The Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production Works

The Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production WorksThe Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production Works
Liked Their Beers
3.7 w/ 5,420 ratings
The Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production WorksThe Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production Works

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

8377 Pearl Road
Strongsville, Ohio, 44136
United States

(440) 239-8788 | map

AKA - The Brew Kettle Production Works

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Ratings: 174 |  Reviews: 79
Reviews by slander:
Photo of slander
4.14/5  rDev -3.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

In Ohio, somewhere; and Witzel will take what credit and/or blame will be (fucking Witzel), we’ll know what’s what in a bit. Driving in from Cleveland, you can tell Ed is getting a bit tense; his GPS telling us we’re growing more minutes away as we get physically closer. And of course, the snow unexpected didn’t help any. Circled a small strip mall looking for parking, hoping to stay dry...

Seems a double wide, but damn it runs deep. Entered from the near side, and moved through the seating, dodging the hostess twinkie, to the far side bar side. Your usual strip mall industrial space, exposed piping & ductwork above. Beige walls with brewerania galore! 2 or 3 rows of old trays lined above placards, pictures, prints & pieces, and then growlers, glassware, and bottles running the length atop. All sorts of shit. And holiday lighting strung as it is the season, or was then, anyway.

On the far wall, a long “L” shaped stained copper topped sheet bar with a wood lip and piping foot rail. Seating for 18 or so on backed chairs. Barback is copper counter space with a pair of bar towers of 12 each and a 6 pack more alongside, over drainage with slight tiered boozings in between and glassware and keggery below. A trio of blackboards dangle above the taps listing beer, ABV’s, IBU’s, serving size & price. I put a lookin’ on them. Tap handles displayed atop to both sides of a (ahem) mounted deer tail. Wood shelving on both ends of the barback unit with glassware, a few football helmets displayed, and shot glasses lining the up high. Flatscreens in the bar corners, and another to the rear. Sad handpump on the bar doin’ nothing.

A dozen booths along the wall adjacent to the bar running to the rear, plus a ½ dozen tables down past the bar. Drop pan lamps over the seating. Bottling commotion of some sort to the rear of the rear. I went back there to investigate and it was a Crazytown brew on premise scene. No, no, serious. Front room holds about 2 dozen booths & tables, in the front windows, up and around the door and around past, as leads to the wine side of things. And I’m hearing there’s some distillery action happening here, too. Busy busy.

30 taps in all, 1/5 of them are house offerings (TBK Dark Helmet Black Lager, Red Eye Pale Ale, Big Woody Helles, Irish Red, 4 C’s Pale Ale, Copper Head Red), and the remainder are a mix of mostly American craft beer from coast to coast (Ommegang Seduction, Southern Tier Unearthly, Weyerbacher Winter Ale, Victory Storm King Stout, DogFishHead Chicory Stout, Thirsty Dog Wee Heavy, Great Divide Hibernation Ale, Avery Joe’s Pilsner & The Czar, Bells Double Cream Stout, Jolly Pumpkin Noel de Calabaza, Dark Horse Too Cream Stout, 21st Amendment Allies Win the War, North Coast Old Rasputin, Lagunitas A Little Sumpin Wild Ale, Lucky 13 Alt, & Old Gnarlywine, Coronado Orange Ale Wit, Rogue Yellow Snow IPA, Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA, Stone/Bruery/Elysian La Citrueille Celeste de Citracado Pumpkin Ale), with a few imports (De Proef To Ol Snowball Saison Ale, St Bernardus Christmas Ale), and a single cider (Wyders Dry Pear Cider), thrown in the mix.

You can play the sampler game, 5 minimum, each beer priced on a scale of $1.50-$3.50; I will be doing just that. Planned on sampling all 6 house beers but the Copperhead Red had kicked so there will be 5, which would be not as many (Dark Helmet, 8%, boozy for a black lager; Red Eye Pale Ale, a hoppy amber, citrus, good malt backbone; Big Woody, a nice clean German Helles, I do like; Irish Red, malty, caramel, sweety; Four C’s Pale Ale, Cascade, Chinook, Centennial, Columbus, decent bite, not bad). The Big Woody helles, Red Eye Pale Ale, and Irish Red were the best of ‘em. Ed drank an Ommegang Seduction (Yep, came to a brewpub and didn’t sample their wares). He had wanted to go to some place he saw on a TV show when he was a kid and always dreamed of going to, and I squashed that dream and ran us here. To be fair, the place he wanted to hit was in the wrong direction from everything everywhere ever.

Enjoyed most of what I had in the way of their beer, and apparently this is some kind of a BBQ house. We could’ve done better homework and started our day here, is all I’m saying. Good fun crowd barside. Nearly everyone there has made beer in that back room. I need to revisit this again sometime.

 4,371 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of Mothergoose03
4.21/5  rDev -1.9%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Photo of will23188
4.19/5  rDev -2.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Photo of Marzen_Fan
4.24/5  rDev -1.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Photo of mkyer
3.91/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4 | food: 4

A real gem. A good selection of house beers as well as a variety of guest beers, including some from Ohio. The smoked chicken wings are great, and the walls are lined with a collection of beer trays.

 199 characters

Photo of MI_beerdrinker
3.96/5  rDev -7.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25 | food: 3.75

Photo of Coho11
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of CPAles
4.09/5  rDev -4.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Photo of LaGuarns
3.88/5  rDev -9.6%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.25 | food: 3.75

Photo of bcgeiman
3.68/5  rDev -14.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of ineburg
4.84/5  rDev +12.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5 | food: 5

friggin awesome place! I love TBK

33 characters

Photo of TrapJaw77
4.34/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.75

Overall great experience.

25 characters

Photo of buschbeer
4.1/5  rDev -4.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.25

Photo of Doublicious
4.05/5  rDev -5.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of glass_house
3.99/5  rDev -7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 3.75

Photo of Brenden
4.53/5  rDev +5.6%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.75

Notes are from 12/28/15, second time I've stopped there off of I-80 between OH and NY

Settled into a parking lot just off the thruway on a main strip in Strongsville, it's got a new brick/old school feel to it as part of a small strip next to an affiliated wine shop. It's bigger on the inside, or so it seems, as it takes up continuing space you can't really see from outside. It's cluttered by in a homey sort of way. In front is the merchandising, host's desk, counter with the register and some beer coolers behind it, to the left and middle the booths and tables. A large industrial steel door, open when the brewpub is, separates a large bar area with more tables and a lot more clutter. A large chalkboard displaying Brew Kettle beers on tap and in bottles as well as the dozens of guest taps and bottles is on a wall in each section.
The service has been good both times I've been, and the staff is both friendly and generally quick. It can be very busy in there, and they still come back pretty regularly.
The beer was excellent, and there was a great selection to choose from of great quality both from Brew Kettle and otherwise. The sample paddle was great, with an informative numbered list that made selection fast and simple, and you can then correlate the number on the paddle with the numbers on the list in front of you.
The food exceeded expectations by a wide margin. I was prepared for good food, but this went beyond that. It is some of the most impressive food, smoked or otherwise, that I've had at a brewpub.

 1,543 characters

Photo of Brian29
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Photo of capt93
3.93/5  rDev -8.4%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.75

Photo of erk0607
4.2/5  rDev -2.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.5

Love the Brew Kettle, if it weren't for the wait, I'd go there all the time. Unfortunately, it's always packed and there is almost always a wait, no matter when you go in and whether you opt of the bar or for a table somewhere... which I guess is a good indicator of what they offer. That said, I don't quite think it's worth a 45 minute wait or more to get a beer and a meal. The food is really good, decently priced, and there's a lot of options, especially when it comes to some of the more unique things like BBQ spaghetti w/ pulled pork or the messy pulled pork salad.

 575 characters

Photo of Sabtos
3.95/5  rDev -7.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

The building is a little confusing at first. Where is the entrance--front or back? Once you realize the entrance is in the front, where is the door? Well the door is to the left, but not the leftmost door. Where the hell is the bar once you enter the door? It's a very odd set up, with a wide open and awkward seated area directly next to a checkout counter in front of the entrance. This area is strewn with brewing tchotchkes to keep your eyes busy if you happen to be waiting in line for something special.

The bar is a short walk to the left in a separate room, and it seems relatively long when it's not busy, with a dividing wall that leads into a different room with additional space. When it's busy, the bar area will get jam packed, so scooch on up and get settled. Once you do this, The Brew Kettle grows on you as you realize the respect they have for quality brews, which allows them to have a strong draw for the rarer, finer things out there.

Their tap list largely consists of half their own stuff, sometimes even less, which is all top notch. The other half includes a few ciders and meads, often a few of those are either not easy to come by or else are thing you might not have wanted to buy off the shelf due to price. The rest of the tap list is a good, strong selection of highly regarded, smaller batch brews from elsewhere--state-, country- and worldwide. They very often have a lineup of at least three or four beers from a single brewery, which is pretty cool if you want to see how they stack up to the Brew Kettle's work.

Food here is "bbq" and is plentiful, but having spent a lot of time in the South, I wouldn't necessarily call it authentic or good. Is it edible, even enjoyable? Sure. But anyone coming from the South would be highly disappointed by the lack of smoke and the dryness of most of it. The chicken wings were my favorite, but you're safest sticking with chili and burgers and the like. There are plenty of options on their huge menu either way.

Service is attentive and knowledgeable.

 2,033 characters

Photo of DrJGR629
4.69/5  rDev +9.3%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.75

Photo of a_beckman25
4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Photo of ejimhof
3.63/5  rDev -15.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

Photo of TominGermany
3.83/5  rDev -10.7%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

The ultimate mess salad (topped with pulled pork and cole slaw was excellent (according to my wife) and the smoked wings were also very tasty (according to my taste buds). I sampled four of their beers with the Big Woody Lager coming out on top. They have a good selection of other beers that you can sample. All in all a good place to stop if you are driving along I-80.

 373 characters

Photo of Gregf51
4.23/5  rDev -1.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

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The Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production Works in Strongsville, OH
Brewery rating: 81.7% out of 100 with 5,420 ratings
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