Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
Ratings: 33 | Reviews: 25 | Display Reviews Only:
4.16/5 rDev +7.5%
I stopped into the Fishbowl Brewpub while in Olympia on business.
The Fishbowl is a no-nonsense, humble establishment with a solid commitment to craft beer. Maybe it's as much the town but unlike some more flashy beer bars, it seemed to be filled with locals enjoying good, local beer.
They had at least 12 on tap with some listed as Fish Tale and others as Leavenworth. I had a Leavenworth Hodgsons IPA and a Fish Tale Winter Fish. Both struck me as great, representative west coast beers but the Winter Fish was a touch better. I didn't have time for the Fish Tale 10 Squared but I plan to get back before I leave.
I really enjoyed the Fishbowl and highly recommend it for authentic, west coast beer.
01-22-2010 03:53:03 | More by GJ40
3.43/5 rDev -11.4%
A: I was a regular here for years, before and after the rennovation. The sound attenuates alot here since the rennovation. Parking is available on the street or the lot to the side and its always warm and cozy inside. The bar is big and greets you when you walk in.
Q: The beer has always been good but since about 2006 I have noticed a big decline in quality on many beers, a few have improved and some how manged winning at GABF
S: Service was always decent to me, I mixed and mingled with the staff and they never forget me or my name. If you are new and you sit in a corner that is how you will be treated. This place is BIG on locals and the college crowd nearby.
S: Usually a dozen handles or more including a Cask. Growlers and bottles to go..kegs too. You won't find anything uber exciting here.
F: Has always been pretty good
10-10-2011 21:39:30 | More by barleywinefiend
3.93/5 rDev +1.6%
The artwork on the building is very becoming, but the parking seems not although on this rainy day it was my luck to find such (later I found out the lot was specifically for the brewery, other areas parking was more limited). I ordered a sampler after some wait and while the beers were solid, there was nothing really exceptional at least to me. It appeared to be a popular place, which made me question my Midwestern palate versus one possessed by a local. I am unsure if they have any food, for I did not have any. They did have a many choices, but only a few deviants from standard pub fare. I would consider stopping again if I was in the area again, but I wouldn't make a special trip with so many other options in the area.
10-19-2011 06:52:06 | More by MilwaukeeCrusher
3.88/5 rDev +0.3%
I went to Olympia with a friend who was under 21 recently and visited Fish Brewing. Unfortunately he was not allowed in since it was a Sunday and only the bar area was open. I noticed the fish nets and Keg decorations with fish as I walked in. The beer menu was prominently displayed on a chalk board with descriptions. The place has a cafeteria type feel with wooden tables and bar. I took a stroll around a picked up some shwag at first, then settled down to order us some food to go.
I was impressed with the menu - Gyros, Ostrich burgers, falafels, salmon, bratwursts and oyster sandwiches. I got to sample 4 different ales including a cask barlewine and belgian triple before choosing a Mudshark Porter. I ordered an Ostrich burger with mushrooms and blue cheese which was delicious even though the add-ons cost extra. the fries were delicious and the number of Organic ale choices was out of the ordinary. the Leavenworth beers: Pilsener, Ipa, Weizen etc. were a nice alternative.
The place is spacious with beautiful art and signage on the exterior and they offer three types of hard cider also. I found the visit to be enjoyable albeit brief. I picked up a growler of Hodgson's IPA to go and I hope to return since the service was prompt and friendly. The selection will leave you satisfied with the many styles and even a cask and guest tap choice.
06-19-2007 17:18:54 | More by Slatetank
3.38/5 rDev -12.7%
Average atmosphere inside, horrible marketing, their apparel is super expensive, not at all creative or distinctive. I usually like to roll out with something from a place while on beercations, but this place, just couldn't drop like 45-50 on a hoodie.
Decent enough beers, haven't had the stout, but wouldn't really stray far from the pale or ipa here. Nothing too exotic have I ever seen from these guys. Enjoyed my salmon there, but seemed a little pricey overall. In downtown Olympia, cooler artwork and ambiance outside as opposed to inside the place. Worth checking out, but don't go out of your way to get here. Streets can be kind of weird downtown.
01-14-2011 22:26:06 | More by Beerandraiderfan
4.3/5 rDev +11.1%
UPDATED 2008: When I first began drinking at the Fishbowl Brewpub in the mid 1990's, the bar was a cramped, single room with the brewery beneath the same roof. The brew house has since expanded and moved across the street. The pub grew to include a second room, and then a third room with a loft. And the original roster of Fish Tale Ales has joined forces with Leavenworth Beers and Spire Mountain Ciders.
Most of these changes have been for the best. Fish now brews at least three organic ales, and the expanded seating capacity at the Fishbowl is put to good use by a hearty crew of regulars who keep the place festive seven nights a week. And while the giant wooden carp still arches above the bar as it did a decade ago, I do miss the live fish tank. I miss the gourmet pizzas and the tangy salmon mousse from the old days, too. But the new menu is, if anything, improved. Organic ingredients abound, with food specialties ranging from soft baked pretzels and seafood stew, to oyster shooters and free-range emu burger. And prices still respect the Olympian working class.
Beer quality remains good, though I'm not convinced that quality standards have completely survived the numerous transitions and expansions, and production of Fish's showcase ales (known as "Reel Ales") has been scaled back appreciably. Big beers such as Leviathan barleywine and the exquisite Poseidon Imperial Stout have taken a back seat to their line of organic standard bearers such as Wild Salmon Pale Ale and the Organic Amber. It's understandable that Fish would seek to emphasize production of its best sellers. But with Old Woody Strong Old Ale winning a recent GABF Gold Medal, it would seem the time is right to grant their specialty beers the greater exposure they deserve.
When Fish merged with Leavenworth late in the last century, the idea was to compliment Fish's Anglo/American beers with Leavenworth's traditional German varieties. As its name implies, Leavenworth Beers originated in Leavenworth, Washington - a Bavarian-themed tourist destination in the heart of the Cascade Mountains. Leavenworth beers are now brewed in Olympia. They are not bottled and receive only modest distribution. But the brewpub regularly keeps three on tap. The Fishbowl also maintains a lineup of three Spire Mountain Ciders (including their perry), two guest taps, a cask, a non-alcoholic ginger beer, and a host of seasonals and specialties. Cheap beer pours Mon-Thurs from 9-11PM.
03-26-2004 01:33:05 | More by RedDiamond
3.8/5 rDev -1.8%
This place is located right in downtown Olympia, but with plenty of parking if you are driving (as I was). I was there relatively late on a weekday night, but there was a pretty decent crowd in the bar area. Low key but not weirdly quite, just what I want in a brewpub.
The service was good as one would expect when sitting at the bar. My glass never sat empty for too long and the food came pretty quick.
They had a good selection with probably eight house beers on tap and three house ciders. I didn't try any of the cider, but its a nice option if you are into that sort of thing. The beer ranged from average to good with the highlight being an IPA on cask
I ordered a salad and a pitcher of mussels. The salad was a pretty mediocre, romaine lettuce and way too much dressing affair, but the mussels were much better. They actually did come in a pitcher and were steamed in the standard broth of beer, spices and onions. I have had better mussels, but these were good and there were a hell of a lot of them.
Overall it was a good experience and I would definitely stop by again if I was in Olympia.
10-09-2009 05:32:10 | More by nickfl
4.03/5 rDev +4.1%
This is my second attempt to post a review of this place. The first time, my computer locked up when I hit review, and it never showed up on the site. That was a number of months ago. For one reason or another, I never got around to trying again until now.
I stopped by here last August on my way to meet my brother at his about-to-become-in-law's place, which was the staging area for his bachelor party. I got into town around 10AM, spent a good hour trying to find the place (I'd forgotten to print out info from Beerfly). I finally had to buy a 6-pk of Fish's IPA just to use the map on the bottom!
The Fishbowl is in a somewhat industrial part of town. When I entered, I was greeted by lots of aquatic-themed artwork, a large fishtank featuring some exotic (to me) looking fish, and a friendly barmaid. Being still somewhat early, there was only one guy in the place when I arrived. While I was there, the lunch crowd began to filter in.
I had three beers, a bowl of their seafood stew (which was rather tasty), and a competently made yet unmemorable sandwich. The beers I sampled were the mudshark porter, the amber ale, and the Leavenworth blind pig. The amber was average - I was mainly trying it because my brother had told me they were going to have a keg of it at his wedding - but I really liked the other two. I asked the woman behind the counter why the Mudshark was no longer bottled. She said, 'Yeah, we don't like to bottle it anymore," then left for the kitchen! While she didn't leave me hanging for any length of time, the service was rather perfunctory, and she seemed uninterested in talking about the beers, which kind of put me off.
I was pressed for time, so I didn't attempt to try any other beers. I hoped to get back to the place again while I was in the area, but my time wound up being monopolized by pre- and post- wedding tasks. Not a bad place, the beers are mostly outstanding, but the service needs to be improved a notch if my time there was any judge.
03-25-2005 23:33:18 | More by woemad
Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub in Olympia, WA
88 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.