Artisan's Brewery & Italian Grill

Artisan's Brewery & Italian GrillArtisan's Brewery & Italian Grill
Artisan's Brewery & Italian GrillArtisan's Brewery & Italian Grill
Brewery, Bar, Eatery

1171 Hooper Ave
Toms River, New Jersey, 08753
United States

(732) 244-7566 | map

View: Beers | Place Reviews
Reviews: 28 | Ratings: 33 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of metter98
metter98 from New York

3.61/5  rDev +0.8%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.75

Vibe: The place has both a dining room and a lounge—I sat in the lounge area, which resembled more of what you would expect from a pub with seating along the bar and a tables around it. The dining room looked more formal and had white tablecloths on all of the tables.
Quality: Beers were served at the proper temperature using a variety of glassware, including snifters.
Service: It wasn't that crowded when I went so service was rather quick. Our waiter offered his recommendations regarding his favorite beers and menu items.
Selection: The place had a total of five of its own beers on tap—three of which were year round beers and two were seasonal brews. They also had an extensive list of bottled beers.
Food: I stopped in for lunch and tried their Buffalo Chicken Wrap, which was just like having chicken wings, except that my fingers didn't get dirty from the hot sauce. I added on a cup of the soup of the day (sweet potato), which was also interesting.

May 04, 2014
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jmdrpi from Pennsylvania

3.6/5  rDev +0.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

Stopped here for lunch, I sat at the bar, which is in a seperate lounge room. I guess the lunch crowd prefers the dining room, as I was the only person at the bar the whole time I was there. Bartender was friendly and service was fine.

They had 6 beers, 3 regulars: Light, Red Ale, IPA, and 3 seasonals: Porter, Maibock, and Nut Brown. They serve their beers in 18 oz mugs, I had the IPA and Brown, which were both good.

The lunch menu was burgers, sandwhiches and wraps. I understand their dinner menu is nicer Italian food. I had a cheddar bacon burger and fries, which were fine, but nothing special.

Apr 26, 2012
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MadCat from New Jersey

3.93/5  rDev +9.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Formerly Basil T's, now Artisan's. It is a very interesting place, I can't say I've seen another like it. They serve gourmet food (it really is delicious), have an impressive wine selection, brew their own beer, and have a cigar lounge. Whats not to like?

Atmosphere: Very nicely decorated, lighting ranges from decent to mood lighting, feels like a high quality restaraunt.

Quality: Food is high quality, beer is decent

Service: Not the fastest, but it was still good, and the waitress knew something about beer (not sure of the extent of her knowledge, but she pronounced Hefeweizen correctly).

Selection: Four beers on tap, for this visit it was a light ale, an IPA, a Pilsner, and a Hefeweizen. 2 pages for the food menu, plus a page of specials.

Food: Absolutely amazingly good. Real good stuff. They serve smaller portions, and they're not cheap, but they are all made well. They have burgers/sandwiches for $10 or less, and a good selection of entrees starting at about $17, though they had a $10 anniversary menu when we went. You won't be disappointed.

Value: Food is quite good for the price, though not cheap, but the beer could either use a price drop or a quality increase. Not bad beer, but not something I go out of my way for. The food, however, I would.

Jun 19, 2011
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Gavage from Nevada

3.58/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

Starting in January 2010, the place will be called Artisan's Brewery and Italian Grill. No changes on ownership, chef, or brewery - just a name change.

Stopped in during a mid afternoon ride in the area. It is located in a strip mall area, but set aside as a stand alone building. The building is in the Italian theme with the restaurant half the place with white tablecloths, wall murals, and generally upscale.

The bar area has a nice tiled floor area and a large 20 stool bar shape in a squared edged U-shape. There is a private cigar room off the the back of the bar too. Several hi-tops and a few regulation tables fill the rest of the room. The brewing tanks are partially visible from the bar area. The area is a bit dark too.

There were 4 beers on during this visit, the standard offering Artisan's Lite beer and West Coast IPA, with two brewers specials - a Wild Hoppy Elf and a Porter. I had all the beers except the Lite, and the Porter was my favorite and the IPA my least favorite.

Service was somewhat slow, but friendly. Waitress knew the beer names but not much more. Food was decent as we stuck to burgers and pizzas. Not sure how the dinner entrees are. They do have a four course Early Bird from 2:00 - 6:00 for $12.95 which give you a salad, soup, entree, and dessert. Not a bad price for the area. There are different nightly food specials too.

Not a bad place to stop if in the area.

Dec 30, 2009
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tjd112 from New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 2.5 | food: 4

This place has a nice Italian restaurant atmosphere, even though it is located in a strip mall, you have your choice of seats or to sit at the bar, which offers a good view of the brewing tuns. There were only 3 beers on tap when I went there, a light ale, a West Coast IPA, and an Irish Red Ale. The other beers offered were basically the swill you find at any bar at the Jersey Shore. Tried the Pasta Fagioli as an appetizer and a Neapolitan Pizza as a main course. The service was extremely friendly, and if you would like to take some beer home, they offer growler fills.

Dec 18, 2009
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akorsak from Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev +4.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 4

Atmosphere: Basil T's is located in what looks like an old Olive Garden in a central Jersey strip mall. Luckily, large signs direct you there and no jug handle turns to navigate. The restaurant is large and undergoing renovation, blocking parts off. A bar, multiple seating areas, a closed-off cigar bar and banquet area are all plainly visible. En route to our table, we passed brewing central, where the brewers were hard at work cleaning the tuns. It is much nicer on the inside than it looks from the outside.

Quality: Even for lunch, the place seemed a little stuffy and uptight. My fidgety monsters didn't help that. Food, especially for the aforementioned monsters, was delivered promptly.

Service: Our waitress visited regularly, brought the boys' food out quickly and was generally attentive. She even rattled off the beer list, though I fear that she may have missed one or two.

Selection: Five beers on taop. A hefe, smoked dunkel lager, lite, O-fest and pumpkin. I tried the first two; one was good and the other wasn't. Only 5 on though? A little light, and at $5 per glass, a little pricey.

Food: Food was a pleasant surprise. Pizza was hot and quite good. A reasonably authentic menu is loaded with Italian offerings. Portions were big for relatively low prices.

Sep 24, 2009
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turtyl from North Carolina

2.17/5  rDev -39.4%
vibe: 2 | quality: 1 | service: 3 | selection: 2.5 | food: 3

I went by Basil T's while I was visiting the Jersey Shore, about a half hour south of Tom's River. This was, by far, the closest brewpub around so I thought I would try it out.

Basil T's is located, like everything else in NJ, it seems, in a strip mall. It looks like it used to be a Johnny Carino's or something. We sat at the bar and ordered a sampler. Available was a Light Lager, an IPA, an Irish Red, an "English-style ale" a Dunkelweizen, and what was apparently some sort of bock.

The red and the English ale were decent. Te IPA wasn't balanced very well. The light lager had CLEAR signs of dirty tap lines and some sort of infection. It was hazy and very sour. The same thing was going on with a few of the other ales, but they had more body and flavor to them and, thus, more to hide behind.

Pity, really. It's one of the only brewpubs and places to get beer in the southern half of Jersey. It could be a beacon for beer, but instead it's an example of how not to serve craft beer.

Aug 06, 2009
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donniecuffs from New Jersey

2.83/5  rDev -20.9%
vibe: 1.5 | quality: 2.5 | service: 4 | selection: 2.5 | food: 3

Like the 'Original' in Red Bank, this Basil T's...which importantly is owned by a different group...attempts to cater to the upscale crowd, with its prices and cigar room. The food is ok, while I found the service to be a lot friendlier and down-to-earth than that of its former sister in the north. The first time I visited this place a few years ago, the beer wasn't impressive at all, but I visited again after Dave Hoffmann of Climax fame came onboard, and the quality was getting decidedly better. That was also a while ago, so I think I'm due for another visit. As such, my quality ranking might be a little least I hope.

Jul 27, 2009
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TMB0424 from New Jersey

4.1/5  rDev +14.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 5

Close to home, a regular place to eat/drink with my family. The restaurant is very clean and nice looking. Has a very nice, homey feel to it. Brewing equipment is easily seen as you walk into the place. The hosts/hostesses are always friendly, as are the wait staff. The food is damn good (definitely stop by on a Sunday for Big Vic's Sunday Dinner - it's out of this world). Whether you want pizza or another Italian dish, you can't really go wrong. I also recommend the cheese assortment appetizer with the fresh honey - amazing. The beer is good, nothing spectacular or mind-blowing, but it's good. If you're there in October try the Pumpkin Porter. The Irish Dry Stout, Tom's River Red, and Dopplebock are worth a shot too. They provide an assortment of tasters for a select bunch of beers and growlers, as well. Overall, a great place... the food is outstanding.

Jan 18, 2009
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tgbljb from Pennsylvania

4.13/5  rDev +15.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Visited the establishment on a Friday afternoon about 4pm. The dining area was virtually empty and we were promptly seated. Drinks and food were served in a reasonable time frame. The beers were tasty and well made. The food was good and priced appropriately. Because the dining room was so empty, the service was almost too good, because everytime I set my fork down, the waitress thought I was finished and was ready to takke my plate away. It was a good dining and drinking experiance. I can recommend them it you are in the area.

Oct 19, 2008
Photo of slander
slander from New York

3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 2.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

The wrist is not broken. I know, 'cause I can stick my finger in my ear (the actual test they would have given me had I gone to the hospital, which I did not). Still, 3 weeks later, it should be feeling a lot better than this. And as I am a kayaking motherphucker, today we're going to test the waters some, so to speak. With all the Deliverance, Frankenfish and Anaconda references visited (plus an always watchful eye out for an angry 30 foot prehistoric crab), we wound through the salt marshes widening and deepening out to the bay, did some time on the beach there and rode the tide back in with very good momentum. The wrist? Yeah, pretty good all in all; but the real test is going to be lifting all them small sampler glasses...

The Jersey shore packed with beach bars 'o Bud, we're in no man's beerland down here. We are, however, midway between two brewpubs albeit both of them at least a half hour out north and south. And I've always been curious about the Basil T's down there, just never been close enough 'til now, so I guess it's T time. Sitting stand-alone on the edge of a mall parking lot not too far off approach for dirty Seaside Heights, it could've used to have been something chainy else.

Tuscany done like the other, bar ahead and dining to the left. Seated, a baker's dozen booths (wrapping an "L" on 2 walls) and tables (hopscotch in the center of the room) here and a far room through with a half dozen booths (3 and 3 on each wall) and a pair of tables between them. Seemingly real wood uprights and crossbeams through faux concrete arches, the walls the same, some done with murals, framed landscape & villa paintings, prints of floral and ornate mirrors. Plenty of fake flowers red everywhere potted on sills and all sides, blinded windows and some spots above.

I'm in sight of a walkway giving views of the brewing equipment behind a half wall, a hanging "Fresh Beer Made Here" sign listing tap selections. Continuing down to the other end, a looking glass image of the 2 front rooms (and what slander found there). Scoped out the bar while I was wandering about. "U" shaped seating 20 or so, dangling mug club mugs all around (they do boast Jersey's largest beer mug club), towers of taps on all sides, and a glass front cigar lounge to the rear for members only. 5 tables lay adjacent to the bar and another 5 raised bar tables elevated beyond them below the windows, spots and shiny tilings throughout.

As a change of pace, I ordered, well they call it a sampler, which provided 6 beers, a mix of regulars and seasonals, served in an awkward wrought iron holder that doesn't easily release the beers. The Basil's Lite Ale was grainy, with a hoppy finish, easy drinkin' and pleasant; the Helles Lager, straw colored, always a good Helles but I don't know that this was kept well; the Hefe weizen, not cloudy, not banana and clovey, although you got a slight, and I mean slight bit of that as it warmed, the West Coast Style IPA, copper color, nicely hoppy but not over the top at 6.2%; the Maibock Lager was past (beer board list the tap date as 5/23), and had no business being on in August, the English Extra Special Ale was just okay, although I'm suspect of it too. The Basil's Lite and the West Coast IPA being the best of the lot.

And food. A cup of pasta fagole and the Fettuccini Alfredo with grilled chicken as a change up. The Fette Alf was tasty and there was a lot of it in a big festive bowl (hooray!). I asked for some fresh ground pepper and was left with a foot and half tall pepper grinder. I guess it's self-service today. Jed had a personal pepperoni pizza (good) and D, a garden salad with grilled chicken, the pine nuts and Gorgonzola brought her joy, as did the extra flatbread.

Food was good, and service friendly and attentive, but the table card lists 3 of the 6 beers on as the April, May & June seasonals, why am I drinking them in August? They need to move the Maibock off (like) right now as I suspect it's holding up the Dunkel en waiting from coming on, and domino it does go. Quality of beer was not great and I'm putting it on the restaurant not moving it and not the off sight brewer who I know makes some very nice Lager style beers.

Aug 16, 2008
Photo of jwc215
jwc215 from Arizona

3.45/5  rDev -3.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

Looks like a Mexican chain restaurant from the outside. The inside is bright - looks like an Italian restaurant chain. The bar is in the center. The vats are there behind the bar, letting you know that they do brew beer there. The "specials" and promotions seemed more geared to wine. That is true, too, of the menu, which suggested wine pairings (except for one entree - which recommended the "light" beer). Overall - the atmosphere was fine - it's clean and roomy - but little focus on the brewpub aspect.There are six beers on-tap. Three regulars and three seasonals. They have the traditional styles, but a decent variety of them. The beers are a bit thin, but decent overall. Service was average - Staff not very informed about beers. Interesting that they belong to the AHA, as noted on door, but do not offer any discounts (not unusual in NJ though). Service was in the expected time - neither quick nor slow - ala a typical chain-type of way (though this is not a chain). They offer growlers, but let you fill up other growlers (a good thing!)
The food was pretty good - again - nothing particularly special, but not bad. There is an emphasis on Italian and grilled food, but offer other items as well.Worth stopping in if in immediate area, but nothing to go any distance for.

Mar 24, 2008
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AltBock from Ohio

2.73/5  rDev -23.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 2.5 | service: 3 | selection: 2.5 | food: 3

Welcome to the Toms River Basil T's! Where the Olive Garden meets a brewpub. The set up is almost like the Olive Garden except their brewpub operation is the middle of the place. The brew kettles were out in the open with only a little tiny wall of plastic plants between the customers and their brewing operation. It even looked like one of their control panels was out in the open where people can pass by and press a few buttons. It is mighty tempting to press a big red button. "Let's see what this does, OOPS!! There goes your beer." Their bar area has a big wooden bar with a few wooden tables and booths surrounding it. Their bar is right next to their cigar lounge where if you're a member, you can smoke there.

The service here is average at best. The only minor problem I had was when I knew the barteder could see I needed another beer form the other side of the bar, but instead they made wait a few more minutes to receive another beer. They were fast passing out the food, but passing out the beer is another question.

What kind of food do you think they sell here? If you guess Tai, you're wrong! They carry all the usual family Italian Restaurant food. I'm sure I don't need to get into detail with that subject.

Their beer selection was mediocore. They have 3 year round taps (light, red, West Coast IPA) and maybe if you're lucky, 3 to 4 seasonals. It looked like their beer menu listed the same seasonals year after year. It was these from Jan-Mar, these from Apr-Jun and so on. When the year ended, it started back up again. It didn't look like anything changed at all with nothing new and creative in the middle. While I was here, I had their West Coast, Winter Ale, Vienna Lager, and Stout Porter in a Growler. The Stout Porter and West Coast were good, Winter Ale was decent, and their Vienna Lager was just bad. There is no way a Vienna lager should taste sour. Unless it was aged in a barrel, but this one wasn't. Their beer quality went up and down.

Basil T's is a nice place, but their set up looked like they took their creativity from an Italian Restaurant handbook. They read the book on how an Italian family restaurant should look like and they copied it down to the smallest detail. It's nice to see they had a brewpub, but without that, it's just another Olive Garden.

Feb 08, 2008
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hops4me from Virginia

3.1/5  rDev -13.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 2 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 4

I went last Thursday afternoon to sample their seasonals and grab a bite to eat. Walked to the bar where the bartender immediately served us. The bar was not crowed and the room was very clean with the expected Italian restuarant vibe going (not brewing vibe). I had the Helles, Barneget Lite, and Vienna Lager. These three were marginal homebrew. The Octoberfest and IPA were decent. I had chicken ceaser salad for lunch and wings. Both were very good. Lastly, marginal hombrew I can deal with....but don't charge me $5 dollars for each. The off flavors and pricing has turned me off for good....I will not be going back.

Oct 22, 2007
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BillyB from New Jersey

3.8/5  rDev +6.1%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This Basil T's has the same vibe as the original in Red Bank. It's a semi-fancy Italian resturaunt with a piano bar. They serve good food (much better than an olive garden or macaroni grill, but I wouldn't consider it an "authentic" italian place). The service is friendly but they don't know anything about beer except what their cheat sheet tells them or what's described in the beer list. They present themselves as a resturaunt that also brews beer. The beer is just an after thought.
The problem is that the beer should be their main focus! It's excellent beer! Dave Hoffman from Climax is currently brewing the beer for them and is doing a phenomenal job!
The Barnegat Light is a crisp refreshing beer. The Toms River Red was an excellent example of an irish red ale. While I was there I also tried the IPA and the Maibock. Both were quite good.
I believe Dave is just their "brewer for hire" for now. So the atmosphere wasn't very good but the beer is definitely worth trying.

Aug 12, 2006
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GeoffFromSJ from New Jersey

4/5  rDev +11.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Italian food and beer is not something I would think of when starting a brewpub. Very busy on a Thursday night when we went out to dinner with friends.

Olive Garden with beer, as someone said. But the food is very good. My wife's pizza looked excellent. My rigatoni in pink sauce was good. Another person's tuna looked good as well.

The maibock I had was very enjoyable. Two regulars we went with and one is into good beer. He said the standard beers are so-so but the seasonals are excellent. I saw an ESB and Starbucks Coffee Stout on-tap.

Wish I tried the ESB and I forgot to bring my NJ brewers passport.

Service was good, but the server never asked me if I wanted another beer. Once I realized this, I didn't really want another beer.

A good brewpub. Worth a visit if you are in the area.

May 19, 2006
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Soracloud from New Jersey

3.88/5  rDev +8.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Finally after having a $50 Gift Card from Basil T's on me for a year the GF and I finally made it out here for dinner and some brews. I was a little hesitant at first. I have passed the place before and have heard the radio commercials. I never figured it to be a BrewPub.

We sat in non smoking, the Bar area was really loud, but away from the dining room (live entertainment Sats). The dining area also has a guy playing the piano on the weekends, but we missed him by 2 minutes.

The food was great! Simple and reasonably priced selection. The daily specials were a little more exotic and pricey though. I recommend the Fried Calamari (Plain or Buffalo style) and a Marguerite Pizza, yum!

As for the Beers, I tried the Winter Ale, Oatmeal Stout and Toms River Red. They seemed limited on available beers. The Winter Ale smelled/tasted great but it was a little flat and came to the table with no head and not a smige of lacing. The stout was good, nothing great but definetly worth a try. The Toms River Red was excellent! 4s in all categories! Seems to be a staple on tap so should be available all the time. It was so good I got me a Growler of it to go for the following night.

4 out of 5! Offers a bar atmosphere in one room and casual intimate dining in another! Good food and Beer, a definite change from the $2 watered pints and $4 Lite bottles at all the Seaside "club" venues.

The Gift Card was rejected, it was purchased in Red Bank and they now have seperate owners :/ oh well.

Feb 21, 2006
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IPA17 from New Jersey

3.86/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3

A very nice place to sit and have a few on the way to and/or from the Shore. I found the atmosphere to be pleasant and, even though more of a restaurant, very about the beer. The quality was very good and the service was excellent. They had 5 beers on tap--1 was out it was the stout, my favorite, of course). They each exhibited a unique quality and a strong adherence to the style. My favorite is the pale ale. I will continue to stop here whenever I am in the area and I recommend it to all who happen to be nearby.

Jan 17, 2006
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LusLuckyLad from New Jersey

2.83/5  rDev -20.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 2.5 | food: 2

We had made reservations on-line which were never confirmed, but a call to the location and that was remedied quickly. After about an hour drive we arrived at ChiChi…errrr…Basil T’s. Even before venturing out I thought the combination of brewpub and Italian restaurant sounded odd but it was worth a try. After all we had read some great reviews suspiciously all by locals.

Once inside we were seated almost immediately. It took a few minutes to stop trying to spot the piñata, but when we did, we noticed nice table linens, candle lamps on each table, some beer brewing equipment and the staff wearing burgundy band collared shirts, all of which appeared to be 2 sizes too big.

Our server, Ron, knew about as much about beer as I know about nuclear astrophysics (which is about nil). Our request for the nut brown ale was declined because, “they were out of it”. Ron then proceeded to squint through the darkness and read the blackboard listing the beers the last of which was the nut brown ale. “Oh we do have that,” proclaimed Ron as he took our order for that and a Bumzfest (an Octoberfest type offering). Ron continued to show off his beer knowledge by getting the beers confused as to their type when he finally brought them.

One of the things we read before going was that the food was good and reasonably priced. Don’t believe either. The grilled salmon ($22) was average to small in size, absent of any flavor. Giambotta ($16) a dish of sausage, peppers, onions and, for some strange reason, onion rings. Luckily whomever they buy their sausage from seasons it well for it was the only flavor to be found. The side of pasta had a strange sweet after taste to the sauce (gravy). Total bill with two brews a piece, $56. That’s with no soup; no salad and rolls that looked and tasted like the frozen ones you buy pre-made in the food store and pop in the oven to bake.

A short stop in the bar to try some of the other beers was the highlight of the evening. A rich looking bar and comfortable chairs allowed us to try the other offerings while listening to some live acoustical guitar. The only two we thought were half way decent were the nut brown and the pale ale.

We wouldn’t make the trip again even if it was just around the corner.

Oct 19, 2004
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JMH_ from New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5

not a bad place, overall, but some improvements could be made. the atmosphere is that of the nice, relaxed kind, with dim lighting, a festive, but not overly loud crowd and an acoustic guitar player in the corner. the quality of the food is excellent (and it's been damn tasty any time i've eaten here), but the beer quality needs some work, namely in the area of dirty tap lines. i grabbed the beer sampler and, of the six brews on it, three had various types of dirty tap line problems. fix this. now. the clean line brews were nice and fresh, and mildly tasty for the most part (stick with the porter right now). the problem with the brews is that they are too basic and similar. if you've got six brews on tap, at least throw on 2 bold brews apart from the standard amber, light, pale, etc. how bout a double ipa or an imperial stout or something? tun tavern does this well. they have their standards but always a couple of bolder or experimental things tapped. also, you have a light beer that you brew in house. axe the bud light tap and brew another of your own beers for crying out loud. that said, it's nice to get some locally made brews and some really, really good food to go with it. this isn't the brewpub to end all brewpubs (i like the original in red bank more) but it's a nice choice and nice to have in the area.

Aug 20, 2004
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TheJudge from New York

3.6/5  rDev +0.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

Tried this place after the one in Red Bank. I liked Red Bank better. This pub is next to a strip mall, on a road full of malls. While a stand alone building, it is difficult to escape the mall feeling.

This is a decent place. The bar area is dark, the size is acceptably big. The fermentation area is next to the bar, open behind a half wall. 6 beers on tap, not bad. As a rule, the beers were good, solid if not exceptional. I was pleased to see they had the porter. The REd Bank location considered porter to be a seasonal beer. The atmosphere is downgraded because they still allow smoking in bars in Jersey. I try not to be judgmental (despite the moniker), but when 3/4 of the bar is smoking, it can get to ya. It caused me not to try the food.

All in all, I would go back. The food looked pretty good, the beer was drinkable, and the ambiance acceptable.

May 17, 2004
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stirgy from Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev +13.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5

Welcome to the old hacienda! This place looks like an old Chi-Chi’s restaurant. From other beerflys we do know this place was once a Mexican restaurant of some kind. Tucked away in a corner of the Seacourt Pavillion in Tom’s River, like an outlying restaurant in the mall zone. The place was nicer than I thought it was going to be. I felt a bit dressed down in shorts and a hoodie. There were plenty of white collar and professionals having their lunch at the time. But hey, this is a brewpub, right? Beer is the common mans drink so who cares? Anyways, I wasn’t treated any differently.

The menu was decent and a bit pricey. Fancy tablecloths covered the tables. Sandwiches started at around $7.95. I got the roasted turkey wrap ($7.95) and it was delicioso. It came with a side of fries and a green salad and yummy Italian olives. A basket of bread was included. I got the beer sampler ($4.95) and it included six of their beers. A few were not good, others were not that bad. The waitress was very nice and the food was promptly served. The food complimented the beer nicely.

This was a nice place to enjoy some fine food and good beer. Recommended.

Mar 16, 2004
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beerluvr from Canada (ON)

4.13/5  rDev +15.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

The "little sister" to the original in Red Bank is in the site of a former Mexican joint, and the architecture shows it. Still quite nice inside though with lots of stucco, dim subdued lighting and the like. The beers are good and well-made, but not quite on par with the original establishment. The batch of Pale Ale showed a bit more diacetyl than I would care for for example, but the food was great with superb pizzas (menu features the same dishes as RB with a few exeptions). The service was top-notch as we were a party of six...six thirsty drinkers, with nary a wait for a refill. Maybe a bit unfair to keep comparing to the original, but on it's own it's a place I'd visit for sure more than once.

Dec 14, 2003
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LiquidBreadMan from Texas

3.2/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

I remember when this place was a Mexican Food restaurant. I became very homesick (for Texas) when I tried New Jersey's version of fajitas. My experience at Basil T's was much the same. I went with a group of beer afficionados after a trip to The Ship Inn -- which serves some of my favorite beer in a great setting.

Basil T's is clean with decent service. The atmosphere was nothing to write home about, although the a guitar-playing folk singer added some charm. The food is good (I had an eggplant pizza and a piece of cheesecake). Their selection of beer was good, but average.

I would go there again. But I would not include it in a night of brewpub hopping --unless-- it were first on the itenerary.

Jul 07, 2003
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ecoboy from Rhode Island

4/5  rDev +11.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Everybody on this page has it right: A chain-like Italian setting done well. Additional notes: Good lighting, good decor and clean and pleasant bathrooms. They claim to have New Jersey's biggest mug club. That would be proof that the locals are fully on board.

Great food, especially pizza. Additional note: Big free happy hour buffet with lots of fresh items.

Beer is good, although on sample of the four I had featured a hint of "bad batch" and I marked off the quality points for that. My companion liked her filtered wheat so much, she had two rather than try something new, so it really may have been that one batch.

But I give big points for selection because of a unique winter seasonal: "Golden Apple." Reminded me of the sneaky petes we used to drink before hockey games. This ain't some gateway fruit soda-like beer: it's sour and bitter in a compelling way. I was really impressed.

Apr 04, 2003
Artisan's Brewery & Italian Grill in Toms River, NJ
Brewery rating: 3.19 out of 5 with 45 ratings