Brewer's Alley Restaurant & Brewery

Brewer's Alley Restaurant & BreweryBrewer's Alley Restaurant & Brewery

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

124 N Market St
Frederick, Maryland, 21701-5422
United States

(301) 631-0089 | map

No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate

View: Beers | Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 48 | Ratings: 77
Photo of Lucular
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Nice selection of beers, good value for those who like to try a lot with a 6-beer (5 oz pours) sampler for $8. The favorite of both my wife and myself was the 1634 rye beer but all of them were good.

There was about a 30-minute wait for a table on a Saturday night but once we got in the service was helpful and fast. The kitchen did make a mistake in sending out French onion soup instead of French fries (my wife had asked about the soup, but decided to get fries instead) but that was more than satisfactorily resolved - they sent a side of fries and didn't charge for the soup. :)

 585 characters

Photo of BMMillsy
3.71/5  rDev -6.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.75

Fun atmosphere but very small and gets crowded a bit quick. Good choice of beers brewed there, but the food sucks outside of the pizza. Get there early to get a seat at the bar. They have regulars like their Oatmeal Stout and Kolsch pretty much always on tap. Go for the oatmeal stout. Neat giant beer tube taps for the table. Overall this is definitely worth stopping at if you are driving down Route 70.

 405 characters

Photo of jjboesen
4.44/5  rDev +11.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4 | food: 3.75

While visiting historic downtown Frederick during the July 4th holiday weekend, I paid another visit to Frederick County’s first brewpub. Brewers Alley is easy to find since it is located in a large brick building on the eastern side of North Market Street. According to the server, it once housed City Hall and a theater. Enter beneath the wrought iron archway and cross the patio into the entrance, where you come to the reception area. This is a large place with several dining rooms, but if the bar area is your goal, go through the door next to the reservation desk.

This is a moderate-sized area with high-tops and tables spread about; the bar is in the middle of everything. While quaint and comfortable, this room could probably do with some more natural light – perhaps larger front windows, so patrons can get a better view of bustling Market Street.

Although, advertised as a brewpub, Brewer’s Alley beer is made about 2 miles up the road at Monocracy Brewing. According to the server, they simply ran out of room for the brewing equipment – or did they just want more space for paying customers? Hmmmm.

The draft selection during my visits – once for lunch and dinner – consisted of a fruity kolsch, a crisp pilsner, the requisite pale ale, the mandatory wheat, oatmeal stout and a cask porter. The ones I had were well-crafted, tasty and fresh. Yummmm. In addition, they were all of moderate alcohol, and made great sessional quaffs. Another plus was the price: $4.00 a pint - minus a buck during weekday Happy Hour. Include some very attentive service along with an eclectic menu, which included some superb fish tacos, and Brewers Alley is a worthy goal should you find yourself in search of history

Frederick is a beautiful destination with plenty to see and do. Plus, the parking is plentiful ($1.00 on weekends). Will most certainly stop here again.

 1,886 characters

Photo of Rushalt
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Had the scotch ale first time for that style so wont review that other than i liked it. Had the calamari which was very good lightly breaded and well cooked the spicy aoli was my wifes favorite to dip it in while i prefered the marinara. For main course had lobster and steak, the lobster was cooked well as was the steak however the steak was under seasoned for my tastes. Finished with a root beer float the root beer was above average and the ice cream was delicious. Our waitress heather was the best that ive had in a restaurant to date, was attentative and knew a lot about the beer and food which She seemed to be giving opinions on and not just saying what they were told 2. Overall it was a very good night out with the wife and we are planning to return once the barleywine is in season.

 797 characters

Photo of Jimmys
3.53/5  rDev -11.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

this brewpub is located in a very pretty building right on the main drag of historic fredericksburg. the restaurant had many different sections to sit in, some seemed way too crowded (the rear dining room in particular). we sat by the brewhouse in the bar section which was significantly more empty. service was attentive but not overbearing. there was about 10 beers on tap and a cask line as well as bud, corona, and miller light bottles (which, for the record, i dislike when brewpubs offer these). the beers i sampled were good with diverse styles on tap such as hefe, mild, nut brown, EIPA, and a scottish. the food was good brewpub food. had a good pulled pork sandwich and especially enjoyed the shoe-string frenchfries. definitely worth a visit if strolling around fredericksburg.

 788 characters

Photo of bum732
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

My go-to place when i lived up in Frederick for a month in addition to visiting my gf who lived there for 2 years. Great location, smack dab in historic Frederick right on main street. They have a nice outdoor patio area that faces main street, about 7-8 tables. Inside is a bar area with bar tables and a central bar. The other side of the building is the restaurant area which has normal seating and beer paraphernalia on the walls.

Hardwood floors and low lighting set the scene for the bar area. Beers on tap are written on the chalk board. They have i think 4 year round beers (IPA, Kolsch, Weizen, stout) in addition to a couple seasonals. I find all their beer very solid, the IPA is a great English IPA (and award winning) and the stout is also very solid. Kolsch is ok, from what i remember, refreshing. They have a couple flatscreen tvs in the bar area, usually always people in there, and has a very diverse crowd, well, for Frederick at least.

Food is pretty solid, they create a lot of meals revolving around the beers themselves. So you have your traditional pub fare as well as nicer, upscale dishes featuring beer as an ingredient.

All in all, a great place to visit, i love coming in the summer to drink and eat lunch outside. Parking on the street or the parking garage behind the brewery makes access easy. They also actually use the beer equipment on display in the bar area, so if you go during a weekday, you'll be able to smell the sweet aromas of spent grain and boiling wort.

 1,506 characters

Photo of Rschis16
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Nice looking brick building with a little outside seating area that seemed very cozy, especially on as nice as it was. The outside seating area was packed and had a few people waiting to be seated out there, so it must have been worth it. We sat in the bar area at a high top table by a window looking at a few large beer tanks with a bunch of growlers sitting on the floor waiting to be filled. A Beer Advocate magazine sat in the window. That's how I knew this was a decent establishment!

The pizza I ordered was fantastic and the other dishes on the fairly expansive menu all sounded pretty good. My friend's mac and cheese was pretty tasty as well and the carrot soup was quality. The service could have been better, but the waitress was busy as she was the only one working in the bar area.

And as for the beer, I ordered their IPA and their Amber Fields Best Bitter, both being pretty good, especially the Bitter. It was unique but definitely very good. The IPA was a little on the plain side, but no real complaints. My friend ordered their Kolsch, and my taste of that was good, a very clean and refreshing drink. The kicker was the prices. $3.74 for a pint each. The food was on the pricier side but the whole experience was certainly worth it.

 1,257 characters

Photo of CuriousMonk
3.55/5  rDev -10.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

A close friend of mine had his rehearsal dinner here and I come down here whenever I hit up Frederick. This is a nice and historical place to be full of character. This brewery/grill is located in a tall brick historical building off main street lined up with shopping/restaurants. This place gives off an industrial and rustic feeling. Two stories with the top floor usually reserved for private parties. They have the usual suspects on tap and they offer other local brews as well as the mainstream ones. Service is average and it's usually a hit or miss with the wait staff just like with any restaurant. Good food here - I recommend the pizza. Enjoy the patio outside when it is nice out!

 692 characters

Photo of patreely12
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I came here awhile back to celebrate a friend of mine opening an exhibit at one of the locate art galleries. The place is very nice inside, both at the bar and in the restaurant. All of the pipe work for there brewery is exposed which gives it a cool vibe and reminds everyone that they aren't messing around when it comes to beer.

They had a great food and beer selection. I had a couple of their Kolsch, which when very well with my dinner. The service was a bit slow, but then again we were in a pretty big group and the place was rather crowded for a Saturday night.

Overall the experience was pleasant. I'd like to come back to this place again, next time with a smaller group. I'd like to have more time to sample all the fine brews they've created.

 758 characters

Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

After an epic but somewhat disappointing 21-course early dinner at the famed Volt restaurant in Downtown Frederick, my wife and I walked a couple of blocks down to Brewer's Alley. We left some room for beer! :-)

The place was hoping at 9:30 pm on a cold winter Friday night, but we shared a table with a friendly local young guy who was all alone. We chatted about beer and music and places (he happened to be a seasoned home-brewer, death-metal-lover like myself and all-around cool dude).

Brewer's Alley occupies an old building on Market Street, the main thoroughfare in Frederick. Inside, it is roomy and has got high ceilings, which makes it comfortable and not noisy even when crowded. The view over the brewing tanks is always appealing.

Service can be chaotic around the bar area (I ordered from the bar, then my tab got transferred to a waitress, then I couldn't find her and so on), but if you sit in the dining room, should be a breeze.

Didn't try food here, but it appears to be Cajun/New Orleans style.

The beers are hit or miss, but I appreciate their having some interesting stuff beyond the brown-ipa-lager basics many brewpubs have. Their barleywine is alright good, a bit sweet and sticky but nice; the Resinator Double IPA was super hoppy and dry and very good. Their regular IPA was fail, as was the 1634 Ale (too spicy and weird), while the Oatmeal stout was serviceable.

Prices are great. Frederick is a fancy, pricey town, but this place is super affordable. Beers are four dollars, including the barleywine, and samples are only $1.50 for a five-ounce pour. Talk about a good deal!

This is a better-than-average small-town brewpub I will definitely return to when I'm back in Maryland.

 1,720 characters

Photo of yankiac
4.18/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

This is one of my favorite places to go in Frederick. It has a nice atmosphere with TV's located around the bar, dedicated to various sporting events. There is also an outside seating area that is fairly large and spacious; ideal for cool summer nights. The crowd ranges from 21-35. Probably one of the few places in Frederick that has a scarcity of "rednecks." The bartenders are pretty knowledgeable and will often allow customers to sample beers if asked a question about them. The place always has about 6-8 different beers on tap. I prefer their year round beers, which include their IPA, Pilsner, Brown Ale and Kolsch, over their seasonal selection. The beers are of good quality and are very fairly priced. Strongly recommended to anyone in the Frederick area.

 767 characters

Photo of TexasLurch
4/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

A nice place to hangout if youre in the Fredrick area. The 1634 is a nice beer, seasonals can be hit or miss, food is fine just wish they had more lighter stuff for the summer months. Been coming here for over a year now. The service is pretty good never really had to wait for a refill or had trouble finding a waiter or bar tender. Last visit 2 weeks ago had a blueberry hefeweizen whick looked like they puree'd the berries into it, tasted fine and went well with the 100+ degree heat outside. Best time to go are in the fall months when they got their October stuff going on.

 579 characters

Photo of drabmuh
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I was in Frederick for another reason so I thought my wife and I could grab some lunch here and get some local beer. This place is really cute. Both an inside and an outside sitting area, we chose to sit outside.

There are about 8 beers on draft, all made by them. I had the hefeweizen, the kolsch, and the rye, all were pretty good.

I ordered a pizza and my wife had a shrimp and lobster salad sandwich. Both my pizza and her sandwich were high quality and very tasty. Our waitress was attentive and came by frequently and brought me a lot of beer. I would go back. Prices were reasonable.

 592 characters

Photo of russellaaron69
3.56/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4

This was my second visit to Brewer's Alley...the girlfriend and I stopped in for a beer while waiting for our dinner reservations elsewhere. I liked the atmosphere the most about the the establishment. Nice outdoor seating area and lager windows in the front all in light and a nice view of the street (people watching). The inside was nice also...plenty of seating and not overly cramped. I felt the service was average at best. I'm probably being a little easy by saying that though. The waitress was rather unattentive. She only came by the table a few times and wouldn't stay long enough for me to even get our drink orders out. I actually had to call her back to the table a few times because she would ask how we were doing and then walk away without waiting for an answer. The beer selection was admirable. I believe I counted 8 brews on tap. The quality of the beer is slightly questionable. I had the maibock to start off with. It wasn't a bad representation of the style but definitely nothing special. I probably wouldn't get it again. My girlfriend got the hefeweizen which she really enjoyed...she's pretty easy to please. I gave her beers a few drinks and, much like the maibock, wasn't impressed by it. It was just your run of the mill hefeweizen. Reminded me of Shock Top actually...not a good thing. The second and last beer I had was the Blueberry Wheat which was unimpressive in everyway. The smell was that of your standard wheat beer and the taste was the same. Where's the blueberry? All and all I would recommend Brewery's Alley...mainly due to my first visit in which I had their barelywine which was very impressive. I hope you all find this review useful. Cheers.

 1,689 characters

Photo of akorsak
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Made the drive down from Harrisburg just for lunch here. (I'm running out of local brewpubs that I haven't reviewed.)

Atmosphere: Outdoor seating, 7 or so tables, as we approached the main entrance. It was a bit too warm to sit outside with the brood. The foyer entrance is a sauna, hot and sticky. Inside, a bar and tables are right off the main entrance with two more seating areas as you curve around. The bar was bright and large.

Quality: The restroom has the same humid feel as the foyer (good thing we weren't seated there). Waitstaff was attentive and chatty about the history of the 1634 ale. Food was fast, much faster than I expected.

Service: As I noted above, friendly and attentive. I recall two check-ins during the meal (one yielded another pint; the other visit necessitated nothing). Our hostess was coy about seating us at a table for 4 (the baby was on board but, really, does she need a 'seat' at the table) but we won out.

Selection: 8 or so beers on tap. I've never had any Brewer's Alley beers, so the whole world was my oyster. I started with the 1634 ale, a rye beer celebrated Maryland's 375th anniversary last year, followed by the hefeweizen. I liked both but not enough to grab a growler.

Food: Wood-oven pizza seems to be the specialty. Out Hawaiian pizza was decent. The andouille was an interesting addition to it. Oh yeah, and they should char up the pineapple on a grill first. The bourbon egg rolls were good if not messy.

 1,463 characters

Photo of zoobaron
3.23/5  rDev -18.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Brewer's Alley has a decent atmosphere, but it is not anything too special. It is fairly new and open with bright lighting. The food is relatively inexpensive but not overly impressive. The waitress I had was a bit obnoxious and overly attentive. They had a pretty good variety of beer, but in the 6 types I tasted none of them really did it for me. None of them were terrible, but none of them stood out as a great example of the type. They ranged from below average to slightly above average. Overall, I will not be coming back here as there are many better places to go.

 573 characters

Photo of slander
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Coulda Carlisled again, I suppose, but thought to head south for dinner from Shippensburg improper this night, finding Frederick rainy Wednesday October. A pair of brewpubs, I don't know that I'll get to both of them tonight, but whatever. Chose Brewer's Alley on someone's say so and parked allotted; the voice of the garage feed the money machine that of "Fitter Happier". Wound wound back up front to find I have to enter from the far side (that would be the alley part), and pushed to the bar...

'scuse me, you got anybody here? No? Cool, thank you. "C" shaped wood bar to the backside of the room, with a lip and a copper foot rail, and seating for 16 on brown leather backed chairs. A row of pillars 3 across the bar somewhat awkwardly sectioning the thing. 4 towers of 5 taps each along and sided and a lone handpump currently unused. Bar island unit is pushed against the rear wall inside, some glassware and condiments below, pyramiding booze above, and then uprights supporting an upper unit with glassware dangling below a bottle lined piece with a flatscreen above. Slight serving piece similar on the end, TV's in the corners and more corners.

Running an "L" around the bar, 4 hightop tables down center and a half dozen tables forward there. Walls beigey in this light with black marbled up trims. High boxed framed ceiling inlays sectioned with inlayed marblings, no, wait, they're actually painted. I never would have known they weren't marble proper had I not saw the peeling. Drop Quisp lamps in rows, some spinny fans and gold painted ductwork. Framed old time portraits and historical pieces, and did I mention the 7 barrel brewroom in the front corner behind me?

Back room holds 2 dozen booths & tables, the booths along the perimeter 7 the tables rowed on center. Cool stained glass panels and some old period pieces (Vintage Red Sox pics and a Pittsburgh Brewing receipt). Also, a side room with upwards of 18 tables, some pushed together. More framed stuff here, including a large ancient Frederick map.

I will need food, I'm telling you that now. If you were here, I'd say it to your face, I don't care. Started with a cup of the spicy seafood gumbo (seafood, andouille sausage, okra and dark roux, whatever the hell that is). And for an entrée, well, I had spotted the wood fired hearth over there where brick oven pizzas happen, but I opted instead for the Asian grilled chicken sandwich, done in a teriyaki marinade with wasabi aioli, on a stupid fresh roll, served with sweet chili napa slaw. I got a choice of side and went with the crown broccoli, 'cause I'm kind of goddamn royalty. It was an amazing sandwich, and had been recommended to me by the guy sitting next to me; it having been recommended to him by the bartender. Later, I would recommend said sandwich to the next guy who would take the seat alongside of me barside. Yes, we are Asian chicken sandwiching it forward.

12 beers on the big board with ABV listings. Chose my 6 on a sampler on a round spool piece, and then started bumming a bit of this, a bit of that to get at all of it (Kolsch, light, easy drinking; Pils, crisp, clean, bitter, hoppy, quite good; IPA, quite good bitterings, nicely hoppy; 1634 Ale, a low hop beer with honey, molasses, rye & caraway, a good Colonial Ale; 21 Cherries, actually kid of tart and not too sweet, pretty good; Oatmeal Stout, roasty oaty goodness; Nut Brown Ale, tasty toffee, a solid Nut Brown; (2008) Barleywine; just a big sweety; Dunkelweizen, I can smell the banananana cloviness from here, oh, it's on; Oktoberfest, some solid maltiness, a good Octo; Wedding Alt, sweet German maltiness, a nice Alt; Ginger Gold, grainy & grassy, it was just fizzy Ginger meh). IPA, Oatmeal Stout, Dunkel, Okto & the Alt were the best of 'em, although nothing really sucked here (okay, the Ginger thing...)

Good tunes, comfortable house. Service was on, the tender feeding me samples just because, and speaking intelligently of beer, not reading off the cue cards like the daft and confused. Had a great meal and the beer was very good overall. Just what I want in a brewpub.

 4,108 characters

Photo of sativen
4.3/5  rDev +8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I really enjoyed last night at the Brewer's Alley.

I sat at the bar, and had a sampler, then a pint. Every one of the beers on the sampler were solid. My favorite was the Kolsch, so much so that I picked up a six pack of it at a liquor store afterward. The IPA had a ton of flavor hop, but not overly bitter.

All of the food looked really well done, I go the Mac and Cheese with ham on top, with a side salad. The portion size was good, and the food came quickly.

Highly recommend if you're in the area.

 506 characters

Photo of dickroop
4.28/5  rDev +7.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I stopped in here on a Thursday afternoon about 5 pm. Sitting at the bar, it was well-peopled but not crowded. The most impressive thing was the 12 different styles of brew offered. I ordered the IPA, which was not extraordinary, but highly drinkable. I tasted the pils and ESB, and both were creditable. The offerings I can remember included Kolsch, IPA, ESB, cask stout, maibock, "21 cherries" seasonal, "old-time lager" hefeweisen, brown ale, porter, and 2 more I don't recall. That's a lot of styles for a local brew pub.

The service was quick and knowledgeable and cheerful. The ambience was open, airy, and pleasant. All the beers and their ABVs were displayed prominently - such full disclosure is very good.

I ordered a spinach salad, which at $8 for "entree size" was not cheap, but was redeemed by its high quality. The happy-hour pricing on the beer was excellent ($2.36/pint). The other menu starters, entrees, etc looked very appealing but were more pricey.

Overall, a very pleasant experience. I would stop in here again, and it would make a good destination for a dinner, given their devotion to using local foods and highest quality ingredients.

 1,165 characters

Photo of beermanWV
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Very nice place to get a beer and dinner. Located in historic downtown Frederick in the building that used to serve as city hall. Different areas to sit makes Brewer's Alley seem like a few places wrapped into one: the outdoor patio area is right by the sidewalk and is nice on a warm day or evening; a bar area surrounded by the brewing equipment has a nice feel; two separate dining areas; and a banquet room on the 2nd floor. Brewer's Alley has a relaxed and historic feel, like most other parts of downtown Frederick.

Service has always been good for me. Servers can almost always fill me in on the seasonals and new offerings.

Food is really good- I disagree with the previous review. I usually pick something from the woodfire pizza oven that you can see from the bar area. However, there are many other options. There are daily specials, including surf and turf lobster and steak on Thursdays. Different selections from steak and seafood to sandwiches.

Beer selection is good, and varies depending on what type of seasonals are available. The last time I went, 7 different seasonals were available. The oatmeal stout is a regular, and is very good. As is the dunkelweizen. There is usually something on cask. I had my first beer on cask here, and it was nice. The hefe is another good choice.

Check out Brewer's if your in the Frederick area. The beer itself is not necessarily worth a long road trip for, but it is quite good. The beer is even better when you put it with everything that I listed above.

 1,518 characters

Photo of sideshowrob
2.78/5  rDev -30.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 2 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | food: 2.5

I've been to Brewers Alley about five times in the past year. I find myself in Frederick pretty often, and gravitate to brewpubs, even when I've been dissapointed by them. I'm writting this review to remind myself to stop coming here.

The place has a fine brewpub atmosphere. The bar area is bordering on a sports bar, with many televisions strategically placed. I've seen the bartenders change channels on request. The atmosphere/vibe is good. They seem friendly to newbs at the bar.

I've never had a beer here that was at all remarkable, memorable, or even really worth commenting on. Supposedly they do have many good small-batch beers, which must sell out quickly. I've tired porters, IPA's, scotch ales, smoked beers - all of them came across as lacking seriously in body. pretty much straight 2's-3's if I was to rate them. They do have a large number of taps.

The seafood here is appaling. I had the crab dip my 2nd to last visit. There was no discernable crab in the dip. not a shred. The bartender told me it was blended crab. I've seen enough Dirty Jobs to know it was made with crab meal - the ground up shells and leftover bits of crab that didn't make it into lump crab. The stuff really tastes like crab, but it's not. I returned my dip uneaten, and wasn't ever asked how I liked it. I've also had cold pizza, a bizzare catfish special, and really good nachos. If you come here, order the nachos and nothing else.

The servers are prompt, but frequently switch beers around. Every time I sit with a group at a table we have to figure out who got which beer. The servers never get it right. They also don't care about kitchen complaingts. Neither my cold pizza or awlful crab dip were addressed.

Sadly, I know I'll come here again and be dissapointed yet once more. I'm THAT hooked on brewpubs.

 1,811 characters

Photo of bonbini26
4.08/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Came in for dinner 01-02-08

Atmosphere- Bar & Restaurant area were both pretty crowded, pretty mixed crowd from college kids to families with kids.
Service- Food and drinks came out quickly, staff was friendly
Selection- Pretty good selection, something for every taste and a lot of seasonal offerings along with a cask line. Everything from Oatmeal Stout, DIPA, ESB cask, Winter Ale, IPA, Weizen, Brown, Kolsch
Food- All the food was very good, no complaints here, esp. for a brewpub
Valve- Dinner was around $60 for apps./entree/beer for two. The flight 6 beers (8oz pours) was only $7!

Overall worth checking out if your in the area a lot of seasonal/limited beers is always nice to see to try something different.

 719 characters

Photo of therica
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

The bar stools and furniture show their wear so be careful, but I'm sure they check that from time to time-- or when you or someone else has the stool collapse! ha ha

Actually very nice decor, good-sized bar area for drinking, socializing or sitting with your party while waiting for a dining table (which can take considerable time during busy periods).

Food and beer quality-- outstanding. The food is great, but the beer is spectacular-- every single one that we tried, and I think we covered all of the ones on-tap.

Service-- other than the occasional missing-server (usually due to other just-as-impatient guests!), the servers were very attentive, very beer-knowledgeable and very intuitive of one's needs.

Food-- I already told you-- GREAT stuff.

Value-- considering the nouveau-upscale OldTown environs of downtown Frederick, the prices are very reasonable, and the always-busy crowd and regular clientele attest to that.

 935 characters

Photo of jwc215
3.86/5  rDev -3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Nice enough set-up - an el-shaped bar with small tables on the side - larger tables further on the side. Eight beers - nice variety, esp. for the summer. One of the beers is on cask.

Bartender did the job, though in a rather mechanical way - friendly enough, though not nearly overly so, esp. as it wasn't busy.

All beers poured into pint glasses. Reasonable/standard prices for the beers. Didn't try the food. Beers were decent to very good (of the four I tried). Cask done well.

Certainly worth visiting.

 509 characters

Photo of mrmees
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

First review. Bear with me.

I've been to lots of brew pubs before, and it took me actually walking up and seeing this place to remember that I've been here before. Not to say it's not a nice place, but that bit of foreshadowing is worth noting.

Brewer's Alley is located along what seems to be a pretty happenin stretch of Frederick, MD. It was Tuesday when I went, and my slightly off-kilter walk back to the car noted a number of mid-twenty-somethings whose kilter had long ago been left.

The establishment is quite nice. As I said, it's my second time here and I was happy to be back. It's your typically lit brewpub, with a high-prominence display case for the beer works right when you walk in. I've sat at the bar both times (because if you're alone, and you don't sit at the bar, that's just weird), but there's a decent amount of seating outside and a large back room that's looks like it would be suitable for finer dining. The last time I came there was a blues band playing in the bar area (which also has about 10-15 tables) that kinda got on my nerves, but if that's your thing, meh.

The food is definitely recommended. I got a cuban panini this time and it was fantastic. A side of thin fries and a little cabbage leaf full of banana chips rounded out the meal. Other things on the menu looked good, they've got pizza/burgers/sandwhiches, along with a higher end menu for those of you who go to a brew pub to eat (WTF?).

Onto the beers. As irony has it, I'm actually drinking one of their locally supplied bottles, the Brewer's Alley IPA. Didn't even realize it when I went, it was just a random find at Ye Olde Spirits Shoppe.

Got the sampler. Natch-urally. Was happy to see 6x5oz glasses come out.

Kolsch: Light and slightly dry. Just like the menu says. Really nothing remarkable except in it's unremarkableness. It's extremely smooth, and if you shove a mouthful of fries in right beforehand, you can barely taste it. I was actually surprised by the drinkability. 4/5.

IPA: Slightly orangey. Not quite grapefruit, but definitely citrusy. Good mouthfeel, and not quite as overpowering as some of the other IPA's. It's not the most complex ever, but it would probably be my beer of choice if I lived in the area. 4/5

Nut Brown: Pretty standard. Not bad at all. 3/5

Oatmeal: Tasty. Smooth malty flavor without being overpowering. Could probably have used a LITTLE more flavor and richness to meet my Stout mood. 3/5

Hefe: Surprisingly bright and flavorful. Lots of lemon and malty mouth feel. A little twangy, kinda made my mouth pucker up. In a good way. 4/5

Pils: I usually leave Pils by the Coors cans in the fridge. This one surprised me quite a bit. Not bitter at all. It's fruity, and kinda tastes a little like a flintstone vitamin. I'd give this a 5, but I'm not well versed in the category. 4.5/5

Cask Conditioned - Don't even know what I had, but it was good. This is my second cask beer, so I won't even bother to rate it, but if I hadn't already drunk enough, I would've ordered a pint.

All around, this place is a great find if you're traveling. You should know your beer though, as this is the second time I've been pretty much ignored by the bartender. I typically come in and anounce the fact that I'm from out of town and looking for beer, and if that doesn't get a little service attention you get a low rating in the "helpfulness" category. She was very nice though, and even gave me a free sample of the cask conditioned. Food service was prompt and they let me order off the full menu even though I came in after the kitchen shut down. The sandwhich + beers + tip came out to $25, which isn't ridiculous, but could definitely rule this place out for some.

Long story short, good times. Highly recommend if you're in the area, wouldn't necessarily go too far out of my way for it.

 3,836 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Brewer's Alley Restaurant & Brewery in Frederick, MD
3.84 out of 5 based on 538 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.