool tables and darts. This seemed to have a cozier, less formal atmosphere that some people enjoy.
Like I said, I think the beers have much improved since last year, the food was very good, the service good, and provided an overall very pleasant experience.
11-27-2006 02:54:09 | More by Beerquester
4.08/5 rDev +4.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
this was the official 'on the way home from dogfish head' 2006 selection. therefore, our team of four hit it up at about 2pm on a sunday.
immediately we made our way to the bar area, which was sparsely populated and rather spacious. the bar was situated in the center of the room, in a square shape, with three hundred and sixty degrees of seating. tables and booths flanked the edges of the giant room, and a deck extended from the bar area. tall chairs were selected for their proximity to the hi-defs, as today was sunday and the iggles were playing... mike had gay fantasy football to concern himself with. i had some good brews.
looked over to the big chalkboard but it was empty. the current selection was available on printed menus scattered across the bartop. currently on tap were the 'standards'.. i believe they were pale ale, lager, stout, and amber.. or something. who knows, i went for seasonals. they had an interesting array.. baltic porter, abbey dubbel, biere de garde and octoberfest. i tried all four which were fresh and varied in overall flavor quality. the biere de garde was the clear winner, a near-perfect beer with amazing dry-grape notes and a refreshing drinkability. the o-fest was solid and traditional without being overly sweet. the baltic porter was good (i only had a small sample), just not my cup of tea. and the abbey 8 was extremely watery and overly fruity, leaving me wanting more. although i complain, it wasn't a terror to drink. i just think i expected perfection after speaking previously to another BA who pimps this place to high heaven.
i ate lunch here as well, and was very impressed by the menu. they step up pub fare with some middle eastern and asian fusion flares, offering both the traditional and something more creative for those of us sick of burgers and fries with our BP beer. i had the toasted pita wedges with lemon hummus, olive tapenade, and fresh salsa. an excellent dish. i also shared some 'extra hot' wings which, despite their name, contained little to no burn. tasted like traditional buffalo sauce mixed with sriratcha.. weird flavor, but everyone else seemed to like them.
the waitress was very friendly and my glass never sat empty for more than a second before she's back with a smile asking me what i needed. albeit, the place was dead, but there is something to be said for attentiveness. i didn't need to ask any beer questions because the beer menu was very in-depth and explanatory.
the beer here is pretty freaking good for the middle of nowhere, pa.. and i like the belgian/european seasonals. this is something i dont get much of in ct. the place itself is your standard restaurant, reminiscent of a less-trendy iron hill. don't go here for lush atmosphere or a cool beer bar vibe. but if you want to drink a couple of good brews, watch a game, and bullshit with your buds, you'll be in brewpub heaven.
10-11-2006 01:00:22 | More by goodbyeohio
4.08/5 rDev +4.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$
Finally got a chance to stop in this place after a round of golf nearby the pub. Entered about 12:30 mid week, and the place had a large lunchtime crowd. When walking in the large bar are is on the right along with an outdoor patio. To the left is the main dining area, and downstairs is the game room which has a smaller bar and several pool tables and dart boards.
We sat at the bar, and surprisingly only the 5 house beers were available, the special beers were gone. 3 new special beers on tap were coming on soon - usual bad luck for me. The Amber, Gold, and Pale were all very fresh and great tasting.
The food was also quite good, as the sandwiches and pizza were reasonably priced and quite filling. Service was attentive and friendly.
I wished I lived a little closer to this place as this is a great place to grab some grub and high quality beers.
09-01-2006 14:31:12 | More by Gavage
4.1/5 rDev +4.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Located in between US 202 N and US 202S, McKenzie's Brew House is one of the top destination breweries in the state of PA, all because of Scott "the Dude" Morrison. The atmosphere, on a Sunday afternoon, had the feeling of a family chain restaurant. This wasn’t a typical family chain restaurant, with a bar to the right upon entering. The wood bar was in rectangular and held about 20. There was seating in both the dining room and a few booths by the bar. There was also a second bar called the Underground Bar, with pool tables and other games; however, it was closed on our visit.
The beers at McKenzie's were great, with the selection consisting of 7 beers, 5 of them being everyday beers: McKenzie Light Lager, Shane's Gold, Unicorn Amber Ale, Wicked Will's Pale Ale and Black Lab Stout. The five regulars were all above average brewpub beers; however the two seasonals were both great. There was a great hefe and a tremendous saison (which what "the Dude" is known for; great Belgian and big beers). The beers were all fresh and showed no noticeable flaws. The beers are available in 12oz, 16oz and 22oz ounce glassware. All tap beers are also available in growlers as well. However no 750s were for sale.
Overall, this place is worth a stop and is not far from the Pa Turnpike and the Delaware state line. The food was good, with a family friendly menu. Also the service was good and very friendly.
08-31-2006 01:26:40 | More by cupbeerman
4.18/5 rDev +6.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
This brew pub is located right in the middle of the split lane 202. This caught me as a surprise as the entrance off of 202 is on the left side of the road. One maniacal, multi-lane swerve later we arrived on the scene.
As I walked in, we were directed off to the left, away from the bar and towards the dining area. Here, were sat in a booth that overlooked all of the stainless steel goodies that were in a long, narrow, glassed-in room that separated our booth from the outside. To the other side of the building was a deli style open kitchen where we could watch the cooks do their thing. The dining area had a very soothing and open atmosphere with some pastel greens on the walls and tons of bright, natural light, even on this overcast day. Over all, I got a warm family dining or a Deli feel. Thats disregarding the bar off in the distance and the brewing equipment through the window, of course. The bar to the right of the door we came in was a large oval and it looked plenty spacious. Also, there was another bar in the basements that had a very different feel to it with pool tables, darts and a very low ceiling. You could really pick the atmosphere you were in the mood for here.
For lunch I ordered the nacho appetizer and a curry chicken with peanut sauce plate. I was a little confused why the delicious chicken dish came out first until the mammoth order of nachos came out. Seriously, this plate probably weighed ten pounds. Dont try this unless you want to bring it home or you have at least three big guys with you. My girlfriend got a crab bisque and a four cheese pizza. The bisque was just fantastic and the pizza was even better cold the next morning. Over all, the quality and quantity of food here really impressed me.
Our server was absolutely brilliant and on top of everything. Every thing came promptly, a plate pushed to the edge of the table was instantly snatched up and here personality said, I care, but Im not going to make a big show of it. That was really fantastic. I wish I could remember her name because she is a model server and an asset to McKenzies. I wont give a 5 here because it was the lunch hour, so I wasnt completely blown away.
The beers we had here were good. On our way to the movie, we discussed the quality of beers here. We concluded that there was absolutely nothing wrong here. The three beers we tried were very solid, but nothing legendary. The Bavay was tasty, the Farmhouse Saison was a little hoppy for the style, but tasty as well, and the Wicked Will reminded me a lot of Hop Devil. I enjoyed the beers here a lot, but again, I didnt get the sense that there was anything amazing going on here. The standard for offerings here looks like six standards and three offerings of the bier de jour.
Solid food, good service and tasty beers; they have it all. Id be back a lot sooner if this pub wasnt so far out of the way.
06-05-2006 19:35:10 | More by DarkerTheBetter
3.78/5 rDev -3.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
This is from a visit on May 13, 2006 to the Glen Mills (Chadd's Ford), PA location.
Atmosphere: The restaurant has a wide open bar and several diffferent dining sections, with tasteful decoration throughout. There is also a bar downstairs, although I did not venture there.
Quality: The quality of the restaurant was good. We were the first to arrive (at the 11:30AM opening) and were only there for a few rounds. Despite that (and a local graduation that would most likely swamp them later), the staff was friendly, even with my hellion 16 month old.
Service: Service was just above average, nothing bad to say about them (this was reflected with a good gratuity).
Selection: Five house beers and three seasonals gave me plenty to choose from. The beer ranged from pils to stouts, so there is something for everyone.
Food: We only ordered nachos with chicken, but damn they were good. You know how a great plate of nachos really brightens your mood? Well this plate fits that bill. My food rating is somewhat incomplete because we only ordered nachos, so I guess I have to go back.
In terms of value, 3 beers, a plate of nachos and a growler set us back $30, so I call that reasonable.
05-14-2006 23:06:17 | More by akorsak
McKenzie Brew House in Glen Mills, PA
88 out of 100 based on 55 ratings.