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Solemn Oath Brewery

Not Rated.
Solemn Oath BrewerySolemn Oath Brewery
BEER AVG
3.84/5
Based on:
61 Beers
211 Reviews
Place Score: 91
Reviews: 32
Visits: 135
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: n/a
Taps: 12
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar ]

1661 Quincy Avenue, Ste. 179
Naperville, Illinois, 60540
United States
phone: (630) 995-3062

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @solemnoathbeer

Notes:
Place added by: emerge077 on 05-08-2012

Hours:
Wednesday - Saturday: 12pm - 9pm
Sunday: 11am - 7pm
Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 32 | Visits: 135
Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4

Very cool wide open industrial tasting room that smells of f awesome malt. Very friendly BT that helped me immediately. Smallish bar area of with nice people. Was a little hard to find, but plenty more of parking. Beer is good. No fun food, but fine. (255 characters)

Photo of gormanv
3.66/5  rDev -10.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75

This is in a small commercial space at the back of a commercial complex. The customer area is rather small with seating only at the bar. They have food vendors stop by since they do not serve food. They brew all sorts of stuff and are starting to offer a few fan favorites with some regularity. Most of their offerings have been on the hoppy side. I had a few darker beers recently that were brewed to standards. They only take credit cards and they have a buy a beer for a friend feature to get your friends to stop by. (526 characters)

Photo of KingBiscuit
4.65/5  rDev +14%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5

Fantastic find - if you can find it - kinda sorta hidden in an industrial park. Usually a diverse selection of taps, small taproom can get crowded quickly. Food trucks add to the vibe. (184 characters)

Photo of Jae61
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4

Love grabbing a drink here, although the bombers are typically more expensive than if you buy them at the store. Very small taproom area, but friendly staff and cool vibe. (172 characters)

Photo of KOBB
4/5  rDev -2%

Staff knows their stuff. The motif is to the point and sticks with the image they perpetuate(gaudy/minimalist). The clientele can be pretty pretentious even by hipster standards but, hey, that's what you're asking for when you decide to sit in a place to drink designer beer that has an eye toward "fashion". They're the type that like bad art and other things people don't like. if it wasn't at the back end of an industrial park and hard to find, more people might know about this place and it wouldn't be so cool to be at. But I digress. They make great beer names. (568 characters)

Photo of barnzy78
3.5/5  rDev -14.2%

I've really enjoyed the several different beers that I've had from this brewery. They're all excellent quality. The brewery itself is rather small along with limited bar seating and a small sitting/standing area, but it doesn't seem to pose a problem. However, I have not been there on a weekend night and I could imagine it easily getting crowded. My biggest complaint is the price of the beer, especially at the brewery. They want $6+ for a glass and growlers are $20+. That growler price is equal to $22.50 for a 6 pack of 12oz bottles, which is obsurd. I won't be back for a growler fill again, and doubt I'll be back again, period. I'll give it an overall score of 3.5 because their beer is good, but it's way too expensive for what it is - beer. (751 characters)

Photo of TheMachoMan
3.51/5  rDev -14%
vibe: 3 | quality: 5 | service: 2 | selection: 3.5

It needs to be said that although SOB does in fact produce extremely high quality beer, I'm about this close to boycotting it, just based on jacking up their growler prices to $25. It's good, but not that good, and it's fairly representative of their often cocky attitude. It's Naperville, so I guess people are paying it, and/or don't know better, and/or there just ain't a hell of a lot else going on out there. I've lived out there almost two years and it's still a destination for when people come to visit (the ONLY destination) but I had family in this past weekend and my poor dad nearly had a heart attack when I told him about the $25 growlers. In Louisville where they live, many places have $5 growler nights, or at worst $10-12, and that's for a good one with serious alcohol. You can get growlers filled in liquor stores down there. But here at SOB you have to buy one of their growlers. Which I did, grudgingly, but their flavors are so rich that you have to have a select crowd to be able to put them away in one night. I'll still go back (just to get the Scareball, which eluding me for the past year) but I doubt I'll get a growler refill. The $9 sampler is the way to go, but it wouldn't surprise me if they jack that up as well. Two Bros. is all the way in Warrenville or I'd gladly go there more often. (1,322 characters)

Photo of Brando87
3.49/5  rDev -14.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5 | food: 2.75

I've been going to Solemn Oath for quite a while so I can provide some back story on where this place was 18 months ago and how it has evolved to where it is currently.

I live less than 5 minutes from Solemn Oath and still had a tough time finding them the first time. It's tucked back in an industrial complex so If you aren't familiar with the area look up directions.

The tasting room is just off the brew house. There is a small bar that seats 10-12 people and some standing room behind the bar. On a nice day they will open up the garage. When they first opened not many people knew about it so you could go on a weeknight after work, belly up and enjoy a few brews. With Solemn Oath's rising popularity its now always standing room only. While there is no food they often have food trucks. Check their website for dates.

When they first opened typically there would only by 3-5 beers on tap. As they have grown you can now find 10-12 on a good day. They have a strong Belgian influence so most if not all of their beers appear to use a Belgian yeast strain. (Something to consider if you're not a huge Belgian fan like myself). **THERE IS A 3 BEER LIMIT PER VISIT**

Overall this is a cool spot and I'm a big fan of drinking local so I support them whenever possible. (1,276 characters)

Photo of Vonerichs
3.86/5  rDev -5.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

A favorite local place of mine. Great people, both staff and patrons.

The setup is that of a tasting room connected to the open brewery. Very small and from the outside hard to find. It's basically a warehouse with a bar and no decor but for the swag on sale. The barstoolsxare are even screwed to the floor. Everything is minimalistic. They don't even take cash, only plastic.

They have a very small selection, usually six taps. Sometimes it's not even much variety. I hope it's more variety as they continue to grow, which is looking likely.

It's only a tasting room so no food, but there is a good truck outside to order and bring in.

I like what's going on here and even though none if the beers have really knocked my socks off, I feel like each day they get better. (779 characters)

Photo of beatenbyjacks
4.11/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5

Atmosphere - this place gets crowded real quick. Since it was a pretty overcast day the garage doors weren't open either so it got packed in no time. I like that one could see all the equipment and such, but I wish there was more space.

Quality - had a few different beers and while none were particularly amazing everything I had was good.

Service - going back to the crowded part, I cannot blame the staff too much.

Selection - this is where they shine as there were plenty of options for all types of beer people.

Value - this is tricky because they do not accept tips so the price sort of included a tip.

Overall - I would like to go back on a weekend to see what the place was like. (692 characters)

Photo of Dayman766
3.18/5  rDev -22.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.25 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 3

I visited here with a buddy on a Saturday afternoon and we were surprised how packed the place was. The wooden bar with the imposing brewery in background view makes for an impressive and unique atmosphere. Unfortunately, the seating here was very limited; many people had to exclusively stand up for the entirety of their drinks.

No food to be had here, so we had a sampling of their current taps. I know this brewery likes to change up their offerings on a regular basis so maybe we caught them on an off day, but I can't say I really was enraptured with any of their beers - they were the typical smattering of overly hopped beers of today's market. (654 characters)

Photo of JackOC85
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

The taproom opens up straight into the brewery. The space is fairly small (understandably) which at times can make it cramped, but being in close quarters with the other patrons has never led to an issue for me.

If you're in for the first time -- payment is credit/debit only, and local ordinance caps consumption at 3 beers per person, so plan to purchase a growler to go if you like anything in particular. (409 characters)

Photo of LANDRY
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Okay so to call this place a brewpub would be an overstatement and this place is nothing but an understatement. It is what appears to be a former garage that has been transformed into a microbrewery, they have seven beers on tap I tasted a flight and two pints (limit three per day) all were beyond reproach, most interesting was the imperial black Saison very tasty and completely uniques as well as the toasted marshmallow stout, do yourself a favor and do not go on a Friday night they have one small bar with seating for aprox 10 people and they were 50 plus on a Friday night bartenders did their best to help out but with the noise and the crowd didn't feel like I got the full experience will try again on a weekday. You really have to look for this place to find but don't give up you won't be disappointed once you do. These guys know beer and they do impeccably they appear to be straddling the line between home brewers and full on brew pub owners and that's how I like it. (984 characters)

Photo of cwehr13
5/5  rDev +22.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Solemn Oath is one of my favorite brewery's. There beer is great and everyone working there is very nice. There was a mix of people from younger adults to business type adults. They do have food trucks on the weekend but you are welcome to bring your own food with. It is card for payment only and you do not tip the bar tender, you can buy them a drink as a tip. The way you see all the fermentors and everything that goes on inside the brewery from the bar it kind of makes you feel like a part of it. (503 characters)

Photo of Thedaver4220
4.14/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5

Solemn Oath is a bit hard to find considering it's in a building behind another building, so bring your GPS.

The taproom is small and intimate which but feels good. The open floor plan allows you to see the brewery and the goings on inside. The quality of the beers is allows top notch in IMO, so finding something you will enjoy shouldn't be a problem. The service was also top notch. Our bartender was knowledgeable, nice, and seemed to know everyone else in the taproom. The selection of beers was really the only downside. They had 5 on tap with no guest drafts. I would have loved to be able to get a flight if they had 7-10, but o well. All in all this is a cool place to visit, and I would recommend it to anyone. (722 characters)

Photo of IPAdams
3.81/5  rDev -6.6%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Atmosphere- Very good, it is set in the middle of a warehouse district so it has a bit of an underground feel to it. The taproom is only separated from the brewery by a waist high wall, you are no more than 15 feet from the fermenters. Not very big, maybe 15 stools at the bar, no other chairs around.

Quality- Solemn Oath makes some good beers and they usually have 5 of their beers on tap at a time.

Service- Very friendly, because it is a smaller place, the service is quick and the bartenders are easygoing.

Selection- Its a taproom so they only have their beers on tap.

Food-None

Value- Typical price for beers, around $5 or $6 for a pint. Their growler fills are a bit on the expensive side. $20 for a refill, $25 for a new growler and fill. (752 characters)

Photo of Isoruku
2.7/5  rDev -33.8%
vibe: 2 | quality: 2.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 2.5

Solemn Oath is a lesson that just because you can brew beer, that doesn't mean you should.

First off, let's discuss the ambiance. I don't object at all to the warehouse setting or the lack of television sets - which apparently bothered another reviewer. It's a brewpub, not a sports bar. But my god, the noise was appalling. Ten seconds after I walked in, they piped some "music" at very high volume through the speaker system in the brew space. The high ceiling amplified the sound and sent it right back in to the drinking area. Truly cacophonous.

But what about the beer? They had four on tap, and three of them were not worth the drive out. The fourth, their Pernicieux beer, was flavorful with a spicy aroma. But it's not enough to warrant a trip. The two IPAs I had, Butterfly Flashmob and Snaggletooth Bandana, were among the worst I have ever encountered: no rich, layered complexity, overly obvious and unrewarding to drink. (What do I consider "rewarding" IPAs, you ask? Racer 5, Dreadnought, Southern Tier, Torpedo...)

Honestly, if you're in Naperville, why bother with this place? They haven't got the hang of brewing anything truly noteworthy, although they do seem to have mastered cute names for their beers and equally cute copy on their web site. But just because you can get a bank loan to buy some fermentation equipment, kettles and tanks, that doesn't mean you should go ahead and do it. Beer, like literature, is a craft. It shouldn't be a medium for self-indulgance. (1,494 characters)

Photo of krl2112
2.43/5  rDev -40.4%
vibe: 1 | quality: 2 | service: 3 | selection: 3

So we only went in and stayed a few minutes. If u like a place with limited seating, no A/C and smells then this is the place for you. Soooo many rules that ur head will spin. They don't take cash, no tv's, don't fill personal growlers and the list goes on. Just from their website u get aggrevated. They say they will never can their beers . Ok well then they must not understand the dynamics of sunlight on beer. Their website just rubbed me the wrong way. They have way too much attitude for a new brewery. Can't tell u their brew is good but totally thrown off by their brew bar. No thanks. Plenty of other places to go with no attitude. (641 characters)

Photo of amalahow
5/5  rDev +22.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

This place is glorious. I consider it a destination brewery in the midwest. Thankfully, I live just 10 miles away so it is a frequent destination for me personally. I think Solemn Oath has quickly moved from "up and comer" to "total glory" among midwestern craft breweries. Note: this is not a bar or restaurant; it is a tasting room that closes at 9:00 on most nights. Therefore, categories like "atmosphere" and "selection" and "food" aren't really applicable for its rating. But I gave it 5 in everything because, for me, this place is perfect. This place makes beer; you can drink it there; or you can buy a growler and bring it home. If you like things that are great, you should drink beer here. I like things that are great. (731 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
4.06/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

After waffling about it for some time, I finally got around to making an afternoon visit to ol' Solemn Oath, my first time in Naperville since RibFest 2008 (if memory serves). First off, the place ain't exactly easy to find if you're just using the directions Google Maps provides, as it involves taking a right on a side street and ducking into the rear of an industrial/commercial area. Once it was found, though, I was thrilled: Usually, brewery tap rooms are quaint little bars with windows into the brewing world. Here at Solemn Oath, on the other hand, you're entering a brewery that happens to have a small tap area tucked away in the front corner. The lack of walls semi-immerses you in the world of conical fermenters and mash tuns, lending a unique ambiance you won't find anywhere else. The small bar provides a nice little selection of SO's beers; this time, though, I happened to arrive when a couple had recently kicked, leaving only 4, but this awarded the perfect opportunity for a sampler flight, which includes a selection of 4 beers. Serendipity, to some degree. The flight is served in stemmed globes on a wooden rack, a higher-class visual than most any other brewery. Adding to the uniqueness and charm are the ways you can buy beers for others: you can pay for a beer during your visit which your friend can redeem when they come at a later time (the names are put on a chalkboard on the wall to keep track), or, in lieu of a normal tip (which is not expected here), you can buy your bartender a beer, an opportunity I took full advantage of considering the knowledge and care shown by my 'tender. There isn't much space here, but you can bring in some food and enjoy a pint or two (they limit you under the auspices of responsibility, a neat little touch) while watching the brewing process at work. It's been a long time since I've been this impressed by a visit to a tap room... (1,904 characters)

Photo of smartassboiler
4.16/5  rDev +2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I was pleased with my 2 visits to Solemn Oath thus far.

Atmosphere - It's a relatively small tasting room in the brewery, and the bar seats about 15 people or so. The problem is that the space simply isn't large enough to do much for the people who cannot fit at the bar, so all they have are 2 large wooden kegs you can stand by and put your beer on. Saving that, there's nowhere else to sit down. It's a clean place. You are limited to 3 beers per visit, so it helps prevent people from camping at the bar for hours at a time.

Quality - I've thoroughly enjoyed every beer I've had from there thus far. They are a creative brewery who push the boundaries of a good number of beer styles.

Service - I've never once had a problem with the service. All bartenders have been nice and are attentive when people are trying to order a beer.

Selection - The first time I visited they had about 10-12 brews, but I went last night, and they only had 5., so it will vary a decent bit based on what they have available. However, they present a good variety of styles, so there will almost always be something to suit what you're in the mood for.

Food - They don't serve food, but they will occasionally have food trucks parked outside, and I always enjoy that as a nice touch.

Value - Both beers I had last night were $6-$6.50 for a 16 ounce pour, so you get a good amount of a quality beer for your money. They also offer reasonably priced tasters as well.

I will continually visit this brewery when looking to drink something local. I recommend it both to local residents and anyone passing through the area looking to grab a good beer at a solid price. (1,651 characters)

Photo of Matthewpakula
4.41/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75

I love this place. Tim Marshall makes some of the most creative, tasty beer I have ever had. The creative minds that work with Tim are unmatched by any other brewery I have been to and I am always excited to see what they have available in their taproom (beer selection is always changing). The staff at the taproom are energetic, kind, and passionate about their products and are alwasy willing to listen. I was very excited to hear that they will be putting their in bottles and look forward to the time that I can purchase my first one (hopefully its Radth, that beer is the shit). If you haven't already done so, stop in to see Erin (Taproom Manager) and buy her a beer( they dont accept tips or cash, but a cold one is always appreciated). (744 characters)

Photo of guityler83
4.54/5  rDev +11.3%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5

The brewery / tap room was tucked away behind a car delership in an industrial park area of this Chicago suburb. Walking in the door I was greated with the aroma of hot wort, a great sign this brewery was in operation and adding to the atmosphere.

The brewing equipment and the bar are sepperated by a half wall so there is no problem seeing it in action when you get your first pint. I tried the Captured By Vikings a complex malt and pine aroma IPA that reminded me of Surly Furious. I also tried the Tickle Fight (barley wine) and sampled a spiced belgian brown ale. Overall the beer was top notch and its great to see some interesting variety in their lineup. I'll definatly be keeping an eye on them and hope to make a return visit. (739 characters)

Photo of powz87
4.52/5  rDev +10.8%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 5 | selection: 4.25

If you are ever out in the burbs this is a must stop. It's a pretty small tap room tucked away in an industrial park. That being said there are no windows between the tap room and brewery so it does get quite warm in the summer as there isn't an A/C. The staff is second to none. The beer's are belgo inspired ales and they are focusing on putting a lot of beer in wood this year, so you might get lucky and catch one on tap. There isn't any food but they do have food trucks from time to time. (494 characters)

Photo of Florida9
3.87/5  rDev -5.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75

SOB can be a bit tricky to find your first time out. Just know, when you're driving down Quincy road, SOB is located in the building behind the 1665 building. If you see the 1665 building, drive around back.

As for the taproom itself, it is small. It is essentially carved out of the brewery and it is clear the brewery won out. The taproom is tight. It's a L-shaped bar with stools. There are no tables, little in the way of ambiance, and the music comes from an ipod. It's minimalistic to say the least. It is what it is: a place to drink a couple of beers or fill a growler and nothing else. That said, the music is pretty good, the bartenders are good natured, and the crowd is a lively mix. There's not much room to sit or stand or talk, but given the 3 beer limit, I guess there isn't much of a need to provide you any of the comforts that come with a normal bar.

Selection is fairly limited. There were only six beers on tap during my last visit, though there appears to be about a dozen lines. Respectable, but lets be honest, when was the last time you were impressed by a bar that offered up a whopping six beers? (And yes, I understand this a taproom, but its also important to be fair.)

As for the food, there is none. Occasionally they will have food trucks come by, but it is far from regular.

Overall, it's not a bad place. If I lived in the area I might visit more often, but with the 3 beer limit and the limited offerings, I can't see SOB being worth the drive. (1,486 characters)

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Solemn Oath Brewery in Naperville, IL
91 out of 100 based on 32 ratings.