MacKenzie's

Not Rated.
MacKenzie'sMacKenzie's
BA SCORE
88
very good

29 Ratings
Ratings: 29
Reviews: 22
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: n/a
Taps: --
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

918 Hennepin Ave
Minneapolis, Minnesota, 55403-1805
United States
phone: (612) 333-7268

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: feloniousmonk)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 29 | Reviews: 22 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by PokerGod:
Photo of PokerGod
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 1.5

This place is my brother-in-law's favorite hangout. He live in NE Minneapolis, and it is nearly impossible to visit him, without the standard trip to MacKenzie's. That is to say, I'm not complaining. I've always found the atmosphere pleasant and have never found the service lacking. A 24 tap selection is certainly nothing to sneeze at either. We've always seemed to meet a variety of interesting folks there. Located right next to the Orpheum Theater, there is frequently a crowd right before and after any show, and the type of crowd present in the bar can reflect the audience of the show greatly. Not much for food there ever as far as I can tell, pretzles, peanuts and usual bar snacks only. Local beers such as Summit and Surly can always be found along with some imports and fun fare. Without a doubt, worth checking out.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Jlabs
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of pinksky21
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

MacKenzie's Pumpkin Jack Hard Cider is my favorite fall beer ever! Very spicy and sweet at the same time. It's a dessert in a glass!

Photo of millelacsmark
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of jarrgal
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of warpig372
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%

Photo of mothman
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of MNBeer1017
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of treznor
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of 4000qtrap
2.65/5  rDev -31.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 2 | selection: 3 | food: 2

Visited midweek and it was largely empty. Nice patio out back. The food was average, but the service was poor and the waitress did not know her beer at all. However, beer selection was OK though they struggled to keep everyone in the loop as far as what was actually on tap versus what was on the menu.

Note: Decent option if you are at the conference center.

Photo of garylite
2.48/5  rDev -35.8%
vibe: 1.5 | quality: 2.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3 | food: 2

So you know how Cracker Barrel tries to fool you into thinking its an old country store the first time you go in and you quickly realize it is full of fake crap made in China. This place does much the same thing as it pretends to be an edgy bar with soul. This is as far away from Tornodo as McD's is from Luger's. The exceptional rating given here must be due to the fact that it has Surly on tap and I suspect without it and O'dell's the rating would take a nasty fall. Speaking of nasty the bartender has made it clear to me on several occasions she is happy with that discreptive. This isn't the cool edgy nasty either. This is the I don't give a crap variety. Speaking of crap. How bout the food, all my friendly tender could say is the pizza is good. Well I think the cardboard disk it was served on likely had a better flavor profile. Do yourself a huge favor and get your Surly at another bar in town. If you want a true MSP experience with great food and an even greater selction of Beers go to Town Hall Brewery grab a pint of Masala Mama on cask and a fresh hot cheese filled pretzel or a muy bueno burger.

Photo of jsprain1
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

A- It has Scottish decor, but that's about the extent of the Scottishness. A couple of tv's and some arcade games gives it a sports bar like feel. The 90's music is a plus though.
Q- They have a variety of glassware which is always good. Everything was served properly as well.
Ser- Very friendly and knowledgabe about their beers. Service has a tendency to be slow to very slow, which is my only critique of service.
Sel- Heavy on the IPA's but there is a decent variety of beers on tap with many different breweries which is a plus.
F- Food is decent by sports bar standards. Thai chicken wrap is one of my favorites.
Food is inexpensive, beers are a little spendy but it balances out.

Photo of augievikings
4.16/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

Went to MacKenzie's for the first time before a Twins game in July. We have walked past this place several times without stopping, but I saw a previous review and decided we should check it out. Very nice selection of beers, particularly higher ABV IPA's and more of a local selection, including Surly and Fulton. Some Belgian choices (Chimay, Duval) in bottles. For downtown Minneapolis, it probably has the best selection of craft beer that I have seen so far. The service was adequate, but it was 3:00p.m. and we were about the only people in the bar.

Photo of Moon2Goddess
4.35/5  rDev +12.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

MacKenzies is my "reward for actually going to the health club stop." Convenient location, so small you almost walk past it. The bartenders and wait staff are incredibly friendly, fun and helpful. Its small size creates the cozy, unpretentious atmosphere that I truly appreciate. You can stop by if you are dressed for a show or all sweaty in your jogging clothes, and you will feel equally as comfortable. On any given day, it is easy to strike up a conversation with the people next to you, laugh your asses off and order another. I also enjoy the 90's music variety playing overhead, and exploring the jukebox.There is a secret patio you cannot see from the street, with an incredibly eclectic gathering of patrons, and the occasional roadie guarding the tour bus for performers at the Orpheum, although I prefer the front patio for maximum people watching. But the best reason to go to MacKenzies is the beer selection: On tap this summer I had Backwoods Bastard, Jubel 2010, and Abyss just to name a few, this fall the Cashew Nut Mountain and Pumking were favorites. They change up their taps regularly and have some nice tasting events, and they treat their regulars with extra care.

Photo of slander
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Last hurrah Minneapolis Tuesday in case you're wondering. Presently, we're wait, there it is, was, now past, we just passed it, behind us now, back there, and growing further farther back there, stop yelling at me, I can't turn anywhere anytime soon yet but I'm on it. We turned somewhere sometime soon, funny lot parked around the corner and walked up to meet Stu Bob barside. I'm pretty sure he's not a Stu Bob but in fact a Jeff, with a not silent and oddly pronounced "E" on the end like "Leffe"; that's what Witzel said anyway, or that's what I'm saying Witzel said anyway...

Deep & narrow but the sky is the ceiling as the better part of the second floor is absent, with pinny fans up high. Long "L"ish wood bar with a black inlayed piece and a copper foot rail off to the right. 4 taps on a small tower on the bar and another 20 in a row on the barback counter with pint glasses on ice in a bin below them (please don't ever use one of them on me). Stacked glassware and booze there on mirrored panels below 3 arched colored stained glass panels, a large one on center and smaller ones to both sides. Mugs club mugs lining above & dangling below, and shelved on the end over wine on its side over hanging glassware wide. Wide wood slat wall behind the bar and big brick throughout otherwise. Brewery placards & mirrors on the wall behind me and mounted neons above. Strung Bud flagging & Corona blow ups dangling overhead, and Guinness, Harp & Smithwicks pub signage dealt on a pole. Framed maps of Scotland to the rear with signed Broadway Orpheum Theatre play posters lining above and flatscreens in the corners.

5 shorty square tables adjacent to the bar & a few Guinness barrel tables up front in the windows, with a pair of electronic dartboards off to one side. A Schell Kilt King & Queen of the month board sits above, holding a digital countdown to the new Kilt King & Queen. I have no idea what this means. And out front, a small pen with 3 street side tables. A kitchen area located just past the bar, and some video games (Big Buck Hunter, Phil's Golf Game Live & '09 Live, a Simpsons Pinball machine) to the rear. Door there runs to a partially canopied rear patio with a dozen+ tables running the perimeter sharing benchage and a ½ dozen tables & some bar hightops in the center. Upstairs perch holds an 8 seat "L" shaped bar to the rear with darts adjacent (that might explain the netting; it only takes one time for a dart to, well, you know). A dozen tables, some hightop, some not running the length of the side towards the front, with framed Gilroy Guinness prints along the way. A lone ping pong table up there; keep the ball on the table or head downstairs to lay chase (although more likely... game over).

4 and 20 beers ago, I come into this bar... 24 taps in all, 2/3 of which are mostly micros mostly regional (Summit Kolsch & EPA, Surly Bender & Furious, Schell's #7 Roggenbier, Octoberfest & Grain Belt Premium, Dark Horse Tres Blueberry Stout, Founders Centennial IPA, Bells Octoberfest, Capital Autumnal Fire, Boulevard Tank 7 Saison, Blue Moon) although some not (Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop Ale, Lagunitas Little Sumpin' Extra! Ale, Grand Teton Double IPA), and the other 1/3 are fine imports (Ayinger Octoberfest, Belhaven Scottish Ale, Carlsberg Beer, Stella, Guinness, Harp, Amstel Light, Strongbow Cider). Started with the Dark Horse Tres Blueberry Stout (just lovely), and then had the Schell's #7 Roggenbier (did not suck) & Surly Bender (oaty brown = win!), all were in very good shape.

And 40+ bottles coolered below. Lots of mac action there but about ¼ of them micros (Founders, Dark Horse, Bells, New Belgium, Tyranena, Surly, Flying Dog, Sierra Nevada, Lagunitas), and a few good imports (Duvel, Affligem Blonde, Koningshoeven Quad, Maredsous 10, Leffe Blonde).

Their tag line is "An American bar with a Scotch flavor", and we'll blame that on the whole meh import side of things here as the micros are solid for the most part. I could definitely do some time here going through that side of the tap list in greater detail if I had to or had time to. Beer was fresh and clean, no problems there, and service server served, dealing us samples of things he felt we should try as we hadn't asked for them. Although I suspect it gets Soccer & Nascar mad here on the weekends, it was comfortable enough on this Stuesday afternoon.

Photo of kbaker91
3.84/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 2.5

This is probably the closest & easiest to get to 'good beer' tavern to where I live in the near NW Suburbs, therefore I end up here quite often (2-3 times monthly). That being said, this place is pretty hit & miss. Most of the time, I have had perfectly pleasant experiences here, with tasty beers & fine service. Other times, the rotating selection of taps & the service leaves much to be desired. Again, 80% of the time, the service is great, but that 20% of the time leaves a bad taste in my mouth. The tap selection is generally good, but sometimes they fill too many lines with 'psuedo-craft' beers from Widmer, Red Hook, etc instead of superior selections from Bells, Tyranena, etc. I have heard rumors of good food, but have never been there when a cook actually is working, so all I have ever seen offered are frozen pizzas & the like.

Overall, I recommend this place to anyone looking for a generally quiet place to hang and grab a decent brew when downtown MPLS.

Photo of FightingEntropy
4/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

After not ever going to McKenzie's, in spite of being downtown for various activities, I went two nights in a row: Surly and Furthermore nights. If downtown, I tend to go to Rock Bottom down the street, but McKenzie's is a good alternative.

Very simply, the range of taps is good, and a nice place to sit. The crowd seemed to be younger and hipper than me, but that doesn't take much. I did find a couple new taps that I had never had (besides the S and F that I was there for), which new stuff is my reason for going to a pub. If someone suggested McKenzie's for a place to meet before show, etc., I'd accept in a heartbeat, no problem. I'd even order food again, which the pizza I had was very good and there are several other vegetarian choices to explore in the future.

Overall, a good choice. A very nice bar, well decorated in a old brick building that has a lot of character, and good choices of beer that were all well served. Not a problem going here, especially for future beer activities that gaurantee new beers.

Photo of DanK222
4/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3

What can I say...
This place got me through college. When I first discovered Mac's in 1997, I thought I had died and gone to heaven. They were one of the few bars in MPLS at the time that had delicious beers and more than 4 taps. But it was the Anderson Valley IPA that won me over. Not only did they have an IPA on tap, they had one of the best IPA's at the time on tap. Not to mention some of the tightest and newest pinball machines in town. The Guinness is poured to perfection too. If you're looking for a bar that has a club atmosphere, then you're in the wrong place. Mac's is the kind of bar you decide you're going to have just one and the next thing you know it's last call. If you can make it past the sometimes snooty wait staff. (Seems like they have their own rules when the owner's not around.) Then it's the perfect place to have a couple beers with a few friends. The patio makes it that much better too.

This has always been my "Cheers". As long as I can get a Surly Furious and multi-ball in the same night, I'm happy.

Photo of supercolter
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4

A very decent beer drinkers bar. Atmosphere is very good, with lots of seemingly knowledgable individuals. A lot of homeless people around though and it was kind of distracting. Quality is very good. Lots of locals including Surly and some imports such as Belhaven.
Service was ok, but there were 5 of us and we were tipping pretty well. The bartender just wasn't that excited to help and he didn't know what they had. He had to keep checking the card to see what was in stock. Selection is good. Not as much as like the Gnome or Pig but what is there is a good variety. Its a bit pricey for beers 6-8 dollars for most, but not too bad. I would recommend this one.

Photo of ckeegan04
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Dropped in on Friday afternoong during a break from the conference I was in town for. Only 7 other people at the bar. Nice dark pub feel to the place. 24 taps of some local stuff and other crafts. No macros on tap, only bottle. Had some Surly Furious and Victory Prima Pils while I was in there. Bartender knew his stuff and was happy to make recommendations. The people in there all knew each other and knew the bartender which gave it a nice local feel. Real convenient location if you are downtown.

Photo of Erdinger2003
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Walked in to get some Darkness on tap and found some. No problems getting served. I got a great lady who knew what beer glass I wanted without questioning me. Friend that was with me didn't get so lucky, he got the lady getting drunk by the bar who had no clue yelling at him asking why he would want "to be fancy" and have that glass. Everything else was fine, nice little place. They gave me a Lucifer glass when I asked for it to have my Darkness in. Big long bar and plenty of seating, there was even an upper level I didn't get to go to, but looked really nice.

Photo of Chaz
3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

3 big T.V.s, free popcorn, and 24 taps . . . what more could you want? Oh yeah, there's a couple of pinball machines, megatouch, golden tee, and . . . did you say 24 taps? Yep, 24 taps, and although this isn't the only reason to come down here for most BAs I'd bet it is the main reason. I've visited perhaps a dozen times in total, and the service has always been leisurely/realistic as opposed to breakneck speed, and as I'm hardly a high-powered downtown busines type the leisurely pace has never bothered me in the least. Of course I've always visited later in the day, as was the case most recently, as I was on my way to a show at the 7th Street Entry. We were cordially greeted at the bar and our drink orders were taken. When I asked for Bell's Hopslam I was told "we're out of that . . . would you mind Expedition Stout instead? Six dollars for a 12 ounce pour." Hard to turn down a draught Expedition at that price, and it came served in a logoed Bell's tulip. For that matter I noticed more logoed and otherwise proper glassware on this visit than I have in the past, always a good sign. Other taps included both Surly offerings, New Holland's Mad Hatter, Grotten Brown from Belgium, and winter offerings from Summit, Sierra Nevada, and Rush River. Not a big place, but the tall ceilings give the place an expansive feel. It was also both brighter and more peopled on this visit for some reason, so it felt more 'alive' for lack of a better term. It's always struck me as a very laid-back, friendly and unpretentious atmosphere, sort of a dive-bar that lacks true diveyness, and although I love a "good" dive-bar it should be obvious from their tap selection that they're far from low-rent. The staff have always been friendly if not outright gregarious. We chatted with the bartender about the Scottishness of the place and my drinking buddy cautioned to ask why there wasn't more attempt made to cash in on the whole "Sister Scotland" phenomena by adding more ephemera associated with the Irish pub experience. The bartender just smiled and took it all very easily. Later we talked about Herb Brooks, as the old Miracle On Ice flick starring Carl Malden was on after the All Star game. I'm not much of a spirits and mixed drinks person, but the bar is fairly well-equipped for those of you who are, and has a good selection of single malts and premium tequilas as well. Although I've never dined here the website indicates a average selection of sports bar / pub grub style appetizers are to be had for pretty fair prices, and their luch menu is at least above average - some day I'd like to be around in time for lunch! Easily the best bar in the area to grab a beer, and far more laid back than the ultra-lounges and dance clubs in the area. Well worth stopping into when your downtown. And don't forget, Rock Bottom is right across the street, hint hint.

Photo of woodychandler
4/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5

Brian and Debbie were the owners and this place was run like a neighborhood bar, despite being right downtown at the corner of Hennepin and 9th Streets. I entered through an extended vestibule with a stained glass bagpipe player at the end. I went in by making a hard right through a door and there were two electronic darts machines plus some high tables and chairs on a buttonhook right. By continuing on a left oblique, I reached the elongated, “U”-shaped, wood and dark granite bar. The back bar incorporated more stained glass as part of its décor. Further aft, along the right wall, was the kitchen, followed by tables and chairs. Along the left wall were a popcorn machine, standard tables, two pinball machines, two electronic games, and all of the way aft, the washrooms. To the extreme right of the doorway was the long stairwell up to the second floor balcony area with its own short bar and tables and chairs. Back on the first floor, to the left of the washrooms, was a doorway out to a wooden patio and smoking area. I had a great bartender who allowed me to roam around freely, but I forgot to note his name. You have my apologies for that oversight, sir.

They had twenty-one (21) taps that included all three Surlys (Bender, Furious, and Cynic); one Victory; two Summits; and one Bell’s. The bottles tended more to the pedestrian.

Photo of dfried
3.35/5  rDev -13.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 1.5 | selection: 4

This place has a great location, right on one of the main drags in downtown Minneapolis. They have some outdoor seating around the side, and a couple tables right out front on the sidewalk. Inside it is long and narrow, kind of a cozy feel, but it hasn't been updated in there for a while.

The service was really crappy, I don't know if it was because it was the first time I was there, or because I am 25 but look 19-20, but I was not impressed with the service. First of all, I was sitting on the front sidewalk tables and no servers came out there at all the whole time I was there. Not a huge deal, I can walk 30 feet to get my own beer, but I get up there ask what type of Urthel they have and the bartender wont pour one for me, explaining it foams up too much and its not worth selling since it takes 4 times as much to fill a cup. That too is understandable, but then he walked away and got 3 other people beers before comming back to me. When he did come back, I started asking him about a couple of the things I couldn't quite see, and he walked away again to get other people beers. I was not happy.

They did have 12-15 high quality beers on tap, so I am sure I will stop by there again to see what they have, but they did not leave a good first impression with me.

Photo of KarlHungus
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

This is my kind of place. I like the way they take the whole Scottish theme really lightly. Other than the name of the bar, and a couple maps of Scotland there is really nothing Scottish about it. However, there doesn't need to be, because it has it's own charm. The long wooden bar runs about half the length of one of the buildings brick walls. Lighting is ample, but not too bright. The beer selection is very good with twenty or so taps, nearly all of which are of high quality. Bell's, Surly, Rush River, Sierra Nevada and other are all on tap. The place was fairly busy when I was there, and I only saw one waitress and one bartender. The service was still good, friendly and prompt. The food is prepared in view of the setting area, and everything they were making look appetizing. I had a small pizza which was nice and spicy. This is definitely a place I will visit again when I am in the Twin Cities.

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MacKenzie's in Minneapolis, MN
88 out of 100 based on 29 ratings.