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Eel River Brewing Co.

Your Rating: None
Eel River Brewing Co.Eel River Brewing Co.
BA SCORE
3.68/5
Good
2,116 Ratings
Eel River Brewing Co.Eel River Brewing Co.
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

1777 Alamar Way
Fortuna, California, 95540
United States

(707) 725-2739 | map
eelriverbrewing.com

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate

BEER STATS
Beers:
26
Reviews:
1,151
Ratings:
2,116
PLACE STATS
BA Score:
4.1/5
Reviews:
22
Ratings:
36
pDev:
9.27%
 
HISTOGRAM
 
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Ratings: 36 |  Reviews: 22
Photo of woodychandler
4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

When it opened in 1995, it was America's first Certified-Organic brewery.

Tucked away between a Super 8 motel and a self-storage facility, the porch and overhang on the motel side opened onto a sea of standard restaurant tables and chairs. The short, all-wood, "L"-shaped bar was on the left side, headed aft. Off to the right was a really extensive biergarten populated by some VERY skittish kitties. The kitchen was all of the way aft, along the back wall. The brewhouse and several FVs were visible behind the back bar. Outdoor were several cement slabs from the former Clay Brown Mill, on whose site the brewpub now exists. A new facility, nine miles away, was soon to come on line with national distribution forthcoming.

Update: It has not only happened, but we actually get their beers in PA!

Their philosophy included five (5) credos which all revolved around good customer service. Our server's name was Yuneun (Yoon-Win). David Bourn was their kitchen manager. I had Italian chicken noodle soup for lunch. It should be noted that they also offered fresh baked pies.

History: As regards their logo, the Olympic and Eel River RailRoad (O & E R R.R.) used to haul lumber and gives its name to the Climax California Classic Lager. Along those lines, be sure to take note of the B & W photos along the right wall.

Beers: CA Blonde (5.62); Organic Extra Pale Ale (4.8); Organic Amber (4.7); Organic IPA (7.0); Organic Porter (6.3); and Hazlnut Porter.

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Photo of LXIXME
3.91/5  rDev -4.6%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75

Photo of DoctorZombies
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Good food, so very busy. Still, staff was friendly and knowledgable. Huge nachos. Bar was packed. Try to sample all 12 beers on tap, then take home a growler - all are available.

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Photo of kingpin1010
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of DrMindbender
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of Gatordaddy
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of williamjbauer
3.9/5  rDev -4.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.75

Wife and I stopped here while travelling through Cali on vacation and it was quite close to where we stayed in Ferndale, located near the beautiful Eel River.

Good sized bar, nice chill atmosphere, cool decor. A good locals joint. Beer is slightly above average and I respect the organic ingredients though not necessarily translating into a superior product. Selection was decent, had 8-10 samplers with a few limited/seasonal brews on tap. Food was quite good and organic as well.

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Photo of VegasBill
4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

This is one micro that I have been looking forward to returning to.The inside is very big even huge and there is an outside patio, they call it a beer garden, with warmers for the spring and fall.The beer is very good quality and they have won hundreds of awards including some at the GABF. I found a new appreciation for the Triple Exultation which I tried last time I was here and did not care for but this time I was talking with the bartender and he explained that this is a version of Old Peculiar but with a lot more hops. Well mention hops and you have my interest, so therefore the new appreciation.
The food served here is organic even to the point of raising their own beef . The food is very tasty and high quality , during the day and early evening the restaurant is very busy with food customers and little beer being served, what a shame. That changes later in the evening. I like this micro so much that next time I head up the coast I will arrange more time for Fortuna.

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Photo of WoodBrew
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of htomsirveaux
3.33/5  rDev -18.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Had a light snack here on 30 Aug 2012. Stop #5 on the tour up 101.

Fairly crowded when we walked in, and as we sat down we realized why. Thursdays are $2.75 pints all day. We lucked out! Seven regular beers on tap plus five specialties. Three TVs showing football and baseball. Beer garden outside, maybe 20 4 tops inside with space for 14 or so at the bar. Was actually pretty crowded, we briefly sat at the bar (mom inadvertently stole an older lady's spot and got the stink eye which was amusing) before a table opened up for us.

Lots of swag on the walls, flags, old saws, a buffalo head. Somewhat slow service and our waiter unfortunately had an amazing case of halitosis. Entrees a bit on the pricey side, but California + all organic = big money. We had the calamari, it was cooked well but slightly on the bland side.

$$$ for food everyday, $ for beer on Thursdays or during happy hour (1500-1830 daily).

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Photo of Brolo75
4.01/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

Visited on a Saturday evening, lots of people, good food, and excellent service. My family and I ordered food and I had a couple of their beers. I really enjoyed their blond ale and the Emerald Triangle IPA was okay. The customer service was really good as well but the beer and food quality is not on par with other breweries I have visited.

 342 characters

Photo of Troyone
3.8/5  rDev -7.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Located in a suburban area, this is an interesting Brewpub. Lots of local regulars frequent this location. There is advertisements for live music on certain nights, an outdoor patio, and the brewing room can be seen from the bar.

Most of the tap nozzles were brass at least one was stainless steel. The wood tables, chairs, and bar were nice. The kitchen was not in the open and the restroom was clean.

Service was friendly, prompt, and apparently some remember the names of the regulars.

Good selection of their own beers and no cask. Most of their beers were organic and all were possible notables. The Ravens Eye Stout was a definite notable.

The food was not bad but not cooked on a real grill. They do have organic and hormone free options.

reasonable

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Photo of HippieDave56
3.8/5  rDev -7.3%

Photo of colonelforbin
3.59/5  rDev -12.4%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.25 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

This place looks it has been around for a while. Nice long bar inside and a bunch of tables spread throughout the rest of the place. Inside is a restaurant, aside from the bar. Nice enough atmosphere, seems like a lot of local families visit this place. A handful of TVs dot the restaurant/bar area.

Had 12 or so beers on tap when I was there, including a few barrel aged versions of some of their regular beers. Nothing really stood out too much. Pretty pedestrian beers by and large. The Raven's Eye Imperial Stout was OK and the barrel aged offerings were nice to try. Wouldn't call it mediocre, but nothing too special.

Service was fine, nothing out of the ordinary.

Decent atmosphere, decent beer. Worth a stop if you are in Humboldt County but there are other spots nearby that are better.

 801 characters

Photo of Mark
4/5  rDev -2.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

A nice pub in a big rustic barnlike building. Friendly servers, great food, and good craft beer. When we were there the lunchtime crowd was NOT drinking beer. Way up in the boonies from the Bay Area, but worth a visit if your up in that direction. Fortuna seemed a friendly but unspectacular town.

 300 characters

Photo of Harvest06
4.51/5  rDev +10%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.75

Photo of VashonGuy
3.61/5  rDev -12%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.5

This is a pleasant brewery, with an outdoor garden (complete with horseshoe pit). The vibe is very mellow - what else would you expect for Humboldt County? There's a good selection of beers. None of the beers we had were outstanding, but they were all at least OK. The food was also OK without being exceptional.

This isn't a beer geek's destination, but it's worth a stop if (like us) you are driving along 101 and looking for a place to eat with some decent craft beer.

 479 characters

Photo of casapy
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of rayzorwit
3.8/5  rDev -7.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

If you have time for only one brewery in the Eureka area, I would recommend going somewhere else. Otherwise, if you have a few days to spend in town, then this is worth putting under your belt.

I lived right around the corner from this place so it was convenient for me to stop in on a semi-regular basis. The ambience is fine, and it's the only outdoor dining area for a brewpub in town. I've met a couple of patrons and will say there are some good folks here (this is Friendly Fortuna at its best). The food is good. Exceptional to note are their beer battered onion rings.

As far as beer, I would deem it as okay. I have yet to try a beer that really called my attention, with the exception of their Exultation, which is definitely a must try as far as their beers are concerned. Unfortunately, any good beer of theirs usually fetches a higher price. Overall, you're looking at spending a little bit more money for food and drink.

 937 characters

Photo of Act25
3.81/5  rDev -7.1%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.75

V: Local, friendly, families, relaxed, talkative.
Q: Beer is ok. Organic good. The IPA too thin, not sticky or interesting enough.
S: Excellent, friendly, engaging, fast.
Sel: Too few beers, oysters too small.
F: Solid k-babs, oysters ok, salad excellent. Well prepared.
Value: $$ Reasonable

Happy hour with organic pints.

You could bring your family here. Friendly place.

Near Humboldt Redwoods and the Avenue of the Giants!

 431 characters

Photo of ackeeper
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of TheLoneGunman
4.18/5  rDev +2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This is an excellent organic brewery. The food was tasty and I must say the onion rings rivaled Hop Leaf's. That's saying a lot.

The bar is huge. I mean really huge. The dining area is very comfortable and they even have an outdoor area. This is a great example of a brewpub that caters to families during the day. Lots of locals eating and many of them were not drinking beer. Things liven up in the evening and the beer really starts flowing. As I said, the food is good and the portions are BIG.

The beer is darn good. I wasn't disappointed in any of them. Whether it is by chance or not, I don't know. But I have not had good luck with other organic breweries. If you are in Northern California, you really should check them out. They deserve your time.

 764 characters

Photo of Endocador
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of Hoppedelic
3.56/5  rDev -13.2%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.25

Photo of beerguy101
4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

After spending most of the day driving down the Oregon and California coast. I stopped at Fortuna for the night. After checking into a motel, I asked the desk person if there was anywhere to eat except the Denny’s. She said “well there is this brewpub right over there!” Brewpub?? Damn how did I miss that? Located in a big rustic barn like building, it captures the mood of the North Coast well. The waitstaff was great; my waitress didn’t charge me for the samplers I tried. There were at least 8 beers on tap. The menu was varied with lots of selections: burgers, salads, pasta and the like. The food is plentiful and excellent. I was too tired to spend more time there than a few beers and dinner. But it was totally packed by 7 PM on a Thursday night. It is most definitely worth a stop if your in the area.

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Eel River Brewing Co. in Fortuna, CA
Brewery rating: 3.68 out of 5 with 2,116 ratings
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