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Capital Ale House

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13 Reviews

Type: Bar, Eatery

13831 Village Place Dr
Midlothian, Virginia, 23114-3503
United States

(804) 780-2537 | map

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Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-02-2008

View: Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 13 | Ratings: 23
Reviews by Sludgeman:
Photo of Sludgeman
4.39/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Visited just after lunch on a Saturday - bar was dead.

Overall, an oasis on the South side of Richmond.

A - A clean, well lit, friendly place.

Q - Fine bar with a ice strip in the bar top on which to sit your beer and keep it a little cooler. Beers in coolers, room temp glasses, correct glassware. Bartended said they cleaned all lines once per month (in-house cleaning not the distributor or other). Have lines dedicated to styles (stout/porter, wheat/belgian, ipa, and two other groups). I thought once per month cleaning was too long - how about at least every two weeks.

S - Walked in, read the menu and said "cool" they have Cigar City beers and been wanting to try that brewery (well they had one - Guave Groove Saison). But I was disappointed, no Cigar City - some explaination about having to send back an order because of foaming). Despite the disapointment, this place has a very good selection with a big concentration on Virginia breweries. 80 beers on tap and a bunch more bottles in a book. There is something for everyone. All styles are covered, but few rarities or hard to find beers.

S - We had a helpful bartender, who was very willing, but lacked a bit in the knowledge of beer and current events.

F - Did not try.

V - I thought the draft prices were good. They have take out, with everything 25% off the listed price. Also growlers.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of krbrevard
4.78/5  rDev +9.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Photo of Tim-M
4.64/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

I've been here a couple of times and was looking for a place for a company sponsored celebration. It turns out to be hard to find a place that can serve more than 50 people without renting out a hotel ballroom. They were very accommodating and I ended up renting the entire upper floor for the event. They had really good waiters and waitresses that listened closely to what types of beer people liked and made some fine recommendations. Food was also very good. Large selection of good beers.

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Photo of homillerlaw
4.3/5  rDev -1.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of Nolynylon
3.84/5  rDev -12.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.25 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

Photo of dwoolley1
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Photo of LeeEvolved
3/5  rDev -31.4%

Photo of Iamjeff6
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of DRouth
4.16/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of mkirkland80
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Holy taps. Food is decent. No complaints.

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Photo of beerrat
4.39/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

Food is on the high side and not the greatest too upper class.Over 50 taps 100of bottles.

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Photo of brocktune
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of rtrasr
4.81/5  rDev +10.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25

Absolutely one of the best places I have been. The best selection of beer that I have seen. I had a Kostritizer Schwarzbier, I cannot think of a beer that I have enjoyed more. It was superb. I also had some Stone's Smoked Porter which was outstanding as well. I also sampled some milk stout. I enjoyed it much. The food was somewhat upper end gastropub and priced accordingly. It was good, though. They make great jagerschnitzel. A great place to take a date, family or anyone else. A real class place.

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Photo of cdkrenz
4.35/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

Pulling up to the Capital Ale House I realize just how big this place is. From the outside it seems to stretch through what looks like three or four storefronts. They have outdoor seating on both ends of the establishment. The interior opens up to a large welcoming hostess area. To the right is a dining room and to the left is a bar that must stretch to 20 yards long. They have huge glass coolers behind the bar displaying the enormous selection of bottles. They must have 60 or more beers on tap and another three in casks. This is a beer lovers dream come true. It is absolutely amazing to see the selection of beverages they have to offer. They have a beer menu and it lists the date on it because they bring in different beers on a consistent basis. It looks like they print a new menu every week. The service is good. The folks seem to know their beers rather well. The food is good enough to bring me back because it wasn't bad, that being said, it wasn't great either. I had a black bean burger and it was better than average. The beer prices were a bit on the expensive end but they do offer carry-outs until midnight. If you purchase brew to take home they offer a 25% discount off the menu price. That makes it a bit more reasonable but the prices are a bit stiff. Overall the experience was good. I wish a place like this would pop up in Central Wisconsin.

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Photo of gopens44
4.38/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

My "official" beer bar since it's the closest one to me

I love the atmosphere at this place. Sinatra era jazz or similar appealing yet less demanding tunes float through the air while being polite to not intrude on the din of discussions taking place in here. The customer type in this bar is quite diverse. From blue collar types enjoying a new craft selection to older professionals who know exactly what they like to drink, to young urban yuppie types who have no idea what to order and everyone in between. Rarely do I see overly obnoxious types in here.

Quality of the experience and the brews are usually impeccable. If by chance you ever EVER have a question over the freshness or quality of your draft, the bartender will replace it, no questions asked. Just do yourself a favor and get a sample of something new and strange before investing in the entire beer.

Typically I love the service. The regular bartenders are very well versed on what they are serving, but occasionally they will have a waitress fill in behind the bar. If you detect this, kindly pull aside a regular bartender for advice on something new instead of trusting the waitress to give an in depth explanation of a beer. Nothing against the waitress, but it is what it is.

I find the selection to be quite satisfying in both drafts and bottles. Having a few drafts and taking a few bottles to go is what I'll usually do, and I can literally spend an hour figuring out what's going with me.

Food here is great! It does lean towards a German feel for the most part, but they also have some pretty eclectic yet simple and tasty foods as well..

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Photo of clayrock81
3.95/5  rDev -9.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

This place is hit and miss, although I wont' compare it to the one in downtown Richmond b/c it's in a more laid-back suburban setting.
What can I say? Went for lunch Thursday afternoon and it took a really long time for two sandwiches, and my girl's egg salad sandwich was really dried out. However, they comped it and gave her a free dessert and were really nice about it. The beer selection is real good, not the best I've seen since it focuses on the local breweries and has a lot of American micro staples. Doesn't really step out of the box or get a lot of imports, but there were some diamonds in the rough I haven't placed anywhere else. I'd go back if I happen to be in Midlo again, but I'm not sure about eating there.

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Photo of aventinus829
4.18/5  rDev -4.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Went twice over this past weekend with my friend from school. I was very impressed both by how classy the place was and their enormous selection. The atmosphere was great: a lot of dark wood paneling, a fireplace in the back, and the stones in the bathroom sinks were nice touches. An impressive 80 beers on tap and far more bottled, their beer menu was over 10 pages long. They also had a great seasonal lineup and two cask offerings. While I was there I had a delirium noel, allagash white, and kulmbacher eisbock (all on-tap). All tasted fresh. The food was pretty darn good too. I highly recommend their belgian style fries ("frites") which come with 4 varieties of mayo dip. Their salads were great and their burgers were pretty good too. Food prices were pretty reasonable, the beer was slightly expensive. Overall, a great time with good food, good beer, and good company.

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Photo of MrSpackler
4.85/5  rDev +11%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I was in Midlothian for about a week and spent most of my evenings at the CAH. I got to know a few of the bartenders and waitstaff sharing our love for great beer being the common denominator. The food was creative and delicious from seafood to steaks to great burgers! (Where else can you get a $9 half pound blue cheese burger for $2... Mon. night burger night??) The selection was absolutely fantastic with a staff that knew all of the 250 bottles and 80 taps! Thats impressive! If you really want to have a all out beer geek conversation look up Jay at the bar! Great guy and knows his brew! The fact that you can buy any of their bottled selection one bottle at a time and take it home with you makes this place unique for that fact alone. Where else can you put together a "U pick it" 6 pack with a selection of 250 or more?? I will be back when I get back to VA!!

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Photo of Beejay
4.45/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 3

First of all, I dod not get food, so I put in average I didn't spike the average. I love that they had a strip of ice built into the bar to keep the beer cold... The staff was attentive, and knowledgeable, and of course they have some of the best selection around. I think they had over 300 beers.. Some of which I had never seen, and some of which available on tap that I have only seen in bottles..

Let's face it, this is my disney world. If I had an unlimited amount of time and money, I would probably spend most days trying something new here.

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Photo of Minkybut
4.7/5  rDev +7.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

The CAH in Midlothian is a very nice place. A bit loud around 6pm but things calmed down after 8. We sat in a booth in the smoking section. I do not know if all the booths were that uncomfortable but the one we sat in was terrible. Table too close (and I'm skinny) and just too upright. That is main and only complaint I had about the entire place. Service was fantastic, beer was good and selection great. Though do not print out what they have available on their web-site and take it with you expecting to get everything on that list. That evidently changes daily as can be expected. We drank only beer that they had on tap. I plan on going back soon. Oh you can throw darts there too if your not too drunk!
Went back a month later 3/31/09. We got there about 4pm. This time the place was not as loud. Service was the same fantastic service so by them being consistant with that means very much to me. Great service is required by me me and CAH delivers. Beer was great again also. We had NC BBQ that was good and I know good pulled BBQ. We were also treated to a chunk of carrot cake that was the best I have ever had. Only complaint I have is still those damn uncomfortable booths. Not wide enough front to back. You have to sit stone straight which I guess makes for better posture, but gets really uncomfortable to me. I cannot sit in regular chairs comfortably either and they do have those. My wife thinks they are not good sitting booths either and she is skinny also. But if that is the only complaint I have of the place, then you best know it is a nice place. Like I said before, the service is great, warm friendly very personable people. Don't know how CAH will fair in December when new smoking ban takes place. Might not bother others, but it will be the end of our tour unless CAH configures the place to allow smoking to continue. I don't smoke much. but I like to have a few while I'm drinking. We will see, in the meantime go try it out. The beer is good and cold.

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.38/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

I was amazed at how many quality taps this place had. I think they had around 80 or so drafts, many of which are limited release. They had Choklat and Oat from Southern Tier as well as plenty of others that I cant remember.

Decent atmosphere. The place was packed so I had to sit at a weird sort of large, triangle shaped table with one other couple and another two dudes. Plenty of room for all of us to have privacy, though. It was Tuesday so they were having the "Steal the glass" night, which on the particlar occasion, was Thomas Creek from SC.

Had three beers and all seemed fresh and were very tasty. I enjoyed the cask ESB they had from a local VA brewer.

For food I chose a crab cake salad which was okay. All it consisted of was spinach with a crabcake on top. Kind of plain. The salad and three beers came to $28, which was a little steep, but the quality beers come with a bit of a price tag, I suppose.

Defintiely check this out if in NW Richmond.

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Photo of Proteus93
4.7/5  rDev +7.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I have no idea how I managed to get away with not adding a review of this place when I've done others since, including places that weren't as remarkable - and CAH certainly is.

Entering any of the locations is always a gratifying experience... the massive draught-line and the big cooler of bottles. Midlothian presents the taps in closer proximity to the consumer, which is a nice touch.

I had been here for Beer Geek Week a couple months ago and had a wonderful experience... a few interesting choices and rarities (Ola Dubh 30 on cask, some Smuttynose Big Beer offerings, a couple other kegs that they managed to secure outside of other places - and that was just one night out of a week of beer!).

The draft & bottle selection is very nice as it is, and special events and weekly glassware nights just adds an extra touch to things.

The food has always been very good in each of the times that I've gone there (at both locations I've been to), but my only complaint is that I tend to go with my wife and son... and we seem to get put in a 'kids section' or something that is outside of the general gathering area - that's fine and dandy, and I can understand why it would be done - but then the service is very poor. Long waits... often times, you'll need to track down someone to help out. Fortunately, Jacob Brunow makes up for that when he's available... very inviting, and very passionate about beer, so I can't dock too many points there.

Prices are pretty standard markup, and if you get a location with a beer list (last I knew, Midlothian did NOT have one - this may very well have changed by now), there can be some special gems to be had. A fabulous place, and it certainly deserves the thumbs up it receives in various publications (including this very magazine!)

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Photo of nriech
4.5/5  rDev +3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

The new Capital in Midlothian is great! I love that the bar is on one side of the place so that the smoke doesnt interfere with those of us who dont smoke. The bar is setup is awesome. All of the taps are at the end in a half circle where you can walk up and look at all the tap handles. I think there are 80+ on tap. Everyone that I have had at the bar so far was familiar with the beers and correct glassware. Theres a couple of cask taps also.

The food is the same as the other locations. Great burgers, some high end stuff too like steaks(a bit pricey but good) and the specials have always been pretty good too. Theres an upstairs with a few pool tables, areas for darts, and a few secluded tables in alcoves.

I rated everything a 5 except for food only because its hard to get a burger cooked to an actual medium, its pretty consistently over done so order undercooked.

Staff are still great but the selection while still numerous isnt as outstanding as it used to be, neither is the atmosphere. They had to get rid of the pool tables and darts upstairs because it wasnt handycrap friendly from what I heard. Its ok to stop in for a bite and a beer but wont be my go to spot anytime soon.

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Capital Ale House in Midlothian, VA
4.37 out of 5 based on 23 ratings.
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