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Ashley's

Not Rated.
Ashley'sAshley's

Taps: 72 / Bottles: 200
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: N
BA SCORE
96
world-class

100 Ratings
Ratings: 100
Reviews: 80
rAvg: 4.32
pDev: 8.33%
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]

338 S State St
Ann Arbor, Michigan, 48104-2412
United States
phone: (734) 996-9191

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @a2ashleys

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 100 | Reviews: 80 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of zdk9
zdk9

Texas

4.68/5  rDev +8.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5 | $$

Ashley's is the bar to have a beer. They have an awsome selection full of Michigan brews, along with stuff from the west coast, Colorado, east coast, and Europe. I have had many a delicious beer there and could never hope to make it all the way through the menu. Service is the best at the bar where the bartenders can give you the down low on rotating taps, casks, and what's fresh. The rest of the staff has a rather high turnover and isn't as knowledgable. Food is nothing special but not bad. Prices are normal for area, 4.50-6 for normal pints, with some of the special stuff more (especially the bottles). Sun-Thursday features a dollar off something each night (local, ciders, porters, Belgians, etc...). The darker and smaller downstairs area is open on the crowded weekends, where there are about 6 taps, usually macros and a couple Bells. Very highly recommended.

01-07-2008 03:20:01 | More by zdk9
Photo of MathTeam
MathTeam

Michigan

4.55/5  rDev +5.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5 | $$

I've read a lot of people on here talking about the servers' lack of beer knowledge and the smokiness/griminess of the atmosphere, but Ashley's is a place that you have to take as it is; a college bar dedicated to good beer and good times, and a hell of a bar at that. This is not a place that you would go on a Friday or a Saturday night looking for a quiet booth with some friends. You can see the main campus from the front windows and the student union is less than a block away. You're going to be surrounded by loud, smoky college students -- albeit a much more desirable crowd for the non-college student than any other of the campus bars. There isn't much you can do about that, but for a college bar, Ashley's does its job extremely well. The staff is generally very nice, and the pretension (in a town that is often ridden with it) is thankfully low. Their extensive selection of beers, and an accompanying menu describing each, is a great welcome to any beer enthusiast, and if you're much of a whiskey drinker, you'll feel right at home as well. I'll admit that the food is not the greatest, but when accompanied by the beer and fries, it's well worth the money.

My advice? Grab a table by the window on a Sunday morning/afternoon for a coffee (not much of a coffee drinker so I can't comment on the quality) and a Bell's Double Cream Stout, stay for a hand-pulled Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA and a turkey reuben (ask for jalapeño ranch for the fries), and if you've got a day to waste, stick around even longer for a couple beers off the rotating tap board, or others from their selection. It's much quieter and much less smoky on Sundays, and if need be, it'll cure the hangover from the night before. Plus, you won't get a headache from your bill since every draft (possibly every beer if I remember correctly) is $1 off on Sundays, so the more you drink, the more you save, right?

Granted, Ashley's is going to be more enjoyable for your college student than any other demographic, but don't write it off as a college bar. Hit it at the right time, and it can and will be a great time for anyone looking for a good beer.

12-07-2007 01:03:52 | More by MathTeam
Photo of BigAl723
BigAl723

Michigan

4.6/5  rDev +6.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$

Wow what an amazing place! This is not your typical bar. Right around the corner from a few head shops on State Street you will conveniently find a small bar with the name of Ashley's. On the inside it is a very old dark structure with a selection that will blow your mind. With just about 70 beers on tap you are sure to find something you will absolutely enjoy.

The service is a thing I tend to hear the most complaints about here on BA and for good reason. When this place gets busy it's like a mad house. The servers are definitely overwhelmed at times but pull through to get you your brew. The key at Ashley's is to try to go when there aren't a lot of people. Sure most people like to go on a Friday or Saturday night to get the full experience but a Tuesday afternoon is when you can walk right up and sit at the bar.

I have found myself being a regular now for over six months, showing up once or even twice a week. The bottom line is when I want to drink good beer and can't always find it right around the corner I settle for a half hour trip south to Ann Arbor.

A few of my favorites on tap include Bell's Best Brown, Third Coast Old Ale, Expedition Stout, Hop Slam, Double Cream Stout, Java Stout, Two-Hearted Ale, and Oberon. Founders Breakfast Stout, Pale Ale, Dirty Bastard, and Red's Rye. Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald, Nosferatu, and Blackout Stout. Stone Arrogant Bastard, Ruination IPA, Smoked Porter, IPA, Pale Ale, Oaked Arrogant Bastard, and most recently Imperial Russian Stout.

Now I’m sure you can get a gist of the style beer I like but they have much more. You can’t always get all these beers on tap there though, most of them have been on the rotate list, but that’s the perks of being a regular. This is probably one of the best bars I have ever been to in my short life and seriously can’t get enough of it. If anyone out there likes beer in the slightest bit, you will love this place!

How can I forget Hop Wallop!

05-10-2007 21:26:41 | More by BigAl723
Photo of CortexBomb
CortexBomb

Michigan

4.6/5  rDev +6.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$$

Craft brew / whiskey / bourbon fan heaven, flat out.

This is the place to visit for beer fans who find themselves in Ann Arbor. A decent, standard pub with the accompanying, mildly overpriced food (albeit tasty) pairs with an unearthly number of taps, almost all of which are craft brews. Some of the taps are etched in stone, but most of them rotate with the seasons, and there are a number of things available here that you will not find on tap anywhere else in Michigan (i.e.: Big Foot, Maudite, St. Bernadus ABT 12, Delirium Tremens, hand-pulled Rogue Imperial Stout and Dogfish 90 minute, all kinds of out of state seasonals). Beyond the taps, they have a huge range of bottles, and stuff from JW Lee's Harvest Ale to Kuhnhenn's Raspberry Eisbock were available. On top of that, if you like other kinds of alcohol, they have an extensive single malt scotch whiskey and bourbon selection.

The overall atmosphere is a fairly standard bar (tap handles on display), but I like the smallness of the place, it's quite intimate. A small bar, booths, the entire place is pretty small, and I like that a lot. The only thing that would gain it the additional half point is less light and a bit less polish, it's just a touch upscale, and that's fine, I'm never uncomfortable here, but I like things a touch more old-fashioned.

The servers here are random, I have had exceptional service, I have had average service. This place gets jammed, so it can take a while on a busy night, the bartenders always seem knowledgeable and friendly when I sit up there though, so it averages out to 4.

Overall: if you've got some time, stop by this place, you will not be disappointed.

05-08-2007 00:08:16 | More by CortexBomb
Photo of tapman
tapman

Illinois

3.85/5  rDev -10.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3 | $$

My new number one stop when visiting family in Ann Arbor.

At the time of my patronage 70 taps were available approximately. Many I had heard of and many I haven't which is usually surprising for most of the bars I have been in in the last year, even strictly beer bars. They have rotating sampler trays which have a common theme. I tried the stout & porter sampler and found my next love, Arcadia's Starboard stout, so if you're out lookin for that special beer, there is a good chance they'll carry it potentialy if not right now.

The food is decent and certainly hits the spot after a long morning of U of M graduation ceremony and is not unreasonably priced. Also they have a great selection of whiskey's at a competitive price. A definite must when visiting Ann Arbor. Go BLUE!

05-03-2007 13:46:28 | More by tapman
Photo of bklynbeerbaron
bklynbeerbaron

New York

4.3/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5 | $$

Visiting the girlfriend's alma mater across the street, went on a Saturday night with five people. The place was jammed, had to wait about a half-hour for a table. Atmosphere was well, collegial. There servers were a little overwhelmed by the crowd.

Phenomenal tap selection (60+), one of the best I've ever seen, and reasonably priced. Had a Bell's Two-Hearted, a Fuller's ESB and a Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald, if I didn't have to make it an early night, I would have sampled a lot more. Didn't sample the food besides some waffle fries.

Good thing I didn't go to Michigan, I would have wasted a lot of time and money here. A definite stop if you're in the area.

04-16-2007 02:59:54 | More by bklynbeerbaron
Photo of david131
david131

California

4.14/5  rDev -4.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$

The place was pretty packed when I went with my girlfriend, so instead of waiting for the non smoking section, we elected to sit in the smoking section. Although, there wasn't much difference between the two environments though. Why indoor smoking is still allowed in Michigan is beyond me, but that's for another time. The service was a little slow, but when you got their attention, you got your beverages fairly fast. The beer selection was among the best that I have seen, especially the amount on tap. A good selection of Bell's, Rogue, Founders, Kuhnhenn, Delirium, Fantome, Unibroue, Arcadia, Dogfish, Thomas Hardy, St. Bernardus.. I could go on. Check out their website for a good idea of their "permanent" menu. Pricing was fair, and I didn't really see much in terms of specials, but with a selection like they have and with as busy as it was, why would they have to have specials? Worth going to at least once to see the amount of beers they have. I'm sure I'll be going back.

01-21-2007 18:18:12 | More by david131
Photo of Higravity
Higravity

Michigan

3.86/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | $$

A welcome site in the Ann Arbor area. The place is a little small and there are a decent amount of seating for the resturant crowd but he upstairs bar is a touch small, which is a bummer since it holds the vast majority of the taps at the place. There is a bar down stairs with more room but a far more limited selection on the tap and bottle list. We ended up downstairs and it was good at first but the single bartender got overwhelmed as the crowd rolled in and we ended up trying to get upstairs but there was no room so we beat it out of there. The weekend night might be a bit crowded but it should be fun to checkout and enjoy during the non-rush time. Man am I getting old.

01-15-2007 16:15:24 | More by Higravity
Photo of alexgash
alexgash

Connecticut

4.28/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 3 | $$

Hard to miss location right across from the Diag. and a busy part of town. Cozy, dark, narrow place with lots of old wood and sticky tables can accomadate more customers than you would guess. Medium-sized bar showcases close to 100 tap handles. There are 2 or 3 chalkboards that list rotating tap choices and specials. I love these boards as the rotating taps are always changing and the choices are typically excellent (i.e. Bell's Hopslam, Founders Strong Ale, Kuhnhenn Nine, Rogue Imperial Pilsner, Stone Oaked AB, etc.). The "permanent" beer menu is big and well put together with nice descriptions and categorizations. I've had many pints and bottles here and I have yet to have an infected, old, or stale one. Impressive considering the number of choices they have, and it also says something about the volume of business they do. Service is friendly and the beer knowledge, though it varies from server to server, is pretty good. They will let you sample anything before buying too! Most beers come in Shaker glasses, but they bring out the tulips for stronger Belgians. In my opinion they could improve upon this. The place can get a bit smoky, so I try to avoid busy times (lunch and early evening 4-6 pm are good and during happy hour every beer is a buck off). Food is average pub fare with the Stilton fries being exceptional, especially with a nice barleywine!

11-20-2006 15:16:12 | More by alexgash
Photo of Gaisgeil
Gaisgeil

Michigan

4.25/5  rDev -1.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$

Welcome to the dao of beer drinking.
It's high time I get around to reviewing this spot. Definitely one of the better beer bars in the state in terms of selection. I haven't had a single stale beer from Ashley's despite how many tap lines they run. There is always something new and interesting everytime I go in and they seem to get kegs of new beers before anyone else. They also tend to get beers from small breweries that I've not seen anywhere else in the area. Short's is a great example of that. Service tend to be young and uneducated in the Kung Fu ways of the malt & hop, but at least they manage to pour a pint without scratching their heads and that's as much as one can expect this close to a college campus. Food is a bit pricey for what it is, but quite good and face it, restaurants in A2 just ARE expensive. (Don't believe me? Go to Zingerman's. Just be sure not to choke on your garlic pickle when you see your bill.) At any rate, this is THE spot for good beer in town.

Just mind some of the regulars... There are some characters in this joint. Notably the little old guy who pulls his trousers up to his teets and plays polka and oompa band music on the jukebox and proceeds to dance around like a five year old knocked up on cherry Kool-Aid.

Slàinte!

09-30-2006 10:17:05 | More by Gaisgeil
Ashley's in Ann Arbor, MI
96 out of 100 based on 100 ratings.