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Swashbuckler Brewing Co, LTD

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Swashbuckler Brewing Co, LTDSwashbuckler Brewing Co, LTD
123 Ratings
Swashbuckler Brewing Co, LTDSwashbuckler Brewing Co, LTD

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

2775 Lebanon Road
Manheim, Pennsylvania, 17545
United States

(717) 665-7021 | map

On the Grounds of the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire; adjacent to the Carriage House Wine Shop.

Added by NeroFiddled

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 18 |  Reviews: 9
Reviews by woodychandler:
Photo of woodychandler
4.14/5  rDev +4.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Transcribed from notes dated Sa, 24 Oct 2009.

It was located on the grounds of the Pennsylvania Rennaisance Faire, not far from Exit 266 of the PA Turnpike, or up/down PA Route 72, if you are local, as I am. Brewer Mark Braunwerth and Marketing Manager Barb Lacek had been after me to come up for a while and so a warm, rainy Fall afternoon seemed like an apt time to visit.

Located quite near the pirate ship, the brewery was a high-ceilinged wood structure that housed two five-tap, "U"-shaped laminated wood bars on the back end of the building. The entire operation was housed in the central part of the structure and included the brewhouse and hot liquor tank as well as five (5) FVs and six (6) SVs, all on display. Four (4) more SVs were behind the two bars. Also inside was the combined Merchandise and Cigar Store. Built-in heaters hung from the overhead for the winter months, when canvas and plexiglas walls would be temporarily installed, along with a door in the center, allowing them to have year-'round customers.

It is a small operation and it keeps Braunwerth busy, but he makes good beers and one can and may get growlers for take-away.

The ambiance can be disconcerting for the casual visitor, but for a guy who routinely goes around in monk's robes, it was another day at the office. Just be aware of the Men in Black Watch!

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Lambdon
2.92/5  rDev -26.1%

Photo of Draesith
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of BeerDrinkingDiver
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%

Beers ok, PArenfair is great would give it 5 for the fair not on beer selection.

81 characters

Photo of Slatetank
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of stakem
3.25/5  rDev -17.7%

Photo of jhartley
3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of Jason13
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of CaptainRoadRage
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of canawler
3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of SirEdwinWNorth
4.63/5  rDev +17.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

There are four ways to experience the beers from the Swashbuckler Brewery. Unlike the wine which was moved out to vineyards in Erie Pa, the beer is brewed on site. recently there were hops planted on the grounds which have been used in some of the brews. Beer tours are availible.
1) During faire and faire ground events. In off faire season there are several smaller events that allow for smaller crowds but less atmosphere(green fest Brew fest and food fest). During the run of the Renaissance Faire you can expect crowds of 10,000 or more. this will impact service times that run up to 30 minute lines, however with the actors and shows going on there is much to do while waiting. Also during faire your beertenders will be in character and very entertaining. From shy and quiet to rude (playfully so) and crude. Even with additional pour stations there can be long lines.
2) off season on weekends the pub known as the Swashbuckler is open and there are tables and seats, good pub grub and less people so waiting times drop. the pub is also open during mansion shows such as Dickens Xmas and Poe shows
3) year round one can buy 22 ounce bottles are available at the wine shop.
4) on occasion at local bars such as Farmers Hope, there will be beers on tap.
I will say that even with crowds, the faire is the best time to experience Swashbuckler Beers. The atmosphere, actors, music and shows will make it a full bodied experience. information is available at parenfaire.com

 1,478 characters

Photo of Knapp85
3.73/5  rDev -5.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

I was asked by my girlfriend to goto the renaissance fair for a long time and finally for her birthday we made it out there last September. Aside from the people dressed up and acting their parts this place has a small brewery. That drew me right in. I wasn't told anything about that since my girlfriend wasn't into beer it wasn't something she looked into in advance. The brewery was interesting a pirate served me a Capt. Rude's Stout and talked with us for a bit. The area wasn't too shabby it kind of fit the whole environment of the fair. I wanted to try more of the beers they had but I was low on money at the time so I wasn't able to get much more. Overall the place was pretty cool, it's not something I'm dying to go back to but it is worth checking out if you're around.

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Photo of Minotaur
4.28/5  rDev +8.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

This review and the establishment is a two-fold experience.

It is on the grounds used by the Pennsylvania Renaissance Festival. During the Faire hours expect Service and Food to possibly get half ratings. The place can have 10,000 people a day moving through it and the food is average for the price (festival/faire food).

I will rate this based on my experience outside of Faire hours, attending events and hitting the Swashbuckler in "off hours". The service is generally friendly and surly in a jovial manner. The bartenders/servers know their beer.

The food you can get from the kitchen is average to good; it is always well prepared even if not fancy.

The brews on tap from the brewery are all high quality and the brewmaster holds all drinks to high standards. Their "Gold" (kolsch) and the Captain Rude's Blackwater Stout are my ongoing favorites. He is also very forthcoming in discussing brewing and beer.

There are usually 5-7 beers on tap and special blends rotate through out the season. Of particular note are his bock beers, saisons, and scotch ale.

I often frequent the faire long after my interest in the repetitious shows, cheeky comedians, and stage fighting has waned for that season. My reason for having a season pass to this event is The Swashbuckler Brewery.

 1,287 characters

Photo of BeerIsland
4.03/5  rDev +2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Margie and I made our first visit to the "open" brewpub last night. They are only open Thurs-Sat at the moment from 4:00 to 11:00 or so. Although there may be some kind of activity going on (last night was Open Mike), there is no cover or Faire entrance fee. They kicked this program off late last year and it should get better as it gets warnmer. The menu is a little limited at the moment but our food was warm and tasty. They had 6 beers on tap, the Kolsch, Amber, and Stout making up the regulars and Dunkleweizen, Scottish, and Barleywine comprising the specials. I liked the barleywine in particular; full flavored but not a load, even though it clocked in at 11.5%. Mark, a Rock Bottom graduate, is doing the brewing and said that one was cooked up last February. Scott was also there and told me the brewhouse is on its third configuration, basically to allow more seating and brewing volume. He would up buying the whole Faire so he and Heather are pretty occupied with all that, particularly during the summer. I'm glad they finally got this together and folks can just pop and and enjoy their beers, albeit over the weekend.

 1,135 characters

Photo of krukster
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Made my first trip to the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire today and visited the Swashbuckler Brewery. Definately a cool little brewery right in the middle of the Ren Faire. Had the special octoberfest which was outstanding, followed by the Smoke, Gold, and Raspberry beer.

Although the fee to get into the Ren Faire is 28.95 and the beers are $5 a piece, this is a definate must visit. The beer is excellent and so is the food. Had a giant turkey leg for lunch and a braught for dinner. (the Faire was celebrating Octoberfest)

 526 characters

Photo of Seanibus
4.06/5  rDev +2.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

The Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire is probably the best in the country and Swashbuckler helps make it so. Along with the great shows, roving performer, games and food, there is Swashbuckler beer, available at several locations. The best location is the main brewery, located up the hill next to the big red pirate ship. The atmosphere is fun - a series of outdoor bars and tables crammed with costumed guests and performers. The beer is always at least good, sometimes great, and the varieties rotate weekly. The Gold is their basic, standard ale and it is quite tasty. The amber is good. The Pilsner is decent if you can find it, and the rarely-seen IPA is quite satisfying. The only downside is the price - $5 for an average plastic cup (though you can buy a pint glass for an extra $4 and get refills at the same price - worth it if you don't mind toting the glass around all day). But what the heck - you pay more a beer at any ballpark or amusement park, so why argue.

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Photo of HugoGrim
3.99/5  rDev +1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3

Inside the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire is an excellent location for a brewery. I've read that a new brewmaster has taken over operations this year (2006) and I can really tell with the selection. Last year there were only three beers to choose from, this time I noticed there are three "house beers" (available all the time) plus a specialty brew which they are releasing on a weekly basis for the Faire season. This is obviously a vast improvement, as it added such beers as a wheat, an oatmeal stout, and an IPA to name a few.

As for the quality of the beer, I can tell it also is on the upswing. As with the selection I see a noted improvement from last year (again probably due to the new brewmaster) as the beer takes more risks in terms of flavor and style. I would not yet go so far as to say it is great, but it is definitely good. I am excited to see where they are next year.

I reccomend buying one of the large collectable mugs, as it is a nice mug, and you can bring it back with you when you return to the Faire and have it refilled for a much lower cost.

 1,077 characters

Photo of Phatz
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 4.5

This is certainly not your typical brewpub, by any means. Swashbuckler is actually inside the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire. To get in you need to be admitted to the faire.
With the exception of the 2005 season (due to having our 2nd baby under 14 mo. old) we have been season ticket holders to the faire for 5 years. In the 2006 season we will be season ticket holders again and we will be taking the kids to the Faire on a regular basis. It is fantastic family fun! All that being said, it does change the atmosphere (and the experience) from that of a typical Brewpub. There are a lot of families and children, lots of (time appropriate) music, and lots of costumes and fake accents. The food is pretty good (for faire ground food), at Faire ground prices. Their beers are great but there are only 4 (or 5 if the bring back the Skull Splitter). The price to enter the Faire in 2006 is ADULT $24.95 and CHILD (5-11) $9.95. Unless you buy tickets online or have other coupons or discounts. As much as I love this place, I must say, if you are only interested in the beer it is probably not going to be worth the admission. However, if you are looking to take the family somewhere that everyone can have a blast and BTW you can have some really great beer as well, this is a good added bonus to the Renaissance Faire.

Hope this is helpful.

 1,354 characters

Swashbuckler Brewing Co, LTD in Manheim, PA
Brewery rating: 3.57 out of 5 with 123 ratings
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