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Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub & Guesthouse

Not Rated.
Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub & GuesthouseSpinnakers Gastro Brewpub & Guesthouse
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

30 Ratings
Ratings: 30
Reviews: 28
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 9.27%
Active Beers: 35
Beer Ratings: 253
Beer Avg: 3.72
Taps: 0
Bottles: 0
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

308 Catherine St
Victoria, British Columbia, V9A 3S8
Canada
phone: (877) 838-2739

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @spinnakers

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: 49degrees)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 30 | Reviews: 28 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DIM
3.3/5  rDev -17.3%

We got off to a really bad start here, but things did get somewhat better eventually. I'm not sure how relevant this story is, but I'll tell it anyway. Eight of us went to Vancouver Island for a vacation recently, including my father who is in a wheelchair. We ended a long day in the Victoria area so we decided to see about having dinner at Spinnakers. My brother-in-law Eric called ahead to see if they could accomodate all of us including my father. It seemed to be an unusually long call and Eric said he was put on hold twice, but we were told it was no problem.

We arrived about 20 mintes later and the hostess began to lead us upstairs. Apparently there was a miscommuniaction somewhere. Eric did mention my father's handicap, but no one passed this on to the hostess I guess. Spinnakers has plenty of seating, but most of it is either up or down some stairs. There wasn't anything available in area accessible to my father, except in the outdoor area. The sun was setting on a sixty degree day and the wind was picking up, so that wouldn't work.

What happened so far annoyed me, but mistakes happen. This is the part that made me see red. The bartender/manager was summoned. He shrugged and said, "sorry, its either upstairs (impossible for my father) or outside (freezing cold)." He came across as calloused and uncaring. My wife saw how angry I was and pulled me aside while my more diplomatic sister handled the situation. Perhaps I'm overreacting, but I thought this was handled very poorly. His people made a mistake and he wasn't willing to do anything to help make it right. I wanted to leave at this point, but my dad had his heart set on eating here after I told him about it.

The hostess stepped up and asked a recently seated party if they minded moving upstairs. So we did get seated after about fifteen minutes. My thanks to her for making an effort to resolve the situation. As for the bartender, well I think he's an ass.

Despite my bad first impression, I have to admit this is a cool place. A beautiful brewpub in a perfect setting, right on the water. I tried three beers, the nut brown ale was great, the IPA was pretty good, and the Scottish ale on cask was pretty weak. I had a BBQ chicken with caramelized onion and roasted garlic that I grudgingly admit was fantastic. Frankly though, I was surprised when the bill came to find nothing comped. I thought at least a couple of free appetizers were called for.

In summary, its probably best to ignore my review and focus on the more positive ones. Despite what I thought of the manager this place has a lot going for it.

DIM, Jul 01, 2009
Photo of ritzkiss
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%

Visited on a slow Wednesday night, sat upstairs in the tap room with a friend.

Cozy atmosphere. Sinnakers has the best location in town, overlooking the inner harbor. On a nice day (it was raining) you can sit on the patio or on the balcony and watch the boats and the float planes.

Waitress knew the basics but the guys downstairs, once they knew I knew a thing or two about beer were all talk, chatting up their favorite brews there.

The beer went from mediocre to exceptional. I had that night's cask, the Dark IPA (nice hops, too light body), the ESB (too light) and the Icebrg PA (very good!). Each night they open a cask conditioned ale, which is really sweet. They always have at least 7 or so of their brews there... though the ones I was looking forward to weren't there (RIS, DIPA).

Overall, one of the best brewpubs in Victoria. They know their beer, they work on interesting casks, great atmosphere, good food. Tops.

ritzkiss, Apr 02, 2009
Photo of Voonder
3.95/5  rDev -1%

Overall - it's really good place. We got lucky, our server was excellent, she was really knowledgable and helpful. So, service was really good, and the barmen was nice enough to give us a hand with off-sales.
Food was really good too, we had steaks and really liked them. The food selection wasn't that great though. They only had to offer 1 kind of burger, steaks and pasta and that is pretty much it. House made ice cream was allright.
Beer was good. Really good. We tried hefeweisen, currant noir and irish red and we weren't dissapointed with any of those brews. We need to come back and try some more.

Voonder, Aug 11, 2008
Photo of IronDjinn
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Another fantastic destination in Victoria, one that any beer afficianado should seek out when in this city.

We stopped in on a Friday evening before 6 p.m. and the place was already hopping. The dining room was already filling up, and since we didn't have any reservations we were lucky to get a table in the bar on the 2nd floor. Clientele was predominantly white collar, all in for their after-work Friday drink or beer session, although there were some larger groups present dining and/or celebrating this or that. Large windowed-in patio section along the waterside, as well as an open patio that wrapped around the building--both were packed to capacity. The view of downtown across the water is stunning.

Service was friendly yet somewhat intermittent, although we all eventually got what we ordered throughout the evening at one point or another. The server knew her beers by rote and could do a spiel about any required, as well as recommended food pairings.

We were so impressed with the place that we came back the following morning for brunch, when the place was less noisy and packed to capacity, in order to get a second look. Easy to pick out the regulars at this point, as well as recognize fellow tourists in to enjoy the place as well. The food was delicious and fine quality both times I ordered, a lot of thought goes into this menu. You also definitely get what you pay for.

Was also very impressed with the beer selection and quality, and all were served in proper glassware. What stood out most for me was their limited edition Iceberg strong pale ale, was glad to have been out there at the right time to sample it. One of the best pale ales I've tried. Some styles were stellar, while others ranged above average, but nothing was simply mediocre. They certainly put a lot of thought into their beers as well.

Other perks to this establishment are that they brew their own malt vinegar ranging from many of the different styles of ale they produce. Also contains an artisinal bakery, plus along with dessert pastries they also make their own gourmet truffles. All this can be found in the small gift shop near the front entrance, which also sells glassware, shirts, hats and other products with the Spinnaker's monicker on it. Up the road a bit (Yale I think it is) in a mini-mall complex is the Spinnaker's liquor store, where you can pick up their bottled line if you forgot to buy any off-sales while you were at the pub. They also have a decent selection of other local micros, as well as imports.

Very impressed with this place, and would like to return and visit some more to see if it still lives up to the calibre of my last visit. Hopefully the service will be upped a few notches as well.

IronDjinn, Mar 02, 2008
Photo of Sammy
3.7/5  rDev -7.3%

Great view. Very pretty retaurant and (separate floor) longer bar, busy in mid-aft offseason weekday. Al kinds of people. A sweet little friendly giftshop with bottles and such to buy.
If you find yourself in Victoria, you must make a stop here though you are spending at least most of a day and some funds to do so.
The beer was fine and mostly served well. The bartender appoligized for the Saison that was overcarbonated and gave us another half pint. The saison ws serviceable, the brewmaster who spent time with us is competent and experimenting well, though conservatively into Belgians.

Sammy, Feb 21, 2008
Photo of CanuckRover
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%

Bit of a walk, but I actually enjoyed looking at the upscale condos surrounding it and the view across the bay to city hall was great.

Me and a friend were seated promptly, although we felt a little out of place, the average age was somewhere in the 60s. Decor was northwest Canadian and comfortable. Menu was impressive, resulted in much headscratching from me and the buddy. Settled on a starter of a few oysters, lovely, and I had a burger with the works, awesome, and Adam had the cod and chips, said it was great.

Nice waitress and the speel they had for the unitiated about beer was admirable, including the disclaimer over temperatures, would have been appreciated by your average macro drinker. Wide range of beers, had the pale ale and the IPA. Not particularly impressed with either, thought the IPA was nicer, malt in the pale ale wasn't to my liking. Okay session beers, nothing to write home about.

60 bucks or so for 4 oysters, 4 pints and two meals. I'd go back.

CanuckRover, Sep 20, 2007
Photo of JanM
3.48/5  rDev -12.8%

Spinnakers is located in an area full of sprawling condos across from the inner harbour of Victoria. Although there's a scenic walking path along the water the area feels kind of desolate. There's a good view from the patios and you can watch the sea planes take off and land if that amuses you. The rather straight cut bar is upstairs while downstairs boasts a gourmet restaurant. The beer list looked very interesting but when they had pumped up their Titanic Stout real ale from the basement I found it to be a disappointment. Compared to, say a St Peter's or Young's stout it was rather thin and watery. It's not a bad place to sit but I think the BA ratings are a bit hyped. I guess a good session with friends upstairs could knock my ratings up a notch or two.

JanM, Aug 14, 2007
Photo of sockeye101
3.4/5  rDev -14.8%

A very nice spot that really excells focusing on what food pairings work well with their beers. I went there for lunch and the atmosphere was nice, a nice restaruant feel as opposed to a brewpub feel. Food was very good, I had salmon and pasta. I was a bit disappointed with their beer selection. 3 of my first 3 choices on their list were not currently available. I was expecting to see a special brew on tap in addition to their standbys on their menu, but there were none. Service was quite slow and we felt abandoned at times. Overall a great place if you want to havea very nice meal and a good beer. But in my opinion their are better beers in the Victoria area.

sockeye101, Jan 10, 2007
Photo of doubleipa
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Was really looking forward to going to the original brewpub in Victoria. The beer was the best we had in Victoria. I especially liked that the cask is listed separately from the regular draught. The cask ESB was quite good. The atmosphere was quite good. It was dark by the time we got there, but I can imagine during the day the view is fantastic. The food was quite good. My wife had the mussels and I had the tuna. The mussels were great, as was the tuna. I could hardly finish the meal, which is usually never a problem. The service was the worst we had while in Vancouver or Victoria. The only time we encountered a wait staff with an attitude.

doubleipa, Oct 16, 2006
Photo of bodybyadam
3.75/5  rDev -6%

A Brewpub with a view is just something extra special in my book. A co-worker and I planned on stopping here after a quick twenty-something bike ride. Well we worked up a sweat after a beautiful ride, and being able to lock our bikes outside on a bicycle rack impressed me. So we come walking in our "spiffy" cycling gear clicking our plastic souls on the floor. Drawing some attention to us but still felt very comfortable and not stared upon. We sat upstairs for a late lunch or early dinner, and saw a wonderful view of the bay. A great selection of beer that was offered in 4.5 oz selections so I could try multiple selections without getting toasted for my bike ride back (very smart marketing). I ordered the mussels cooked in a Belgian beer sauce and they were extremely good. My buddy got the fish and chips that I tried and thought it was good without to heavy of a batter. Definitely check this place out if you're in the area. If you're already in the area, well I'm jealous and hope to be back soon.

Two Elbows Up,
Adam

bodybyadam, Oct 08, 2006
Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub & Guesthouse in Victoria, BC, Canada
90 out of 100 based on 30 ratings.