Ale Emporium

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BA SCORE
86
very good

14 Reviews
Ale EmporiumAle Emporium
PLACE INFO

Type: Bar, Eatery

8617 Allisonville Rd
Indianapolis, Indiana, 46250-1552
United States

(317) 842-1333 | map
ale-emporium.com

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate

PLACE STATS
Score:
86
Reviews:
14
Ratings:
34
Avg:
3.7
pDev:
4.86%
 
 
Taps:
41
Bottles/Cans:
125
Cask:
N
Beer-to-Go:
N
View: Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 14 | Ratings: 34
Photo of bpkrippner
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

What a beer menu! I was there on a very busy Saturday night, but we still got good service at the bar, even when I ordered a local beer that was on tap at a different bar in the restaurant. Would love to go there again when there is more time to taste through the depth of the menu.

 285 characters

Photo of W9820
3.41/5  rDev -7.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.25 | food: 3.75

Ale Emporium is a great place on the northeast side of Indy. Outstanding beer selection, good service and great pub food.

It has two distinct sides or sections. The new side is much more modern, loud and busy. It's the product of a relatively recent expansion project. The older side, original side, is not nearly as loud or as busy. The older side, original, would benefit from an update. The new side beats you over the head every single weekend with local bands that are, usually, mediocre at best. Between the bands and amount of people crammed in there, it gets waaay to loud. I prefer to sit outside or on the original bar side.

As I mentioned, the service is usually good and they have great pub food. I highly recommend the pizza of which they have thin, original and Chicago style. The Hermanaki style wings are stupid good.

They boast a wonderful beer selection (local brews, micro, macro, bottles, cans, draft) but it seems the staff is a bit lacking in beer knowledge.

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Photo of neckbracesub
3.6/5  rDev -2.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.25 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.75

For fans of the higher alcohol content beers, this place leaves a bit to be desired.

The atmosphere isn't exactly my cup of tea, as it's heavy on the sports bar vibe. With that being said, it is nice and spacious and can accommodate tons of people at a time.

They were out of the Brooklyn Brown Ale that I ordered, so I settled on a Bell's Octoberfest, which was just alright. I really couldn't find anything new to try and that was a tad disappointing.

The service wasn't fantastic but it definitely wasn't bad. Once the bartender warmed up to my wife and I and started to really converse, he was decent. The other bartenders/servers seemed annoyed to be there.

Our burgers and fries were prepared exactly how we asked, so that was a plus.

Overall, this is a decent place but I would never pick it over Twenty Tap.

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Photo of DyingBreed
3.91/5  rDev +5.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75 | food: 3.75

If there is a better beer list in Indy I am not sure where it is. The pizza is off the hook with 3 different styles. Only restaurant I have been to that serves bombers. A full menu of FFF's and other top shelf beer! If you are in the Castleton area or visiting Indy I recommend a trip to Ale Emporium.

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Photo of tsauce2
3.74/5  rDev +1.1%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

A: Large expansive restaurant area. Bar runs the legnth of the room and has an "old school" feeling. Back room has a stage for bands. Tons of tv's around the bar area. 1 bottle of everything that is currently available is displayed. Taplist is pretty accurate. Names of the beers are shortened for space and a little confusing if you don't know your stuff (i.e. Robert Scottish for Robert the Bruce Scottish Ale). Overall this place has a decent vibe.

Q: Everything on tap is of the highest quality and freshness.

S: Seems to be the same bartender everytime I go there. This guy is knowledgable about what is available and the styles of individual beers.

S: Fantastic beer selection. Tons of stuff on tap and plenty of bottles. Taps and bottles seem to rotate fairly regularly. Full service bar.

F: Have not had any food here, but menu is standard bar food (pizza, wings, burgers, sandwiches).

V: Prices are reasonable for beer and food. Specials run throughout the week.

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Photo of Shagtastic
4.1/5  rDev +10.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 5

One of my favorites. I went here for my 21st Birthday so it has a special place in my heart. I'm lucky enough to live right near this place and have been multiple times so I figured I've give it my first place review.

A- If you like smokey bars this is the place for you. It's tucked back in an unassuming strip mall so if you don't know where you're going you won't notice it. Small front but has a huge back room where bands play frequently.

Q- It's a bit above average for me. Hasn't disappointed me but hasn't amazed me flat out yet.

Service- Personally I love the service here. It's a tad slow but they are real friendly and always seem to take care of you.

Selection- Once again they haven't let me down yet. I can always find something new and good and they seem to have a great rotation going.

Food- Here is where Ale shines. They have some of the best deep dish pizza in indy and always seem to have good deals going. If you go make SURE you get some hermanaki wings. When I order pizza this is my go to place.

Value- Like I said they always have things on special if you're willing to try something new. Drink specials nearly every night.

Overall, I love this place. It will always have a special place for me but I'd highly recommend others try it as well.

 1,274 characters

Photo of phisigben
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 5

It's located in an unassuming strip mall, I was actually told about this place for their pizza not beer. After walking in you discover it's a bit smoky, but when compared to other bars in Indiana its not that bad. But I guess they are in the middle of adding a non-smoking section to the bar so this should be pretty good in the long run. After sitting down I order a FFF Gumballhead the waitress didn't seem very knowledgeable about beer, but I didn't expect a lot since it's not really a dedicated craft beer bar. The selection is pretty good and after looking at their beer list I noticed that on Tuesdays they have a pretty good special on all of their craft/micro stuff. After getting my beer I ordered the deep-dish personal pizza about 20mins later it came out it looked absolutely delicious and it tasted amazing. I consider myself a bigger guy so I assumed that I could finish my personal pizza after it came out I quickly realized that I would not beer able to finish all of its goodness, but that was ok since then I would just have snack later at night.

 1,065 characters

Photo of mynie
3.13/5  rDev -15.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3

It's in a strip mall, so I wasn't expecting much decor-wise, but it was actually quite woody and homey, like your grandfather's smokey den. They allow smoking everywhere in this state, so I guess I can't really hold it against the Emporium...

Sportbarish, about a dozen flatscreens in the bar area and another several in the dining hall. Old timey beer adverts. They had a wall of old bottles up on the bar, to show you what they served. I love that--seeing an old, paper-label Heineken is like taking a trip back to high school.

Bottle selection is solid; nothing rare or exceptional but there's a good mix of your typical Midwest/Indiana micros, macros, inbev imports, and a handful of Belgians.

Around 10 taps, half of which were craft. Gumballhead and Robert the Bruce ruled the roost. Again, nothing spectacular, no one-offs or anything. The bartenders could tell you a little something about each tap and they were friendly enough.

A nice little joint with a ton of character. Not exactly worth traveling for, but you should probably stop by if you're in the area.

 1,077 characters

Photo of Rainne
3.58/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

Interesting location for a place like this in the strip mall. If you didn't know better you'd think it was just your average liquor store not an actual beer bar. Decent look about the place with a large bar area. Pretty decent selection along with shit beer and you could still find most of what you want in bottles. I'm personally a fan of FFF and of course they have that on tap which is nice. The food is okay but not great. Staff are friendly and they pay pretty good attention and can answer questions. Not as nice to sit and enjoy yourself as some others nearby but not bad.

 580 characters

Photo of xfactor9600
3.15/5  rDev -14.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 2

I lived two blocks from the Ale Emporium for two years. It was a weekly gathering place for me and my friends. The establishment has a healthy selection of beers from different parts of the globe, along with a nice selection of micros. When i was a regular, they had various weekly specials which allowed me to try many of the the more exotic beers cheaply.

Unfortunately I was not a fan of the food overall. I went several times, but never really settled into anything I could find on the menu. I guess the experience wasn't totally poor as I continued to go.

Ale Emporium is a nice place to grab a couple of beers. I wish the food was better.

 648 characters

Photo of lightindarkness
3.78/5  rDev +2.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

A good place to stop in for a beer. A nice bar area with some seating around the rest of the place. The atmosphere is pretty dark and comfortable if you don't mind the sometimes crowded small space and smoke. A few TVs to watch games. Bar staff are relatively knowledgeable about their selection and kept 'em coming. Some selection of beers on tap including BMC and a few micro/imports. Fairly impressive bottle selection for this area with a good variety to choose from, but don't expect too many hard-to-find beers.

 517 characters

Photo of marksto
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This is a venerable beer place on Indy's northeast side and has been for years. It's a sportsbar with a good selection of beers on tap (around 20 total - though some are the BMC variety), a good selection of bottled brews, and good food as well.

The draft lineup always seems to include a good number of Bell's products among others. On my visit a few days ago I had a pint of Two Hearted and a tasty chicken sandwich. Be aware that this is a fairly small yet popular place, so crowds at peak times are common.

 513 characters

Photo of wlhagan3
3.83/5  rDev +3.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

The "Ale" is a good place for the beer enthusiast with a wide selection of bottled beer and a decent selection on tap. The tap selection rotates the micros around for a change of pace. They have several TV's including two big screens for catching the game. I can only attest to their hot wings and pizza as far as the food goes. If you are a chile-head try the 3-Mile Island wings (The No-Way! wings are the hottest they serve). They are awesome if you like the heat. The pizza is very good as well. The only potential draw backs to this place are it can be crowded, noisy and smoky. They are a smoker friendly place. Other than that it is a great place to enjoy good beer and good pizza with friends.

UPDATE: As of 9/8/2003 Arrogant Bastard is on tap!!

 756 characters

Photo of zerk
3.88/5  rDev +4.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5

The Ale Emporium has a large selection beer from around the world, with most tastes adequately covered. Around 80-90 beers in bottles, mostly focusing on imports. UK beers are a focus, with 5-10 each of Belgian, German, Mexican, and Austrian. They also have around 20 US micros in bottles, including beers from Bells, Rogue, Three Floyds, and North Coast. Also have around 15 on tap.

Atmosphere reminiscant of a British pub crossed with an American sports bar. A great place to watch a game, and pick up a beer and a meal.

The food is very good with Pizza being their specialty. Maybe the best Pizza in the city.

My only knocks on the place are that it's usually very smokey, and they really don't rotate their beer selection very often.

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Ale Emporium in Indianapolis, IN
3.7 out of 5 based on 34 ratings.
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