Brew Brothers Restaurant & Taproom
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Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 4 | Reviews: 4
Reviews by Garin:
3.7/5 rDev -2.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4
I had a couple of pints at Brew Brothers the other day in the restaurant half of the establishment, and overall I'm impressed. It's still quite new (it opened at the end of the summer 2003) and it still feels like it. That's both good -- everythings shiny and clean -- and bad -- it's a bit sterile and lacking character.
The beer is mostly quite good. I was mighty disappointed with the Prairie Berry ale, which has most definitely changed significantly since the first time I had it. However, the IPA (which I still haven't reviewed) was as good as ever. No Black Pilsner -- they ran out! That's a crime.
They have apparently stated that they will not put any macros on tap, only craft-brewed beer. Strictly speaking, it seems that's true. I saw taps for the Brew Brothers Beers, plus a couple of Alley Kat beers, I think there was a Wild Rose beer, and there was something else that I didn't recognize. They did have Strongbow Cider on tap, which I thought was interesting... So, I'd be happy enough with the selection except for the lack of my favourite BB beer.
The service was good, once they noticed we were there! We were the only people in there on a Saturday afternoon at about 4pm. Most everyone else was in the Pub half, listening to the live music. On our half, the jazz faded to a nice background music, and that let my friend and I have a great conversation. A good time was had by all.
Oh yeah, and the food was quite good too, if not mind-blowing. We both had the bison burger, and it was a decent burger with fresh and crisp fries.
On the whole, I'd say that the Brew Brothers experience was decent, if not especially memorable. Once they truly get rolling, I hope it'll pick up. It has great potential.
I guess I should say one more thing: they have big shiny stainless steel tanks, but I don't think they're brewing in them yet. Soon, I hope.
12-23-2003 07:07:38 | More by Garin
More User Reviews:
3.65/5 rDev -3.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
I think the only reason I do not haunt Brew Brother's regularly is a mix of (1) it being too far away in a rougher downtown district with pay-parking, and that (2) its consistency as far as beer being on tap is low. The whole place is basically made up of four parts: the restaurant, tap-room(bar), patio, and the brewing area, which is mostly downstairs. There are two entrances, one into the restaurant, and one into the bar, but the two are connected inside by doors. Entering the restaurant is pleasant enough, with a couple of large fermenting tanks on the left behind glass, and a generally quiet area composed of booths and tables, with a pool table near the back. The kitchen is right at the back. This area of the establishment seems to be very unpopulated every time I go--generally only one or two other groups of people are here, and because of that the service can be quite slow. It is comfortable enough though, with some sofa-chairs at one end and mostly dark booths in the middle. A set of stairs by the tanks leads down to the brewing area. Last time I was there I managed to get in on a tour, and the basement is cluttery but functional, with a small display of BB's memorabilia immediately at the bottom of the stairs. Bags of malt and hops were lying around. In a cooled room were the tanks, maybe 5 or 6 of them, and then in another room they had a single bottling machine, and labels and cleaners. A very small operation indeed, with a lot more room than they actually need. The chap giving the tour was Peter Kufeldt, and he was very friendly and even more easy-going. We were all given sampler glasses and allowed to pour the beers straight from the brewing tanks, even though the beers were not finished yet. We asked if we could grab a pint glass, and he did not blink an eye as we filled our pint glasses with the beers ourselves. He let us take some hops, coasters, and displayed several brewing instruments and how they work. Definitely worth a tour. The tap-room is often loud and has a stage for local live bands as well. As I said, the consistency of a beer being on tap is low when I have been there, with some coming and going, and especially the Prairie Berry which has been on and off forever. Finally, as of June 11 2005, the taps seemed to have stabilised, and a hefe and a dunkel are now available. Prairie Berry is available(and no it is not the barely drinkable sweet syrup it was a while back). I like the regular tap lineup they have kept, because it offers a decent variety. Service can be very slow, but sometimes that has its benefits. Our waitress at the Real Ale fest on the 11th just gave us our 3 pints for free because they took a while. The menu has changed over the years too, but the current one, from what I have tasted, is much more artisanal and very flavourful. The starter was a bread with brie and saskatoon berry platter, which was exceptional and complemented the Black Pilsner nicely. Other choices exceeded my expectations for the venue. Brew Brothers must be given credit for holding the Real Ale Festival in Calgary for the past two years, for striving to finally get its beer brewed on premises and for promoting its exceptional beers(because when I have tried BB's beers and they have been consistent, bottled or on-tap, the brews are sensational.) Easy going staff. They hope eventually to be bottling all their beers, and I cannot wait to finally have their products available at a nearby liquor store again. Brew Brothers is slowly improving, and I hope soon they will recieve the respect they deserve for their products.
06-14-2005 04:38:24 | More by Cwrw
3.85/5 rDev +1.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$
Have been to Brew Brother's a couple times when they first opened, and finally made it back again. Showed up shortly after 6:00pm, and there was only a couple other patrons sitting at the bar, so we had pretty much whole place to ourselves. Our waitress was quite new and though not fully knowledgable about the beers, still very helpful and friendly. We were offered taster samples to help with our beer selection, although I already knew I was going for the Black Pilsner. They have added a Hefe-weizen (which was quite good) and a Dunkel-weizen to the menu, not sure if these are seasonal or just test runs, but they are not listed on the website and are not available bottled like their other regular brands. Unfortunatley the Prairie Berry taps were not working, but the Ambush and Tumble Wheat were fine choices.
Menu is pretty typical 'pub fare' but they do have a large selection of Vietnamese choices (soup, subs, vermicelli, etc). Settled on a combo platter (wings, spring rolls, salad rolls, grilled shrimp, chicken skewers, dry ribs) and bowl of wor wonton soup to share. Food was very tastey and good serving size.
Only thing lacking is the atmosphere/ambience. It is a big wide open space (and feels like it) rather than having a warm, welcoming feel. Loud heavy metal on the speaker system (I like Kid Rock, don't get me wrong), and most live bands advertised were quite heavy rockers. Also have a pool table up front, so it feels like they are still struggling to find their niche.
Don't want to sound too negative, the quality and uniqueness of their own products still make it a place I will go back again (even if parking is terrible).
Edit: June 12, 05 - Was at Bew Brothers for the CAMRA Fest. Good set up with Breweries out on the patio (too bad it rained).
*Noticed they have changed the menu - no more Vietnamese, just plain old bar food (burgers, etc).
01-28-2005 17:51:52 | More by BigBry
4/5 rDev +5.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3
I was quite excited to hear about Brew Brothers opening up a brewpub here in Calgary last year. They make unique, fine quality beers, and have had a great list of gigs playing in their establishment, seems to me that they are dedicated to supporting both fine beer and fine music. However I haven't actually made it down there to check it out until last week, almost a year since they've opened. Why? Because parking sucks ass here in downtown Cowtown, that's why. Brew Brothers had taken over the location where the infamous Fox and Firkin stood its ground throughout the glory days of Electric Ave., and well beyond after the party moved to another part of town. It's a great location if you actually work downtown, or are taking the C-train to get there, but a hassle to find decent parking anywhere's near the place.
So me and a friend finally popped in on a lazy Saturday afternoon, the place was pretty empty except for a few other tables. However they had just opened their doors within the hour. It's impressive space, the tap room is wide open and wood finished, a stage in one corner, and the dining room, although closed during that time of the day, looked pretty swank, and I made a mental note to come back when it was open to check it out. They also have an enclosed patio area off of the taproom, but the bar top was being sanded down at the time, so we opted for the tap room.
This was my first experience trying Brew Brothers on-tap, and it was not disappointing. I had my first Black Pilsener in years, and missed that unique toasty metallic flavour of a schwarzbier. I also tried the Ambush IPA for the first time, which also left me satisfied. I think that with the exception of the Prairie Berry Ale, that all the Brew Brothers crafted ales would make fine sessionals. I realize now that I never checked to see what else they had on tap except for their own stuff, but I've heard that it's all local micros. However the selection of their own beers alone is worth showing up for.
I've heard that they also have a good menu, but wasn't very crazy with what I had ordered, the seafood club. It came served as a messy blended paste on a kaiser bun with insignificant portions of lettuce and tomato that left me somewhat disappointed.
Yet all in all I was impressed with the Brew Brothers brewpub, I scored it a bit lower on atmosphere due to the time of the day and the construction being done at the time, I'll definitely be going back to see what it's like on a hopping evening with a gig. It has a lot of potential, I think they're still trying to iron out the fine details.
06-27-2004 03:26:19 | More by IronDjinn
Brew Brothers Restaurant & Taproom in Calgary, AB, Canada
- out of 100 based on 4 ratings.