Beer Revolution

Bar, Beer-to-go

464 3rd St
Oakland, California, 94607-3834
United States

(510) 452-2337 | map

View: Place Reviews
Reviews: 55 | Ratings: 113 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of heymikew
heymikew from California

4.38/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Beer geek refill stop

A must do, major beer place if you're anywhere near 12th Street Bart or Jack London Square.

Great, ever changing selection both on tap and for takeout.

Oct 15, 2016
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mactrail from Washington

2.99/5  rDev -31.9%
vibe: 1.5 | quality: 2.5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5

I liked this place the first couple of years but they seem intent on re-creating yet another Toronado toilet kind of place. It's dark, odiferous, and the bathroom is apparently a playground for unpleasant nine year olds. The sound system is cranked up to painful volume but I couldn't say if it was actually music or something gone wrong with the espresso machine. Only place I have been carded in the Bay Area in thirty years. The deck on the sunny west side is at least a decent place to enjoy a beer if the weather cooperates.

I used to make a special trip here to buy beer, but I keep seeing the same bottles, and the selection seems to get more and more random. You can't read labels without opening the cooler doors and crouching down while people try to get past you. It doesn't look like they've checked on what's on some of those shelves lately. I think I'm done with this place as Oakland is incubating some new brewpubs.

Feb 06, 2016
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mxchap from California

4.43/5  rDev +0.9%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5

One of the best places to grab a beer in the entire bay area.
On the short list of places you should check out if you are visiting the east bay

Vibe: Small and not a whole lot of seating. Not a looker, per se. Lots of great people there though. The hops growing outside and hanging on the ceiling are a nice touch [3.75]
Quality: Seems like the taps are always rotating. Fresh IPAs abound. Never an issue with a bad pour or stale beer. The pricing is pretty fair as well (most beers $6-7, and smaller pours on special releases). [5]
Service: This is a bit variable. I've had some incredible service here, and some terrible. For the most part it has been improving though. Everyone knows their beer [3.5]
Selection: 99% of the time I am really pleased here. Always something new or just an incredibly diverse selection of beers on tap. And don't forget about the bottles! There are some gems in there, and they are affordably priced to drink there ($1 corkage) or to go. [5.0]

Feb 04, 2015
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nmann08 from Virginia

4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

This was a positive surprise spot for us on our San Francisco-Oakland visit. It has inside-outside seating, but really is your typical dive craft beer bar.

The bartenders were all nice, relaxed, and seemed to want to cater to regulars as well as new people. The majority of the taps are hyper-local with some breweries having 6 or 8 different beers represented. They also have several beer coolers that you can buy from and open on premise. The selection in the coolers was great, but no whales if you that is what you are in search of at a bar.

The only negative for me was that it closes at 11pm on a Saturday night. I was disappointed, but it was only because I was enjoying my time there.

Aug 05, 2014
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shivtim from Georgia

4.44/5  rDev +1.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

This is a fantastic spot in Oakland. I was in town for work, and luckily my hotel was only a few blocks away.

First, the selection - about 50 beers on tap, all local/regional. I only saw one thing I can get in Atlanta (Russian River Damnation). The rest were mostly bay area beers from small and small-ish breweries, with a wide selection ranging from a coffee porter to a session IPA to a sour saison. In addition, there are several coolers of bottles that can be taken out or consumed in the bar. An out-of-towner couldn't ask for anything more.

The place itself is solid. Nice little patio out front, and a small number of seats inside, plus a few spots at the bar. Hops on the ceiling; tons of beer and brewery stickers.

Service was good. Bartenders were friendly and offered up suggestions.

Definitely a place to stop if you're in Oakland, or even in the bay area in general.

Jul 14, 2014
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GJ40 from North Carolina

4.03/5  rDev -8.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I stopped by while in the bay area on business. The selection of bottles to purchase and take home is limited with several small coolers arranged in an disorderly way. The tap list is extensive but seems to be so local, that I had a hard time recognizing anything. So I asked for a recommendation and got a decent CA IPA. It's got a great atmosphere filled with serious local beer fans. There's also a deck out front if you want to enjoy the sunshine. It's well worth a stop.

Jun 09, 2014
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dirtylou from New York

4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75

Another really awesome Oakland/EastBay spot - the last stop on a nice little tour of Drakes->Rare Barrel -> Trappist -> Dinner -> Beer Revolution

It was prime time on Saturday night so perusing bottles wasn't very feasible - tap list was overwhelming, perhaps just due to the kaleidoscope of color involved and the large number of drinks already taken down.

Taplist seemed VERY california heavy, which was awesome - lots of stuff I really dont know a whole lot about.

The room had a sweet vibe and the energy was definitely present. This place was really awesome.

Mar 04, 2014
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swarles from California

3.74/5  rDev -14.8%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I went here during beer week and it was pretty crowded, but not annoyingly so. They had a pretty large selection of beers, but it was mainly from only 3 breweries. Fortunately, they said that they change out their selection every week, which is a plus. I had a really awesome Lagunitas Fusion 20, with a really hoppy but relatively smooth taste and an ABV of 9.5%. I think its only a limited time brew which makes me sad, but I was glad to try it.

The atmosphere wasn't really that impressive, but it wasn't bad. A lot of beer stickers all over the place and a nice little patio out front. This place is pretty small so there wasn't a lot of seating available. One really nice thing was that the bartenders were really welcoming and helpful. They couldn't tell you a lot about all of the beers because there are so many and they are always changing, but they did their best. I would definitely go back, but it's not a place I would want to hang out all night.

Feb 27, 2014
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orangesol from Pennsylvania

4.14/5  rDev -5.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Stopped in here yesterday on my way to another event in the area. Kind of has the dive bar feel but it is clearly all about the beer, reminds me of the old version of Shady McGrady's back home. Atmosphere was good. Lots of people sitting outside and a bit less inside. Service was great. Two guys behind the bar helping people choose their beers and explaining them well. Quality was pretty good. All of my beers were served in the correct glasses but the bar overall could use a bit of TLC to smooth out the rough edges. Selection was easily the best part. They had a ton of beer on-tap, even after finding out the entire middle board wasn't available for a few hours. They kept having to explain that to every person who came in, simple fix would be to put a sign on that board...whatever. Lots of bottles in the coolers on the opposite side of the bar, plenty of quality options in there. All of the drafts were $6 which was awesome because I have seen a few of them for much higher at other bars in the area. Overall a really cool spot.

Feb 15, 2014
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Erbayd from California

4.73/5  rDev +7.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Beer Rev is amazing! Definitely one of the best places in the Bay for beer, if not the best. With 48 amazing beers on tap, be prepared to spend time staring at the chalkboards to decide what you're gonna get. The selection is what sets this place apart, as you'll find beers on tap and in bottles here that you just can't get at other bars. They have appropriate glassware for the beers they serve, and it's actually a really good deal too! I mean a 12oz bottle of Older Viscosity can go for sale for $15-20 but at Beer Rev I've had a 10oz glass for $7!

Don't let complaints about the atmosphere stop you because it's part of what makes this place special. Besides, you're coming here for the beer, right? There's dried hop vines on the ceiling and you can spend hours looking at all the awesome decorations on the wall. There's tons of old bottles & cans lining the walls and the tables are barrels with bottle caps embedded on the top. Even the bathroom has a kickass mural painted in it. The outside patio is really great too if the weather is permitting.

There's ample bike parking available and the bar is within walking distance from 12th st BART (and there's the free broadway shuttle). The people here are super chill, and the bar staff have always been helpful with recommending beers. No food here, but you can get some tasty vegan eats at Souley Vegan or the pub next door (which also has an awesome selection). They close early for a bar so keep that in mind.

Sep 27, 2013
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kflorence from Texas

4.59/5  rDev +4.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Located just north of Jack London Square in Oakland. This place is heaven to those who prefer anything strong, hoppy or local. Always a plethora of good stuff on tap here. As others have mentioned, the interior, complete with beer barrel tables and stickers everywhere, is dark and musty and not unlike a neglected basement, but they also have outdoor seating which is quite nice. They cook up some food on occasion but I wouldn't count on eating here, it's mostly just a tap house. This place is generally packed after 3pm so don't be surprised if you find yourself without a seat.

Personally, I like the edge and character of this place and their beer menu keeps me coming back for more. I can see how the atmosphere might turn off some, but if you can get past it you'll realize what a gem this place is. If you're in Oakland and into beer, you absolutely have to go here.

Jul 07, 2013
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RblWthACoz from Pennsylvania

4.44/5  rDev +1.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Beer Revolution is the business. Tons and tons of stuff I have seen stuff here I haven't seen at City Beer. Tap list is good, with plenty to choose from. I remember the first time I came here, I saw a keg of Cantillon near the door. (Not sure if it was empty or full.) I thought, "Yes. This will do." Very helpful staff.

Frankly, I don't think BR is for everyone. It's a bit gritty, and the overall vibe might not appeal to many. However, it appeals just fine to me.

Jun 20, 2013
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BeerAficionadoMCMXC from California

3.3/5  rDev -24.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 2

It was packed, but the beer selection was great. There was a nice little pub next door that I heard was even better. If I could remember the name that might help. The food wasn't worth my time, and the beers were a bit pricey, but perhaps that is the Oakland rate. Overall, I would certainly come back to this place, especially if a lovely lady were accompanying me.

May 19, 2013
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Ilovebeer1549 from California

4.64/5  rDev +5.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75

Stumbled into this place on the way to another place when we heard a buzz of a crowd as we walked by. Asked myself, "why not?" Cool vibe inside. No t.v.'s just beer cans, banners, stickers and bottle caps. Oh ya and 50 beers on tap!! The place is a little bit on the trashy side...just like I like my women. I give it two thumbs up.

May 18, 2013
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CopeTech from California

3.28/5  rDev -25.3%
vibe: 2.75 | quality: 3.25 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 1.5

Atmosphere - Interior is dark and dank, the new space is more open but flavorless. The exterior is more fun but picnic tables with an occasional umbrella forces you to sit too close to people you probably don't want to. But on a sunny weekday afternoon it can be pretty nice.
Quality - Pretty good, I think the owners carea nad are involved, I disgree with many of their choices but ok.
Service - rough, we were turned away from the bar since we also wanted to order food, then the waitress kept routing away from us.
The bottle list here is very good, if you don't like the extensive tap list, the wall of coolers are very good. Teh tap list tends to have 3-6 beers I want, and the taps vary greatly on style and quality.
the new food is weak, poorly cooked and vegan. No stars.

May 01, 2013
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BartholomewRoberts from Washington

2.98/5  rDev -32.1%
vibe: 1 | quality: 2 | service: 3 | selection: 5

The selection is amazing, but this bar proved a terrible disappointment. First, the atmosphere is akin to drinking beer in a dirty, albeit brighter, version of your parents' basement, with the local SCA chapter. The inexcusable part, however, it that they get the beer wrong. My friend's $6 DIPA came in a soapy glass. He didn't drink it. My $7 saison, which was a rare beer that I was excited to try, was flat--not undercarbonated, flat. Clearly, the keg had been mishandled or was too old. And the bouncer (a very nice guy) kicked customers out at 11 pm on a Friday night, which would have been more disappointing if I wasn't ready to leave after 10 minutes. Not a place for people who are serious about beer. More of a clubhouse for a particular hipster subset of the "new Oakland."

Mar 30, 2013
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MilwaukeeCrusher from Wisconsin

4.91/5  rDev +11.8%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

First things first. The owner or manager is a true benefit to craft beer. Many taps and offerings I was unable to count, as I was inundated with beers at the tasting I attended also there. Place had the nice homey pub feel, without being dingy or anything of that sort. This was my first downtown Oakland experience and with the farmer's market it was a good one. Previous to the visit, I asked a brewery owner if the Toronado is really THE place in town. He said to skip and go to Beer Revolution.

Mar 15, 2013
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Hopsiam14 from Minnesota

4.37/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5

I had the chance to visit Beer Rev in March of '12 for their imperial stout fest. What an awesome display of beers. I think there were at least 52 on tap that day and many I had never even heard of before. Servers were nice and knew their beer and service was good considering the volume of customers. Tons of bottle selection as well inside their coolers. I was really impressed with this place and would recommend it to anyone who will be in the area.

Feb 19, 2013
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John_M from Oregon

4.29/5  rDev -2.3%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 5 | service: 3.25 | selection: 4.75

The end of a recent California trip saw us staying at the Inn at Jack London square. As we were pulling into the parking lot, I saw this tiny beer bar across the street that was just packed with people. The thought crossed my mind that this might be a younger event, so I ran right over to see what was up. No younger, as it turned out, but I was far from disappointed by what I saw on offer.

As part of SF beer week, the BR was hosting a Sierra Nevada tap takeover. I about fainted when I saw what was on offer; 48 different SN beers, with 5 vintages of Big Foot. The draft selection was just awesome, and then there looked to be another 300 or some bottled beers as well (with nary an adjunct lager to be seen anywhere). This place is undeniably tiny, with a small indoor bar and table service area, and then a modest size outside patio area as well. There were kegs and beer paraphenelia strewn everywhere inside, and quarters were undeniably tight. Service was OK.... I was there at closing (9:00 on a Sunday), and I think the staff was a bit worn out at the end of a long day. So service was a bit slow, and the staff wasn't exactly gushing with friendliness, but no matter... no one was nasty or unpleasant, and I had no problem with any of the servers here. Prices were fine I thought... all the SN beers were priced at $5 or $6 a glass, served either in a pint glass or tulip.

This place is just outstanding, and I can completely understand the high BA score. I'll definitely be back.

Feb 11, 2013
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DocJitsu from Florida

3.8/5  rDev -13.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

This place is usually pretty busy. They seem to have a following that outdoes the quality, selection, and environment. I think they might be the only beer bar with this many taps and selections of to-go bottles in the East Bay area. The service is usually pretty good. That snotty, know-it-all, impatient quality often found in the service in Bohemian places like Beer Rev was very noticeably absent. This was a huge plus. Prices are fairly reasonable. Only one bathroom. And it is a unisex. It's a tight fit inside the bar. The only reason I'd give it an above average on environment is that it has outdoor seating. Of course, in that part of Oakland, there's not a lot to look at out there. They close early and sometimes, whenever they choose. They have a huge variety of tap beers that get rotated regularly. They offer several different options of to-go bottles, but the bottle beers aren't anything impressive. Some are obscure, but none that are remarkably sought after. Pliny the Elder seems to sell out pretty quickly.

Oct 29, 2012
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Morgan-makes-Cloud from California

4.86/5  rDev +10.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

I love this place so much. The staff is knowledgeable and clearly cares about every beer they have. For having as many beers as they have they know their brews each one they kind describe vividly and thy get into your head enough to know what you want.

One of the best things about this place is that all the beers on tap are between $4 - $6. Really it's beer for the people. They always have different beers which is good and bad, I have often come in for a hankering for a particular beer only to find that it is no longer there in a 6 day period.

Another great thing about this place is that it has an outside patio. The inside sometimes gets a little too crowded and has that musty beer smell which adds to the atmosphere in my opinion.

This place is a great place to go on a beautiful day and for me is one of my regular staples. it's places like this that make Oakland's beer scene superior even to San Francisco, which has great places but not places with this kind of character and "for the people" mentality.

Oct 04, 2012
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BenHesk12 from California

4.58/5  rDev +4.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Beer Revolution has 47 taps, most of which are hand selected american microbrew, including many local selections from small breweries you won't find anywhere else. The staff is friendly and helpful, and it seems like every single beer is between $5-7 for big pours. They sell cold bottled beer and only charge a dollar to drink it there. I saw on the wall they have an active calendar of events which I will enjoy coming back for. The atmosphere is typical of a dive bar, no windows, and they use old wooden barrels as tables. This place is just about what you would expect for downtown Oakland and is walking distance from Bart. If youre in the Bay Area and you're into beer more than scene, I say skip San Francisco and go straight to Beer Revolution.

Mar 19, 2012
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elNopalero from California

4.94/5  rDev +12.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

I remember coming here shortly after they opened and being one of a handful of folks at the bar. On my first visit I think it was just me and my drinking companion, and we closed down the bar. But even then I knew I was on to something special.
Flash forward two years and a lot has changed. This place is perpetually busy. I recently visited the Bay and stopped by mid-week in the afternoon and was surprised to see so many people present in-between lunch and happy hour. They’ve expanded their tap selection so there’s now an overwhelming number of options and started using “better”/proper glassware (no more glass mugs!). Prices seem to have gone up a buck across the board, but their prices are consistent with the market. Their “corkage” fee remains unchanged, thankfully, and there’s several treats along the coolers too. (Jester King in California!)

Coming from a self-described beer geek I was thrilled to find so many brews to choose from! However, I could use some help in the future—not just ABV but style or tasting notes would help, without me (or my at times indecisive drinking companion) burdening the bartender with questions or requests for samples. The vibe is pretty laid back, at least during the day time. (I haven’t been by in the evening or on a weekend in over a year so I can’t speak to the crowding.) Will I be back next time I’m in Oakland? Of course I will.

Mar 05, 2012
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Seanibus from California

4.08/5  rDev -7.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Not so much exciting as a bottle shop (not terrible though), but the tasting room is amazing - dozens of high quality, unusual taps. If you can't find something you like, you don't like beer. If you can't find something you haven't tried, you get out way too much.

The place is a little grungy-looking, with dark wood and worn looking furniture (there are several outside picnic tables s well).

The bottle shop portion is a couple of coolers across the back wall, with a few small room-temperature shelves. It looked to be a better import selection than domestic and the prices struck me as just a hair over the average in this market.

The nice thing is, however, that you can buy a bottle and drink it right there. But why would you bother with such a great tap list behind the bar.

Staff seems friendly and super casual.

Note that no minors are allowed, so don't even think about bringing the kids.

Jan 08, 2012
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stupac2 from California

4.94/5  rDev +12.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

How haven't I reviewed Beer Revolution? That just doesn't seem right, considering the number of times I've been there. Regardless, this is the best beer destination in the East Bay, and I'd put it up there in whole Bay Area. Over 40 taps, always good stuff on, and almost never over $6. Serving sizes can be ridiculous, last night I ordered a BA Black Marlin, expecting a 12-oz pour at most, and got a full pint. You'll always feel like you're your money's worth, that's for sure.

They do multiple events weekly, usually things like "Meet the Brewer" with various local or not-so-local brewers, and feature a lineup of their beers. Taplists are often, but not always, posted on FB. They usually update when they get special bottles in too, and bottles seem to last longer than most places (a bunch of Eclipse is still on the shelves, for instance). The bottle selection is very good, obviously not as much as a true bottle shop, but it's plausibly the best in Oakland.

But the best part is the staff. All very friendly, I've had long discussions with several. Fraggle, one of the owners, is extremely accommodating. There is a regular BA tasting that they allow us to do there, and provide glasses, dump buckets, water, etc. It's above-and-beyond, and extremely appreciated.

Finally, while they don't make any food themselves, there are often food trucks or stands set up. I've had several tasty pulled pork sandwiches from a cart on the patio. They also allow food to be brought from anywhere, and have partnerships with at least one local place to deliver food to the bar.

Dec 29, 2011
Beer Revolution in Oakland, CA
Place rating: 4.39 out of 5 with 113 ratings