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Syracuse Suds Factory

Not Rated.
Syracuse Suds FactorySyracuse Suds Factory
BA SCORE
70
okay

27 Ratings
Ratings: 27
Reviews: 26
rAvg: 2.62
pDev: 18.32%
Active Beers: 3
Beer Ratings: 15
Beer Avg: 2.85
Taps: 0
Bottles: 0
Cask:
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

320 S. Clinton Street
Syracuse, New York, 13202
United States
phone: (315) 471-2253

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 27 | Reviews: 26 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by WesWes:
Photo of WesWes
2.34/5  rDev -10.7%

This brewpub is located in downtown Syracuse. The pub is huge on the interior, but not much to look at. There's a pool table and a large bar. The brewery is off to the side behind a wall of glass. It has to be the most unimpressive brewing set up I've ever seen. I was also told that this was an extract brewery. That alone says it all. If your going to spend the money to have a brewpub why not at least use all grain? I can drink shitty extract beers in my basement. The beer was terrible. The sampler contained all the usual suspects, but way worse. The service was average. Good looking bar maids, blah blah blah. The food selection was only bar treats. I will never come here again. This looks like it could be fun if it was just a micro beer bar instead of a brewery.

WesWes, Jul 30, 2003
More User Reviews:
Photo of ClavisAurea
3.5/5  rDev +33.6%

Beer is ok. It's been around for quite a while. Their stout was pretty good and my father-in-law even liked it. He is a die hard Coors drinker with no craft beer palate.

ClavisAurea, Aug 02, 2014
Photo of dzlle25
3/5  rDev +14.5%

dzlle25, Jun 26, 2014
Photo of StonedTrippin
2.68/5  rDev +2.3%

the beer is not the feature here. this place is more of a nightclub type of deal, a place to go get boozed up in downtown cuse, more of a hangout with loud pop music than a place for fine ales. its a massive building, loud, and beer isn't their focus. security at the brewery? that's novel. just a handful of beers on tap, none of which impressed me at all. the pale ale was rotten, but the black cherry works okay. cheaper pitchers is always nice, but I just didn't care for any of the beers too much. service was just a few local hotties filling jugs, not a clue about the beers. they did have a few nice craft guest taps which saved them for me, but this is a place for college kids who don't care, not a beer establishment to be taken too seriously. maybe its the brewmaster, maybe its apathy, maybe its just an aside, but this place was a miss for me.

StonedTrippin, Sep 10, 2013
Photo of UDbeernut
2.75/5  rDev +5%

Went here for a few rounds of drinks after eating at Empire Brewing Company. The SSF is located in what seems to be the main bar/resurant are of Sryacuse. The place is large and open. Many seats and a long bar. I did not have high expectations due to reading revoews on here before hand. It Looked like about 8 to 10 of their brewed beers on tap. It was tough to see what the where pouring due to the small labels on their taps. They also had Sam Summer, Miller Lite, and Shock Top. The atmosphere was average. They had a cover band playing which was not overly good, and it was tough to hold a conversation. I did not try thier beer or food.

Beers seemed to be priced around $5 give or take a $1. I did have two beers, and both of them seemed to have an off flavor. I don;t think they clean their lines.

UDbeernut, Jun 23, 2011
Photo of fmccormi
2.4/5  rDev -8.4%

Syracuse Suds Factory is an okay sports bar-ish type of place. I suppose they brew beer there, too, but if I owned the place I wouldn't claim it as my own. Beer is very mediocre. Very plain selection of taps, no cask ales obviously, no imports to speak of.

The food and service there are fine, if you're just looking for a generic sports bar experience. Atmosphere is okay. Really though, on BeerAdvocate I think we're all looking for a run-down on their beer, and frankly it's just disappointing.

fmccormi, Apr 22, 2011
Photo of rlee1390
2.4/5  rDev -8.4%

went during a trip to syracuse. Odd vibe, multiple tvs with sports on. Only 6 beers on tap but had some macros. Nice look but loud music. The beer was ehh. Food was decent. Very cheap. But ehh beer and bad music means bad place

there are better places in syracuse to go to. The location is decent bbut with empiire state brewing about two feet away go there

I got a burger it was solid didn't seem to offer beer and food pairings they should add pairings to the menu.

they do offer logo glasses which as a collecter of them I liked to see.

rlee1390, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of silver1audi
1.8/5  rDev -31.3%

Wow. I have not reviewed anything in a few years on BA. But after going to Syr Suds I just had to.

As other reviewers had said, great location and cool building. Another business could really do a lot with this place and make it a great spot to go. Sports bar-ish which which is unimportant given that I am always excited to try some fresh brewed beer, no matter the atmosphere.

This is by far the worst beer I have ever tasted. I ordered a pale ale and could not finish even half of it. Literally, I have never been unable to finish a beer because of how it tasted. This was the first time. Seriously. This was worse than my first batch of homebrew, which was pretty gross. I was embarrassed for the brewer. Should have known when everyone else was drinking Bud. I would not have been able to identify this as 'beer' in a blind tasting.

Only one reason to go: just out of curiosity to see how to not make beer.

There are so many good places to go in the area. Walk the hundred feet over to Empire or Blue Tusk.

silver1audi, Jan 09, 2011
Photo of TonyReaves
2.53/5  rDev -3.4%

Man, thought we should try this place two nights ago on a visit to Syracuse. It was dark and empty and loud, with ESPN blasting and echoing from loudspeakers into a high-ceiling room. It's actually a beautiful building that isn't being used well. Looks like it's just a sports bar that happens to brew its own beer. There must have been 10 TVs broadcasting different sports channels.

Service was cool. The bartender insisted my wife try the "lambic" she'd ordered before committing to a full glass. It actually wasn't bad on the first sip.

So she had the Black Cherry Lambic, my friend had the pale, and I had an Irish Red. I didn't finish my beer, which is a shame since I usually enjoy the style. But oh, those thin, thin beers got worse with each sip. Cloying, with odd aftertastes.

My God, there are so many good bars in Syracuse. Stay out of this one.

TonyReaves, Mar 17, 2010
Photo of BrewSomerville
2.23/5  rDev -14.9%

Atmosphere was similar to a sports bar. The people there for the most part were 40-50-something yrs old. The EXTRACT brewery was visible from the bar area. I don't understand why someone would open a brewpub with extract brews... and then make it visible to the customers that you aren't even brewing with all grain.

The beer was terrible. We couldn't even finish it. The stout tasted like someone had dumped some corked red wine into it. I think we may have taken three or four sips to be polite, but we could tell from the smell of it that something was very wrong... It must have been infected in addition to just being a bad beer to begin with.

Service was average. Gave us our "beer" quickly and was pleasant enough.

Selection of about five taps. The tap handles were hard to make out, with tiny little brass placks...

BrewSomerville, Sep 15, 2009
Photo of icemanrulz
1.6/5  rDev -38.9%

Syracuse Suds straddles the line between wanting to be a quality brew pub and an attractive spot for college nightlife. Unfortunately it doesn't really fit either bill. As a brewpub Suds is a big disappointment. When I last went they only had 4 beers on tap. Now I have been in the past and they have had more, as many as 8 I believe, but, to me, calling yourself a brew pub and offering only 4 selections is unacceptable. The average homebrewer has more to offer on a given night.

The bar is not overly clean, which is fine if you're looking to pack in college kids on a Friday and Saturday night, but not if you're looking to relax with friends and enjoy a few beers. The beer is nothing to write home about. The four they had on tap when I went were the Honey Light, Weizen, Black Cherry, and Pale Ale. Unfortunately all four were completely forgettable and borderline undrinkable. The Honey Light was bland, weak, and flavorless. The Weizen was tolerable and would've benefited from a lemon wedge. The Pale was an odd mix of hops that just didn't blend. And the Black Cherry tasted like a liquefied Luden's cough drop....enough said. The menu all sounds good but is overpriced and not very good.

The one saving grace is the price...pints were around $2. They also have a number of small TVs around to watch the SU games, but even they are not conveniently situated where you can comfortably watch them. All in all, a very disappointing brewpub and bar. There are better in Armory Square.

icemanrulz, Jun 27, 2009
Photo of akronzipfan
2.76/5  rDev +5.3%

After having been to Empire Brewing and Clark's Ale House (not to mention having tried to get in the Blue Tusk until I gave up due to the length of the wait), I ended up here at the Suds Factory as my final stop last Friday night on the eve of the Zips glorious victory. One advantage this place has over the others is space. There is plenty of room for what seems to be a predominantly younger, SU student based clientele. And the beer is pretty cheap. So if it's price and coeds you are most interested in, this might be your place.

The quality of the beer (especially the house brews), on the other hand, is very ordinary. I ordered a pint of Irish Red and my buddy ordered a pint of IPA, both Syracuse Suds recipes. Sitting next to one another, both brews looked almost identical. Finding this a little bit odd, we sampled each and found only slight differences in taste. This lead to the joke (halfway kidding) that all the Suds brews came from the same vat. Hey, at least they were only $2 each and while they weren't noteworthy at least we finished them.

BTW I finally made it to the Blue Tusk the next day, and this is where I will return upon future excursions to Syracuse.

akronzipfan, Sep 08, 2008
Photo of hurleymanvw
3.48/5  rDev +32.8%

I can't say i had a great experience but i wasen't what i have read before i got there. I'll start off and say they did have a sampler with a nice set up of 8 house beers for 6 bucks. Not a bad deal. They had a wild berry stout that was very sweet and intersting. Nice to try and it would take a week to drink a full pint. The other beers were decent. The food we had was excellent. Chipolte spiced tortalinis, sorry i can't spell, were out of this world. Over all it was a good place to hang out with the college kids of the city but for a beer lover establishment it fell short.

hurleymanvw, Aug 29, 2008
Photo of slander
2.81/5  rDev +7.3%

Snowy Syracuse supper stopover en route Rochester westward, or nonsensical half sentences, as such. Seen a few of the kind bars but talk about the easy brewpub one-two. Back up the rabbit hole and down the block to the corner, just a couple of hundred feet really, the other brewpub. Actually, it was here first, so maybe the other one is the other one and this one is the one, except it ain't, but we'll get to that. So close together and yet...

Large cavernous room with high ceilings and tall steel pillars down the center painted red. Massive arched windows up front over Walton Street, framed in the same red on a big brick wall. Corner brew room behind glass, and a small nook with electro darts to both sides of a center Phil's golf game (Live). Faux conveyer belts with rows of kegs extend from the walls above at both ends of the room as if they were live assembly lines in a (ahem) suds factory. Nearly a dozen and a half booths & tables below the front windows and dotted about the room running up along the center pillars. On the back wall, a long "L" shaped wood bar with green tiling seating about a dozen and a half. The barback counter holds tiered booze, glassware and a small Red Bull fridge (setting the tone), below green walls with 4 mounted TV's in the center. To each side, a large framed mirror rising up high with bottled selections along their trim, nearly 60 bottles in all. Upwards of a dozen micros (Anchor, Brooklyn, Saranac, Flying Dog, Sierra Nevada, Victory, Sam Adams, Pete's), and other than the Sam Smith's, the rest of the lot were wah imports, macros and maltos. Above the mirrors, a pair of giant chalkboards with drawn bar scenes, mounted TV's on the ends, and some framed pics here and there.

My second of two brewpubs this night, I had wandered in and bellied up to the bar to have a looksie. Logo handled house beers on 2 copper towers of 4 taps each, plus a tower below with 4 guest taps (Harp, Bass, Sam Adams Lager, Blue Moon) and another handle of 2 (Molson Light, Woodchuck cider).

"Can I help you?"
"Uh, yeah, do you do a sampler?"
"Sure, I can give you samples of whatever you'd like".
"No, no, I mean, a sampler, where you get little samples of everything, you get to try all the beers".
"Well, yeah, we do one, but I've got a few beers off, so I can't really give you a full one, but I'll let you try everything. What do you like?"
(Me, looking around noticing that the taps were unlabeled and no board listing the selections)
"What do you have on?"
"You like hops?"
"Um, yeah".
"Well, I've got a Pale Ale, but you've got to like hops!"
"Bring it!"
(The Pale Ale had like zero hoppiness, poured a dark ruby color and tasted a bit fruity, I suspected it came through the only labeled handle, marked "Black Cherry").
"Are you sure this isn't the Black Cherry?"
"Nope, it's the Pale Ale, but you've got to like hops!"
(Next up, the Brown Ale, smelled of butter).
(Next up, the Stout, flavorless, no body, no roasty nothing).
(Next up, the Irish Red, smelled and tasted of butter).
(Next up, the Weizen, dark and clear, it had no characteristics of Weizen anything except that it was liquid).
"The Honey Light and Black Cherry Lam-bric (oh, my god, he called it a "lam-bric") are both off, but I've got a root beer" (The root beer was the best of the lot of 'em, no contest).
"So (now that you've had them all), which one do you want?"
(I panicked and realizing that I hadn't actually purchased anything, ordered a "pity pint" of the Stout, which was much better as it warmed).

I sat mulling my Stout, taking in the great number of plaques on the barback wall amongst the TV's there. Year after year after year after year, awards won at the Syracuse Winterfest for "Cajun gumbo cookoff" and "chowder cookoff" and "Bloody Mary mix off". Also, an abundance of recognition plaques for being an official stop on the "Short fat guys' road run", but not for actually, you know, making good beer. And on realizing this, I'm not sure, but I might have made a slight snorting laughing noise. I gave a look around to see if anybody heard me, and I don't believe this to be the case but I'm sure now that they're watching me take notes. I think they're talking about it and are planning to kill me. It might be my whistling, but probably not. They're a dodgy crowd anyway, a chromo dropped somewhere between the last place just up the street and here. Between the macros, TV's, classic rock, and suds factory theme, this is more sports bar with extract brews for the novelty of it than what I would call a brewpub.

The beers they make here were not very good. I left and walked across the street to Blue Tusk to get something, anything to help relieve the pain. Just plum freaky.

slander, May 15, 2008
Photo of LumpyGuitar
2.85/5  rDev +8.8%

Girlfriend took me here for my birthday, wasn't as good as I had hoped.

Atmosphere was quiet, I was there on a Friday afternoon, about 3pm, and the week after Christmas, which may have something to do with it. They had a pool table, two dart machines and an arcade game. They only had one dining room, which was rather plain and consisted of wooden benches around the perimeter.

Quality of food was great, but I'll get to that in the food section. The beer I ordered was their "house Irish Red" and didn't have a name. The beer was alright, but I'd rather have had a bottled Killians. Sad, I know.

Service was about average. The waitresses were really nice, however the girl who served us didn't know what to recommend for either food or beer, and knew very little about what selections they had for beer.

Considering that the name contains "Suds Factory" you'd think that they would have a wide variety of beers. Wrong. There were no more than 5 on the beer list, all of which were brewed there. Nothing wrong them making the beer, however, the styles offered very little variety, I wasn't impressed and almost didn't order a beer because of it. Even as far as food selections go, there wasn't alot.

Food, though, was the best part here. I ordered a Turkey Club, which turned out to be huge. The food tasted great, even a day later when I reheated it. Everything was fresh, tasted good, again the best part.

As far as value goes the prices werent to high, in fact they were about right.

As far as this place goes, try it if you like, my guess is you'll be disappointed. If they had more decor, and more beer options, this place could be alot better. My advice, try somewhere else.

LumpyGuitar, Mar 24, 2008
Photo of kevman527
3.68/5  rDev +40.5%

Second stop on my Syracuse brewery tour. Didn't eat here just tried some beers. Got there after 1pm, the place wasn't busy, afterall it was a Thursday afternoon. My buddy and I each got their sampler, which included 6 - 4 oz beers for $4, that's not bad at all. However, the beers were nothing to be desired, very sweet and not much to write home about. But, if you are looking for a cheap buzz, $4 for the equivilent of 2 beers isn't too bad. The atmosphere was ok, nothing too special, a few tv's, some dart boards, very spacious, however the bartender was attractive, that helped.

kevman527, Dec 20, 2007
Photo of SunDevilBeer
2.6/5  rDev -0.8%

Had reasonable expectations visiting this place on a recent biz trip. Was in the area the night before, and planned to hit this place the next afternoon while killing some time to catch a flight home.

In the middle of Armory Square, it's a renovated old factory - just my style! However, for 5:00 on a Thurs afternoon, I was the ONLY person there. May have more of a vibe for Syracuse University sporting events, though....I could imagine it being much better with a few people in the place. I noticed they serve BMC in addition to the house brews, which is never a good sign for me.

The beer list was fairly lame - 5 beers on the lighter side of light, and only 4 of them going. I tried the Pale and the Amber, which were both pretty mediocre. Had time for a quick snack and ordered the wings. They were OK, but not on the level expected for Central/Western NY.

With several options in the immediate area (Clark's, Dinosaur BBQ, Blue Tusk), I'd have a hard time recommending this place to fellow BA's.

SunDevilBeer, Jul 31, 2007
Photo of WillieMoe
2.98/5  rDev +13.7%

This is not a bad place to go for a beer, if you go at the right time. On a Friday night you could become entrenched in a bunch of people listening to loud rap and hip-hop, drinking bottles of Bud Light. Not really a traditional Brew Pub atmosphere. I partook of the Veizen and the Black Cherry, and they were fair, but not spectacular. Not the best place to get some locally brewed beer, but it's worth a stop if you can avoid the Bud Light "party crowd" and really have a chance to drink it in. And the food isn't half bad either.

WillieMoe, Jul 29, 2007
Photo of Metalmonk
3.03/5  rDev +15.6%

Syracuse Suds Factory is in an old brick warehouse, like many brewpubs in this area of the country...high ceilings, long and narrow room, brew tanks in the open...cool but slightly ho-hum atmosphere. Seems a bit sports-bar oriented, judging by the multiple TVs playing nothing but sports, and the music is the same old classic rock you can hear on any average FM station. Ho-hum. Service was good, the guy couldn't have done a better job. Menu offered no entree-type dishes for vegetarians, which sucks, but I cobbled together a pretty good meal from the appetizer and salad offerings, and those were good.

The house beers were less than amazing. I tried three: the stout, the brown ale, and the weizen. The Weizen seemed unfocused, and not very much like a real weizen...and they serve it with a lemon floating right in it...Bah! The Stout was not very stout, the most disappointing of the three...the Brown Ale, not a favorite style of mine, was quite good, being robust, well-balanced and flavorful, but probably not a true-to-style brown ale.

The beers aren't exceptional and the clientele seemed like the Bud Light type crowd...if you're in the area, skip it and head for the Blue Tusk. Better food and better beer selection. Nuff said.

Metalmonk, Apr 20, 2007
Photo of MTNboy
2.98/5  rDev +13.7%

I am not going to totally knock this place but there are better places to visit in the area. I would add it to places I would hit up if I was doing pubcrawl of Armory Square. It was a very wide open place with plenty of televisions. I was suprised that they did not have more tables or booths for the size of the place. There was hardly anyone there. The bartender was nice and friendly and was good with recommendations but she also acted like there were other places she would have rather have been. I think the location is a great place for a brew pub. Hopefully the owners will improve it.

MTNboy, Feb 01, 2007
Photo of dlee
2.05/5  rDev -21.8%

I remembered enjoying the Suds factory in College (when it was located several blocks north of where it is now in Armory Square) when my beer drinking palate was un-refined. So after having a pint at the Blue Tusk across the street, I decided to check it out.

The Suds Factory is a large room with a long straight bar on one side. Several TV's above the bar. They have the "Sunday Ticket" for NFL games. Crowd is predominately college kids. Not very clean.

I ordered their "Brown Ale". Undrinkable. Unlike any brown ale I have ever had. Would have gone straight down the drain if I had it in a bottle at home.

At this point I looked down the bar to see what the other patrons were drinking. At every OTHER brewpub in the Country, everyone drinks the house beers. At the Suds factory, just about everyone was drinking Bud/Miller/Coors. That observation prompted me NOT to order any more Suds Factory beer!

Along with the standard B/M/C swill, the Suds also has some craft beers. I ordered a Victory Hop Devil. The Bud Light drinker next to me took an interest in my bottle of Hop Devil, so I let him have the last 2 ounces of it, mainly because I wanted to see the look on his face when he drank the over-the-top hopped ale (in comparison with his Bud). Needless to say, it was priceless!

I ordered the Buffalo Wings which were pretty good.

There are several great places in Syracuse to get a beer (Blue Tusk, Clarks, Middle Ages Brewery). Don't waste your time here.

dlee, Mar 05, 2006
Photo of wailingwench
2.38/5  rDev -9.2%

I am going to be the only one who actually has something positive to say about Syracuse Suds. If you have ever been to the Buffalo Brewpub, you would understand.

Cheers: $2 pints. Open on Sunday. Beer is drinkable. Nice bar area. You can look at the tanks. Blackcherry "Lambic" and the Pale "Ale" are decent enough. Good place to take the in-laws. Good place to take a Bud or Blue drinker. Open on Christmas Eve. Merely a place to stop by on the way to something better. Or, a place to stop by if your wallet is getting light.

Jeers: I'm not sure what is in the tanks. Server had no clue as to what is what. Would be a best seller in Buffalo. Need some serious signage, the place looks like it is closed. Dinner was somewhat edible.

My visit(s) are not memorable, nor are they bad. Suds is what it is. Nothing can compare to MacG's, Tusk, or Clarks.

wailingwench, Nov 16, 2004
Photo of quincyships
2.48/5  rDev -5.3%

Back in the day, it would have been great to have a place like this around, just because there weren't many brewpubs at all. Today, though, the bar has been raised. We tried four of the house beers and found them all mediocre at best. The Pale was hoppy, but not well balanced. The weizen was just syrupy and way too dark for style. I didn't peek into the brewery to see what kind of system they were using, but the beers tasted to me like they were extract brews. (Although I've never seen a cherry lambic extract before). Even so, it's possible to make halfway decent beer with extract. Anyway, on the second visit, we switched to microbrews - they have a pretty decent selection (Sierra Nevada, Anchor, etc.)

Service on two visits was ragged. (Why two visits? The main virtue of this place was that it was one of the few spots open on a Sunday) A first server forgot one of our food orders in the kitchen. He was literally running from table to kitchen. It was exhausting just to watch! A second server forgot to even take an order from one of our party.

Food wasn't bad, although the mashed-potatoes-from-the-box was an unpleasant surprise. The menu has some out-of-the-ordinary selections, and the portions were reasonable for the price. If they could just ramp up the brewing a bit...

quincyships, Sep 02, 2004
Photo of Suds
2.48/5  rDev -5.3%

I remember the Suds Factory from when it first opened. It used to be in a different location, and seemed to have mediocre beer. The new location is closer to other beer establishments (Blue Tusk and Clark’s Ale House), but the beer hasn’t improved. The place is relatively open aired, with high ceilings. Still, it has a dingy, dirty feeling about it. As you walk inside, there’s a small brewing area to the left and a long bar in directly ahead. The service on an afternoon was curious and fast, but not very interested in the beer. The food was sub-par, even for pub-grub. They had five beer selections, none of which were very good. All of them had an unpleasant lactic tartness that was a serious flaw. Various commercial bottled beers were also available, including a few macros. I hate to say it, but it seemed like a local dive bar that just happened to serve beer that was brewed on premises. The focus sure wasn’t on great beer.

Suds, Aug 23, 2004
Photo of CBFanWish
2.58/5  rDev -1.5%

What a dump. Bad beer, slow service, dirty. Just some words to sum up the Suds Factory. I guess this is the kind of place where Bud Light drinkers go to act like they have sophisticated taste in beer. Christ, going here is just about proof that these kids have no sophistication in the least anyway. Dumbed down beer lacks any integrity and is not deserving of the term craft beer.
The atmosphere was that of a cheap, dirty hole in the wall dump. I didn't want to see what the kitchen looked like. Oh, the horror.

Never again.

CBFanWish, May 18, 2004
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Syracuse Suds Factory in Syracuse, NY
70 out of 100 based on 27 ratings.