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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 Conrad
3.38/5  rDev -15.3%

I had a preconceved notion formed from the ads and from previous posters. The place did not live up to expectation. The venue was good and there was free parking. However, we (wife and I)were taken aback by the crowd of people. I thought this would be a high class joint, but it must have slumped. There were lots of jocks and loud people in the place, guys with their ball caps on, some on backwards, the girls in denim and tattoos, and all of them speaking loud to be heard over the music and general noise. Too many TVs were on, and the hustle was a bit much. However, I was there for the beer, and the beer did not disappoint. I tried a flight of the samplers and settled on their ESB. Excellent choice, if a bit pricey. I will not go back until I have tried the other brewpubs in town.

Conrad, Jun 18, 2010
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 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 joshuacavett
3.53/5  rDev -11.5%

I visited this brewpub having great hopes of experiencing a jewel brewpub, but was greatly disappointed in the beer. The food was amazing, I had a beef pot pie and my wife had the fish & chips which was exceptional. We sampled every beer on their menu and three of the beers were very flat (I could not get carbonation in the beereven if I blew bubbles in them). The only one that was above average was their IPA on draft. The place is very kid friendly and the waiter was very quick to bring our order. They did have three seasonal beers on bottle (Jolly Pumpkin Oro de Calabaza, a Merle and another belgian) that give a better selection. If visiting the Victoria/Vancouver area, I would recommend The Alibi room(see my review - http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/17068) over Spinakers. The Alibi room has an unbelievable selection and cellared brews.

joshuacavett, Aug 14, 2010
Photo of canucklehead
3.68/5  rDev -7.8%

This is a classic Victoria brewpub that has really grown and expanded over the years. I can say that the majority of beers are very good and the fact that they serve some warmer on handpump shows a dedication to the craft.

The food was very good with some excellent fish and chips. The service was a bit messed up as the food came the same time as the beer which is a no no in my book. StephenLouis tells me that the service depends on where you sit in relation to upstairs or downstairs. The atmosphere is very nice as this is an old house that overlooks the more open part of the harbour.

canucklehead, Jul 11, 2004
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 BDTyre
3.7/5  rDev -7.3%

Don't get me wrong...I really like Spinnaker's and I make a point of going there every time I am in Victoria. Not much is wrong with this place except...their service is inconsistent.

A Friday afternoon, the place is packed. We have no reservations, but we get seated and served promptly.

Saturday night, the place is really busy but since there are only two of us, they tuck us away in a corner, but attend to our every needs.

Friday night, the place is empty. But lots of tables are reserved. We are told we can be seated, but the table has a reservation an hour and a half later...no problem. So why does half an hour go by before removing our empty plates?

Food usualy is great. However, on our last visit there was a fly in my wife's salad. Plus my cheese and beer pairing was served somewhat separately. Another not on service...not everyone can remember six beers and six cheeses and which goes with which. I don't expect the server to tell me this, but at least leave me with a copy of the menu card so I can pair them up properly.

Other than that...

Good atmosphere. Nice worn wood decor, great view. Food is always tasty, great selection...and the beers are always great. It can be a bit pricey.

Part of the problem lies in their own popularit I think...sure they're a bit out of the way...but I've never been here when it is quite. Everyone seems to know this place. Locals are always here, plus loads of tourists and the proximity to Esquimalt always brings a good number of service members for lunch and dinner. Also, they allow children. This here creates a problem because families with young children always require a bit more attention that your of-age pub patrons.

Again, I really love Spinnaker's, but they could improve on a few points. On the plus, they apparently offer cask nights on Fridays, except the Friday beerfest night (usually the Friday after Labour Day).

BDTyre, Sep 12, 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
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
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Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub & Guesthouse in Victoria, BC, Canada
90 out of 100 based on 30 ratings.