Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse

Not Rated.
Against The Grain Brewery & SmokehouseAgainst The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse
BEER AVG
3.71/5
Based on:
136 Beers
515 Reviews
Place Score: 94
Reviews: 43
Visits: 158
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: n/a
Taps: 9
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

401 E Main St
Louisville, Kentucky, 40202-1110
United States
phone: (502) 515-0174

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @atgbrewery

Notes:
Place added by: brian44556 on 09-25-2011

No notes at this time.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 43 | Visits: 158
Photo of GJ40
4.1/5  rDev -4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

My family and I stopped into Against the Grain while visiting Louisville.

The building is fantastic with authentic wood floors, high, wooden ceilings, two levels of brewing equipment above the bar and an artistic flair mixed into the warehouse foundation. They have TVs, probably to cover the baseball games, but they don’t detract from the overall atmosphere.

They offer six beers that are all brewed on the premises. Based on the website, I expected the beer lineup to be geared to the masses and not craft beer fans. But they manage to pull off both. The menu presentation simplifies the descriptions so a beginner can easily make a decision. But having tried them all, they’re substantial and interesting. They’re much more balanced and mainstream than over the top but they’re flavorful and interesting.

The food is fantastic as well. They have smoked BBQ including pulled pork, brisket and chicken. And they have several options for sauces. Two came with the meal and we added a sauce sampler for $1.50. It was great to try all of the different meats with the different sauces. We also had the smoked wings, hash and salad. If there was any flaw, the meats were a bit dry. But the sauces help mask that and there were no disappointments.

Against the Grain is surprisingly good for a commercial, touristy place in a minor league ballpark. It’s well worth a visit. (1,382 characters)

Photo of MilwaukeeCrusher
3.72/5  rDev -12.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Stopped here to do a quick flight. Beers were hit and miss, some great some only ok. Facility was nice and service was good. Didn't try the food. Might stop back here again because I've heard good things about this place as I might have not been there on a good day or I was in a hurry because of an incoming blizzard. (318 characters)

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.18/5  rDev -2.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Lots of genuine character at AtG. I like the vibe, the design, and pretty much everything about the place. Selection and quality was on the mark, with an interesting variety of different kinds of beers. I took a growler of Shart Pants with me. Food was pretty good. The brisket was nice and the corn on the cob was a good touch. The green beans were cooked to oblivion though, but 2 out of 3 ain't bad. When I am in Louisville again, I would definitely come back. I imagine that AtG will continue to put out a lot of interesting brews for some time. (549 characters)

Photo of Mantooth
4.07/5  rDev -4.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25

Fantastic bar & brewery in downtown Louisville. The vibe is wonderful, the brewery can be seen through glass behind - and up above - the bar. Big fan of the massive mural painted on the wall - illustrating the process of all grain brewing. Very knowledgeable and helpful staff. Don't think twice, check them out. If you're in the area also hit the Louisville Beer Store and Holy Grale. You're welcome. (401 characters)

Photo of mynie
4.43/5  rDev +3.7%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

Against the Grain is Kentucky’s buzziest brewery. I’ve had a few of their beers in Indy and they’ve ranged for solid to very good. And—take notes, kids—they have the good sense to directly distribute their kegs. Meaning they are generating hype in Indy and Cincy and even Chicago, which is very good for their brand.

Their set up was adorable. Way new brewery-y, with lots of exposed ductwork and warm track lighting, but it makes sense seeing how the brewery is physically is a part of a fucking AAA ballpark. I drove past the place 3 times before I realized the “BREWERY” written on one of the park’s enclaves wasn’t some Captain Morgan’s Cove-type bullshit. So, even without attending a game, I guess it’s safe to assume that the Louisville Bats have maybe the best beer selection of any baseball team in the states? That’s not fair.

The place is long, wide, and nicely ventilated. 5 15-barrel tanks sit well illuminated above the dining area, and bearded men paced about them intently. The crowd was southern mixed race-—meaning the black people came in diverse forms, but the white people were all fuzzy and car-shaped. The TVs showed sports and the music was innocuous.

I can’t gauge the south. The little aesthestic tics that signal coolness up north here can be meaningless. My first time in Louisville I came across a heavily tattooed youngster with gauged earlobes. He knew where the weed was, of course, but he also very deeply hated gay people and damn, he said, if we wanted to get out of this economic mess we was gonna have to stop spending so goddamn much on foreign aid. You know how much that takes outta his tax dollars? Too goddamn much. Then he said some slurs.

Anyhow, this place had some legit vegetarian options. Overall it was friendly, but I can’t tell if it was for-real friendly or that weird, perfunctory southern friendliness that’s actually just a thin patina they pull down to mask their pressing hatred of outsiders. It also looked like it could get real busy real quick, but it might be in the kind of area and appeal to the kind of people where it ain’t likely to get too awful busy at any given point. (2,175 characters)

Photo of joe1510
3.51/5  rDev -17.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

Located in the Louisville Slugger Stadium downtown Against the Grain has a cool space that's anything but little. You enter next to the large outdoor seating area, all covered in case of rain. The interior space is large with high ceilings and a lot of brick. A huge chalkboard tells of the days offerings. Tanks can be seen through a long window directly above the bar. Although the space is large it still seems intimate and cozy. Nicely decorated.

Service was friendly and prompt although I did have to ask for a couple of items. Against the Grain labels themselves a smokehouse so the menu is loaded with delicious smoked meats. The pulled pork sandwich, though a little pricey, is smokey, savory, and moist with a good helping of char and pickled onions to boot. Good stuff.

The beer was actually my least favorite aspect of Against the Grain. I don't know if this is normal but the day I stopped in for lunch they seemed to be serving all beers in plastic cups. Strike one. Strike two was that my beer was so cloudy and sediment filled that it was as close to chewing a beer as you could get. As it was served I was told it was that way because the keg was just recently moved. With that said the beer was mediocre at best and my only drink of the visit because of said issues.

I would give Against the Grain another try if in the immediate area but I wouldn't go out of my way to stop through again. (1,410 characters)

Photo of djhowell
3.5/5  rDev -18%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

The location itself is fantastic; attached to Slugger Field, they have a big outdoor patio and the indoor seating has great views of the brewing equipment. However my experiences at Against The Grain can be summed up in one word: inconsistent. The service we had varied from attentive to non-existent and several of their beers are just too gimmicky. The food and the atmosphere have brought me back but the service has kept me away on more than one occasion. (462 characters)

Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
3.74/5  rDev -12.4%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.25 | food: 4.5

Located inside Louisville Slugger Field stadium, the seating area isn't all that big, but the ceilings are huge so it looks much bigger. There's a good sized patio for outside enjoyment as well.

Staff is friendly and they seem to love working there, lots of camaraderie. The food is awesome! Get the tacos, you won't be sorry. Love the hummus and the pulled pork sandwich, too. I haven't had a bad thing from their menu. It's a tad more expensive than you'd expect, but well worth it.

They make a lot of different beer, feels like they're pumping out a new one every damn day. Because of this experimental mindset, you'll find a lot of mediocre stuff, but a lot of good stuff as well, and every once in awhile, you'll strike gold. Obviously, Bo & Luke has been their main attraction lately, but many will argue 70k is even better. They have 5 or 6 offerings on tap at any given time and it's a great place to always find something unique or different. You won't find any other brewery's beers here, at least not from the times I've been. So go to try something different, or go to get something you've been waiting for them to release, but also definitely go for the food. (1,175 characters)

Photo of LeeEvolved
4.01/5  rDev -6.1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4.5

I stopped in back in October and loved the overall feel of the place. The location is awesome as it backs up to Lousiville Slugger stadium. I can imagine this place is even cooler during baseball season.

The seating area is wide open and you get a great view of the three-story brewing setup from anywhere in the place. The staff was nice and well versed on the beer and food offerings, but our server was pulling double duty as the bartender and waitress. This really only delayed us when we were trying to settle up and leave.

The food was pretty good overall, but the beer on draft seemed to be so hit or miss. I've found this to be the case with all AtG beers. You never really know which beer, other than Bo&Luke, is going to be a home run.

Overall, it's a cool place that I'd definitely like to try to hit up again when I'm in the area. I just hope the randomness of the beer takes a turn for the better. (920 characters)

Photo of MikeFromMarsPA
4.1/5  rDev -4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

We passed through Louisville this past Friday around lunch at the end of a week-long brewery tour. We figured we'd catch the downtown location of Bluegrass Brewing, and I saw that this was just 7 blocks away or so, so we figured we'd give it a shot, too. I did not expect much from a brewery located in a minor league ballpark in Kentucky, honestly, so this place blew away my admittedly low expectations.

You'll forget about the ballpark angle pretty quickly. Unlike most brewpubs in well-traveled entertainment districts, these guys are focused on making beer, not money. Each of the six beers they had on that day had bite, character and class.

We only split an appetizer since we were still planning on lunch down the street at Bluegrass, but the app was unique and tasty and huge for the price. The crowd was light and we had the bar area to ourselves, so our server was always right there when we needed her.

Everything here was surprisingly good. We were glad we were able to stretch a single into a double when we went looking for lunch and brews in downtown Louisville. It will be on our list for places to go back to when traveling. (1,145 characters)

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

If you're wondering where to go for a real brewpub in Lousiville, look no further. Built inside a minor league baseball stadium, everything inside is major league.

The food, no matter what you order, will be excellent. The weekend Brunch So Hard menu is highlighted by my favorite, the chorizo biscuits and gravy.

The beer selection is somewhat limited in quantity, but the variance of what will be on tap is wide. AtG operates their taps based on style, so there's a session, a hoppy, a whimsy, a smoke, and their wild offerings are often wonderful.

Beer prices are not listed, so you will occasionally order one that will grab your attention when you're ready to pay the tab. Most are reasonably priced. (708 characters)

Photo of SomethingClever
4/5  rDev -6.3%

This place was pretty quiet but it was Monday. Looks like a rather nice place, waitress was very nice did not eat any food. It is unique to sit at the bar and look at the tanks. The beer on tap was really average though. I was blown away when I had Rico Sauvin on tap somewhere else so I was pretty disappointed in the beer. They are really brewing unique beers there with smoked malts and Brett but the problem is they are really average. (440 characters)

Photo of mrfrancis
4.18/5  rDev -2.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

A: Occupying the space where Browning's Brewery once was, Against The Grain has a wonderful location at Louisville Slugger Field. The interior is spacious, clean, and well-lit with a great view of the fermenters in the brewhouse. Lots of clever little touches (regional artwork, large televisions, and lots of wood) make this a very comfy spot that fits in nicely with its surroundings.

Q: The quality of each of their offerings is superb, and the place always seems to promise a good experience. Really, everything here is rock solid all around.

S: Service is casual, friendly, and attentive. If you go in on a slow day, be prepared for some spirited conversation with the servers and/or other regulars. Despite its youth, Against the Grain almost has the character of an established neighborhood bar or brewpub.

S: Being predominantly a brewpub, the selection is limited, but extremely thoughtful. I particularly like their efforts to accomodate all tastes. There is always a session beer on-tap, as well as something for both the hopheads and fans of malt-driven ales. If you like dark beers and/or smoked beers, they've got you covered too. Unlike many American brewpubs, Against The Grain always offers a cask ale of some sort, as well as guest taps for national, international, and regional brewers.

F: The food leans heavily toward standard brewpub fare, so expect to see such staples as beer cheese and sandwiches employing smoked meats. The fried crawfish po' boy is a must. Portions are generous and prices are very reasonable.

O: This is an excellent new spot, and I hope it flourishes. It would be nice to have a brewpub in downtown Louisville that is in it for the long haul. If you ever find yourself passing through the area, stop by and kill some time. (1,773 characters)

Photo of KYGunner
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%

The food was fantastic and affordable and the beer was varied and odd. I've had several ATG in bottles but this was my first visit to the brewery. The wait staff was incredibly nice and accommodating but seemed to be less beer geekish than expected. I love this area of Louisville and I love ATG beer so this was a very good time and a great experience. (353 characters)

Photo of UrbanCaveman
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Hands down my favorite place to go when my work calls me to Louisville. It's a mandatory stop before I head home.

Beerwise, this is one of the best places I've found, as the on tap lineup changes completely nigh weekly. If you're familiar with the Bluegrass Brewing Company, this place is founded and run by some of the original brewers from there. ATG is all about experimentation and having fun with their creations, and while they churn out the occasional miss, they also hit some beautiful homeruns out of the ballpark (literally, they're in the stadium for the Louisville Bats). I've been there at least half a dozen times, and seen about three dozen different beers they've brewed - many of which have been delicious.

While some of the staff aren't exactly beer savants, you will find at least one of the brewmasters working behind the bar most any time you're in, and they don't mind chatting about the beer. The food is all phenomenal, particularly the (market price) local smoked chicken wings with local honey and your choice of their barbecue sauces (which are whipped up by the chef in much the same way the beers are whipped up by the brewers).

I'd be here far more often if I actually lived in Louisville. As it stands, I'm glad they ship kegs and bottles to some of the local stores near me. (1,309 characters)

Photo of cagocubs
4.43/5  rDev +3.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

My night in Louisville ended up being amazing, it also helped that two of my favorite events have combined into one perfect place; Louisville Slugger Field.

A: I had bought tickets to a Bats game and had some time to kill, so to my surprise there was a Brewery attached to the stadium. Located near the Ohio River and adjoined to a beautiful baseball field. You can access just the brewery from the street. Has a nice outdoor patio area where you can watch all the fans stroll into the game, much like MLB Ballparks. A nice setup, I did not spend much time inside as I opted for the nice weather.

S: Great service. Sitting outside I had a waitress regularly visit me to see if I needed anything or another beer. Fast, prompt, and polite.

S: A basic offering of beers didn't have me thrilled, but they did have I believe eight mainstage beer styles. What had me thrilled was how good their beer was. I had the dark and IPA beer which both impressed me.

F: I did the Memphis Sandwich which consisted of slow $23, not bad for a brewery right next to the stadium. (1,066 characters)

Photo of tsauce2
4.44/5  rDev +4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Atmosphere was great. Brewery/restaurant is located in the structure of the baseball for Louisville's minor league team, the Louisville Bats. Simple layout, good job of decorating, great patio. Live music outside on a Saturday night.

Quality was top notch. Everything was professionally made/done.

Service was a bit slow, but it was at night after the Bo & Luke release, so I can sympathize. Staff was very friendly even though they had been getting slammed all day.

Selection was great. Brewery makes a varied assortment of styles of beer. Menu had many choices that did not include just the normal bar food stuff.

Food was banging. Had the homemade chorizo hash. Very tasty and really hit the spot after a long day of drinking.

Value overall was great. Beers and food were priced very well. (797 characters)

Photo of JDizzle
4.64/5  rDev +8.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

I have been to this place about 4 times now and it had never disapointed.

They always have ureal draft selections, most of their own, but also guest taps from around the world. I have had Mikeller 1000 IBU, Three Floyds BooGoop, etc.. on tap plus most of their high gravity beers. The service is great!! Will, the bartender, is always willing to give you nice samples of anything you want and shoot the shit about beer.

The atmosphere is great with the high ceilings and the brew tanks viewable in a nice window above.

The food is really good as well. I am a vegetarian, and their mushroom burger is epic, but they also have a ton of meat entrees that would be very nice if I ate meat. They have a ton of sauces that are homeade as well that are killer! The hot sauce is brutal.

By far the best all-a-round brewery in the Ville. (833 characters)

Photo of bluejacket74
4.28/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Made a trip to Against The Grain last weekend, it's the newest brewpub in Louisville located in the old Browning's. They have around 6 brews of their own on tap along with some offerings on cask, and also a few guest taps too. I tried the sampler, and everything on it was quality. I ended up getting their 35K on cask and it's a very good brew. It seems that they're focusing their beers more towards the craft customers (some of their brews included a Bière de Garde and a Belgian IPA), which is definitely a good thing. Me and my friends ate there as well, I ended up getting the crawfish Po Boy sandwich which was good. Also tried the beer cheese appetizer that all of us liked a lot. The prices for both the food and beer seemed fair, the service was great and I have no complaints about the place at all. I'll certainly go back to Against The Grain in the future, and if you're in the area it's definitely worth the trip. (928 characters)

Photo of tonafernandez
3.5/5  rDev -18%

Food is great, good space, nice bar, the beer was kind of on the mild side not really what i was expecting, more trending towards non impressive beers, at least on the draft side, i will probably take out a couple of bottles of stuff not available on draft, they do have Alpha King from 3 floyds.
Most beers trend towards a medium light body and substance. (357 characters)

Photo of rodney4130
4.63/5  rDev +8.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

A little nicer atmosphere than you often find in brewpubs. All of the beers are tasty, and different from the normal reds, hefs, etc that you find at most places. Definitely geared to the craft crowd.

Food is very, very good. I had the beer can chicken, and others in our party had the turkey burger and tacos. All looked good and all were spoken of highly.

Service is great. Attentive, but not overly slow. Was really impressed that the burger was overheard to be shared by two people and they took the time to plate each half separately without being asked to.

I second the recommendation of the Belgian IPA and Biere De Garde. Some of the names are a little odd and unappetizing (Who Sharted?) but that's a minor quibble. Well worth checking out. (752 characters)

Photo of Bourbon
3.5/5  rDev -18%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 2.5 | service: 5 | selection: 3 | food: 3

First, the service was excellent. Among the best I've ever had.

Second, The atmosphere tickles me. Having been to Browning's (the previous brewpub at this location), I expected the high ceilings and visible brew equipment. What changed was the diagram of the brew equipment in Street Art-style, the huge portraits of the (assumed) proprietors in their mohawked and hoodied glory and every listing on the On-Tap board is its' own piece of art. The place is brash and arrogant. I like it!

Third, the food was good to excellent. The low score I gave reflects the lack of options and the menu that manages to not make anything enticing.

And now, the beer: meh. I had a Triple IPA that i would describe as "meek" and "inoffensive." There was an Irish Dry Stout that was comparable to Kaliber in flavor. I was so disappointed! I gave as high a score as i did for the ambition of having every tap rotating, but I think they need to knuckle down and just make good beer. It almost feels like they can't be bothered with such a thing.

I'll go back in a few weeks. My fingers are crossed. (1,082 characters)

Photo of fleurdelou
4.11/5  rDev -3.7%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

Against the Grain has been one of my favorite Breweries/ restaurants. granted, I have not been to a ton. This one I have, however, had the pleasure of visiting on many occasions. The feel is overall very spunky casual. It is nestled inside of a baseball stadium. There could be more seating, but the small stature adds to the local feel. The décor is awesome. Many reflections of their bottle art found throughout the place. Wicked cool view of the vats over the bar. One of my favorite parts about the place is their chalkboard. They always have a beer list up on this giant chalk board in the center of the restaurant. It displays the style, flavor, rating, and ABV of each beer listed. The best part, however, are the hand drawn art pieces associated with each brew, not to mention their ever cleaver names. The atmosphere is great, but the food....the food is something to be experienced. I had a personal favorite in their bangers and mash dish. Sausage, sauerkraut, and mashed potatoes topped off with bier mustard (that is to die for). I have tried a few of their other dishes and never been disappointed. I will have you know they emphasize quality over quantity here, so don't expect outrageous portion sizes. I walk by everyday on my way home from work and wish I could bottle the aroma of brew and smoke that oozes out of this place and take it home with me. The staff is very knowledgeable. I have never run into a server/ bartender who didn't really know their stuff. Everyone there seems to really appreciate their product and allow others the ease of knowing what they will appreciate in it as well by answering questions with detail and excitement. Lastly, but certainly not least....the beers. I have never been disappointed by a brew here. I have my favorites of course, but they are all fantastic. Very flavorful creative brews given to us by Against the Grain. They are reasonably priced (somewhat pricy for specialty items), but you aren't going to waste your dollars here. Highly recommend to anyone who is visiting Louisville, KY and looking for a great local brew. Don't take my word for it...go out and give them a try for yourself. (2,158 characters)

Photo of rden4654
5/5  rDev +17.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

A first class operation with first class people, First Class Food and First Class Beer. The two things in Louisville one should not miss is ATG Brewery and Churchill Downs. Hint the pulled pork tacos were the bomb I can't wait tot try the brisket chili and the brisket burger!!! (278 characters)

Photo of macher0
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.75 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4.75

They brew some crazy good beers - 70k, Bo and Luke, Brett the Hop man - but they are rarely available. I typically find something on b the menu I'm pleased with.

The vibe is cool and staff are great.


This place has excellent food. Lots of smoked goodies. (259 characters)

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Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse in Louisville, KY
94 out of 100 based on 43 ratings.