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Water Street Brewery

Not Rated.
Water Street BreweryWater Street Brewery
BA SCORE
84
good

38 Ratings
Ratings: 38
Reviews: 23
rAvg: 3.61
pDev: 11.36%
Active Beers: 16
Beer Ratings: 123
Beer Avg: 3.41
Taps: 0
Bottles: 0
Cask:
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

1101 N. Water Street
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 53202
United States
phone: (414) 272-1195

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: brakspear)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 38 | Reviews: 23 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dirtyharry2489
4/5  rDev +10.8%

dirtyharry2489, Apr 21, 2014
Photo of Knoxrb12
3/5  rDev -16.9%

Knoxrb12, Apr 03, 2014
Photo of Storning
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Storning, Mar 06, 2014
Photo of kvnklingler
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

kvnklingler, Feb 10, 2014
Photo of Cujo65
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Cujo65, Nov 06, 2013
Photo of adrock7309
3.63/5  rDev +0.6%

Recently stopped in for some fine Wisconsin cuisine and hand crafted brews.

In my honest opinion, the joint had a cool vibe in the bar but the dining rooms felt a bit outdated, even for an antique brew pub. I started off with an IPA which was a complete disappointment. It was nice to look at but had such a reserved hop aroma/flavor that I was surprised they considered it an IPA. The food was amazing – I had german sausages and Spaetzle. I finished off the meal with their RIS which was actually a treat to drink. Nice roastiness and subtly sweet. Probably wouldn’t go back.

adrock7309, Feb 01, 2012
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.06/5  rDev -15.2%

Visited in a recent trip to Milwaukee.

An interesting place in the water street bar area. The bar/restaurant is quite large and very rustic looking. The tap list was about 10 strong, most of which were fairly tame offerings with the exception of an IPA and a "black lager." I was in the mood for a stout or porter and was disappointed to not see either style represented despite about 10 taps being offered. I had the pale ale, which I found to be very average, if not below average. My friends ordered a munich lager and it was pretty good.

Prices were reasonable but considering how ridiculously cheap beer is on all of water street during happy hour, it was disappointing to see no happy hour special here.

Didn't have food. The service was friendly yet describing their pale as a "Sierra Nevada clone" was more than just a little bit misleading...

Not sure that I would return but worth checking out once.

TheSevenDuffs, Aug 01, 2011
Photo of MilwaukeeCrusher
3.98/5  rDev +10.2%

Stopped here on a Sunday night, place was not crowded at all. Service was great as far as accommodating customers, although you got the vibe some of the people there weren't passionate about beer. Spent some time looking at the old beer can collection on the wall and some of the decor gave the vintage old town Milwaukee feel. Beers were ok to good, and it was nice to actually have a locally made black IPA. No palate challenging beers of the imperial sort.... I might go back again if I was in the immediate area, but right now there are other alternatives I might prefer more.

MilwaukeeCrusher, May 23, 2011
Photo of BeerLover99
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%

This is macro-brew pub. It is very clean in downtown Milwaukee and has a cool nostalgic feel to it. Very family friendly.

The wait-staff were friendly, but were not beer geeks.

Menu was above average pub fare, most things were average, but a few were delicious. The french fries and grilled cheese were excellent!

The beer was pretty light and many of the beers listed on the menu were not available anymore.

Overall, if one is new to the craft/microbrew scene, this may be a great place to start.

BeerLover99, Apr 28, 2011
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
2.93/5  rDev -18.8%

The ol' Water Street brewery, located on, yup, Water St.

If you know anything about Water St. in Milwaukee, you know this is the main drag for nightlife on the weekends. This place can be a very different experience depending on your timing. Of course, the beer is the same regardless.

Anyways, nestled between all kinds of other alcohol and food purveyors, is this brewery. Its on Water St., so parking is atrocious, and of course, meter maids hover 24/7. The quality of the beer is average. Nothing horrible, nothing special.

The selection is usually the standard stuff (pale, wheat, stout, lager, light), it seems to be a rare occasion when they have a seasonal or one off brew available. All the beers taste like they have the same yeast strain and even hops (although in different levels). The food goes beyond typical pub fare, but I haven't had anything any better than typical pub fare there either. Worth checking out, but I tend to prefer other brewing establishments when I'm in Milwaukee. But it is one of the better beer destinations on Water St. if your friends drag you that way on a Thu-Sat night. Go Marquette!

Beerandraiderfan, Aug 12, 2010
Photo of dirtylou
3.64/5  rDev +0.8%

stopped in this joint as we were looking for a pre-dinner drink on water street

entrance was festive and lined with giant copper fermenters - tons of beer schwag inside that was pretty cool.

unfortunately, this place obviously suffers from being located on water street. the clientele was pretty terrible on a saturday evening. we sat at the bar, watching bama-florida, and saw more glasses of terrible brewpub wine and crappy cocktails being made than pints being poured.

i had a pale ale - it was average. there was an imperial stout on the menu (didnt see a single one poured in over an hour) but i had no interest in stick around

food was pubfare, but we didnt eat anything

dirtylou, Dec 06, 2009
Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.28/5  rDev +18.6%

I've been to Water Street many times but this is the first time since being a part of BA. I was just in earlier last week and plan on going again this coming week. I love how you're greeted at the entrance by big copper fermenters. The whole layout is nice and their decorations between the exposed brick to all the vintage beer collectables give it a great feel.

The bar is pretty large as it circles through two sections.

The selection was great as they had a fantastic handful of different beers on tap. No guest taps that I could see but I got a flight of 10 beers which were all different and fresh.

I've had their food before and it's good but it's been a long time.

As far as their service, the bartender was really nice to my handful of questions about the beers I fired off to him and quick to be around the customers (not that on a Thursday night it would be hard with 6 people there).

The flight of 10 beers all at 4 oz was $8 I think which isn't bad at all.

Definitely a nice place with a great location on Water St. to check out of you're ever in the area!

BeerFMAndy, Sep 27, 2009
Photo of tedsox31
3.4/5  rDev -5.8%

Went here on a Friday afternoon before a Brewer's game while in the area. I rather enjoyed the layout of the place, it had some fermenting vessels that you could look at from the restaurant, along with some beer memorabilia along the wall.

Quality was fine, although not super impressive. There were about 8 beers on tap, I had the witbier and raspberry weiss. Both were to style if a bit over-spiced.

Service was good, our waiter was timely and asked about refills in a quick fashion. He also warmed up my food when I asked for it to be warmer.

Selection was decent. German-style influence to the menu. Food was not great. My sandwich came cold, although I am pretty sure that it was supposed to be served warm. Overall, this was ok for the price. I probably wouldn't return but it wasn't a bad stop by any measure.

tedsox31, Aug 29, 2009
Photo of fbinla
2.83/5  rDev -21.6%

Turned up friday afternoon, the place was empty, weird old lady decorations, felt more like a more expensive restaurant than a brew pub. The food was great, cooked very well. I ordered a sampler of beer, received a pretty good selection for the $8 ab out 12 in all. However all the beers were blah, kind of watery, not much of a defined flavor, a few of the beers had diacetyl in that were not to style. The best beer was the pale ale which actually stood out from the rest of the beers that were hard to tell what they were. I wouldn't come back here again unless it was just for food.

fbinla, Aug 05, 2009
Photo of kmeves
3.48/5  rDev -3.6%

A good restaurant with decent beers. The bartenders have a good understanding of beers although the waitresses do not. The food is generally good with some German influence. Cool downtown location. Their beers aren't bad, but they just aren't anything to write home about. I'm sure the popularity of Water Street pushes this establishment into catering to the mainstream a bit, which isn't the worst thing in the world, it's just not what I'm looking for in a brewpub. For example, the last time I was there, they had just tapped an imperial stout, which I ordered, but there was so little flavor, I can't imagine why they would have labeled it an imperial stout. And, on a side note, when I ordered it, the waitress said, Oh, I haven't tried that yet, probably tastes like Guiness, hope you like that. (now, I know she was just a waitress and that it's hard to find waitresses with a high degree of beer knowledge, but it did push my service rating down, despite relatively timely serving).

kmeves, Jan 16, 2009
Photo of DownDaHatch
3.05/5  rDev -15.5%

First of all parking in Milwaukee is ridiculous, however I did not let this effect my rating. The look and vibe of this place is pretty cool with old beer cans and bottles lining the walls and backbar. It is quite a large place and is easily a "family-like" establishment. The food was generally pub-style with some upscale dishes/dinners. Their craft brew selection was less than I had imagined and while the Stout was good it did not WOW me. As for the service, that was the worst part of the visit. The staff payed little attention to the bar top and did little to engage in conversation or help with questions about getting around town. It could be that we are from Illinois. I had some similar experiences at a few other stops while others were more than gracious. I would generally say take a pass on this place unless you are visiting the other Irish pubbs in the area.

DownDaHatch, Dec 31, 2008
Photo of poland7
4.72/5  rDev +30.7%

The place itself is very clean and classy. It has a a restaurant in one area and the bar in another. If you want to be a little laud then the layout is very good. The service was excellent as well. Our waitress was hilarious and we had a great time there. The beer was very good as well. When we were there they had about 8 beers on tap and we each tried something else, but we loved every beer we had. i definitely recommend you visit this place, not to mention there will be many locals here because every one loves this place.

poland7, Dec 23, 2008
Photo of zeff80
3.85/5  rDev +6.6%

This place gets a 5 on atmosphere because of its huge beer memorabilia collection. The displays of classic cans and tap handles was a sight to behold. According to their website it is 6,000 cans and 1,400 tap handles, not to mention coasters, bottle openers, signs, etc. Also, the interior is just a warm comfortable space. The beers with good. I drank two and sampled some others from people with me. The service was a little slow, but maybe it was just a bad night. The food was pretty good. Very large portions and quite tasty. Not the usual pub fare, either. It was a pretty good value the beer prices were on target and the food portions were great for the price. Nice place, I'd like to go back and try more of their seasonal brews.

zeff80, Nov 06, 2008
Photo of botham
3.63/5  rDev +0.6%

first of all, plan to spend a few minutes looking for a parking spot.

had lunch here yesterday, and was not impressed. Water Street Brewery does not live up to its reputation. the atmosphere struggles between the architypes of a 50's diner and a brewpub (the music is retro sounding, and the decor is 50's-esque). there are some great collections of old beer cans and bar-taps that require a minute to check out. interesting place to be in, and at a great location.

the beers are nothing special either. i sampled the munich lager and the octoberfest, and had a glass of the irish stout. all three of these brews seemed watered down and lacked character. i would have tried a few more if those turned out to be better.

the service was the good part of the excursion. prompt and friendly, and the food was great for a brewpub (the chef's creation was phenomenal!).

bottom line: check this place out for the food and the location, not for the beer.

botham, Sep 09, 2007
Photo of Rennpferd
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%

My visit to the WSB was late in the afternoon on a weekend. Parking was normal for downtown Milwaukee. But considering that it was on Water Street on a weekend, that was actually good.

It is located in a restored building. It was great and had character. The building was made of brick, there were large glass windows. It was all maintained well and was clean. As far as the physical establishment of the place, it was way better than most places on Water Street. The crowd was a mix right off the street. From college students to senior citizens.

The staff was professionally dressed and they had a professional attitude. Definately a step above the usual Water Street bartender/waiter crowd.

I would say that the grub was good to eat, but an average selection for Milwaukee. Definately not worth the cost. The beer was very good, and fairly priced for the area. The selection of beer was average for this area. Ales, Lagers, Weizen. The styles of beer you would expect in a town with a large German population.

My girlfriend and I tried a couple of their beers and took a couple of Growlers home for later. Did I mention that the beer was good?
Well it was!

Rennpferd, Apr 16, 2007
Photo of BeerBelcher
3.4/5  rDev -5.8%

I was pleased with my lunch experience at the Water Street Brewery. My food was pretty good, and the two beers I had were better than others I've had lately at other area brewpubs. A friend told me that Water Street had good food but beers inferior to other brewpubs, and I disagree. Reading the other reviews, I'm a bit confused about my experience, but here it is.

Ambience of the place was pretty cool - lots of brick like a lot of brewpubs, with a very impressive of old beer cans impressively displayed. The menu looked quite good. We had some great pretzels for appetizers, and my sandwhich was pretty good, served with some great home-made chips. Service was a college aged woman, and we didn't talk much about the beer, but she served us adequatelyl. The beers I had (the APA and the Irish Stout) I thought were good, and the highlight of my visit.

BeerBelcher, Mar 30, 2007
Photo of Reneejane
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%

Well, I grew up in Milwaukee but left town shortly before becoming of age and never really went back to party until recently. We visited this place last night before going to an Admiral's game. So, the parking on an event day could be unmanagable, but we parked in a garage, and walked to the Bradley center after our meal.

The waitress was very knowlegeable (she had tasted all the beers so knew what she was talking about...). I liked that they had a good mix of German and English styles. Lately I've been really bummed at the over-prevalence of Weiss or Wheat beers and this place had a good mix. I tried the mead, the pale ale, amber, and the imperial stout. The mead was on the wine-y side but a very nice version of it. And, I'm happy to see this style on a menu. Wasn't too sweet and wasn't too yeasty. I liked it. I tried the Pale Ale it was solid, good, and hoppy. But, the Imperial Stout was heaven in a glass. Be careful with this one though, its got high ABV. But it was sinfully chocolately, ooohhh...

The Amber was weird, very weird. I think it may have been a lager, but I got a definite banana-ester flavor to it, and wasn't sure what to think of that, I was expecting something more typical amber ale.

I went for German food, and well, like usual, regretted that later in the night, but it was very good. My husband had a pasta dish and enjoyed it. There is quite a bit of variety with the menu.

Reneejane, Jan 08, 2007
Photo of granger10
2.98/5  rDev -17.5%

Been here twice now, once during midday in which it was quite crowded and once at night in which it was quite empty. Crowds seem to be here for the food first and foremost. I have yet to have tried it so I can't be of service in that regard. Beers here seems a bit watery and a touch sweet to style for the most part. Irish Stout was the best I had and the Pale was solid, maybe even good. The rest are about average with a couple being downright bad. A few diamonds are there however deep in the rough. Selection was decent, every basic style was covered but nothing that would wow a beer knerd. Service has been good actually with lots of enthusiasm. It's in a good area of town to go out so this might not be a bad spot for a meal and a sampler before checking out the district. Not really worth the venture solely for beer.

granger10, Aug 24, 2006
Photo of bnuttz
3.58/5  rDev -0.8%

Water street brewery is the only micro brewery in the downtown water street district. A nice place to hit up when on the macro dominated water street. Usually a decent selection of styles are available here. However none have really ever caught me as excellent. The pale ale was by far the best I have come across. Unfortunately most of the brews here seem to be watered down, I really think of any other way to some them up. The food can be decent, but I have gotten some rotten dishes there as well. Prices are not too bad, but can be a little on the higher side. Once again I would say worth a place to hit up if you are on the water street area.

bnuttz, May 26, 2005
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.25/5  rDev -10%

Atmosphere- We went on a Sunday afternoon and sat at a table by the bar. We didn't realize we entered from the side and not the front door where they were seating people. It is a nice clean space with lots of T-shirts of other brewpubs covering the walls and a great collection of old taps and bomber. The piped in music played everything from Van Halen to the theme from Shrek and Hanson but it was a good level so conversation wasn't difficult.

Quality- When the manager brought us these ratty old newspapers I thought he was trying to beg for money (typical for a Chicago street corner). It was actually the menu and the beer list. It seemed like the beer were turned down a little to cold and the air conditioning didn't help

Service-Our waiter happened to be the manager and he wasn't really happy that we seated ourselves so he spent more time flirting with the other wait staff. My friend asked if they had Sprecher, since he noticed non Water Street beer on the list, and the waiter went on and on about how Sprecher is their competition an why on earth would they sell their competitions beer.

Selection- They had a good mix of German American beers with nothing to unique.

Food-The food was good and it came with pub chips which were various roots (beets, potato, yucca?) fried. The chips alone were great. The food is typical of trendy brewpubs that serve oversized buns and big plates so they can charge you double the price. But it was warm and well plated. I had a vegetarian friend that ordered grilled cheese of the kid’s menu cause everything else is focused for carnivore. Interestingly it came with a big piece of corn beef stuck on the bottom of the sandwich. We got a good laugh about that one.

Value- This is the prices I would expect to pay in the Theater District. Reasonable for a big city which is usually a bit overpriced.

rhoadsrage, May 24, 2005
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Water Street Brewery in Milwaukee, WI
84 out of 100 based on 38 ratings.