The Flying Saucer Draught Emporium
Ratings: 106 | Reviews: 67 | Display Reviews Only:
3.9/5 rDev -8%
Flying Saucer has the feel of your basic downtown chain (similar to Rock Bottom ambiance). Unfortunately we were there on a Friday night. It was LOUD. It was crowded. It was apparently the *only* place to go downtown.
The beer list, while extensive, was not that varied. (Pretty heavy on light colored lagers, pilsners and IPAs which isn't really my thing.) Happy hour prices were a plus (upsized to 20oz hefe glasses for the price of a pint). Quality was fine.
Service was distracted, but it was loud and busy.
As for food, don't get the nachos. You get about a dozen chips with beans meticulously applied to each chip and a couple of shreds of cheese melted on top. This is not the usual copious brewhouse platter.
I also got the buffalo chicken wrap which was fine, but again a little expensive for what you got. This is not a food destination.
My opinion of the atmosphere would likely be different if I went at an off time, but given my experiences at Ginger Man on Thursday and Flying Saucer on Friday, I preferred the selection and ambiance at the former.
11-22-2006 00:44:05 | More by 4thoseabout2bock
4.44/5 rDev +4.7%
Another edition of the Texas-based beer bar chain and, from what I see, possibly the nicest one I've visited. Located directly on Main Street, ample mass transit points and a parking lot (pay to park) just across the street.
Opening up with high ceilings, this Saucer is essentially one large room (large enough that the Fort Worth Saucer would fit within it). Plenty of tables, a bar running almost the length of the room and a line of bar-tables nearby; even when packed on a weekend, there's a lot of elbow room and it never feels crowded. A row of booths runs back to the kitchen for a little area of privacy and the second floor is open and overlooks the bar area, which is a nice touch.
Roughly 85 taps, all of which seemed to be in great condition. More selection than the FW Saucer, more emphasis on Texas micros and a few other US craft brands. The staff seems fairly knowledgeable about what they're selling, nice and friendly and quick with the samples. Didn't try the food but the menu is standardized across the chain, so it should all be very similar.
Props to BA VoodooBrew, one of the bartenders. Be sure to say "Howdy" to him if you sit at the bar.
11-07-2006 16:37:55 | More by assurbanipaul
3.68/5 rDev -13.2%
I really liked this plae except for the food but more about that later. All 86 +/- taps were in use and obviously, I couldn't drink from them all. The place is very appealing on the inside. It's clean, high ceilings, some overstiffed chairs in the fronnt, dining tables, and a decenlty long bar offering about 20 or so stools. The variety of brew avialbale was pretty good with all of the sections of the country represented. The bottle list was also on a par with the draught selections. I was quite disappointed with the very limited menu. I had the salmon wrap which was good. There were really no entre items offered.
09-24-2006 17:46:01 | More by maybrick
4.4/5 rDev +3.8%
All right, time to review this joint since I have moved closer to downtown and made it one of my weekly haunts.
Located in the heart of Houston downtown, which makes it kind of bear to get down there. However, there is almost always ample parking and the trip is well worth it.
Atmosphere: Medium sized place that has a classy look to it, yet a laid back feel. Downtown officeworking crowd, a smattering of UH students, beer geeks like myself, and Astros fans. When there is a home game, expect the bar to be filled. There are booths ringing the entire room, comfortable couches and armchairs in the corners, and a high table in the center of the room for the more transient customers. Bar itself is long and impressive-looking. Several comfortable picnic-style tables are located outside. This is a smoking bar. However, even though I can't stand it when people smoke around me and my craft beer, this bar is not the least bit smoky.
Quality: I have never had anything but the highest quality beer here. Draught beer is always fresh, and bottled beers are good too (although I tend to not get bottled, because what's the point at a bar with so many taps?).
Service: From good to outstanding, depending on how crowded it is. I for one have never been left without a beer in my hand, but sometimes the food is slightly slow. The waitstaff is probably the best aspect of this bar, next to the tap selection - they all know their beers/glassware, and are quick to let you know when something is on sale or just arrived on tap. And 99% are good-looking women in short skirts and tight "Beer Goddess" shirts, so that is just extra icing on the cake!
Selection: No other beer bar in Houston has the selection of the Saucer. Not even close. Local TX brews are the beers to get at this bar. No, not Shiner...Real Ale, St Arnolds, Rahr, Live Oak, Independence. All of them are fresh and tasty. And if you desire, there is a plethora of other beers as well.
Food: Much better than I expected; this place makes some delicious food. The garlic chicken pizza, the caesar chicken wrap, and the bratwurst plate are probably the best dishes I have had there. It is all high quality, made-to-order grub.
Value: If you are drinking beers on tap, you can't go wrong with the value here. It's a quality beer bar, so don't expect dirt cheap. The high turnover ensures beer is always fresh. Number one beer bar in Houston, IMO, and worth every minute of the drive there.
07-22-2006 21:50:46 | More by beertastegood
4.28/5 rDev +0.9%
I'd consider this one of my weekly haunts despite it being a 20-25 minute drive from the suburbs. It's one of those places where the game is always on (in this case a few smaller tv's above the bar and a projector style hanging down in the table area) and even though you can smoke in there it's spacious enough to where it doesn't feel smoky.
The waitstaff is very friendly and extremely knowledgeable in the ways of beer. It's also not a bad thing to get a beer in the proper glassware served by a waitress in a plaid skirt and knee high socks. Around 70 or so regular taps with about 5-10 rotating kegs. I like this place because it usually has the Rogue special offerings that never make it to the shelves.
There is always a deal going on with the beer whether it be 2.50 pint night on Mondays or the daily fire sale beer which is always 2.50 a glass. I also scored a great Unibroue glass from the weekly "keep the glass" night when they featured Trois Pistoles. Every Tuesday is trivia night with bar cash as the prize, so you can hang out with your friends and drink a little cheaper all at the same time. Food is solid and reasonably priced and I'd recommend the garlic chicken pizza.
Shout out to the ABC Team and the short chick who calls the trivia.
06-03-2006 20:11:44 | More by jwff
4.58/5 rDev +8%
In the shadows of downtown, the Saucer has a great street view, and the obligatory plates everywhere. Nice combination of seating options, overstuffed chairs and couches along one wall, straight wood dining tables in the open, slightly secluded booths toward the back, seating at the bar and another bar like row behind that. I didnt make it upstairs.
Tap board as long as Texas with what has to be close to 90 taps (menu lists 76, but my math shows more, and the Freshly arrived arent listed yet). Freshly tapped Live Oak Hefe was an easy choice. Served with lemon (I forgot to ask them not to). Friday afternoon crowd is a mix of office drones, leisure hip, and older moms. Wifi available with a code. Beer goddesses, well, at least mine, were in top form. Knowledgeable about the beers, suggested a sample when I asked about the Frosty Frog, and generally took care of me (even directed me to the one seat that I could plug in my laptop- single tall two top by the dart board).
A great place to spend time and money. If youre hitting Minute Maid park, this is the before/after spot. You have to hit Specs down the road too.
05-05-2006 21:05:56 | More by HardTarget
4.53/5 rDev +6.8%
Houston's top beer bar. Sure, others may be cozier (The Ginger Man) or more convenient (i.e. not downtown), but taken as a total package, The Saucer tops my list.
* The Saucer is at the bottom floor of what feels like a refurbished bank. The ceilings are incredibly high (high enough to have a little second floor interior balcony) and are covered with a couple hundred golden platters (saucers), commemorating those dedicated Beer Knurds who have drank at least 200 different beers at the establishment. This feat is a little more impressive when you consider that the Saucer will only count 3 beers per day to your total. As of this writing I only have 185 to go. Good luck to me!
The crowds can get fairly large during the early-mid evening hours, with a strong after-work contingent to go along with the dedicated beer seekers. Daily rotating specials also help to keep interest high and prices reasonable.
* Despite the tendency for healthy crowds, service is still usually easy to come by thanks to the large squadron of cocktail waitresses servicing the floor. Oh, and it helps that they wear high socks and schoolgirl-style skirts and are pretty much all good-looking.
* Since I rated G Man's selection a 4.5, The Saucer has to get a 5. This rating is relative to its market, of course, and I'm sure there are other bars in the country and in the world that will blow it away.There are enough drafts to satisfy the serious beer connoisseur, and the bottle selection is equally impressive, if still not all-encompassing of the Houston market's offerings. For that you'll have to head to Spec's.
03-03-2006 23:57:56 | More by VoodooBrew
3.9/5 rDev -8%
This place is pretty alright by me. Place wasn't too loud or smoky. I was very pleased with the foxy waitstaff and those great uniforms. The barstaff never left me waiting and seemed to be quite attentive. One little qualm I have with the place is that when I went, they were out of two beers on their beer list that I've been dying to try for sometime. One was draft and the other bottled. I had the grilled chicken and pesto pizza which was decent. Overall, I could most definately see myself returning while in the Houston area.
12-14-2005 08:18:07 | More by goochpunch
4.22/5 rDev -0.5%
Ok, even though it can be expensive to come here, it is still one of my favorite beer bars in town. Mainly for the selection and quality of beers that are available. Anyway, let's get to the details...
Atmosphere. It's very loud and crowded, but not too smokey if I recall. We usually end up sitting outside, which is a good place to meet the bums. Be careful, you never know which one has a knife.
The service is so-so. I gave them an extra .5 point for the uniforms. They can be slow sometimes, but I have been to plenty of places with worse help.
I think I already mentioned that the quality and selection are excellent. There are over 200 beers here and I have never gotten a skunky one. Quality and selection are really why we go to bars anyway, right? Overall the saucer is a great place to get sauced and sausages at the same time.
11-23-2005 22:29:09 | More by skittlebrau
4.13/5 rDev -2.6%
Defintely not the place you want to sit down and have a heart-to-heart talk, especially with those waitresses in pigtails, plaid skirts and bobbie socks. It is noisey, especially on game nights. You can sit upstairs to get away from the bar or sit back in a couch to throw some down while looking att he flying saucers on the ceiling. Sitting out on the patio can give you a good glimpse of the "Wham-Bam" train or share a beer with one of Houston's fine homeless folks.
I like most about Flying Saucer. It is a good concept, and there is something new all of the time.
The bar staff are the best. They serve you some excellent samples and always suggest really good beers. You cannot go wrong if you are the bar. The waitresses, fun to look at, but they could you know loosen up a bit. Either they do not deliver you timely beer or your food takes forever to reach you.
This is their strong point. 80+ draft beer and 100+ bottles, and they mix it up too. They have good glassware as well, themed pints.
Believe it or not, you can actually eat a meal here without have to do the "Pepto" dance.
11-04-2005 02:59:10 | More by damifino
The Flying Saucer Draught Emporium in Houston, TX
94 out of 100 based on 106 ratings.