Dragonmead Microbrewery

BEER AVG
3.72/5
Dragonmead MicrobreweryDragonmead Microbrewery
PLACE INFO

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

14600 E 11 Mile Rd
Warren, Michigan, 48089-1556
United States

(586) 776-9428 | map
dragonmead.com

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by beernut7

BEER STATS
Beers:
62
Ratings:
1,932
Reviews:
832
PLACE STATS
Score:
92
Ratings:
134
Reviews:
81
Avg:
4.16
pDev:
9.38%
 
 
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Ratings: 134 |  Reviews: 81
Photo of Sammy
4.14/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Initial impressions were good, of the envoronment, and staff was friendly. A bit hard to find being on the service road of a main highway so there was toing and froing (It's on the south side). Free pretzels and mustard and rootbeer for my wife and daughter. Several beers on tap, a few people here and there. Since I was from Canada, we all get tastings of their beta batch mead.
I wasn't up for the sourness of the batches, which I was told by a BA in Detroit, tends to occur late in their batches.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5

This brewpub had very good selection. There were > 15 beers on tap when I visited in May 2005.

The location (off an exit ramp from a major highway in Detroit) was a mis-match for the atmosphere within. It felt like I entered a Medieval fair complete with swords, dragon sculptures and tons of ales.

I tried a sampler platter and then had some singles. Based on my limited tasting (7 beers), I recommend going with the beers that have awards in their honor (you can find these by looking on the wall behind the bar). The non-award beers aren't anything special in my opinion.

If you try only one beer, it must be Final Absolution (Tripel).

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Photo of Yetiman420
4.44/5  rDev +6.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Stop #228 on my world brewery tour.

Located in a nondescript building on an interstate access road. Almost feels like you're headed into an auto parts distributor shop. The medieval interior reminded me of the Excalibur hotel and casino in Vegas.

Dragonmead has more beers than any other brewery I've ever visited. The best part is they are all well done. Our group of three shared a couple five beer samplers where you write the beers in ink on glossy stock so you don't ruin your sampler memento - excellent touch. We had...

Sampler 3
IPA, raspberry wheat, barleywine, Baltic porter, rauchbier

Sampler 1
Kolsch, nagelweiss, apricot wheat, hot pepper ale, cream ale

Sampler 2
trippel, abbey, quad grand cru, Belgian dark strong, golden (Belgian strong I think).

You can peek in and see the brewing operation on the way to the bathroom. It looked as if they did a lot of smaller batches.

The only downside to the place was the spotty service during our visit around 2:00 on a Friday. The bartender kept disappearing but did a fine job when she was there.

I would definitely recommend Dragonmead for any Michigan brewery tour.

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of Mothergoose03
4.14/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5

This was stop #4 on our pub crawl in a group of four people. It was still mid-afternoon and we were not hungry, so we were here to try some of the beers and experience the pub. Customer activity was picking up for the late afternoon and evening crowd, so we got the last table that was left before they opened the closed section.

There were 44 beers on tap, plus some meads and wines that are also made here, so the selection was excellent. We ordered two 5-glass sampler flights. All of them were very good and right on to style with some extra flavor kick to make them much better than average. Overall we graded them at a B+ rating.

There was a food menu on the table that had a limited selection of meat/cheese plates, nachos & cheese, a cheeseburger, a few deli sandwiches and pizza. All of them are reasonably priced, but we didn't order any food for me to comment on the quality.

With a beer selection like found here and the quality of the beers, it's hard not to like this place. We'll definitely make a return visit when we're in the area again.

 1,059 characters

Photo of MilwaukeeCrusher
4.44/5  rDev +6.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Stopped here and was suprised by the extensive selection of beers. Figured out where to stay nearby and did two flights of beers... something that probably never happened before at a brewery because there usually aren't 10-15 beers I must try. The line up was great and had to buy a sixer of the Tripel. The atmosphere was somewhat laid back and lighting dark, which almost made me wonder if I was going to run into a friar at some point. Service was good but had to be to deliver two flights. I would most certainly stop here again if for nothing else than to sample their extensive list of beers. It's like a beer tasting sitting down.

 637 characters

Photo of tommy5
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of francisweizen
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Atmosphere is nice, and this place is very f'in small, homey, cozy, etc. A pubs pub. Quality of my impy stout was great, as are the prices here. Service was also fast, and friendly. The selection here is the real highlight, but none of the beers really jumped off of the mnu at me, except for the great, lower abv, sam-smith-esque, imperial stout that I mentioned above. Still, 30+ lines is quite an accomplishment and I hear that the beers are pretty damn solid as well. No food here, but you can eat anywhere, come here to drink beer. The imperial stout ruled, and i'd love to try some others another day...

 609 characters

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Hehe. It's kind of funny in Dragonmead. It has the whole medieval thing going on, but from my point of view, it's entirely too clean in there. I mean, it's almost pristine kinda clean in there. It somewhat doesn't fit imo. But it's a pretty chill vibe. And, shocking as it may seem, these guys have more beer choices than Kuhnhenn. Yes. It's true. Food is kind of bar nibbling kind of stuff. I must say that the opportunity to dine of venison sausages is always welcome in my book. Or any other non-traditional meats, for that matter.

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Photo of dmorgan310
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Dragonmead is a beer lovers' paradise. Plenty of delicious beer options. I don't sample foods, but the beer options are admirable and tasty. Location is industrial, but with a pub atmosphere including steel tip dart boards and a lot of english oak. The theme is clear and the quality is here.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
4.11/5  rDev -1.2%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.75

Photo of Kegatron
4.58/5  rDev +10.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

We had the pleasure of visiting this brewpub during a recent run through Warren, MI. Right off the bat as you pull up, you know that with its cool looking castle like brick façade (hey at least for a brewpub), this is going to be a pretty neat place. The interior has some of the coolest theming that I've seen in a brewpub in a while. Medieval is definitely the motif, with coat of arms banners and European flags hanging from the rafters, a suit of armor in the corner, and various dragon influenced artwork all over the walls. The coolest stuff in reserved for the bar area though with it's Knight & Dragon stain glass windows, shield tile mosaic (that houses just some of the dragon themed taps) and the classic wood wraparound bar. An all around great atmosphere that really sets the mood for the beers to come...

Ah, onto the beers. They offer at least 50 different styles of which they had 37 available. Yes, I said 37 different beers...from one brewpub! The styles ran the full gamut, from their Ring of Fire Chili beer, to the Crown Jewels IPA, to a Bourbon Imperial Stout, to their absolutely magnificent Final Absolution Belgian Triple. We tried a lot of stuff (and were glad that they offered ½ pints) and everything was top notch for the style. If you go back towards the bathrooms, they offer you a peek into the brewery and their awesome looking "tank farm" of small fermenters that shows just how they can keep so many beers on at a time. Pretty cool!

They offer a limited food menu (and encourage you to order in your own if you want) and although their fryer was down, we still made due with a tasty cheese and cracker plate. The service here was great. We were promptly greeted by our server April at the bar as we entered and were treated like we were the only ones in the place (OK, we actually were for our first 15 minutes here;) but still, she did an outstanding job the entire time we were there. Owner Larry Channell even came out to talk with us for awhile. We felt very welcomed here and wish that we could have stayed longer.

This really was a surprise of a visit for us as we didn't expect to like this place this much! A great themed atmosphere, awesome (and a massive selection of) beers, and a friendly staff make this a must hit if your in the area. We definitely can't wait to visit again.

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Photo of Deuane
4.44/5  rDev +6.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Stopped in with 3 other BA's on the way to Madison for Great Taste.

Not much to look at from the outside but once you walk through the doors...Bam! Beer Nirvana!

Passable job of decorating the interior with an English Middle Ages feel. Nice game area with darts and table seating to the left and a long bar to the right.

Ok, so what can you say about a place that offers 38 different home brewed micros on tap? Well, plenty if they were all crap but, they are far from that!

Thirty-eight freakin' taps...including a few cask selections....CRAZY! Plus, they make their own soda...in 6 different flavours!

The beers we ordered and shared were all good or better....a credit to the brewers for becoming successful at so many styles.

Nice to have brews offered in a lovely sampler platter, in half-pints or full pints....I took advantage of the half-pint offerings.

No food today....and they dont offer much....but enough to fill your stomach to keep you drinking!

Our server was pleasant and helpful. We never waited long between finishing one beer and starting the next.

Dragonmead is a beer stop in southeast Michigan that should not be missed. With Kuhnhenn being less than 10 minutes away these two locations make a fantastic one-two punch!

 1,255 characters

Photo of cryptichead
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of 86sportster883
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 2.5

Out the Wazoo

I'm not sure why I had such a hard time finding this place. Maybe I was just lookiing in the wrong place. When I finally did, it was well worth the wait. This place has an amazing selection of beer styles to chose from, all of which are brewed on the premises. I sampled 10, six ounce servings and was generally impressed with most of what I tried.

The place consists of one long, medium-sized room with a castle/dragon motif. Gargoyles, swords, medieval type flags, stain glass windows, dragon paintings, etc. The bar sits at one end of the room and tables make up the remaining 2/3rds. Beer medals out the wazoo. Almost 30 hanging behind the bar. Blues music playing softly in the background.

The crowd was a mix of ages from mid 20s to 50 plus, mostly men but enough women mixed in to keep it interesting. For some reason it struck me as a weird crowd (not a bunch of weirdos, just a strange mix). As usual I sat at the bar, ordered a few samplers and a light bite to eat. The smell of the deep frier from the back came through strongly at the bar. This is definitely a local hangout. Most everyone seemed to know the staff by name and the staff knew most customers also.

My 1st sampler (5, six ounce pours): Earl Spit Stout- nice dry stout
with a kick; Honey Porter - just what you would expect, decent porter w/ a tinge of sweetness; Perfect Porter - Excellent english style porter except for the finish, which seemed a bit off; Holy Smoke - nice nose but weak and thin, almost a Rauchbier lite; Oompa Loompa Stout -different, took some getting used to, definitely a chocolate stout.

Hoping to stem the effect of the 5+ABV beer selection of my first sampler, I put in an order of popcorn chicken and Jalepeno poppers before ordering another round of samples. The chicken is quite tasty, while the poppers are your typical pub fare.

2nd Sampler: Firkin Cask Conditioned Broken Paddle IPA - very nice, very smooth, real nice light citrus finish, an American IPA;

Inquisition Pale Ale - English style IPA, well balanced but a little too bland for an IPA; Dragonslayer Alt - Ok; Sir Williams ESB - not my favorite, I retire it 2/3 through and move to my final beer, the Dubbel Dragon Ale -Very peaty, not what I was expecting, but certainly on point.

The bartender announced last call around 11pm and began closing out tabs. I finished my beers, paid my bill, slipped out the front door and headed back to my hotel. I do plan to return to the Dragonmead, as they have many more beers that I would like to sample.

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Photo of Loki
3.88/5  rDev -6.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2.5

Atmosphere: A bit strange, but laid back and friendly. Medieval Times on a much smaller scale feel. Without the jousting and serving wenches.

Quality: Beer is very good, and lots of it. Just their stuff, but it is very good quality.

Service: Average at best. No glaring complaints or any bad incidents, but nothing to get excited for.

Selection: Wide variety of taps and beers. Probably close to 20 different beers on tap.

Food: Very, very limited menu with decent hamburgers and menus for all the places that deliver. Do not go for the food.

Value: Prices for beers were great and a great value of the money.

 624 characters

Photo of benito
3.73/5  rDev -10.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 2.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

I grew up in SE Michigan and have known about Dragonmead, which is about 25 minutes from my house. Finally, I made the trip out there.

Their location isn't great: on a service drive of the interstate; I was almost confused into thinking that I'd driven too far and that I'd end up back on the freeway, when I finally caught a small 'Dragonmead' sign out of the corner of my eye.

The interior is small. A classic bar with two separate rooms with tables. I'm a sucker for these types of places and enjoyed the fact that I felt like I'd stumbled upon something special: a small brewpub in a nondescript industrial mall, much like the Fort Collins Brewery or Twin Ports Brewpub in Superior, WI. What the place lakes in glamor, it makes up for--quickly--in character: you walk in and the place screams 'we're about beer first and foremost. everything else is an afterthought.' I came in on a Monday afternoon and only found a few regulars at the bar. The service was incredibly friendly. As I perused the beer menu (they had 29 on tap!), Sherri the bartender offered a few suggestions after asking what styles of beer I enjoyed.

I bought two samplers, each of which came with 5 4-oz selections. Choosing which beers to try was no easy task, but I came in armed with a good series of reviews from BeerAdvocate and a mind to try the field. All of my typical 'beerbar' heuristics were buzzing and signaled that this place ought to be a hit...they had good service, a small and hard to find spot, and lots of beer on tap. Unfortunately, the beer itself I found to be less than enthralling across the board. It was by no means bad, but of the ten brews I tried, I only found one to be exceptional (the Honey Porter). The other nine were Under the Kilt Wee Heavy, Kaiser Kolsch, Nagelweiss Hefe Weizen, Corktown Red, Erik the Red, Big Larry's Pale Ale, Reverend Fred's Oatmeal Stout, Dubbel Dragon, and Bronze Griffin Belgian PA; what I found remarkable was that all nine of these had impressive flavor profiles and a good, if slightly watery body, yet they were marred by a bitter, biting aftertaste. Given that they've got 19 more brews on tap and ten more or so that they rotate in on a regular basis, I can only imagine that they've got their fair share of winners in there; it may have been the choices that I made, but overall, the beers were the most disappointing aspect of my experience.

For sheer novelty, I'll be happy to give Dragonmead a second (and probably third and fourth) chance: it would be a great place to introduce a newbie to a cornucopia of beer styles and the diversity of offerings that they profer is enough to maintain the intrest of even the biggest of beer nerds.

Given the number of American brewpubs that are serving five or six mediocre brews, the ambition of Dragonmead alone is impressive. I'll be back for a second, hopefully tastier, visit in the future.

Update August 2006: I made it for a second visit to Dragonmead while visiting family in SE Michigan. Just as I had anticipated, I was overwhelmed again with the task of choosing a few brews for the (very substantial) sampler. I selected the Final Absolution Trippel, Earl Spit Stout, Castlebrite Apricot Wheat, Imperial Stout, and the Crusader Dark Mild. The Final Absolution, Earl Spit, and Castlebrite were all excellent--the tripel being a truly phenomenal beer, and the RIS and dark mild, like many of their other brews were fine save the biting aftertaste. And, after a second visit, my conclusion is the same as after the first--I can still go back, find five more beers to try, and still have plenty left after that for a fourth visit. Perhaps this is the nature of addiction.

 3,683 characters

Photo of MarcatGSB
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Not the most appealing location or building to the eye, but it's definitely worth the stop.

It looks like it used to be some old Italian Pizzeria or something...kind of a long, banquet style building, typical of what you would see in the Detroit 'burbs.

No food, but they have some snacks for you to chew on...And a huge tap list. They offer every style you can imagine at Dragonmead. English IPA, English Bitter, California Common, Belgian Triple, Russian Imperial Stout...really great to see, and all the beers were very clean and tasty good.

A really hometowny feel to it. I could see some local folks just hanging here because it's a nice warm atmosphere, not really because they are beer geeks.

I'll stop again, I really dug the place. Nothing outrageously special, just good clean beers, and a solid atmosphere.

 824 characters

Photo of wingedeel
3.99/5  rDev -4.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.75

Finally made it to Dragonmead after wanting to come here for years. Huge beer selection, as well as house made mead and wines. I tried the Crown Jewel IPA, and another one whos name escapes me. Both were good, not great. They had a few meads on, my wife enjoyed them. Service was so-so, but we had a nice talk with one of the bottlers. Didn't try the food. A slight disappointment, but glad I finally got to give the place a try.

 429 characters

Photo of DrJay
4.58/5  rDev +10.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

This is a really fun place to go. The fact that it's located on a service road for a major interstate highway in an industrial plaza just adds more excitement to the experience. It's a very relaxed atmosphere, with a large following of locals who show up regularly (at least on weekends).

I've been totally impressed with the quality, and quantity, of beers they keep on tap. About 30 are always available, including one cask, with styles ranging from english ales to belgians to german lagers (along with a number of "experiments" that they're always working on).

Although horribly understaffed when it gets busy, servers are very courteous. Recently my whole table was given a tour of the brewery at about 11pm on a Saturday night, after the rush ended. (They have a very impressive brewing system that allows them to brew a lot of small batches, which makes sense since they keep so many beers on tap at once.)

There are only a few food items available (pretzels, cheese and crackers, etc.) and while they're good (and appreciated), they're not worthy of giving a rating. They do keep a binder full of take-out and delivery places in the area and have absolutely no problem providing plates and utensils if you bring in food.

If you're in the area, or even just passing through, Dragonmead is definitely a spot that you should check out. Easily one of my favourites.

 1,381 characters

Photo of SaisonRichBiere
3.79/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4

Located right off a main freeway makes it an easy destination north of Detroit. They usually have about 45 beers on draft. Solid representations of styles. Crown Jewels is a great British IPA, Final Absolution Trippel is a must-have.

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Photo of FaradayUncaged
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of Agentveba
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of CRJMellor
4.64/5  rDev +11.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Simply can't imagine a better brewpub. Well I can but it would cost way too much money. Spent an afternoon and evening with a buddy there recently and we managed to sample every beer on tap. Something like 33 beers were sampled. Although palate fatigue set in we really did not have 1 "bad" beer in the bunch. The Belgian category was the most memorable with some outstanding beers. Another that was truly outstanding was a Scootish Wee heavy. One of the owners, Bill Wrobel, was nice enough to take 3-4 of us on a tour of the operations and spent some time talking about the set-up including answering some fairly detailed questions from my friend and I regarding their process, flow and capacity.

Everyone beer lover should visit for the beers. Every homebrewer, whether serious or beginner should visit for a tour to see how much you can with with a very little space.

Highly recommended.

 898 characters

Photo of CaptainFleeker
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

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Dragonmead Microbrewery in Warren, MI
3.72 out of 5 based on 1,932 ratings.
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