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Vintage Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Vintage Brewing CompanyVintage Brewing Company
BEER AVG
3.84/5
Based on:
55 Beers
82 Reviews
Place Score: 91
Reviews: 17
Visits: 64
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: n/a
Taps: 22
Bottles: --
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

674 S Whitney Way
Madison, Wisconsin, 53575
United States
phone: (608) 204-2739

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
Place added by: uwmgdman on 03-01-2010

No notes at this time.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 17 | Visits: 64
Photo of IMFletcher
3.81/5  rDev -7.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 2.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

We came to visit this establishment for an early lunch based on a recommendation. It looks like a steakhouse restaurant on the inside, save the brewing tanks. It's a full bar, so there's not a high emphasis on their own product.

The food was excellent, portions were large. The beer was varied and very tasty, growler fills are available for most of their 10-12 in-house brews. The hibiscus saison and the cabarnet barreled jinja ninja stood out as memorable.

But the service was blah. We tried to ask questions indicative of our beer tourist status, and were largely rebuffed by the bartender, who was too busy doing prep work to talk to us, despite there only being one other person at the bar. Since we love talking to people who work at craft beer establishments about their beer, it was disappointing. (808 characters)

Photo of tyleeis
4.31/5  rDev +4.9%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.25

Vintage has always has great beers on tap good food on the menu and are well known for their beer diners. Very nice decor and a comfortable dining experience. I've only been there once but, would highly recommend it to anyone and plan on going again very soon! (260 characters)

Photo of BarrelAgedG
3.95/5  rDev -3.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.25

Vintage Brewing is a brew pub that brews a significant array of beers and also has a menu that is equal parts appetizers and large selection of dinner entrees. Their beers are typically robust and flavorful and the appetizers and dinner plates are both well done and satisfying. The only 2 complaints that I can make about VBC is that they are often out of brews that are on the menu(which is because of popularity but still a bit annoying) and could b avoided with a daily printed menu or a chalkboard. Also the dinner plates are a dollar or two more expensive than they need to be but all in all their beer is very good and the food is delicious. (648 characters)

Photo of KellyScottMad
3.88/5  rDev -5.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

This place has a solid line up of beers. This place is leaps ahead of the brewpub that sat there before Vintage came along. The style of the place is 50's class, and they have a room that you can reserve, but it is a wee bit pricey. If I lived on the west side of Madison I would frequent this place a little more often, but not over on that side of town that much at least when I am craving a beer. The food is good and solid too. The Vintage is a place to go and hang out, have a good couple of rounds of beer, and have some solid food to go with the barley sodas. All in all a good place to go. (597 characters)

Photo of emerge077
3.8/5  rDev -7.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Stopped in here for dinner recently, unfortunately the house beers left alot to be desired, though the food was great.

Didn't have a bunch of time, so I sat at the bar and got a few samples and $1.50 pours along with a tasty bbq brisket dinner. The house beers were overwhelmingly average... ESB, Oatmeal Stout were good, and the Jinja Ninja was interesting though the rest of the lineup could be from any other random brewpub. The guest taps stole the show in fact, O'so Qu Rosa and House of Brews Cellar Dark were both great. Beer list was draft focused and well varied by style, though there were a handful of solid bottles like CW Illumination and La Folie.

Atmosphere was ok at the bar, it felt like an upscale revamp of an old place (JT Whitney's), but the dining room looked nice. Seemed to be a good dinner crowd of locals on a Monday night. Rectangular island bar with a giant aquarium in the center casting an eerie glow. Flatscreen tv's and brown tile floors were kind of meh, but there was some cool original art and stone work accents elsewhere, and knick knacks above a fireplace in the dining room. Service was ok at the bar, though one guy didn't get why I wasn't ordering the $2.50 house pint special and opting for $1.50 small pours. I'd already explained I wanted to try the whole lineup, as i'd never been in before, and was short on time. Shrug... the other bartender was good though.

Food wise, the brisket was smoky and really tasty, though expensive at nearly $14 for 2 thick slices, mashed potatoes, and a mushy corn cob. Doubt i'd return here unless to eat and grab a beer on the west side... it's near Woodman's on Gammon and Steve's Mineral Point, though seemingly not much else in the immediate area beer-wise. (1,744 characters)

Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.71/5  rDev -9.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5

wandered into this place looking for a decent beer, as it seems most of the many bars in downtown madison cater to college students, obviously, serving only bmc and spotted cow. the alaskan amber neon sign is what gave me the impetus to check this place out. pretty big place and mostly non-descript with a well-worn feel, i had no idea this was a brewpub until told by the bartender that all the "v" taps were house beers brewed nearby. the bartender was great, gave me free tastes of all of the house brews. the oaked ipa, dubbel, and hoppy red were all decent. they also had some guest taps and various bottles including several bmc and craft offerings. nothing special other than breakfast stout bottles were available. all in all, glad i found this place as i needed decent beer. (784 characters)

Photo of sweemzander
4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

Our "home base" and starting point/visit for my good friend Andy's bachelor party. We ended up renting their "Prison Bus" so we could tour around Madison not having to worry about cabs or staying sober all day.
Much more a restaurant feel than a brewpub overall, but seeing the brewing room and fermentation tanks off to the side reminds you where you are at.
Off to the other side was a decent gaming room, darts and pool and TVs are always a plus.
Right from the start, the service was excellent. I was impressed with their wide selection of beer styles as well as their quality; I had trouble deciding what to get pints of, though they did give us a sample of every beer they had on tap and really was impressed with their quality honestly.
The food was ok, I enjoyed the soft pretzels, though alot of their other offerings looked very good if you were to come in for dinner and have a few beers too. Overall, a great place that I thoroughly enjoyed. (954 characters)

Photo of beerwolf77
4.18/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

First stop on the tour of Madison.

Upscale brewpub feel. Plenty of seating and bar space. Game room is a nice touch.

The beers on tap were very good. We got the sampler and I was impressed with many of the offerings. The standouts for me were Velouria (wheat/peach ale) and Sister Golden (kolsch). Both were outstanding for their respective styles.

The service was excellent. We were using their party bus for a fellow BA's bachelor party and they were extra accomodating. We were well taken care to say the least.

I only tried the (soft) pretzels and they were a bit dry and thick for my taste. Can't all be winners.

Overall I would have no problem heading back here when in Mad town. (693 characters)

Photo of cptnspeed1
3.95/5  rDev -3.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I like what they have done with the old JT Whitney's. The beer is better. They have started to get experimental in aging and blending beers (although they have a ways to go to make an elite beer in this category). The dark beers (especially the coffee porter and the imperial stout( are good, the hoppy beers are ok, and some of the seasonals (the Wit comes to mind) are worth checking out.

The food is pretty good. Not too many places will serve you a 1/2 lb burger between two grilled cheeses and leave you happy with your decision (health concerns aside).

The building is nice and has an inviting exterior, but the layout leads to some bottlenecking when it is busy in the bar area. The waitstaff seems to be fairly knowledgeable about their product, but the overall beer knowledge is so so. (798 characters)

Photo of Yetiman420
4.6/5  rDev +11.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Stop #221 on my world brewery tour.

Solo visit around 7:30 on a Wednesday night in early August. Sat at the spacious bar.

Building is in an area of 80's era chains and strip malls. Lowered expectations on the way in from the parking lot and was pleasantly surprised by the interior. A bit swank with low lighting, some vintage beer signs, and a modest vintage decor that hints at the interior of my great aunt's furnishings. A bit like an old-school steak house. I like it.

I went with the $1.50 samplers of all the beers...
Kolsch
Weiss
Wit
English Summer Ale - cross between a pilsner and English pale
Hibiscus Saison - remarkable
Sahti - wonderful
IPA
Alt
Schwarzbier like beer
Double Black IPA
Imperial Stout aged in Rye Barrel

All beers were excellent and I would recommend any of them. The Sahti stole the show for me. I think it may be the first time I've had the style (probably sitting on some DFH in my cellar that I should crack open).

I had the Wisconsin whitefish sandwich with fries drizzled with truffle oil. The fish had a slice of cheese on it which I'm still trying to figure out. Very good meal and I can't figure out why this place gets a 71% on reliable Urbanspoon.

Six local guest taps included can-bic from New Glarus, Ale Asylum, Potosi, Furthermore, and Spreeher. Also had a handful of pretty good bottles and cans.

The only drawback is not having an outside patio to enjoy the short Wisconsin summer. (1,439 characters)

Photo of richkrull
4.8/5  rDev +16.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I went here for dinner last week with my wife and 1-year old daughter. We went on a Wednesday night around 6:30pm. We were surprised that the parking lot was almost full and walked in to find the place nearly packed. The hostess said we would need to wait about 15 minutes for a table which was not a problem.

We took seats at the bar and looked over their beer menu. They had about 15 of their own beers on tap with most styles covered. About half-way through our first beer, the hostess led us to our table with a high-chair for the little one.

For starters, we had the chips with beer cheese dip which was very good with homemade chips. I had the bratwurst burger and my wife had the meatloaf sandwich. We both really enjoyed our sandwiches and couldn't finish them. We agreed the chips from the appetizer were much better than the fries we got with the sandwiches which were big steak fries.

The beers we tried were the Palidrome APA, Woodshed IPA, Dedication abbey-style dubbel, Scaredy Cat Oatmeal Stout, and Weiss-Blau weissbier. All of them were very good. I'm looking forward to trying the rest of their menu.

Our waitress was very good. Attentive and very quick with bringing our beers and checking on us. The place was very nice inside. We really enjoyed our night out here. The food and beers were great. We will definitely be returning in the near future. (1,373 characters)

Photo of flyboy599
4.05/5  rDev -1.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Our server was knowledgeable and had free beer samples on the way at the slightest sensed interest. She was able able to make helpful suggestions as well.

Atmosphere was dark but modern, a nice cosy pub feel around the bar. Some medium sized TV's but not a place I would go to watch the big game.

Beer selection was up to par and I was excited about their naturally carbonated cask conditioned ales or as they call them "real ales." Two of the current beers were available as "real ales" including their scotch all "Wee Heavy." These were hand pumped from the cask, smooth and delicious. Paid samples were a nice way to gain more experience with the beer.

My friends ate a meal and were all impressed with the food. I stuck to cheese curds which, to my surprised, were offered non-fried and squeeky.

Having lived in Madison for some time I hold "The Great Dane" as the standard for Madison brew pubs. Any new pub must at least perform at the Dane's level of quality and selection. Vintage did a great job of meeting that. (1,026 characters)

Photo of adman08
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

I live about 5 minutes away from the vintage, it's been open for about a year and has quickly become my favorite place to get dinner and some beers. The food is much better than you'd expect from a brew pub and in my opinion reasonably priced. The beer is good and the house brewed taps change very regularly along with frequent changes of the cask beers which are variations of the other beers they offer on tap. If you want a good place to grab a growler or two before a party, or even to fill your 5 gallon corny keg if your a homebrewer, I'm not aware of a place that is less expensive. The staff has always been great to me and any friends I bring in. (656 characters)

Photo of cullenvens
3.88/5  rDev -5.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 1.5

Visited in June with my wife and daughter. The atmosphere was dark and heavy, like an old English bar, but better lit and modernized. The service was charming and helpful, but the beer knowledge was questionable. The beer quality, on the other hand, was acceptable and the selection was surprising, as we had learned that they had just brewed their first beer only a month or two before.

The food, if you were to ask my wife, was perfectly fine. To me, a former trained Chef, it was abominable. And that was the reason we decided to go there. I wanted to try a specialty, which was a smoked duck and sausage dish, whose name i forgot. It was outrageously salty, and I LOVE salt. I told the server and they fixed the situation immediately. Which is why the service got an extra nod from me. (790 characters)

Photo of uwmgdman
4.33/5  rDev +5.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Made a visit to the new Vintage Brewing Company on a Saturday afternoon for lunch. The Vintage Brewing Co. resides in the old JT Whitney's, but with a completely fresh look.

A: The atmosphere was just fine for Saturday lunch hour. A few people enjoying a brew and watching some TV at the bar. In the restaurant portion the tables were about half full with some Sinatra-esque music playing. The floors, walls, ceilings, and lighting have all been redone. A lot of dim lights, dark woods, new vinyl 60s like chairs, lots of old school beer memorabilia. In addition to tables and booths, there are couches and chairs by the fireplace.

Q: The quality is quite high. The tap beer selection is high quality, my lunch was very high quality, and the place looks nice.

Service: Was greeted promptly by a friendly hostess. Our waiter was friendly and knowledgeable, eager to serve. The drinks and food were served quickly and a quick check on how things were was made.

Selection: 10 taps currently. They are all Wisconsin micros for now, with their own beer coming on-line as it is brewed and aged. The waiter said they hope to have 10 of their own beers on tap once things get rolling. I was the proud customer of their second pour of their first in-house brew, their hefeweizen, which was very well made and quite delicious. There is also a selection of bottles, but I didn't pay much attention to the list.

Food: I had a lunch special which was quite delicious, fresh and fairly priced. They have a page for apps/salads, one for lunch entrees (some sound great) and the final page for burgers and sandwiches. If the lunch menu is any indication, the dinner menu should be great as well.

Overall I really like the look, glad to see a lot of good beer on tap and I'm very much looking forward to returning as more of their beers come online. I'd recommend checking this place out. After my first visit I'd say a definite improvement over the previous ownership.

EDIT: Returned September 2010 for dinner with many samples of in house beers. The menu had variety yet was not overwhelming....from the appetizers, to entrees, to desert, they kept the menu manageable and everything I tried was well done. They had about 12 of their own beers on tap, tried many and generally was rather impressed. After two visits, this will be a place we will continue to visit until they give us reason not to.

3rd trip: Dec 2010 another solid visit for food, beer, and waitstaff. However I'm dropping the service a touch because we had the same hostess as the last visit. She was unbelievably unfriendly, bordering on rude. Last time I just thought she was having a bad day, but 2 for 2 is a trend, and not an inviting one. (2,704 characters)

Photo of djhowell
4.15/5  rDev +1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

This is a very new establishment that happens to be very near my office. It's becoming a favorite happy hour destination for my co-workers and I. The first few weeks they had some growing pains but they seem to be settling into things now.

This was the former location of the JT Whitney's brewpub which I was never much of a fan of. The interior has, thankfully, been completely reworked and I like it a lot. It features a large rectangular bar, surrounded by booths in the front room and leather couches around a fireplace in the back. Everything is done in darker wood and is kept very clean. There are lots of flatscreen TVs everywhere, muted, but they aren't in your face and this is not a sports bar. The decor features lots of antique beer signs and memorabilia keeping with the name of the bar.

Now, on to the beer... They've been experimenting with lots of styles and it's been fun to come in to find something new to find every couple weeks. I read that they are "testing the waters" to see what's most popular before deciding on what their regular offerings will be. They run between $2.50 and $6 depending on happy hour pricing and which style you sample. The higher ABV Belgian-style beers were the only ones that have cost me more than $4 I think. The bar staff are very knowledgeable on average and are happy to answer questions or offer suggestions. In addition to the beers brewed on site they offer a half dozen guest beers and most if not all are from Wisconsin.

I've only had a few items from the food menu so far: a cod filet sandwich that was a little pricey but pretty good, chips & guacamole/salsa that was enough for 3 people to snack on, and an order of chicken and chorizo nachos that have been my favorite item on the menu so far. In general I feel like the food is good but maybe a little overpriced for what it is.

Generally, I like the place and I'm excited to see what they make of it. (1,920 characters)

Photo of dirtylou
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Stopped in on a Friday night after our last soccer game. Was very skeptical of this place for a few reasons - (1) JT Whitneys (prior occupant) had such a terrible reputation and (2) strip mall location

first off there's the location...on one hand its really close to the research park, where i have a lot of clients. On the other hand, its on a really wore down stretch of Whitney Way that is really not a place i would frequent without reason. The west side of madison is a beer abyss of sorts, so this will certainly help.

the atmosphere is more of a corporate brewpub - its nice and new, pool tables/darts, horrible jukebox selection, fish tank, large bar, the works. its hard to tell what the clientele will be, but its location makes it hard to expect much less than suburbanites. We had such a large group out that interaction with the other clientele was almost nonexistent.

service was good - bartenders were always there, and while i cant really attest to their beer knowledge, i got the sense that they had the right kind of guys manning the bar.

the selection actually surprised me - i wasnt sure how much they had running at this point, but they had about 8 beers including 2 higher alcohol belgian styles served in chalices. I tried the belgian IPA (ok) and both larger abbey ales, which werent spectacular, but were good choices.

we just had a bunch of appetizers, which were pretty standard barfare.

I'll keep an eye on this place - i was pleasantly surprised at the styles they have taken on. (1,514 characters)

Vintage Brewing Company in Madison, WI
91 out of 100 based on 17 ratings.