Rio Salado Brewing Company


Awaiting 10 Ratings
Rio Salado Brewing CompanyRio Salado Brewing Company

Type: Brewery, Bar

1520 W Mineral Rd
Tempe, Arizona, 85283-4354
United States

(480) 755-1590

// CLOSED //

No notes at this time.

Added by mzwolinski

View: Beers | Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 4 | Ratings: 4
Reviews by bleeng:
Photo of bleeng
3/5  rDev -21.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3

A big loss in the Phoenix market.
A big loss in the Phoenix market.

 532 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of grumpy
3.18/5  rDev -17.2%
vibe: 2 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 2.5

Visited this establisment in November of 2003. Surprised it has only three previous reviews, as it is in a major metro area. I will echo the previous submitters - it's a small, plain taproom occupying part of a warehouse in an industrial area. A bit hard to find. Sort of a new, clean, hole-in-the-wall. As we entered the taproom, we were warmly greeted by a young woman. A stylized version of our conversation follows.

Me: "Whacha' got on tap today?"

She: "Well, we have our Light Ale, our Lighter Ale, our Lightest
Ale, our Fruity, Namby-Pamby Girlie Beer, our Really Tasteless Wheat Beer, and Redzilla."

"Yikes and Yuck." I thought to myself. "We drive all over to find this place and the best beer they have on tap MIGHT be as good as Killian's Irish Red?"

Desperate to avoid the awkward moment of walking out beerless in front of a handfull of patrons, even more desperate to quaff a brew, and ever optimistic (not...), I continued the exchange.

Me: "What is Redzilla?"

She: "Oh, that's our Barley Wine."

Me: "Thank God. We'll have two."

And a good Barley Wine it was. Quintessential American style - hop-forward, with a good base of sweet, caramel malt. In fact, I had to have a second.

OK, an explanation of the scores.

Atmosphere - 'nuff said.
Quality - I had only the Redzilla. If I were reviewing it, I would score it 4.0, or higher, in all categories. I'm shamelessly marking down a notch because the other beers were unapproachable.
Service - Friendly and competent
Selection - Redzilla saved the day here, avoiding an even lower score. I can't imagine any serious BeerAdvocate having any interest in any other beer available that day.
Food - Didn't sample it.
Value - Nice Barley Wine at a fair market price.

Conclusion: I probably shouldn't even review this place after such a limited sampling of their wares, but any establishment that brews a good Barley Wine rates a mention. I notice, also, that they apparently make several other seasonals. Next time I'm in the Phoenix metro area, I'll give them a call and inquire about what's on tap. If it sounds interesting, a return visit is in order.

 2,149 characters

Photo of mzwolinski
4.43/5  rDev +15.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Don't get turned off by the drive there. The route I took me to led me through the barrio, and no matter which path you take, the brewery is located in a hard-to-find spot in the middle of an industrial park.

Inside, however, is a different story. This is probably the first brewpub I've been in that feels more like a home than a bar. It has a multo-room layout, with the bar in one room, a "living room" with couches and a few tables, and another room with a pool table and the obligatory Golden Tee. Very comfy -- designed for hanging out with your friends after work.

The staff and clientele are great too. This is a good place to go to get away from the college crowd. Kat was the bartender while I was working, and topped off my beer several times on the house (it was a new keg and she had to pout a half a pitcher or so before she could get any decent beer).

When I went, there were 8 beers on tap. Most were lagers, but there's more here than just the standard pilsner fare. My favorite was their anniversary doppelschwarz, a dark porter-like beer with a characteristically crisp lager finish.

No food here, but a very comfortable and relaxed place to drink some hard to find styles. Quite worth the visit.

 1,236 characters

Photo of astrobrewer
4.74/5  rDev +23.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Rio Salado Brewing Co. has been one of my favorite beer hangouts since their tasting room opened. The brewery is located in an industrial park off the beaten path. As a result they don't get people just wandering in for a beer. This is great because everyone in there is there for good, craft-brewed beer.

Inside the tasting room is very friendly and relaxing. There is no smoking and no loud music (except when they have live musicians on weekend evenings), so it is a great place to meet people and have conversations you can actually hear.

The beers are German-style lagers and ales, and the quality of the beer is very good. My favorite is their Maerzen which they call Monsoon Lager. It is a well-balanced amber Oktoberfest-style beer with a very clean, refreshing taste. I think that it is one of the best Maerzen beers around. I also like Rio Salado's Schwarz Beer, a German Dark Lager that they call their Thunderhead Lager. It is a black as a stout, but with a smooth, clean, malty, lager taste. Micro-brewed lagers are rare to begin with, and this is a very unusual beer that has to be tasted. Rio Salado also has Kolsch, Hefeweizen, a Pilsner and a Helles Bock among others. They typically have six to eight of their house beers on tap, and they are all good.

I highly recommend visiting the Rio Salado taproom for anyone who enjoys quality beer and meeting others with the same interest.

 1,426 characters

Rio Salado Brewing Company in Tempe, AZ
0 out of 5 based on 0 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.