Backyard Ale House
Taps: 28 / Bottles: 400
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: Y
Ratings: 16 | Reviews: 13 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by smxr88:
3.23/5 rDev -22.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
I have never actually attended this place on a weekday. On the weekends it is packed shoulder to shoulder. You are completely jammed in there like sardines. It is tolerable if you are there to actually get drunk, but if you are there to sip on a beer and enjoy it... it's not the place (On the weekends at least). It is very hard to get a beer trying to fight through the crowds. They have a pretty good selection, and run some very good specials at times though.
There is very limited indoor seating and standing area. The biggest area they have is their "Backyard." This is an outdoor patio with no roof during the summer. So if it is raining, be prepared for the bar to be absolutely crowded in the indoor section. During the winter it is tented and has propane heaters which is nice and they can use it all year.
I wouldn't mind trying it during the week or earlier in the night on a weekend. I might actually enjoy it more if I caught it at a less crowded time.
11-01-2011 18:30:14 | More by smxr88
More User Reviews:
4.74/5 rDev +13.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | $$$
Went here on 5/4/2013 during The Office Wrap Party. Got in a little bit before 1pm and the place was not yet crowded. Great selection of drafts and the bottle list is huge. Plenty of options to choose from including lots of bigger size bottles. There is a beer to fit everyone's needs. So those are the positives.
The negatives were there is no food. You can bring in food but they don't serve a thing. Not even a bag of chips or some free pretzels.
Other knock is that there was a beer on tap that multiple people asked for and the bartender said that it was awful. I decided to try it out and see how bad it was. At first it wasn't great but as it warmed up it got better. They charged full price for the "awful" beer which was interesting
if they don't like it and don't want to serve it why not discount it to kick-the-keg?
Other than those two things the selection was great and the atmosphere was pretty relaxed on a busy afternoon.
05-06-2013 13:06:56 | More by joeebbs
4.08/5 rDev -2.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | $$
As a lifelong Scranton resident, I frequent the Backyard AleHouse for craft brews. They have a very long bottle list and rotate their tap selections regularly. I had to ding them a bit for atmosphere for two reasons. One, during the winter months when the tent is on the back patio, there is inadequate ventilation to disperse the cigarette smoke. Many are the mornings I've woken up with aching lungs despite not smoking a cigarette. The only other option is the inside bar, which usually has a cover band playing on the weekend (Not really my thing). They generally only charge a cover when there is a band playing, which leads to my second issue. The vast majority, myself included, move straight through the inside bar to hang out on the patio, and don't listen to the band at all. It's irritating to pay a 5 dollar cover with no intention of listening to the band. In the grand scheme of things, these are minor gripes (and I would add at least a half point to their atmosphere rating when the tent comes off the patio in spring and summer). They do a good job with promotions during the week to really promote the craft beers they serve.
02-28-2013 00:52:19 | More by JeanPaulValley
4.04/5 rDev -3.6%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | $$
Met up with a friend last night while in town for business, figured we both like good beer so this place would be perfect.
Atmosphere was pretty good. Not too many people around but it was an "off" night so I wasn't expecting much. A few TV's and a Jukebox made up for the lack of people. Quality was pretty good. I was offered my Matilda in a pint or Chalice. Service was great. He checked up on us multiple times, talked beer with us and even offered us one of the fresh Nugget Nectars that had just walked in the door.
No food at the moment but they are apparently building a kitchen, albeit slowly according to our bartender. Selection was pretty solid. I was hoping for a few more local offerings but it was still pretty solid. I got a Goose Island Matilda and an Old Forge Pale Ale. Overall a nice beer bar that I would definitely return to if I am ever in the area again.
01-25-2013 03:27:46 | More by orangesol
3.74/5 rDev -10.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | $$
I met a pal here after a job one Saturday afternoon in late October. The place was quiet, with maybe 10 other patrons. Those looking to pick up something other than a pint might have been disappointed but it suited us fine. The decor is nothing special but more than adequate for our needs. We sat at the "Inside" bar. The Backyard Ale House has another bar in an adjoining tented-in area which might be the source of the name. The Outside provides something of a rarity in 21st century Pennsylvania--a bar for smokers. I imagine this area is a real bonus for those who enjoy cigs and suds. I couldn't detect smoke where I drank when there were a few puffing away. I do wonder if a full tent might be a problem for tobacco-sensitive folk. Pictures on the bar's website show that section sans tent which could be quite nice in warmer times.
The Backyard Ale House's printed draft menu was split into Inside and Outside listings with 20 for the former and 6 for the latter. The broad selection offered a good variety of styles. That day 5 of the 20 Insiders were Marzens or pumpkin ales. Only 1 mainstream offering diluted the group. Many beers were new to me, which is always a plus. I went with Belgian-style IPAs, Evil Genius Beer's Evil Eye PA and Clown Shoes' Tramp Stamp. For the record, I liked the Tramp Stamp better but did feel a little funny when I told the bartender "I need another Tramp Stamp." The Backyard Ale House also had an extensive bottle list.
I would definitely return should I find myself back in the Electric City.
11-27-2012 23:35:47 | More by keymcgrip
4.74/5 rDev +13.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
This place is great. They have about 27 taps and 500 bottles of beer. The atmosphere is great for someone in their 20s/ 30s who would enjoy a balance between good beer and an exciting, youthful environment. It can get a little jammed in there and I do wish they had more outdoor seating for around 11 p.m. on a weekend night. The bartenders are all pretty knowledgeable on their beer and give good recommendations if you can't decide for yourself. If you are going here to get a good beer without any external distractions, I'd recommend their Tuesday night 5 for 5 beer tasting event. If you want to have your beer in a more fast paced environment, go Thursday through Sunday. Check it out though nonetheless.
10-28-2012 23:31:45 | More by IPAhopoverload
4.75/5 rDev +13.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$$
This has been the staple happy hour destination for myself and people I work with for the last 5 months.
Typically, there is no food served, but during the spring/summer, the bar offers free bbq fare (burgers, hot dogs, sausage with peppers and onions). It would be great even if there were a cover charge for it, but because it's free, it's even better.
Great service and a ton of beers. If you suggest a type, the bartender can pick out something you'd like and usually describe it pretty well.
The bar also offers variety buckets (4 craft bottles/cans for $10) as well as beer tasting nights.
The outdoor patio is awesome, the clientele is pretty alright and both the selection as well as the staff are fantastic.
If there's one thing to do in Scranton, it's drinking -- make sure you come to the Ale House and do it right.
08-09-2011 20:30:08 | More by stilts
Backyard Ale House in Scranton, PA
92 out of 100 based on 16 ratings.