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Ass Clown Brewing

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Based on:
50 Beers
161 Hads
Place Score: 89
Reviews: 12
Visits: 28
Avg: 3.88
pDev: n/a
Taps: --
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar ]

10620 Bailey Rd Ste E
Cornelius, North Carolina, 28031-9364
United States
phone: (704) 995-7767

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @assclownbrewing

Place added by: BRoss242 on 06-06-2011

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Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 12 | Visits: 28
Reviews by Bung:
Photo of Bung
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Not the easiest place to find, but it is worth the effort. Unassuming place in a light industrial/office park. The owner(Matt) really has the place fixed up nice inside. Lots of beercentric decorations. Lots of nice wood and homemade wood furniture.
The owner/brewer does most of this on his own. Some helpers apparently are chipping in now. 8 on tap, always some interesting stuff along with a few regulars. Pints, samplers, growlers. Seems to like to do a lot of sour and tart stuff. Really interesting ones are the dark brew hybrids. Some real nice clean hoppy stuff as well. He tries to use really high end ingredients. Service is top notch, as again he does most of it himself.

Also can get soap made from the spent brewing ingredients if you like that sort of thing. They are really doing some nice things here.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of MarkLinton1
4.57/5  rDev +17.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5

Small cozy tap room. Excellent vibe with some very unique offerings. Tried a flight that included a ghost pepper IPA, rhubarb sour and an oak barrel cabernet Brown ale. All exceptional. Definitely a do over for me next time I'm in Charlotte area.

 246 characters

Photo of mwaltz99
4.94/5  rDev +27.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of David63Olson
4.28/5  rDev +10.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

I felt very comfortable in their tap room... For a small space, it was laid out excellent. On the day I was there, the beer selection and the service were both exceptional. I would visit again.

 193 characters

Photo of GreenStreet
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 3.25 | service: 4.75 | selection: 3.25

Photo of mbfolk
3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Photo of ajcalhoun
1.72/5  rDev -55.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 1 | service: 1.25 | selection: 2

This place is tucked away, but really not that hard to find if you plug it in your GPS. Very similar to other small breweries/taprooms I've visited. I'm from Charlotte and am trying Ass Clown in an attempt to try all of the local breweries. The atmosphere is great, a small taproom with a good vibe, they even have a wall of the "cool" beers their staff has tried. Getting closer to this wall I noticed the first red flag, the beer they were showing off wasn't really that good, a number of gypsy bottles even a westy 12 but really on closer inspection most were cheap Bells or Westbrook bottles you can pick up in any grocery store. I went ahead and ordered a flight trying as I usually do to sample a few old standards according to the bartender and a few very strange concoctions. The bartender was curt to me when I asked his opinions about their incredibly extensive (like over 20 beers) tap list, seemed annoyed that I was troubling him over his regulars. All the while I had to listen to the two guys behind me in line talking about "this new brewery I just found called Allagash" I knew I was far from beer Mecca. Sampling the popular dark chocolate sea salt stout, 30 ghost pepper, wet hopped semicoe, and rhubarb sour. The 30 was impressive in the fact that it actually was painful to drink it was so spicy, the others were lacking in body just coming off kinda watery and it took me a few sips to even get basic tasting notes from the popular stout. Overall I would say it makes sense why they aren't bottling or tapping anywhere outside the brewery. Maybe they should stick to one or two beers and make them really good instead of offering plenty of average ones. Skip this one, the vibe might be cool but the beer isn't.

 1,733 characters

Photo of JamesBell
5/5  rDev +28.9%

I thought about this before I gave a 5, if there was anything I should drop it down for and I just couldn't come up with anything. They could be a little hard to find at first I guess as they are in the back of a business park and will not be visible when your GPS says you have arrived.

However, one you are inside it's great! We have stopp several times traveling through Charlotte and have never been disappointed. They can be a bit crowded, as they were last time we were there but we expected it at 5PM on a Friday!

The beer: Simply put its fantastic. They have a nicely varied menu that changes often. Last time there I had a 15% Vanilla stout that I never would have guessed to be 15%. It was so rich and smooth. I am not a huge hop head, so I can't comment much on that side of the menu. They do a lot with peppers, and if you like spicy beer they usually have at least one on tap. I have had their Raspberry Jalapeño Porter and it was pretty good. It was s bit strong on the pepper taste, but the heat was perfect.
Oh, and they make wine! My wife even likes stopping here because of that, so it's a win-win. She says their barrel aged Pinot Noire is one of the best she has ever had.

The People: I haven't been enough to "know" the guys or be a regular, but the one time we got to sit at the front bar you would have thought we were there every week. Very friendly staff. Informative and excited about their products. Also gave great recommendations for local eating for us travelers.

They don't serve food but there were some chips and pretzels scattered around. The last time we stopped a couple had a pizza delivered to have with their beer.

All in all a great place!

 1,695 characters

Photo of bluestyle18
5/5  rDev +28.9%

Photo of GreenMachine
4.75/5  rDev +22.4%

Photo of Yetiman420
4.75/5  rDev +22.4%

Stop # 456 on my world brewery tour and boy what a doozey.

Cozy place located in an out-of-the-way industrial part about 20 minutes north of Charlotte. Wes was tending bar and pretty much set me up. Had samples of all the beers and while they may not be for everyone, they were all unique and well done. Stayed too long and probably drank to much....thanks Wes!

 363 characters

Photo of BeerInTheHand
4.8/5  rDev +23.7%

Photo of Bronco_IV
5/5  rDev +28.9%

Photo of jrfehon33
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of nickomus
4.65/5  rDev +19.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.25

Incredibly interesting tap room in what us basically a strip/industrial mall. Bartender/brewer was fascinating to talk with and very interested in sharing his creations. Beer choices go well beyond the ordinary and are a must for anyone interested in new styles and the art of brewing.

 285 characters

Photo of Daroger12
4.75/5  rDev +22.4%

Photo of illy0sis
4.75/5  rDev +22.4%

Photo of rxthree
4.5/5  rDev +16%

Photo of Mantooth
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I was recently in the area and stopped by the brewery, I was surprised to find a sweet little tap room - dark and cozy. They've made good use of what I assume was an office, it's a fun place to sample a very nice assortment of their brews. The bartender was knowledgeable and pleasant to talk to. I'll never get over the horrible name of the company - their logo is on the outside of the industrial building they're housed in, but the words Ass Clown are not on it because the park won't let them have the word ass on their sign. That name's the worst - but the beer and tap room are really cool. Check em out.

 610 characters

Photo of CBlack85
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of one800higgins
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of bigkingken
4.7/5  rDev +21.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

I wasn’t expecting very much from a recent addition to the Charlotte beer scene that is a solid 20 minutes outside of the city – much less from yet another startup in a nondescript strip mall – but I was pleasantly surprised by Ass Clown. Actually, they blew me away.

First of all, I love the space. They’ve taken what had to be a boring, bland, office-like space and have turned it into something funky, cool, and relaxing all at the same time. Vintage furniture like a couch and arm chairs dot the sides while nice tables fill the center. One wall is lined with a bar-top made of what looks to be beautifully reclaimed wood from some random fallen tree. There are television spaced throughout the entire place and they’re happy to change the channel to meet your whims.

And the music rocks – a great mix of classic oldies, rock, and modern alternative rock. You can’t help but feel at home the second you walk in.

But then there’s the beer. I typically expect a half dozen, maybe a dozen at most, taps from a small place like this. Most times you only get three or four. So imagine my surprise when I found an entire wall lined with their own experiments – 31 taps in total – along with some barrel-aged wines.

It’s not just the number of taps that are impressive, though. They’ve got wildly experimental beer that you won’t find counterpoints at anywhere else. It’s definitely not the dreary beat-to-death varieties that every brewpub has. For example, there was a banana bread stout, a sea salt chocolate stout, seven varieties of fresh-hopped IPAs, blood orange IPA, and maybe 10 sours.

There is one downside to the wide range of experimentation, however. While swinging for the fences, they knock some of them out of the park; but they also strike out a lot. Their double IPA is delicious. The banana bread stout is unique and nearly as good as some of Southern Tier’s famous imperial stout varieties. The blood orange IPA is great. But the sea salt chocolate stout comes in too salty, the pumpkin sour doesn’t taste like pumpkin or anything else that I want to drink, and, in fact, most of their sours are just sour without any complexity or balance.

That’s okay, though. For every miss, they also have a solid hit. So you end up with at least 15 very good beers. That’s way better than six mediocre ones in my book.

I wish I lived next door.

 2,410 characters

Photo of dailyminefield
1.31/5  rDev -66.2%
vibe: 1.25 | quality: 1 | service: 1 | selection: 2

I live in Cornelius, and I have been meaning to try this place out for over a year now.

I walked in, decent décor, very small and claustrophobic. Fire marshal probably limited this place to 30 occupants, it was that small.

The place was half full, the 5 bar stools were occupied. I noticed there was a line formed on the side of the bar for ordering. There were 4 people in front of me.

With only one ass clown manning the bar, I figured it would take a minute to get my order in.

20 minutes later there were still 2 people in front of me. It became apparent the bartender was favoring the regulars sitting at the bar. My wife and I had enough and walked out.

I did not get to try any beer and I will not be back any time soon. Bad timing?... perhaps. But I'm not going to waste my time finding out. Maybe I'll wait another year to try again. It is worth it to bypass this joint and make the drive to Charlotte to visit NoDa, Birdsong, TripleC, etc...

**Note: You will not find Ass Clown brews in any restaurant, bar or bottle shop.
There is a Duckworth's a couple miles south that specializes in craft beer. They have 100+ taps, they carry tons of local offerings, and still no Ass Clown. I guess this is why it took so long for me to make a visit. It is easy to forget it exists when there is nothing around town to remind you of it. That and the fact it is in some industrial park that I have never come close to driving by. If they are not serious about being a desirable/thriving brewery, there is no need for me to be a serious patron.**

 1,554 characters

Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of BigGingDrinker
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

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Ass Clown Brewing in Cornelius, NC
89 out of 100 based on 12 ratings.