Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Bear Republic Brewing Co.Bear Republic Brewing Co.
BEER AVG
3.9/5
Based on:
82 Beers
24,506 Ratings
Place Score: 93
Ratings: 184
Reviews: 101
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: n/a
Taps: --
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

345 Healdsburg Ave.
Healdsburg, California, 95448
United States
phone: (707) 433-BEER

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @brbcbrew

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Place added by: BeerAdvocate

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Ratings: 184 | Reviews: 101
Photo of craft_shannie
3.36/5  rDev -19.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.25 | service: 3.25 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

Stopped in for lunch on Father's Day 2013 and was able to get a table right away, as there was only a wait for patio seating. I thought the lack of a crowd was odd, but afterwards I should have seen it as telling.

I enjoyed their Tartare (berliner weisse), but found the other beer offerings "good to OK" including Racer 5.

Was disappointed w. the food - nothing special at all. Got the pretzel which was loaded w. grains & fiber (not good), mustards were awful. Fish tacos were disappointing & even the garlic fries that seem to be popular were cold & not flavorful.

Service wasn't stellar - more of a check box and move on mentality.

I understand that it's hard to follow Lagunitas and Russian River, but honestly Bear Republic wasn't even close to being in the same league.

Photo of heytomcat
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

If you're ever in "whine" country, you have to check this place out. Located in the downtown area of Healdsburg, you can send your wife out to check out the many overpriced art, antique, and clothing stores around (just don't give her the credit card) so you can concentrate on some serious beer swillin'. They have about 6 House Ales, plus about 10 other seasonal offerings. The Berliner Weiss was outstanding. It even came with the syrups you get in Germany. I preferred it plain though.

Photo of jophish17
3.74/5  rDev -10.3%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.5

Visited while in Sonoma for a long weekend in February. After driving around to wineries all day (not my thing), it was time for me to pick our lunch spot. How about Bear Republic? =)

Parking on the street wasn't an issue for us, but I can see where some might have to walk a bit during busier times. Since it was a gorgeous 70 degrees and sunny, we opted for the patio - it was pretty much perfect. It seemed like most of the people around us were also tourists enjoying themselves.

Ordered a sampler. It was all beers that I have never had - though I can't buy Bear Republic in GA, I can in surrounding states to I've had the Racer 5 and Hop Red Rye's of the world quite a few times. Truthfully, the beer was mostly just "pretty good" - I do suspect that they are wise in what the decide to bottle and distribute, as it is generally better than their brewpub offerings, which should be expected.

Food here was pretty good - I remember feeling the need for a burger, and ordered a particularly messy Jamaican Burger. I'll order pretty much anything that comes with both pineapple and bacon. Awesome! I'd say it was above-average by brewpub standards, and won't rate it against some of the gourmet places in the area.

Value was fair - food was probably a bit pricier than the quality, but the beer wasn't too bad.

What a way to wrap up the Sonoma portion of our vacation. I definitely will be back for another lunch next time I'm in northern Sonoma

Photo of Jodi215
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.5

This was our 2nd visit to Bear Republic. The atmosphere is casual dining comfortable. They have a nice patio and it is very family friendly. Decor is metal tables and carved bears with some racing stuff around. Loved the mural painting in Ladies room. Healdsburg is a really cute little town with a central park plaza and lots of overpriced shops that are fun to look in. While the quality of our visit was good there was a crying baby that needed to be taken out.Service was very friendly and fast, thanks Adrien. beer selection was great but no guest taps. Food was excellent pub fare. I had the fish and chips and the fish was fresh cod from Bodega Bay, excellent! Others had hamburger, excellent and panini which was excellent. Value was a bit pricey on food and a little better on beer. We will return.

Photo of WheelsRule
4.71/5  rDev +12.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Stopped here on our Spring Break 2013 California-Oregon Road Trip. I had read the good reviews, but had only tried Racer 5 in a bottle, which I found to be good, but not my favorite IPA. This experience (and Apex) changed my mind. I have a newfound respect for Bear Republic. They do it right. Also: Dogs allowed in the back area!

Atmosphere - Excellent. Comfortable indoor/outdoor seating. Friendly people (servers and guests alike). We enjoyed being here. It was relaxed and friendly.

Quality - Excellent. Beer especially. Racer 5 is a solid IPA, but I think Apex is a fantastic and extra-special Double IPA. A must-try, if you like that style of beer. I tried a few more, but I'm stuck in my ways...my girlfriend enjoyed the different beers she tried.

Service - Our service was excellent. The bartender was knowledgeable, helpful, professional, and friendly. He made good recommendations and seemed to be happy doing his job. We sat out back and the service back there was good as well.

Selection - Good. Plenty of different beers and food to choose from.

Food - Solid bar food (tough food competition in wine country). We had Calamari and a salad. It tasted fresh and delicious to me.

Value - The prices were excellent for a high-quality product in a very expensive area.

Summary - We will definitely come back here. Food, service, beer, and all else was of high quality. We thoroughly enjoyed Apex and wish Bear Republic would bottle it. A delicious brew.

Location - Healdsburg tiptoes the line between being a bit snobby and just being a great place to be - it's clean, safe, friendly, and easy on the eyes. It's 'boutiquey' as one reviewer mentioned, but overall, a pleasant place to be.

A few tips: The Wurst Sausage Grill right off the square (and just a few minutes walking distance from Bear Republic) has fantastic food and serves Racer 5. We mostly drank at Bear Republic and ate over at the Wurst. Also, you can get a fantastic deal on weekdays at the Best Western Plus Dry Creek Inn which is about a 15-minute walk from the square, Bear Republic, and the Wurst. Don't drink and drive, fool!

Photo of Pumpknrdge
4.56/5  rDev +9.4%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

One of my favorite stops on the west coast. Fantastic beers and great food. I could drink the racer 5 everyday no problemo. The brew pub is really nice, right downtown in Healdsburg. They had growlers to go in rubber bladders when I was there last. Finally getting this good stuff in Florida.

Photo of DoubleJ
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Another of Andre's requests, having been impressed in the past by its Hop Rod Rye. Guilherme was interested too. I would have prefered Lagunitas, but I knew Bear Republic would be an acceptable alternative. We had a little trouble location the brewery because it's located away from the street. We found someone on the street to give us direction, and then we parked our car in the back and found ourselves outside Bear Republic.

The tanks are clearly visible from the bar, but seperated by a glass wall. Yet the interior did have the scent of malted cereals. We chose to sit outside, where the patio is enclosed from the cool outside air. We even had our own heatlamp. But we weren't forgotten by the staff, whio came by a number of time to check on us.

16 different house beers were pouring, including Grand-Am, Hop Rod Rye, Newport Rebellion, and Global Kolsch. Naturally, we ordered a flight of all their beers. If you want a full pour, you can get one for just $4-5! The beers we tried were solid to good, though I'll admit a few that I've had before seemed a little muted (of course, visiting Russian River before may have disfigured my palate).

I had never been to Healdsburg before, and Bear Republic was the reason for breaking that spell. Bear Republic lovers will certainly enjoy their visit here.

Photo of Sammy
3.98/5  rDev -4.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Here I am at this must visit place, to try the beers they never bottle..and the rare time I can find them I have been beary pleased. The bartender is John and we are talking beer. He is giving me style and another style. Is it the style? I had a great pale, and an unusual sour beer, among others. A large square bar, many tables, tempting merchandise. Great service, not to busy on a cold Monday night. Parking down the street. A beautiful and very safe town.I understand the food is very good, and a big step up from your your usual bar food.

Photo of elNopalero
4.38/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Updated:

Love the beers but my experience visiting the brewpub has always been a little hit-or-miss, depending on the time of day (crowd) and staff (laid-back to downright pushy). The beertenders and regulars have a good rapport, but that can come off as somewhat cliquish depending on your personality. Me, I get a kick out of it. Last visit I caught the happy hour, which was nice because it shaved off a few bucks from my total tab. Wish they filled outside growlers as I would have made off with half a gallon of hop shovel.

Original: For a place with nearly national distribution their brewpub had a laid back, small town feel to it. Even on a weekend night when places just down the road were packed and lively my party still managed to find a table without any wait and enjoy a few beers. Food was on par with expectations—nothing dazzled, and the prices were about what I’d expect to pay. The real plus here was the service—the servers were exceptionally friendly and welcoming across the board. Good beers, good people, good times.

Photo of DrunkenMonk
3.95/5  rDev -5.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Had a nice lunch here on Fathers Day 2012. Good food, excellent service and good beer. I was surprised the waiter wasn't prepared to offer pairing suggestions.. I ordered a burger and asked his advice on what to pair with it. He kept telling me a hamburger, so I figured he misunderstood and didn't know what I was talking about. No problem.

I ended up with a sample paddle of MANY beers that were draft or brewery only, and not sold in stores. The wine country wheat beer was a bit grapey. Many of the others were hop-centric. I'd eat and drink here again.

Photo of WeedKing4
4.14/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Stopped here for a quick 'beer' lunch. The beer selection was very nice. All their regulars were available with some nice specials/limited beers too. They even had the Texas brown ale on tap. I enjoyed an oak iipa as well. We only had the roasted garlic spread appetizer for food. Good selection of clothing to buy, and the service was very friendly as well.They were even brewing behind the bar. it smelled awesome. Would love to make this place a regular stop if I lived here. lots of seating as we were out on the patio to enjoy a beautiful spring day.

Photo of beerwolf77
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

My wife and I spent an afternoon drinking and carrying on with the locals here. It's a fairly nice brew pub but nothing I haven't seen before. The beers were all good especially the 10 year old barley wine. The best part of our experience was the bar staff and the locals. The bar tender was filled with stories and silly jokes. Had us cracking up the whole time. Plus the locals were very friendly and fun to chat up. It was like being back home in a bar we had been to a hundred times. After several pints we got hungry and ordered some food. It was very good but standard fare for a brew pub. This was a great stop on our way up to wine country.

Photo of williamjbauer
4.13/5  rDev -1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I really enjoyed my time here. I didn't have huge expectations and this was a nice surprise.

A - A bit nicer than your average brewery.

Q - Great quality for what you spend.

S - We had great service and conversation the entire night and even some good reviews of other local breweries.

Sel - I had 8 of about 16 beer available. Great selection and if it has "racer" in the name you must try it.

F - Pretty good appetizers and a nice price.

V - It was fine we saved money by going with appetizers but the menu was fair for all types of food.

Photo of dgilks
3.58/5  rDev -14.1%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Right in downtown Healdsburg, this was a stop on the way North to Anderson Valley and Fort Bragg.

The atmosphere is very dark and a little dingy. The overall vibe though is of a sports bar. That all said, it just didn't feel that comfortable.

The quality of the beers is not bad and the pours are decent.

The selection is pretty good with a few interesting and slightly unusual BR beers on offer.

Service is brusque and a little cold. Not bad but certainly not great.

On the whole, I like their beers well enough but I'll take them in the bottle at home.

Photo of GRG1313
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Visited Bear Republic over the 2011 to 2012 New Year's Eve weekend. Saturday afternoon and the place was crowded with people waiting for space at the bar and waiting for tables. No problem. Places opened up at the bar for folks and tables turned.

Lots of locals clearly present but friendly and engaging. Staff handled crowd really well, even to the point of filling two growlers for me and, while telling me I'd have to wait a little bit to get a full tasting flight, she got it to me in about 2 minutes!

Great selection; great service and great value. Only problem is that you've got to get to Healdsburg! We probably tasted close to 15 beers and all were excellent. I don't think Bear Republic knows how to make bad beer! I'd gladly welcome Racer X as my daily beer.

Photo of scottfrie
3.95/5  rDev -5.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I went here for lunch the other day with my lady and our friend. Atmosphere is warm but busy feeling as the dining area is cozy and there are TVs and decorations everywhere (I’m being a bit picky though). Everything on the menu sounded wonderful, and the entrées we ordered were all delicious albeit a bit expensive. The service wasn’t necessarily slow, but it was noticeable. The place has outdoor seating, a decent sized dining area, and a bar section. The tap list was extensive and consisted of all their ‘normal’ brews they offer in bottles plus a handful of limited brewery only releases. They even had a little section on the menu that offered vintage bottles of the breweries beers that they have tucked away, some for over a decade, and they also frequently offer things on cask.

Overall, this place is worth a stop at least for a beer but maybe even for a meal. They have a big menu, a broad beer list, and a warm (but crowded and loud) atmosphere. This place does fill up quickly, especially on weekends, so get there early.

Photo of tdm168
4/5  rDev -4.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

My wife and I stopped in while on our honeymoon to Sonoma County. It was midafternoon on a weekday, and we had both just eaten so we didn’t sample the food. The beer however was great. They had their standards on tap which you can get almost anywhere in a bottle. It was their other offerings that really grabbed my attention. I was able to try their Apex IPA, Das Koma, and their roggenbier. They offered both 8 oz sample sizes and 16 oz pints. They offered even larger mugs if you were daring. They had different flights which seemed to be quite popular. They even offered a large flight which had a sample of each beer on tap. The service behind the bar was a bit slow, but they had just gotten a tour in and were quite busy. They offer regular dining room seating, bar seating, and a bar garden. This is definitely a place worth checking out if you’re in Healdsburg.

Photo of magictacosinus
4.38/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

On a recent road trip, I was happy to take a detour to Bear Republic Brewery and Pub, which brews what is perhaps my current favorite IPA of all time. Driving to the pub through Healdsburg, I had no idea that the brewery was located in such a boutique-filled community! Not only were there loads of small, chic stores and wine bistros, but nearly all of them were packed even by 10pm! It was reminiscent of stores I'd seen in San Rafael and San Mateo, so it was surprising to see the brewery here.

Anyhoo, once I walked in, the atmosphere of the brewery was already beyond fun. Flags and sports attire adorn the walls (as well as Speed Racer) and there are loads of woodwork on the ceiling and the outside porch area that give it an old-fashioned, NorCal gritty feel.

The selection of beers is beyond fantastic - not only do they have all of their classic brews on tap, but also over half a dozen of specialty brews to pick from. I got a Racer X on tap and tried some of their Black Racer - both were great. The menu was quite diverse, yet I was a bit disappointed with the quality of the food. I ordered their house-made gumbo, yet there was an extra charge to add shrimp. While it was good and spicy, I immediately understood that one should come here for the beer first and foremost. I did try their cobb salad as well, and that was great.

The service was very fast and available, and showed no issues throughout the night, and did not even charge me extra in providing me more bread to soak into the remaining gumbo sauce. I left feeling quite satisfied, and next time that I return I will have one of their large salads with a beer or two. Overall, while the food is slightly expensive for what it is, the beers are ridiculously cheap (Red Rocket ale for $4.50, for instance) and the location is lots of fun. Recommended a visit!

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Cool atmosphere, patio area, dining area, usual breweriana abound. Right downtown, all kinds of cool shops, park in the middle of town. Finding the place is a little bit of an adventure, but nothing too difficult.

Quality of the beer is just dandy, as you're used to in the bottle format. Service is cheery, if not the most informed, but that's ok. Selection was decent, hoped to see more one off type of stuff, they did have some old barleywine and strong ales from the cellar available, so that was cool, but something barrel aged would have been a welcome addition. Breweries should have more stuff of a limited or only there type of nature. I can get the usual stuff at Safeway ya know? I guess they had the roggenbier and el oso which were forgettable for the most part.

Wine country, its a little pricey, wish I wasn't so full already when we ate, the garlic fries are awesome. But $12 for a burger, you've been warned.

Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
4.63/5  rDev +11%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

First stop on a microbrew pub tour through sonoma county.

Got here mid afternoon on a Monday. It was quiet, but the bar was almost full. Decent size eating area, with some outdoor options as well. Decided to stay in the A/C.

Server was very friendly and very knowledgable. You can either get a flute of their house ales, or their specials. I have had most of their house ales, so I was more interested in their specials. Most of the beers were very good. El Oso was the only one I didn't particularly care for, but even then it was still better than average. I got the burger with the anaheim chile, and it was fabulous. My dad got the mac 'n cheese, and it was positively decadent to say the least. A little rich, and unless you're set on inducing a heart attack, you'd be better off sharing it with someone. Food was a touch pricey, but Healdsburg is a pretty posh area.

Service got a 5.0, and it was deserved. Upon learning that I was from southern california, and up here on beer travels, our server went to the bartender to ask for a sample of Racer 5--all unbeknownst to me--cause he claimed it was different and better out of the serving tank. The bartender asked who it was for, and upon hearing my story from my server, he pulled an entire free pint for me. Very cool and unexpected. Almost made me feel like royalty!

Maybe if I was the type to split hairs over octopus or squid, I would have been able to find something else to complain about. Fortunately I'm a pretty easy going guy, and it seems to rub off on other people. This place is great!

Photo of coldriver
4.58/5  rDev +9.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Stop 2 (after Moylan's) on a Russian River Valley pubcrawl 7/18/2011. Bear Republic is consistently one of my favorites with Hop Rod Rye, Racer #5, and Big Bear Stout and I was very excited to see the point of origin. About evenly balanced between indoor and outdoor seating and we choose to sit inside at the bar. Bartendress was about as good as they get and seemed to anticipate our needs very well. You could see into the brewery behind windows and we noted an employee totally working his ass off - if you ever come to Texas you're hired dude. Decent selection of their regular and special beers but the waitress apologized that the last keg of Cafe Racer 15 was kicked the previous day. Right before we left though, working-his-ass-off-dude wheeled out a fresh keg and our waitress went out of her way to make sure we got a free sample. We had the wings during our visit and they were fantastic. Overall a very enjoyable visit.
Incidentally, we stopped for coffee at Flying Goat before leaving town and I've gotta say it was the best cappuccino I've ever had. The barista was a true maestro!

Photo of avaldivia
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I wasn't sure what to expect here. Bear Republic was never my favorite, or a go to for me, so I didn't know what to expect. I was pleasantly surprised with my trip and it is a place I will be visiting again for sure. The atmosphere was very casual and relaxed, which I enjoy. I sat at the bar and was thrilled when I saw the selection. 12 beers on tap and a couple of local ciders. I got the tasters option, so I was able to try all 12. One was not very good, a couple were okay, and the rest were phenomenal. Food was decently priced. I got the special which was, half a sandwich, and the soup of the day, which, thankfully, was actually a wild boar chili. Overall, good beer, good food, good service.

Photo of MadeInOregon
4.55/5  rDev +9.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

After a disappointing trip to North Coast Brewing's restaurant, Bear Republic was a nice change. The bill was $15 less, the food was better, the beer selections better, and the service was way better. This place has a nice outdoor seating area, inside is kinda dark and ugly though. Waitress was great, even offered us tastings of beer to help us decide what we wanted. Pints are reasonably priced as is food. Lots of interesting beer styles on tap (15+) so there's something for everyone. Sandwiches are great. Definitely will hit this place up next time I'm in the area.

Photo of BigB415
4.1/5  rDev -1.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Bear Republic has a convenient location right in the middle of downtown Healdsburg in Northern California. A cozy little place with nice tap list(regular line up and draft only beer) and some great food. I like getting the Jamaican Jerk Burger which has a slice of pineapple in it and the stout or hop rod rye or if it's fridays I get the fish and chips. Service is quick and friendly and I've only had to wait for a table once or twice when it gets really busy but I didn't have to wait that long since they are pretty quick to clean the table and get it ready for the next person. I recommend checking it out if you're in the area.

Photo of Seanibus
3.95/5  rDev -5.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Funky, fun and homey. The restaurant is eclectic, scattered with memorabilia related to racing and the brewery. Most surprising is that the production facility is right there in the restaurant, with the brewers in boots and slickers working over steaming tanks right next to the bar. When there is mashing and boiling going on, the windows fog up and the sweet smell of malt is thick. The service is funky and friendly, and so is the food - basic brew pub menu, no frills. The beer is exactly what you'd expect - interesting, large, earnest and delicious. There are all the usual Bear Republic suspects plus some rarities and brewery-only experiments. Instead of a straight sampler tray, the brewery opts for a series of flights, including lineups of hoppy beers, malty beers, specialty beers and so on. This is a fun stop in a fun town.

Bear Republic Brewing Co. in Healdsburg, CA
93 out of 100 based on 184 ratings.