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SBC Restaurant & Brewery - Branford

Not Rated.
SBC Restaurant & Brewery - BranfordSBC Restaurant & Brewery - Branford
BEER AVG
3.2/5
Based on:
13 Beers
29 Ratings
Place Score: 81
Ratings: 15
Reviews: 10
rAvg: 3.18
pDev: 18.24%
Taps: 17
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

850 W Main St
Branford, Connecticut, 06405-3422
United States
phone: (203) 481-2739

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @sbcbrewery

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 15 | Reviews: 10 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by RunawayJim:
Photo of RunawayJim
3.55/5  rDev +11.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

I went here for dinner tonight. I used to live in Branford for 20+ years before I finally moved out of CT. I was excited to learn that there was a brewpub in my hometown. Little did I know it was a branch of a brewpub from Fairfield County. I had heard the food and beer was pretty good.

They break up their beers into 3 "tiers". The first seem to be the lightest, most accessible. The second is slightly darker and less accessible, and the third is even less accessible. I found the 2 beers I tried to be pretty accessible. I had their stout, which had a lot of good flavor, but was a bit watery. It should've been a bit heavier. The other was their IPA, which was less hoppy than I prefer. The stout was from tier 3 and the IPA from tier 2.

The food was decent, but nothing special. I got their ribs, which were cooked well, but the BBQ sauce was way too sweet. It lacked any "zing". The menu said it was made with their IPA, but I got none of that and honestly, I expected it to be a little spicier. The coleslaw and mashed potato sides were pretty good. My fiancee got their rainbow trout special, which she really liked. It looked a lot better than my ribs (which always seems to be the case with us, her getting the better meal).

It wasn't cheap, but it wasn't super expensive, though I found it a little overpriced for the quality, though the beer was only $4, but their special beer of the night wasn't even their own and that was $3. I'd probably go back to try something else. The burgers smelled really good and with such a large selection of beers, I do want to try them. The weird thing about this place is they not only have something like 9 or 10 of their own beers on tap, they also have several (7-10) commercial beers on tap as well. I have never been to a brewpub that had beers other than their own on tap, but being a big restaurant on a big suburban strip, I can understand why they would do that (though, in my opinion, if you go to a brewpub, you shouldn't be expecting beers other than their own).

More User Reviews:
Photo of ManMoosePig
3/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of SkinniePost
3.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of ChrisChagnon
3.5/5  rDev +10.1%

Photo of RMoeNay
3/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of jefftuck47
1.5/5  rDev -52.8%

Photo of woolybear
3.3/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 3

Visited 12-8 after finding the one in Hamden closed.

The atmosphere was just above average. It was nice warm and inviting.

The service was outstanding. The staff (all of them were very attentive and went out of our way to make sure we were taken care of.

The food was average what you expect form a American chain restaurant. Good value for the money reasonable selection, with reasonable quality. The same can be said for the beer. Average but drinkable.

On the whole a good value for the money and i would stop by again at Branford or any of the other ones if i were in the area looking for a beer and a burger.

Photo of erosier
3.4/5  rDev +6.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 4

Went here to take advantage of the nice weather and sit outside for dinner. It was happy hour time so it was good to sit around outside while it was still sunny and warm out.
Atmosphere of the place was nice, it's clean, friendly, and caters toward the BMC drinking as I saw most of the people drinking Bud Light which is a real shame when there's homemade beer on tap.
The food was good. They had a decent Applebee's/Friday's/Chili's selection of stuff to choose from (you know, a few choices from lots of styles of food) and their specials even had what beer to pair it with. The had nice sized portions at fair prices and the food was pretty good.
Beer selection was also pretty well balanced as far as the house brews go. They had pilsener, lager, amber, ipa, stout which is a pretty wide selection. I had the stout and pilsener. Both were light bodied and almost watered down feeling but they were fresh. The beer was OK, nothing to write home about but certainly better than just Bud Light.
Service was excellent, they like to keep up with your beers and on top of that our waitress even knew what to pair stuff with and would have chosen a beer based on your beer likes and dislikes.
Quality was decent, I guess the best part about it was the fact I could sit outside while eating (but then again all I've got is a beautiful view of US-1).

Photo of Gavage
3.28/5  rDev +3.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 2.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

Very close to I-95 making it quite convenient for us on a road trip. Easy to find and you can't miss the big SBC sign. The restaurant has a bar / open kitchen area, and a back room for dining. I sat in the bar area, slighty dark interior with large glass windows overlooking the road. Outside seating was available too. Large warehouse ductwork adorns the ceilings. Large bar seats about 30. Pretty decent lunch time crowd, most drinking ice tea or water.

The beer selection was nice as most styles were represented. The only problem is the beers were far from exciting. On tap they had a lite, blonde, pilsner, brown ale, red ale, english pale, porter, IPA, stout and a fruit beer (no idea what this was - I didn't ask). They also had Stella, Miller Light, and a cider on tap. The Pilsner and English Pale Ale were not very good, the IPA was mediocre, and the Porter was the best of the bunch (and pretty good too). The three tier system they use on the menus is funny - Tier one is for usual macro drinkers (lite, pilsner), and tier 3 was "more complex and flavorful beers" (porter, stout).

The waitress was very nice and prompt with service. Food was also average, as my wife had the clam chowder which was good, but the crabcake she had had no flavor. I had the French Dip and it came with gorganola cheese. Come on guys, you need a cheese that melts on the beef, not clumps of gorganzola. Ugh. Good fries though.

The restrooms were pretty funny. In the two urinals, one had a painted firehydrant to pee on, and the second had a Bud, Coors Lite, and Heineken bottle with ropes around the neck.

I don't think I'll make a return trip while driving through CT unless I see the beer improves.

Photo of medic25
3.28/5  rDev +3.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Stopped in with the folks for lunch at the Branford location, my second visit. Very nice decor; quite modern, with a good selection of private booths. The wait staff seemed a little slow, but were very pleasant. As I've heard in the past, unfortunately the food outshone the beer. Split a huge appetizer of fried calamari, served with a tasty remoulade sauce as well as the usual marinara. Followed up with the fish and chips, which were delicious. The scrod was extremely fresh, and perfectly prepared. As for the beers...
Pretty underwhelmed, which is a shame since the place is so close to me.
I won't get into a full formal beer review, but anytime the porter is hoppier than the IPA there seems to be a problem. The "Branporter" I started with was reasonably tasty, with maybe a little bit too much of a burnt aftertaste. Unfortunately the IPA was a disappointment. Maybe I've become somewhat of a hophead since discovering this site, but all I kept thinking was that it tasted like a good IPA that someone had diluted with water before serving it. I'm going to have to pick up a sixer of Hopdevil just to remind myself what a good IPA tastes like!
Anyway, to sum up- nice atmosphere,good food, as for the beers; stop catering to the coors light crowd and making bland, forgettable beers. Take some hints from the folks at Bru Rm at Bar and add some character to your beers!

Photo of AlexJ
2.25/5  rDev -29.2%
vibe: 2 | quality: 2 | service: 3 | selection: 2 | food: 2

Although not a fan of their original Southport location(boring, bland beer) I decided to see if their new location gas inspired them to make better beer-it Hasn't. If you are looking for the same, tired, stale, and uninspired lineup of beer then give it a try. Don't let the names of the beers fool you. They are not new creations, just the same old recipes with new trendy names. There was the usulal "light ale", a brown ale, a soulless IPA, a dissapointing red ale, and a porter. No seasonals or anything even remotely interesting! Why do these people brew beer? They obviously don't care about their product, they are just another CT tourist trap!

Photo of slander
3.75/5  rDev +17.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

It's like deja vu all over again. And then not. This third Southport location is located on a hill on Rte 1 just a stone's throw from I-95.
It's very unlike the other 2 Southport locations. This one is a large black wood beam structure, an open room with a sky chalet wood beam arched ceiling and 4 fermenters high above on a platform in the middle of the room. There's also a handful of fermenters and mashers along the wall near the main entrance. Black walls below with yellow uppers, track lighting, and exposed duct work running the perimeter. The main room carries an open kitchen area, a place where bands set up, and the bar area, with a separate dining room off to far side. The rectangular bar seats about 2 dozen, with round bar tables running adjacent throughout. Flat screen TV's here and there and larger ones in the corners. The front wall (the one facing Rte 1) and the corners are all window, and look out on the handful of tables that are the outdoor seating area.
The place was pretty hopping on a Saturday night, but service was attentative just the same. They had no problem letting me try one of these and one of these and one of these. They make an array of beers and they're also pouring Stella, Warsteiner, Miller and (Miller) Lite, as well as bottled macros. The Stout was dry and bitter, with a nice bite, the IPA smelled floral but didn't taste it, or really like anything, but had a bitterness about it, and the Blueberry Ale was the best of the lot of 'em, not overly sweet or syrupy, served with a handful of blueberries in it, some of them diving while others are rising (what makes blueberries do that?)
Food is always good at the SBC locations. I'm all about the Singapore wings (teriyaki/soy sauce/sesame seeds) which have never failed me. The best of the lot of the SBC's...

Photo of Fish113d
3.8/5  rDev +19.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 2 | selection: 5 | food: 4

This new establishment can be found just off Rt. 1 in Branford, CT, which I was visiting to see my buddy and fellow beeradvocate, Sulldaddy this past weekend.

We decided to go to this new brewpub, which opened on St. Patty's Day. Upon arriving the place was absolutely packed, so we went to the bar. At the bar they had a nice beer menu w/ many styles and tastes for everyone from the typical person who knows absolutely nothing about any beer that they don't see an advertisement for with a lizard or half-naked girls (which I love the commericials, but their beers suck!) to the real beer drinker that cares more about what the beer tastes like rather than how many they could drink. The crowd seemed pretty cool with lots of hot chicks of course, which I found awesome, cuz I originally though that being asorta beer nerd was not found to be cool....well the girls in this place seemed to be just as "nerdy" as me, which was awesome! Sulldaddy and I were able to sample a few brews of the 8-12 they have on tap. One problem: Note to owner of SBC, when you advertise a certain beer that I hope to have after taking a 250 mile trip, have the BLEEPING beer! Their selection was good, but they were out of their Stout and their Porter, which was NOT cool considering the rest of their beers were very thin w/ little to no hops even when saying they did have the hops....

Okay, good note....the food was pretty darned good. I had a brew burger w/ bacon and fries (always a winner w/ me) and everyone else we were with seemed to enjoy the food, but the waitress knew more about what color underwear I wear (and trust me....I have never met the damned girl) than she knows about beer....most of their beers were the same color, literally the same damned color, and very undistinguishable. I would have to go here again to get a better feeling about the place....good atmosphere, okay beers (not the worst things brewed), stupid servers who know nothing about beer, and hot chicks...worth a trip.

Photo of Stopper
3.18/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

The atmosphere was comfortable enough, and the thai chicken wrap I had was pretty tasty, along with the standard pub fries. A friend's burger I tried was pretty average. I found the whole menu to be a touch pricey, though not abnormally so for the area. The waitress was friendly and decent, though she forgot a water or a beer here and there. Unfortunately, some beers I'd have like to have tried weren't on tap, but I had a sampler of five that were. Strangely, the only one that had any discernable aroma in that environment was the blonde, which smelled strangely like imitation crab meat. The waitress was a bit confused about which beers she brought me, and so I wasn't sure what beer I had in each of the 4 of my samples, and they weren't very discernable by color (all something close to a medium amber brown) or aroma. The tastes were all pretty similar as well -- light bodied with slightly varying levels of mild hop varieties, and hints of caramel and chocolate malts here and there. You could have sold any of them to me as a English Bitter and I wouldn't have argued (I think I had a brown ale, a red ale, an IPA, and I'm not sure about the other). But the good thing is that all were easily drinkable and probably preferable to something adjunct-laden.

I can see myself heading there again at some point, but I won't be a regular.

Photo of sulldaddy
3.65/5  rDev +14.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Well I just went hear for the first time tonite and metup with Stopper, fish113d, and paulie. A kinda BA gathering I suppose. The place just opened on Wed and it was packed tonite. We had 45 minute wait to get a table for dinner. Good sign that this place may stick around.
So we ordered some brews and watched basketball on the flat screen TVs. The beers were alright but not outstanding. None were very robust in flavor or aroma, but all were decent.
The set up is similar to a typical brewpub, exposed ventilation ducts and frame structures, a large rectangular bar surrounded by tables and some wall stools. Then there are a large number of booths and small dining tables to the other side. Lots of capacity for customers. WE finally got a table and ordered some grub. The fried calamari was good and I also had ribs and bbq chicken as my entree. This meal was good but the bbq sauce had some strange marinara qualities to it. Not the best ribs ever, but very tender and juicy which was nice. The burgers had by others were apparently tasty as well.
The beer selection was good with about 10 house brews available, although several were out or kicked while we were there. Seems like opening day kinks still getting worked out.
ONe highlight was the bathroom. Although small considering the size of the restuarant the urinals made me laugh! One was painted with a fire hydrant for aiming,while the second had a bottle of Coors, heineken, and miller lite with quotes about the low quality of these brews. Great things to piss on I think!

Overall, I am very glad to have this establishment 5 minutes from my pad and will return several times, but by no means the best brewpub I have ever visited.

SBC Restaurant & Brewery - Branford in Branford, CT
81 out of 100 based on 15 ratings.