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The Depot Restaurant & Lounge

Your Rating: None
3 Ratings

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

101 N Railroad St
Shenandoah, Iowa, 51601-1158
United States

(712) 246-4444 | map

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Added by bditty187

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3 |  Reviews: 2
Reviews by bditty187:
Photo of bditty187
3.03/5  rDev -1.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 1.5 | food: 4

I found myself as near Shenandoah, IA as I have ever been because I was touring a couple Iowa wineries, somewhat, nearby. My car was full of wine junkies who were cool with a little detour to this “alleged” brewpub. I say alleged because the Depot Deli was a restaurant long before it was a “brewpub.” I assumed their beer was shipped in from their sister brewpub in Red Oak, IA (which is now closed) called Firehouse Brewery. Of course they always told me on the phone they brewed their own beer but I had my suspicions.

As I pulled up to the old train depot I noted through the windows at the back of the building there was indeed brewing equipment. Okay, this place *is* a brewpub. The building is painted brown, fairly well-kept. It is the same quality of all the other buildings in this small town. (I totally forgot to take a picture to post on BA! Shit!).

As I walked in I was amazed at all the pictures and old knickknacks the walls. It was cluttered but not gaudy. The main room is fairly small with lots of tables, booths, and high top tables. I noticed later there are two “back rooms” of decent size, so over all this is not a small place. I took a seat at the bar, which is near the kitchen to the right of the entrance.

The bar was fairly small, maybe 10 stools. There was a bank of 2 tap handles and a bank of 3 tap hands. They offered homemade Wheat and a Bock (and a blend of the two called Red Beer). There was also two taps of Miller Lite and one empty handle. In a small cooler were 20 odd bottles including Guinness, Guinness Extra Stout, Harp, Bass, SA, and a handful of other average imports and some light beers.

The food menu was heavy on steaks (at good prices) and fried food. Of course there was plenty of burgers and sandwiches; some salads, and a nice array of Mexican dishes. All I ordered was the chicken gizzard appetizers. You see, I am a gizzard fanatic and these were the best gizzards I have ever had. Awesome! I am craving them right now. Maybe it is unfair to rate the food of a restaurant based on one appetizer but it was some good grub!

The service was decent, she was friendly and attentive enough but the place wasn’t very busy either. I have no qualms here.

As for the beer, it was lousy… as expected. Read my reviews for more information.

Overall, this is not a place a BA needs to go and it is not a place I’d go again. Okay, maybe if I was nearby I’d eat here again but drink a bottle of Sam Adams or something. Maybe they should just switch their bock and wheat for Shiner Bock and Boulevard Wheat as those would be MAJOR upgrades. If you think those beers suck then don’t drink here.

 2,669 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of YodersBeerEmporium
3.59/5  rDev +16.2%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.25 | service: 4 | selection: 3.25 | food: 4.25

Photo of jayb
2.65/5  rDev -14.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 2.5 | service: 3 | selection: 2 | food: 3.5

I grew up about 10 miles from this place and never knew it was a brewpub until i went to college.
In the evenings it is dark and smoky. If you go to eat earlier in the evening its not to bad. On weekends it gets a little packed and hard to find a place to quietly enjoy yourself. There are two main rooms, a large seating area with a bar and some smaller tables pushed into the back. pool tables are located to the south of the room which makes this seem more like a bar and less like a restaurant. to the west of this is another room sectioned off by a wall, of which the only way to get to is through a smaller doorway, so this makes for a quiet atmosphere.

All sorts of "antiquey" stuff on the walls, old newspaper clippings and other goofy random "junk"

The food was good, didn't try anything fancy, but the chicken strip basket was nice... hehe.

The beer: had a stout. just called "stout" it was either this or the "bock". Pints were cheap, i paid 2 dollars for mine. The stout was lighter bodied, undercarbonated and not very roasty/toasty. more like a flat light bock. should have asked for the bock. they have all their brewing equipment visible from the outside, but i have never seen it being used in the last 4 years. i wouldn't go for the beer, go for the food and atmosphere.

Service wasn't bad, the waitresses are polite, food takes awhile, but i suppose it depends on the day you go and how busy they are.

You could miss this, its nothing special, but if you want to go to a brewpub in southwestern Iowa, this is about it.

 1,546 characters

The Depot Restaurant & Lounge in Shenandoah, IA
Brewery rating: 2.29 out of 5 with 3 ratings
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