Appalachian Brewing Company

Appalachian Brewing CompanyAppalachian Brewing Company
BA SCORE
43%
Liked Their Beers
3.65 w/ 2,731 ratings
Appalachian Brewing CompanyAppalachian Brewing Company
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery, Beer-to-go

50 N. Cameron St.
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, 17101
United States

(717) 221-1080 | map
abcbrew.com

Notes:
The Appalachian Brewing Company, also known as ABC, was founded in January 1997. ABC has a specialty beer each month.

Added by BeerAdvocate

BEER STATS
Beers:
77
Reviews:
1,145
Ratings:
2,731
Liked:
1,175
Average:
3.65/5
Master Beer Listing
PLACE STATS
BA Score:
74.8%
Reviews:
112
Ratings:
163
Liked:
122
Avg:
3.98/5
pDev:
11.81%
 
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 163 |  Reviews: 112
Photo of JamesS
4/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Had a great time at ABC Friday night and Sunday morning.

The brewpub is quite large, with several dozen tables and a nice large bar area. It's open and airy, with several country's flags decorating the ceiling and large windows that let you look into the brewing area. Everything is clean and well kept.

The two different servers I had were both good, although Friday's was around more and Sunday's seemed to be "busy" a bit too often, or I would've rated service as a 4.5. Still, they were friendly and knowledgable for the most part, and even knew their beer.

Nice food selection with a lot of options on the menu. The Friday night all-you-can-eat fish and chips was excellent. Sunday morning we made it in for the "Breakfast with Hefe" and my eggs benedict were good, as were the egg dishes my wife and daughter had.

Beer was very good, and they had a lot of selections. Not only did they have most of their flagships, but they had several of their seasonals still on tap as well. The Abbey Roade was nice, their barleywine was just awesome, and I can't think of one I really didn't like, although I didn't feel that the Celtic Knot was really an Irish red, more of a basic American red.

I was upset that they didn't have the stout because it's "not really a summer beer."

All in all, though, a great place to eat, drink, and visit.

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Photo of BigRizz62
3.76/5  rDev -5.5%

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

This place is huge. Went with a group of friends, and started out with dinner on the bottom floor. Restaurant floorspace was open-air and busy with patrons and servers. Nothing special. The food was basic American food- sandwiches, salads. All reasonably priced. All tasted good. Very satisfied, but nothing to rave about.

Then we went upstairs to the bar. Live music, pool tables, darts... a ton of room. It was a great atmosphere for our group. The bar was stocked with a very good selection of beer from around the globe. The barstaff was knowledgeable and delivered prompt service. All good things.

When you average-out the downstairs and upstairs experience, I yield a generally "good" result. I would definitely go back... particularly if I'm with a group of friends. The place seems much more conducive to groups rather than individuals.

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Photo of stakem
3.4/5  rDev -14.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 2 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

It's a nice establishment but depending on where you are seated it can feel a little cramped. (Regarding the small landing on the left side of the building and lack of walking space for waiting staff.)

The burgers and wings are delicious. The other members of my party spoke highly of their BBQ pork.

I had the opportunity to take their tour with plenty of samples afterwards. The selection of beer is great. If you visit, be sure to scope out the chalkboard behind the bar that is an ever-changing list of their small batches of beer.

---
June 2010 Update:
After deciding to become a mug club member and visiting more than once a month my perception of this place has drastically changed. The vibe and atmosphere remain a decent setting. The food menu has undergone a reconstruction and while 2 of my favorites have been removed, there is still a decent selection to choose from. The staff is friendly and as of late has been having an issue with "newbies" who don't necessarily give you accurate information when you inquire about takeout beer and their new "brewery direct" beer purchasing. As for the beer, I don't know what to think anymore. Your experience can honestly be a total roll of the dice. For roughly 4 months I was never served a beer with a head, every single pint/mug was served with no head and unacceptably low in carbonation. The final nail in the coffin for me was when I realized this place just generally doesn't care that much about their beer. Why would you serve seemingly flat beer for that long? The most recent occurence which I cant swallow was experiencing them switching lines without cleaning. Ok, I can understand a busy establishment emptying kegs in a short amount of time and not cleaning the lines on every single kick. However, I cannot believe they interchange root beer lines with their beer lines. I literally was served a glass of barleywine which was mixed with root beer. I took it to the bartender who smelled it and said "whoops, guess we didn't pour enough beer through the line that previously had the root beer in."

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Photo of jrancan
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Great place. First floor consists of fermenting tanks and regular dining area. Upstairs has more seating, a bunch of TV's and a lot of bar games (pool, darts, etc.). They even have outdoor seating off of the second floor. They had 7 beers on tap, best of which was their Maibock (I'm not very good at formally reviewing beers). Everything I tried, Imperial Stout, American Wheat, and Pale Ale, were very good. I highly recommend this place to anyone passing through the Harrisburg area.

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Photo of Imstillthegman
4.58/5  rDev +15.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Stopped in here after attending the Eastern Sports & Outdoor Show just up the road. After a long day of walking around and browsing I was quite hungry and very thirsty! Luckily, this place satisfied on both fronts.

The place has a very comfortable feel. Lots of brick, huge glass walls that let you see some of the brew works, and a pretty big bar showcasing the mug club mugs. The service was impeccable. The girl we had never missed a beat and worked very fast for it being fairly busy. They had about 16 beers on-tap during my visit, but I only enjoyed two of them. Very wide range of beers...quite impressive. I grabbed a pretty cool looking "Bear Claw" growler of their Golden Toos Belgian brew to take home. The food was pretty good, as well. I had the pretzels with that awesome mustard and a Fire Jumper burger with onion rings. Very tasty. I will be back next time I am in Harrisburg. Well worth the visit!

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Photo of Craft_Imperial
3.54/5  rDev -11.1%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.25 | selection: 3 | food: 4

Photo of Metalmonk
3.58/5  rDev -10.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

Big cavernous brick walled old warehouse has a cool atmosphere, but is a little too open to provide any coziness or feeling of privacy (the latter being, perhaps oddly, how I like public drinking establishments). Food, what I had anyway, was underspiced and eggplant was undercooked, but it wasn't a disaster. Lots of their beers were available, good selection, and the ones that were seasonal were clearly maked as such on the menu. Found all three beers that I had decent to underwhelming (barleywine, cask pale ale, scottish ale). Attentive service, from both waitress and bartender, were the best part of the visit.

I dunno, was left a little cold by this place overall, but they're giving it a great shot, and you gotta love that they have a Belgian beer bar upstairs. Will try that next time.

 802 characters

Photo of newbeeraday
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%

Photo of JohneHoodlum
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of ggaughan
4.22/5  rDev +6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

This is a review of the ABC in Harrisburg and their Abbey Bar on the 2nd floor. Although I have had the food at ABC before, it was a few years ago and I don't have much to review it on but from what I remember and what I hear from others, the food is very good and the menu is pretty extensive.

The main floor is massive. Even the doors to enter the building are larger than life. There is plenty of seating on the first floor and at the bar. On this night we headed upstairs to the Abbey Bar as I have not tried it since they redid the theme on the floor. Although the Abbey Bar still has 2 pool tables and a large stage area for bands to play (not very Belgian Barish), the atmosphere was pretty cool overall. The bar itself is pretty long and at eye level they have 2 large coolers that hold about 50 or so different Belgian bottles (U.S. and from Belgium). They also have some English and German beers to boot. In addition to the Belgian bottles, they also serve about 8 to 10 of their own beers on tap on this floor and 1 or 2 guess taps that are usually Belgian. On this trip I sampled 3 ABC beers including their Scotch Ale, Barleywine and their wheat beer. I also had a bottle of Monk's Cafe Flemish Sour Ale which was nice to see here and I helped my wife drink a Ommegang Witte and a De Troch Kreik. All in all, both floors of the ABC are very cool and the Abbey Bar seems to be a nice get away from the busy 1st floor.

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Photo of Shandycan
3/5  rDev -24.6%

Photo of IronCitySteve
4.38/5  rDev +10.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

A: This place is quite large and extremely clean. There is ample table seating as you walk in with the bar in the back. A decent amount of big screens make watching sporting events quite enjoyable.

Q: The beer is always fresh!

S: The service here it top notch. The bartenders, servers and host staff are extremely friendly, beer savvy and willing to answer any and all questions.

Selection: They have a great selection of their own brews on tap. A really nice variety of beers. I can't recall the exact count, but there was at least 10 taps.

F: They have a large and extensive menu. It includes most of your traditional bar type food, but also a good selection of sandwiches, soups and salads.

This is a great little bar/brewery that in my opinion is way underrated. Definitely stop in this place!

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

I have visited this place a few times when I'm in town on business. It is located in an older area of Harrisburg, PA. The building is old, but has been gutted and re-vamped with brass and nice wood work. It has a large open feel and I have always been able to find a seat at the bar.

I have only ran in to 1 or 2 other brewpubs that offer such a large beer selection in terms of their own craft beer. They also have a large Belgian selection (upstairs). However, they usually more then enough beers on tap to keep a guy busy! When I was there I counted 15 different beers, and they may have had more.

The quality of the beers can be hit or miss. They have some exotics such as barrel aged barley wines and lambics...but those are usually the "misses" even the bartender warned me that the lambic was below average. I would reccomend the standard seasonals. For instance the Oktoberfest I had was great and classic example of the style. I also appreciated that they have a good selection of Lagers, which many brewpubs shy away from.

The food is above average brewpub fare. However, I would not reccomend anything enough to make that the reason to visit ABC. Overall, this is a must hit if you are in the area. However, I doubt many avid beer lovers would put it among the top brewpubs.

 1,290 characters

Photo of leftmindedrighty
3.7/5  rDev -7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Stopped here while on a mid-PA beer trip, overall not bad.

Only sat and had a couple of beers, but the atmosphere is great. Really large bar area and dining section. The entire place was smoke free, which I like, and wish would happen everywhere.

The beer was nice and fresh, and very tasty. I was never a big fan of their beers, but liked everything I had on tap. Leading me to believe it is a freshness issue, but I digress. Looked at the menu, and the lineup and prices seemed a good compiment to the place.

Overall, I would visit this place again when in the area visiting Troegs, but wouldn't make a trip solely for this place. But worth a visit if in the area.

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Photo of scottbrew4u
3.66/5  rDev -8%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

Photo of therealJAYZ
4.38/5  rDev +10.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.5

Photo of goindownsouth
4.22/5  rDev +6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

While it took me a good 2 hours to reach this place, and the parking is less than adequate, this establishment is the cat's meow! The variety of beers being offered are more than various. They are tasty and well-crafted. However, the menu is very brief and really does not compliment the brews that well. They do use some of their beers with their cooking, but the variety in the food leaves a touch to be desired. If you are going there for a tour and to sample some beers, you will not be disappointed. Bottoms Up!

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Photo of mgbickel
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Stopped by here for lunch on a Tuesday afternoon. Very few people in the place, save for about 6 patrons at the bar.

Great looking pub. Wide opened and airy with high ceilings and large picture windows that show the inner workings of the brewery. Lots of cool things on the walls...not overcrowded, more museum like. The bar is a large "L" shape with two sets of taps and multiple TV overhead.

They had pretty much their entire beer menu on draft...all displayed on a giant chalk board. The food menu has the typical offerings, but with little unique flares.

The bartender was very courteous and knowledgeable. I selected a stout to go along with my chipotle quesadillas.

Great place...will come by every time I am in the Harrisburg area!

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.1/5  rDev +3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 5

Walked in on a Tuesday for lunch. It was not really busy at all, except for a few regulars at the bar. The bartender was friendly, and quite informative. I enjoyed the fact that it had an old school kind of vibe that was updated. It has that old factory kind of look, with old brewing equipment and old beer trays on the walls. Sampled many beers here. As for the food, getting some lighter apps, had the mixed grill and pountine. Big portions and about standard on the price. Food was remarkable, I wish I was a bit more hungry to eat some more. Nice place, I would stop back for sure.

 586 characters

Photo of cupbeerman
4.6/5  rDev +15.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

ABC, located about a mile from downtown Harrisburg, is a very good place to have a pint.

ABC pours about ten beers, with one of these selections being a cask selection. These beers are mainly common brewpub selection, except that they have no light beer. All the beers were brewed on premises and they were all fresh.

The service is very good; our samplers were poured very quickly and the bartender answered all of our questions.

Upon entering the brewpub, the bar is on the far end, with about 20 stools. The brewing equipment is visible from the bar. The place was very nice inside.

The ABC is a good place to have a beer and a place that I will go back to when in Harrisburg. I did not have the time to try the food, but will try to get to the food next time. They fill any growler.

 801 characters

Photo of SixpointJMH
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2

Appalachian is, to me (knowing solely Downtown Harrisburg), a bit of the beaten path. It's a quick two minute drive from downtown, or a longer walk through a quieter part of town and through a tunnel under the train tracks (which could seemingly be a bit shady late at night).

Anyway, upon entering the rather large brick building, you are greeted with a large, cavernous (in a good way) single room. Tables encompass the front two thirds or so of the room with an L shaped bar and some high-top bar tables encompassing the pack portion. Brewing equipment is in a large room to the right and the Abbey Bar is apparently upstairs (never been). Decor is brick with lots of flags hanging from the ceiling and large signs of the labels/logos for their beers.

Beers on tap have been in the dozen or so range on both of my visits and to me, that's a great number for a brewpub. Last visit had, amongst others, the Light, Pale, Stout, Scotch, Barleywine, Wheat, etc. The Stout was on cask as well and the Barleywine was barrel aged. Nice. Beers have always poured in and tasted as if they were in fine shape as well, so even with the high number of taps there seems to be a nice turnover here.

Service seems to be not bad overall. Had a great server last time who was very attentive to our kids needs (yes the place is kid friendly with a kids menu, crayons, etc available), but on our first visit it was just my wife and I and, while our server wasn't bad, she was well, fairly annoying and loud overall.

My biggest (and only) gripe with the ABC is the food. I'm just not getting it overall. I've had a few sandwiches which are dry and tasteless, and my wife had some wings that she did not like at all (although I thought weren't half bad). I'd say it's hit or miss but tends to lean towards the miss more often than the hit, which is unfortunate.

Overall, this is a place that I'd dig coming back to just to hang at the bar and have a few beers and watch a game and relax. The food definitely needs some work, but I can't discount it completely. That aside, I'd come back here anytime for the beers and will gladly visit the ABC again if only for that reason, which is what it's all about for me in the long run anyway.

 2,230 characters

Photo of Kolsch
3.74/5  rDev -6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I have tasted Appalachian Beers before at fests, but this is the first time I stepped into their Microbrewery/brewpub. Atmosphere here can't be beat. Great old industrial building with some of the largest wooden beams I have ever seen.

The beers were mediocre but I knew this going in. I tasted the Pale Ale, IPA, Blonde Ale and the Belgian Blonde. By far the best offering was the Belgian Blonde. Also sampled the 2 beers on cask. The stout was decent but the cask pale ale tasted like old dish water. Didn't eat there, but the menu did look interesting.

Overall, a good experience and would recommend to anyone, just don't expect great beer.

 645 characters

Photo of bigfnjoe
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Came in at about 3 PM on a Saturday....and the place was jammed. Wanted to sit at the bar, but couldn't, so we had to settle for a table. I immediately asked our server if they did flights, and she said they didn't....huh? Settled for a pint of the IPA, which was mediocre, and later the porter, which was good. Asked what seasonals were on and got a list of about 6 or 8, pretty impressive. Food was OK. Ordered the poutine (a favorite from various Canadian trips), and it wasn't bad, though it can't compare to the Canadian original. Service was OK, but the place was jammed so I can understand some slowness. Everything seemed rather reasonable as well. The place looks really nice, very wide open, but I don't like how the bar is all the way to the bank of the main dining area. There's also an upstairs bar that has various Belgians as well, though I haven't been there in a couple of years. They also sell beer to go, but it's just their flagship lineup with a couple of seasonals. It's not bad, it's not great, it's just kind of there. I'd like to go when it's less busy so I can get a seat at the bar, and see if this hogwash of no flights is true. I'd love to try a variety of beers as opposed to just a couple to get a better feel of how their beer is.

 1,262 characters

Photo of generallee
3.94/5  rDev -1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

Appalachian Brewing Company in Harrisburg, PA
Brewery rating: 43% out of 100 with 2,731 ratings
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