Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Brewing Co.Great Lakes Brewing Co.
BEER AVG
3.9/5
Based on:
98 Beers
42,627 Ratings
Place Score: 97
Ratings: 464
Reviews: 229
rAvg: 4.38
pDev: n/a
Taps: 10
Bottles: --
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

2516 Market Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio, 44113
United States
phone: (216) 771-4404

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @glbc_cleveland

Notes:
Place added by: BeerAdvocate

No notes at this time.
Place: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 464 | Reviews: 229
Photo of UrbanCaveman
5/5  rDev +14.2%

This is a mandatory stop for me any time I am anywhere near Cleveland. Not only do they always have a fantastic lineup on tap, but the food is just as good (they have a lamb shepherd's pie made with their Edmund Fitzgerald porter - mother of god!!!), and the brewery itself is a fun tour!

Photo of Bgallup
5/5  rDev +14.2%

Great beers from top to bottom . . . of your glass.

Photo of Briarbush
5/5  rDev +14.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

There's nothing bad I can say about the Great Lakes Brewpub. The atmosphere was great. We arrived just before the lunch rush and took our seats at the bar. The tiger mahogany bar is one of the oldest in Cleveland and bears bullet holes fabled to have come from Eliot Ness himself. Great Lakes had on tap the six varieties that are bottled year round plus the pub exclusives Wolfhound Stout, and Rockefeller Bock. All beer is served in the appropriate glassware and the service the bartender gave us was superb. He was friendly and very knowledgeable. My girlfriend and I split a Tuscan wood fired pizza and it was delicious. Like the beer all the food is all natural, no chemicals or preservatives and you could taste the difference in the food as well as the beer. The pricing on the beer is typical to what you would pay at a regular bar, the pub exclusives being slightly more expensive. The food is a bit pricey (12.00$ for the pizza) however; as always you get what you pay for. I was very happy with beer, service, and food and will be making more trips for sure.

Photo of HunterSBeerson
5/5  rDev +14.2%

Great brewery. Every style is done well.

Photo of damndirtyape
4.95/5  rDev +13%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Visited the Brewpub/cafe tonight during a trip to Cleveland with the whole family. We were seated on the 1st floor near "Brewhouse #1". Nice wood paneling everywhere, and very relaxed through the whole place. Good tunes, plenty of plants nearby, not exceedingly loud. I think it says something about the place that they have a Kid's menu and the place is friendly to all ages and types. I laughed when I saw that someone had ordered wine in a Beer Temple like this place, but the fact that they serve to all is very telling.
Outstanding quality in everything - from the bread brought out before the meal to the very fresh beer on tap (I had Edmund Fitzgerald and the Mrs. had Eliot Ness).
The server was great - made sure to check often and was very personable. Made us laugh a few times and talked us into dessert.
Selection - a lot of everything available but heavy on the European influences in the cuisine. Not that this is a bad thing mind you. Given the beer choices though it makes sense that this is what they have a lot of on their menu. Plenty of beer on tap tonight.
Food - just right in portion size, high quality and oh so very tasty. I had the meatloaf which was just right. Everyone cleaned their plates and the Kid's mac-n-cheese was not from a box, but actual hand made stuff.
Overall - I thought everything was very reasonable given the great brewery this place is - a great evening had by all, even the kids liked the place.

Photo of jaxray8
4.94/5  rDev +12.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5 | food: 5

all time favorite..my "go to"

Photo of RyanCLE
4.91/5  rDev +12.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5 | food: 4.75

This is a Cleveland landmark. Great atmosphere, an incredible ever-changing selection of world-class beers. Great Lakes is a perfect ambassador of the Cleveland beer culture, and their world-wide praise proves it. I have been here dozens of times, and it never gets old.

Want atmosphere? This building is well over a century old and has a history in the family that runs the brewery. The tour of their brewery (around the corner) is fantastic and recommended for anyone who has the time. Highly environmentally conscious and local-focused.

Every beer-loving Clevelander is proud to have this incredible brewery in our back yard -- the eclectic Ohio City district. This is a brewery with universal respect, and for good reason. From their flagship Dortmunder Gold, to their unmatchable Burning River Pale Ale, to their practically-impossible-to-find-outside-of-Cleveland Christmas Ale, to their unique one-offs, any beer you try is a guaranteed hit.

Photo of wailingwench
4.9/5  rDev +11.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Cheers: I don't even know where to start. Busy Fri night, somewhat diverse crowd in age range. Dead Sat night due to the snow. Interesting comparison, to see how a place operates at capacity vs. basically empty. The staff didn't miss a beat. People in Cleveland actually make room for you to place your order, a rarity here in Buffalo. Chatted with lots of patrons who seemed suprised that we came from Buffalo to visit the brewery, but mostly happy that someone actually takes a vacation to Cleveland. 2 levels to drink: the somewhat trendy, tastefully appointed dark wooden bar area (I didn't even take the time to locate the bullet holes, that how much I was enjoying the beer) or the basement with exposed brick and beams. Both were interesting and full of interesting people. Sell beer to go. All of Great Lakes beers are amazing. Use appropriate glassware. Porter ice cream is out of this world, and I really don't like ice cream. Clam Chowder and Walleye Bites suggested. Totally worth the 4 hour drive.

Jeers: Left a raging snowstorm in Buffalo only to find ourselves in a raging snowstrom in Cleveland, apparently a freak occurrance down there. Severe lack of bathroom signage led to a moment of panic. Beer was so good we couldn't make it to the tour.

Photo of giocatore4
4.9/5  rDev +11.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

This place is the cornerstone of the Cleveland beer world. Constantly rotating taps in the brewpub to keep things innovative and fresh. Great Lakes legitimately cares about Cleveland, beer, and even the environment. On weekends, free tours run every hour on the hour. Multiple special events on a weekly basis; even a clean air bus that shuttles patrons to and from Cleveland sporting events. The food is quite good and the beer is world class.

Photo of dailyminefield
4.89/5  rDev +11.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

The best brewpub I have ever been to, and I've been to a few dozen. The atmosphere is awesome. There is a throwback, rathskeller-type cellar adorned with a couple fermenting tanks and an old school wooden bar. The main taproom features a huge mahogany bar. There are two different dining areas on the main floor. I understand they have remodeled the upstairs into more dining space. They also feature a tree lined patio on the sidewalk. The building must be atleast 100 years old, very close to downtown Cleveland. They actually do all the brewing across the street, so it almost feels like a little beer campus. There is also a nice gift shop next to the brewpub. The food is above average for a brewery and the service was great.
I really don't know how you beat the atmosphere at Great Lakes.
Oh yeah, and the beer is world class to boot. All of their beers are solid.
If you find yourself anywhere near Cleveland, you must check it out.

Photo of olacub
4.88/5  rDev +11.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

This is the standard. Vintage bar area as you walk in, with tables off to the left, adjacent to the brewing equipment. Beautiful basement seating (and additional bar) downstairs. Outdoor seating in front of the restaurant overlooking historic Market Street.

What can I say? The beer is consistently excellent - I had a pint of Burning River for starters, and finished up with two pints of Glockenspiel (a Weizen Bock, 8% abv), which was delicious. The food is the best I've had in over 100 brewpub visits around the country, and last night's Southwest Pizza was phenomenal - not to mention the great Artichoke Crock app, and the incredible homemade bread pudding for dessert.

Great Lakes is damn near perfect in every way.

Photo of rosebud
4.8/5  rDev +9.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

A great place to go, especially if you like Great Lake beers. The selection of beer on tap was incredible. We sought out this place after seeing that they had won a medal at the GABF for their Glockenspiel. I have to admit it was worth the trip, plus to have Buring River fresh on tap ... The food and wait staff are first rate. I'll be interested to see what they with their beers once Ohio signs the law increasing the alcohol limit to 12%

Photo of mikepcarney
4.8/5  rDev +9.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Been living up in Cleveland since '09. GLBC is a staple for going downtown. The beer selection is top notch. I have rarely had a beer I did not like. The bar is often crowded to a point you might not want to go in. If you are trying to sample the beers I would go on an off day. The bar is very knowledgeable of all of the beers.

Photo of kjb32812
4.79/5  rDev +9.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

I have been to Great Lakes Brewing Co. for dinner and solely for dinner and neither disappoint. The bar is small and neighborhood like which is a plus. They also have tons of fresh Great Lakes beers on tap. The bartenders have always been very good and offer their opinion when you ask it. If not, they just pour what you ask for. On the food side, I took my FIL here for dinner along with my 2 y.o. son and we had a good meal in the restaurant part away from the bar. Can't go wrong whether dining, drinking or both. Highly recommend.

Photo of BeerFink
4.78/5  rDev +9.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Came on a friday night, took the 8 o clock tour. The tour guide was knowledgeable, funny, and helpful. During the tour he passed around samples of grain and hops to be smelled and examined. At the end, he demonstrated proper serving temperatures by serving a bottle of Dortmunder ice cold and then slightly chilled. Definite difference there, and it was cool to get some beer on the tour.

From there, I sat down to dinner at the brewpub. There I got my first long-awaited taste of Blackout Stout as I decided on my entree. The food selections were diverse and interesting, and there was a beer recommendation for each dish. The bread they served with dinner was made partially from the spent grains that are mashed for the beer (I think I remembered the tour guide saying that). At any rate, the bread had a wort taste to it, a real treat for you homebrewers out there (I was thrilled at least). The server was very attentive and friendly, and answered our questions about the food and the pub itself. The food was excellent, way better than I expected for a brewpub. The Edmund Fitzgerald ice cream was also very good. Not only was the food good, but the prices were reasonable.

After dinner we stopped by the historic bar in the front of the restaraunt for another round (or two). The waitress was very friendly and was happy to show me where the bullet holes were that supposedly came from Eliot Ness. She also did a great job of filling a growler of Blackout for me.

We also stopped by the giftshop for some bottled beer and some glassware. They had some cool stuff there, and the lady behind the counter was very friendly.

This was one of the main reasons for our Cleveland trip, and I was not disappointed in the least. I am already planning more trips around GLBC's other seasonal beers. Definitely a great place to check out if you are anywhere near the area.

Photo of Callenak
4.78/5  rDev +9.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

You have to love this place. Great beer, nice atmosphere, and friendly people. This was my second trip to Cleveland as well as to Great Lakes. I lucked out big time and caught some BA Blackout on tap. Man that's some tasty stuff.

Place is a lot bigger than it looks from the outside. Nice beer bar as you walk in (where I hung out), restaurant seating to the left, a beer garden to the side plus a completely outdoor patio (for the warmer months) in front. They have a pub with flat screens downstairs with all the same beers on tap there too.

I went both days I was in Cleveland and both times the bartenders were very friendly. Were very knowledgeable about beer and the company. Food was a little pricey for a brewery, but it wasn't your normal pub grub. Great food nevertheless.

If I lived in Cleveland I would have my own seat at the bar at this place. Good times.

Photo of AndrewRivera21
4.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Never disappoints!

Photo of McMatt7
4.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Love Great Lakes, good beer food people

Photo of Savage
4.74/5  rDev +8.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

Had lunch special, a fajita chicken with fries. Portions were large. I could not eat it all tried a few beers had the Edmund Fitzgerald porter. Really enjoyed the experience. I went twice while here in Cleveland. The a nice covered patio and tables out on the sidewalk also.

Photo of Stinger80OH
4.73/5  rDev +8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

GLBC is the cornerstone of Cleveland's rapidly growing beer community and one of the first places where I started getting really interested in craft beer. Great Lakes has a typical, not too fancy pub and restaurant as well as their beer cellar (during evening hours) for patrons to visit. The atmosphere is what you would expect from a larger craft brewery...decent sized main bar with a steady crowd of people from lunchtime through evening and a handsome dining room that serves guests some tasty options from their kitchen. During the warmer months in CLE, GLBC's patio attracts large crowds especially during Indians home games and during happy hour. Great Lakes beer selection is generally around 8-10 handles. These always include favorites such as Dortmunder Gold, Eliot Ness, Commodore Perry, and Edmund Fitzgerald plus there is a frequent rotation of seasonally made batches to fill in the rest of the tap selection. My recommendation for those who have had GLBC beers in bottles is to try any of the selections you have never seen before, as everything they make are pretty darn good. Service is always excellent. From the moment you arrive on the patio or the front hostess stand, service is always polite and with a smile. The bartenders pay close attention to your glass and ensure that you are always content while under their roof. Food includes standard pub fare including fish and chips, baked pretzels and a sausage and cheese platter. During the local harvest months, GLBC prides itself on using as much locally sourced ingredients as possible and even has a partnership with a nearby farm in Cuyahoga Valley National Park. If you are visiting and are planning on attending a Cleveland Indians or Cavs game, be sure to check out their Fatty Wagon which runs on straight vegetable oil. Roundtrip fare is $1 per person. Overall, Great Lakes continues to produce some of the finest beers around and is a great place to come visit.

Photo of bradley194
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

My girlfriend and I are from Columbus, Ohio and we decided to make a day trip to Cleveland to visit the Great Lakes Brewpub. It was very much worth it. We had not really planned on eating there, but we decided to try the food. The food was really very very good. I had a garden pasta dish which I would highly recommend to anyone.

The service was impeccable. Our waitress was friendly, efficient, and very knowledgeable about all of the different beers that were offered. My girlfriend does not really like "big" tasting beers so she directed her towards beers that would maybe be more towards her palette.

As for the beer it was amazing. I tried the Oktoberfest, the Eliot Ness, The Commodore Perry, The Prohibition Pilsner, and the Dortmunder Gold. Samples were 25 cents and were extremely generous. All of the beer was totally exceptional.

Also we had some of the Edmund Fitzgerald ice cream. This was a great way to wrap up the meal.

In fact we left and went across the street for some coffee and then came back to have one more before we left for home. My girlfriend also had some of the other drinks and she said they were really very good as well.

All in all it was a great trip. We spent roughly 110 dollars on the whole day, but it was totally worth it. I would highly recommend going out of your way to go to The Great Lakes Brewery.

Photo of mattcrill
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Wow! What a great day and a long awaited trip to GLBC. A little hard to find if you're not from around here but tucked away in old Victorian buildings, the atmosphere immediately engages your senses.

Parking was a bit of a trick but the pay lot was a convienent and had big pictures of all the bottled beers on a brick wall in the back of the lot. Pretty cool.

All wood floors, huge wood bar, and a fully functional brewery in the brewpub make for a pretty fantastic experience. 9 beers on tap including three pub exclusives make it difficult to choose. I'm a huge fan of GL beers but to have them all lined up on tap is pretty tough to beat for even the most discriminating tastes.

The food was pretty good. I had the dortmunder chicken sandwich and my wife had a burger. Nothing memorable but they had recommended pairings for all their food.

Our waitress was sharp, attentive, and very knowledgable about all the beers. She pointed us in the right direction for the tour and was two steps ahead of us through the whole meal.

The tour really made the day for me. Terry gives you a nice history of the brewery, educates you on the ways the brewery helps minimize waste, use local products, and recycle their ingredients, and gives you a nice intro to all aspects of brewing. I'd strongly recommend doing the tour. It's well worth the trip.

The gift shop is small but nice. Plenty of cool glasses, shirts, and posters to lighten or wallet.

If you live anywhere in Ohio, you should take a day and make the trip. Even if you don't live in Ohio, you should plan to go here. It's a great brewery with great beers and it is a visionary company. Great place to foster beer advocacy!

Photo of Ellbert
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 5

An Excellent place to go for great beer and food.

I walked into the resturaunt and put my name it. They said it would be about 15 minutes. I sat at the bar with my girlfriend and ordered an Aniversary Ale.

The hostest came and got us... took us to our table. I got to sit right next to the brewing tanks in the resturaunt and watch the brewer do his thing.

The food was great. Homemade perogies... A lot of their food was cooked with their beer. The food I tasted was excellent.

After I was done with my Aniversary Ale I ordered and Oatmeal Stout. It took my waitress about 5 minutes to get it too me. She took my Oatmeal Stout off of the bill because it took her so long to get it to me... I didn't think it was long but I didn't argue. She also did not charge us for my girlfriends pop.

A great place with great service.

Photo of Dogbrick
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 5

The last time I was at GLBC, it was years before I even got into craft beer. As such I have been anxiously awaiting a return visit for quite some time now. The brewpub is located right over the bridge from downtown. Parking isn't too hard to find even on a busy Saturday night, between the pay lots and street parking.

Inside, the "Beer Cellar" is downstairs and is the ideal place to kill time while you are waiting for a table for dinner. Lots of brick, flat screen TVs, and all of the available beers. You can eat appetizers down there too (the pretzels seem to be the most popular). The ground floor and upstairs are devoted to dining. Great collection of breweriana adorns the walls, and the atmosphere is cozy.

But of course the beer is the attraction here. Even though I have had all of the beers except for Wolfhound Stout (which was served a little too cold in my opinion), there is that intangible benefit to drinking them on-site out of GLBC glasses. The Eliot Ness and Conway's Irish were both good too. Any visitor will immediately recognize the quality in the beers they brew.

The service here is great. The bartenders and wait staff are efficient and really know the beer. Our waiter knew my wife was drinking an Eliot Ness that she brought with her from the Beer Cellar. Big deal, right? Well to me the Eliot Ness looks a heck of a lot like Conway's. Maybe a lucky guess, but we were impressed nonetheless.

The nicest surprise of the evening was definitely the food. The walleye bites were good, and so was my bratwurst. As for my wife's plate, sweet-potato ravioli: Absolutely out of this world. Becoming vegetarian would be a snap with dishes like this. It is a must try! The food is pricey but worthwhile, and they do have some cheaper options for the budget-minded, like the pub burger. The menu details where the ingredients come from (nearly all were local/regional) and there is a beer recommendation for each dish.

All in all this place is the first place any beer lover should stop on a trip to Cleveland. Between the beer, food, brewery tour and gift shop next door you are in for a treat.

Photo of kels
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

I've been to Great Lakes Brewing Company on two occasions now, and I will continue making the trek north as often as possible.

First of all you've got to talk about the beer. I love GLBC beers in the bottle, and I've been even more impressed with them on tap. Who knew they could be even that much better? They've got a really impressive number of selections on tap - all of their traditional favorites that can be found in bottles pretty much throughout the state, as well as up to 5 brewpub-only offerings. On my last trip a couple weeks ago they had Nosferatu, Imperial Dortmunder, The Stein Bock, Barrel Select Pils, and Oktoberfest. I checked the website today, and I found that it's already been updated with new options. It's definitely hard to decide! The beers are pretty reasonably priced, too. A sampler of everything on tap that day goes for $20.

Now for everything else:

Atmosphere - I feel completely home at GLBC. The original bar when you first walk in has such a great lived-in feel. There are a good number of seats and booths right at the bar, and there's plenty of space to read the huge menus and grab a bartender. Even cooler - they claim that the holes in the old wood bar are bullet holes from a gunfight Elliot Ness had with Cleveland gangsters. Off the bar on the ground floor and up the stairs you can find the dining rooms, which give you an option for a quieter dining and drinking experience, too. On our first trip, we ate upstairs which gave us more time and space to sit back and enjoy the time we spent. The rathskeller in the basement is a great place to hang out while waiting for a table. It's a classic dark stone cellar-like place complete with its own full-service bar and tables. On a nice day there's outdoor dining in the very cool West Side Market area of Ohio City, a part of downtown Cleveland. It's urban, but not center-of-the-skyscrapers urban. More of an eclectic neighborhood with a lot of locals and people who really care about the place. Strangers were talking to me about my beer at the bar and offering to share theirs that I hadn't tried - everybody was so friendly and just seemed happy to be there. The location is really easy to get to as well. From downtown it's a 5 minute, $1.25 ride on the red line or an $8 cab ride.

Tour - The tour of the brewery, which is right next to the brewpub, is free and very convenient. The tour guide was completely fantastic. He was so funny and engaging, and it was clear that he was not only passionate about GLBC but also very knowledgeable about their entire process and company. It was great to see the process from start to finish, especially seeing how GLBC strives to be a leader in the Green industry movement.

Service - The service at GLBC is fantastic. They get really busy in there, especially in the evenings, but they do a great job of being attentive. Our server was very knowledgeable about the beers and was able to make food recommendations that worked out great. They're really good at making you feel like one of the regulars, and they take care of all of their customers - from arranging cabs to giving out free tees at their anniversary celebration.

Food - It's a wonderful experience to have great beer along with great food. I really enjoy the variety and quality of the menu items at GLBC. The fish and chips is my go-to, but they've got tons of great dishes, from appetizers to sandwiches to entrees. They are a little pricey, but you definitely get more than what you pay for - enormous portions of food you'd expect to find in an fine restaurant, plus fantastic beer. What more could you want?

I honestly cannot think of any ways Great Lakes Brewing Company could improve their operation. They really are a part of their community while being completely warm and welcoming to guests from everywhere. The beer is consistently worth the trip, and I could quite possibly spend the entirety of any of my trips to Cleveland there. I know if I was a local, I'd be a regular.

« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Great Lakes Brewing Co. in Cleveland, OH
97 out of 100 based on 464 ratings.