Big River Grille & Brewing Works

BEER AVG
3.57/5
Big River Grille & Brewing WorksBig River Grille & Brewing Works
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Eatery

2101 N. Epcot Resort Blvd.
Lake Buena Vista, Florida, 32830
United States

(407) 560-0253 | map
bigrivergrille.com

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate

BEER STATS
Beers:
24
Ratings:
253
Reviews:
129
PLACE STATS
Score:
84
Ratings:
70
Reviews:
54
Avg:
3.72
pDev:
9.14%
 
 
Taps:
0
Bottles/Cans:
0
Cask:
N
Beer-to-Go:
N
View: Beers | Place Reviews | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 70 |  Reviews: 54
Reviews by chilidog:
Photo of chilidog
4.13/5  rDev +11%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This was our second trip to Disney's Boardwalk area. The first visit, three years back, I was only able to pop in this place and buy a glass. This visit I made it a point to plan thisone.

Aug. 2nd, A Very Wet Thursday. A tropical depression in the Gulf of Mexico just dumped on ol'Disney. I called Big River around 10: a.m. for a mid-afternoon lunch. They said come-on-in, open seating, with the weather, they were not planning to be busy. They were not, we got in on arrival, around 1:30, party of six.

This place is alittle walk from Epcot. We had cheep raingear, the kids were look'n homeless. As soon as we sat down with each menu, the doorman and waiter gave us new heavy-duty Big River rain ponch's. Spread the name & logo, Sure!! My wife was impressed and the kids were dry.

To start out and warm up, we had the Beer-soup. Very good, again wife impressed. The other food, typical burgers & mac-n-cheese, pretty good and reasonable priceing compaired to other Disney spots that week. We ate for just over $60 bucks for six, including re-filled soft drinks and I had the $5.50 samplar. The best per oz. beer value I found.

Thats our visit. Beer reviews will be posted. I'll go back because I enjoyed the value and the visit. You see the brewing tanks, taps and glassware. The place has an ok feel to it, for all ages. The waiter new and explained the beers well including the new Vienna lager. I also had the summer release wheat. Over-all, I was impressed!

 1,477 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of Domingo
3.79/5  rDev +1.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

This is based upon a couple of different visits over the course of multiple years.

In all honesty, this is the kind of place that probably shouldn't be good. It's very close to being located inside of a Disney park, it's a brewpub chain, and they have to cater to tastes of all sorts from around the world. I fully expected Florida Beer Co level stuff at best.

Yet the beers are honestly quite good. They aren't boring or dumbed down either. The flagships are what you'd expect (red, brown, pils, weiss, pale) but they're very well made. In fact, they're better than anything short of say, Cigar City or Funky Buddha, that you'll find in that area. The pils is particularly good, and that's a compliment I don't give all that often. In addition to those beers, they also have a few seasonals that give the brewers some room to branch out. Those include a wonderful English Barleywine and a Citra IPA that tasted modern and would satiate a serious hophead. A quick glance at the equipment (and the Weyermann bags) shows that these guys are serious about what they do. I guess Gordon Biersch owns them, so that probably explains some of it.

The rub is that the food is actually holding the place back. As surprisingly good as the beers might be, the food is pretty weak. I'm all for bar food, but it's just not particularly good bar food. It's akin to something like TGI Fridays or Chili's, but probably not as good and about twice as expensive. Skip the food unless you just want a snack like some nachos. There's much better food to be had elsewhere on the Boardwalk, inside Epcot, or in Swan/Dolphin resorts. Beer-wise that's not necessarily the case, though.

The atmosphere isn't particularly compelling, but there's nothing wrong with it either. It could be mistaken for just about any other brewpub I've ever set foot into. There's nothing wrong with that. Service at the bar is really good and the bartenders actually seem to know what they're selling rather well. The rest of the staff...not so much.

Sit at the bar and grab a couple beers and maybe a small snack if you need. You'll be surprised just like I was.

 2,126 characters

Photo of WCKDVBZ
3.15/5  rDev -15.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.25 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 3.25

Photo of hoosier222002
3.66/5  rDev -1.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.75

Photo of HeartofMiami
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.25

Photo of morebeergood
3.99/5  rDev +7.3%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of midlifec
3.56/5  rDev -4.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.5

Photo of tcbl1007
4.03/5  rDev +8.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

Only 5 beers on tap, but the three we had were excellent. Only had the beer cheddar soup, but it was EXCELLENT. Scott also did a great job behind the bar. Overall, a bit pricey, but still a very good experience.

 214 characters

Photo of greg4579
3.44/5  rDev -7.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.25 | food: 3.5

Photo of Jobin_24
4/5  rDev +7.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of Retroman40
3.64/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.25 | food: 3.5

Stopped in on a Saturday afternoon during the holiday season at WDW with my wife and her dad. First the place is almost easy to miss if you don't know what you are looking for. It is located among the restaurants at Disney's Boardwalk Resort (you don't need a Theme Park ticket to visit). There is both outside and inside seating. The seating and the whole atmosphere was a little hectic (which was to be expected during the holiday rush); still, it was peaceful enough that we could speak to each other in normal voices. If you don't like kids avoid the place. Our server was excellent and either had a love for beer or was awfully well trained in faking it. We ordered a couple samplers (7 3.5 oz samples) and she was able to clearly explain each beer (almost too in depth for me but I listened carefully out of courtesy). The beers were all solid - nothing outstanding but certainly way above standard domestic BMC offerings. We had burgers and turkey sandwiches and they were both very good - no one walked out hungry. I was watching what others were being served and it all looked pretty good (the nachos that a family near us got looked like it could feed 3). Considering the total tab (including a 10 buck tip) for three lunches and two samplers plus an additional pint was 68 bucks the place is cheap by Disney standards.

Places like this serve as an excellent introduction to craft beer. Nothing extreme and the Southern Flyer Light Lager should satisfy even the most hard core BL fan.

My recommendation to anyone who may be visiting EPCOT would be to venture out the back gate to this place for lunch - it's only about a 5 minute walk and certainly far superior to any beer you'll get inside the park.

 1,725 characters

Photo of radtke22
4.2/5  rDev +12.9%

Photo of johnwkraft
3/5  rDev -19.4%

Photo of insearchofhops
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of antman27
4.4/5  rDev +18.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This place had great beer selection of there own micro brew ...got a sampler and there was not one bad choice ...great description of each beer on the menus ...the food was also top notch Kobe burger was great and the nochos were hands down the best I ever ate ... If you are in Disney resorts check this place out for sure .. In boardwalk Disney resort ..

 356 characters

Photo of Kevincredible
2/5  rDev -46.2%

Photo of VinsanityDiesel
4/5  rDev +7.5%

Photo of Sludgeman
3/5  rDev -19.4%

Photo of dbrauneis
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of MPSTARR
4.5/5  rDev +21%

Photo of ejimhof
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of Lare453
2.79/5  rDev -25%
vibe: 3 | quality: 2.5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 2 | food: 3

A kinda modern with a lot of brushed aluminum... Cool that you can see the brewing stuffs.

Q the beer is well crafted but lacks flavor and variety...

S this is the highlight of the place, bartenders are very nice.

S same thing every time... Nothing new or exciting in the past five years.

F eh... Mostly fired, comfort food. Nothing too fancy

V very expensive, but its disney so it's expected.

 399 characters

Photo of Suds
3.48/5  rDev -6.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.25 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 4

I took the family to Walt Disney World for a mid -February vacation, and we visited this brewpub for a quick lunch soon after we checked int a nearby resort. I had actually visited this brewpub several years ago (1999, I think) with my wife, before we had children. Nothing had changed. Modern decor, malt aroma, moderately limited seating. The location on the boardwalk is nice, and it is a great place to people watch. The beer is typical ales, oohing adventurous. They were well made, and there was nothing wrong with them. I particularly liked the winter rotation, a brown ale. The service was fast, and, typical of Disney, very friendly. The food was somewhat better than most pub fare. I had an excellent mushroom Swiss burger. The prices are higher than. Necessary, but in line with a vacation resort/theme park. Worth a visit if you are in the area.

 857 characters

Photo of akorsak
3.66/5  rDev -1.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

Snuck out of the Boardwalk resort one night last week to have a few beers at Big River. I'd been here last years ago (at least 7, if not more).

Atmosphere: Tuesday night, not too crowded. Entering through the now white awning, the bar is straight on. To the right, a small seating area and brewing equipment. To the left, more seating. Behind the bar, additional tanks. The bar area has a second, long table that passes for a second bar. Tap handles and alcohol behind the bar.

Quality: The restaurant was slowing down. So despite a few fratboy shenanigans all was quiet. That gave me the opportunity to talk with the bartender. Plus there. Six beers on tap and a full menu. Also, very busy at regular meal hours.

Service: The bartender was friendly but not overly talkative. He did, however, make some recommendations for me.

Selection: Six beers on tap. A stray firkin and handpump sat unused as well. The regular lineup included a pale ale, red, and pils with a seasonal hefe and IPA. I liked the pale and and red best and, after the sampler went with a full pint of pale ale. Several were good.

Food: A full menu is available but I didn't eat.

Pricey like everything else in an around Disney. Despite the Boardwalk being a mecca for outdoor drinking, Big River's license doesn't allow for carry-out to to go sales. Too bad there.

 1,339 characters

Photo of GeneralZod
4.08/5  rDev +9.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

ATMOSPHERE
Found this place during our vacation to Disney World. It was a nice suprise to find a brewery in the resort. It is the typical brewery & grill. It has a nice full bar and a nice display of the beer tanks. It was a fun busy night with a lot of drunk people having a great time.

QUALITY
The beers were not watered down. Every make was a nice full-bodied beer. No short cuts.

SERVICE
Our waiter was very helpful and taking his time to explain the beer and even pointed out what order you should drink to maximize taste.

SELECTION
They had at least 8 beers on tap which were suprisingly almost all very good. The beer sample consist of the light lager, pilsner, pale ale, red ale, double IPA, brown ale and a stout.

FOOD
The food was good. My favorite was the Beer Cheese Soup.
YES! It is made with one of their ales. Overall the entrees and apps were pretty good compared to most breweries.

It is definitely worth visiting if you are in the area.

 960 characters

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Big River Grille & Brewing Works in Lake Buena Vista, FL
3.57 out of 5 based on 253 ratings.
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