Taps Fish House & Brewery
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Active Beers: 64
Beer Ratings: 730
Beer Avg: 3.78
Taps: / Bottles:
Cask: / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 32 | Reviews: 27 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by ALECOHOLIC:
3.53/5 rDev -10.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 1 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5
My perception of Taps has been declining steadily. Great brews with an interesting rotation are their strongest assets. My poor marks for service are misdirected. The service is good but management policys and decisions suck. I attended their beer dinners last fall '03 and spring '04, both were wonderful. I get a heads up from the brewer last August that the next dinner would be in October. So I try to stay tuned (call and ask, watch the website, etc.) as they fill quickly. The OC Register runs a story a week or so before the event (I missed the article) and the dinner books up immediately. My patronage (and others I know) to the previous events that have grown in popularity is in mgmts rear view mirror. Next bad experience: I pick up a growler of pumpkin ale for Thanksgiving with the anticipation of returning on Tuesday 1/2 price refill night advertised on the board behind the bar. I loved the pumpkin ale. I finally get around to returning with my growler on a tuesday and get short shrift about the offer being cancelled as of late. The bartender says that some people were abusing the offer. Instead of taking a tough stance and punishing (saying no) to the abusers, management shuts it down on everyone. I felt like I was in 3rd grade all over again. Managers are paid to be the bad guy now and again and they need to stand up to customers that get out of line. I'll return again for a beer or for Sunday brunch (and a beer) but I will no longer frequent the joint.
12-23-2004 20:50:39 | More by ALECOHOLIC
More User Reviews:
4.25/5 rDev +7.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
Taps is a mainstay with the management team in the company I work for so I've been there a lot for meetings and other things. In fact, when I traveled out to CA for the first time for the interview with this company, they took me to dinner at Taps! I've been to Taps on numerous occasions, I average about one visit per month either for lunch or dinner. My wife and I even took several of our friends to Taps on New Year of this past year but more info on that will follow below.
Make not mistake, this is first and foremost a classy restaurant that serves excellent steaks and seafood. The brewery almost seems to me like an add on that they included after they had the menu for the restaurant set. When you walk in the doors you immediately notice the oyster bar directly in front. I'm not big on oysters so I normally walk right past that and go out on the patio behind the bar. The bar area itself is spacious and well appointed. The patio area is excellent with a covered area and open areas with heaters in the cooler months. There is a large fireplace on the patio also. My coworkers and I love this location because we can go out on the patio and smoke cigars after dinner, always a good time!
The beer is good, but nothing special. Their IPA is a good example of an IPA but again, it's not something that I really look forward to. Their other beers are pretty good also, they have a wide assortment of 12 to 14 beers but all of them are good. They don't have any beer that really stands out as a world class beer. That's not saying that the beers aren't good, they are very good, but it's nothing that is going to turn this restaurant into a beer geek Mecca.
The food is the main reason that my wife and I love this location. They have fantastic steaks and sides at Taps for a reasonable price. I may need to clarify when I say reasonable. I've been to very expensive steak houses like Maestro's or Carne Vino and they have great food but you are paying on average $50 a plate. At Taps you are getting a really fantastic steak for around $30 a plate. For me, that is actually a good deal because you are paying less than what I would expect for what you get. They also have a very extensive wine list which is a pleaser with the wife.
The service in general is very good but I only gave them a 4 because of one really bad incidents with the waitress on New Years. We went with a group of 7 and had a reservation for a month before hand. We were seated with a waitress who had 3 other tables (not 10 tables, only 3). Ordering drinks was silly, it took one of our group members 25 minutes to get a Jamison on the rocks. This was our first drink order mind you. Another ordered a bottle of wine for dinner, it came out 15 minutes after the meal was brought out! These were bad instances, but the worst by FAR was when the bill came out. We asked for the bill at 10:30 because we had other places to be for midnight. The waitress came back at 11:05 with one bill which we had asked originally to have split up. We told her again it needs to be split and she left. She returned at 11:30 and said "I wrote my orders down in a weird way, what did you guys order again?" This is where I lost it because it shouldn't take 25 minutes to realize that you don't have it written down properly. Now we were clearly going to miss our plans for midnight so we told her what we each ordered (which was amusing because IT WAS A FIXED MENU) and went to the bar area to welcome in the new year. Upon arriving back at the table at 12:05 or so, the tab STILL wasn't split up properly. I called over one of the managers and explained what happened while this unprofessional waitress is trying to talk over me telling her manager that it was our fault. Thankfully the manager knew that this was no fault of ours and took care of the entire alcohol bill, around $500. After thanking him repeatedly we went on our way, hoping that the waitress was fired that night. She was terrible. This was only one incident and it was handled properly by the manager. Every other time that I go there we have a great server. Last night we had Marshall who is a true beer guy. He helped me select good pairings for the steak and dessert that we ordered. Their GM is a guy named Chris who is great, he is what a manager of a quality restaurant should be.
All in all I love Taps, but I don't go there for the beer. I go there for the quality food and good atmosphere, the beer is just a nice add on. I recommend heading to Taps to try it if you are in the area, it is worth the cost.
04-09-2013 17:45:32 | More by BeerEngineer
3.18/5 rDev -19.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 2.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3 | food: 4.5 | $$
If i had to grade this place strictly on beer I would give it a 2.5/5, and only on food 4.5/5.
what sucks is they make some good beers, as obviously displayed on their walls with some of their barrel aged beers. Sadly when do they ever make an appearance at their restaurants? I see them once in a while at beer festivals though, but that's it.
the beer they do have on tap regularly is very mediocre. For the most part the people who drink these beers love them, which is okay i guess. It does beat drinking bud, coors, or miller. However they are kind of sneaky for having only 1 guest tap, so your options are kind of limited. Whenever the neo-colonial goes on tap I highly suggest getting that, or the Thomas Jefferson.
now if you are in here for some grub, make sure to go crazy witht he oysters. Or if you can, come on a sunday for their brunch, its amazing!
02-15-2012 00:43:44 | More by GrumpyJunglist
3.38/5 rDev -14.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 1.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Had numerous flights, a few pints, and a couple appetizers. Encountered an unfriendly male bartender and a friendly female bartender. Beer was decent and the food was good but overpriced. The male bartender was annoyed when I found an error on my bill and seemed confused by addition, remarking that he'd rather "pay the few dollars than talk about it." I guess bartending pays well enough where you can close your eyes and sign away regardless of pricing errors. I found him rude, slow, ill informed, and derisive. I probably will not come here again. Service was bad.
08-29-2011 02:26:43 | More by HopHead84
4/5 rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$$
Went here on a recent trip to Cali. Plenty of parking in a backlot behind the brewpub. Upon walking in the place looked really nice with a large dining area to your left and bar/high top table area to your right. My company and I took a seat at a high top table near the bar. There seemed to be a pretty good selection of brews on tap at the time we were there. They also had a few limited on-site comsumption only bottles as well (these are what we call came for). I did not get a chance to look over the food menu as we had already eaten and no one in the group ordered food, so I cannot attest to its quality. Service was good as well. She thought it was 'cute' that we all were taking notes on the beers we were having... Overall this was a pretty nice spot to hang out and have a brew. I would probably go back to sample some of their on-tap offerings if I make my way back over there.
01-11-2011 17:17:51 | More by thagr81us
Taps Fish House & Brewery in Brea, CA
89 out of 100 based on 32 ratings.