Strange Roots Experimental Ales

Strange Roots Experimental AlesStrange Roots Experimental Ales
Strange Roots Experimental AlesStrange Roots Experimental Ales
Brewery, Bar, Eatery, Beer-to-go

501 E Ohio St
Millvale, Pennsylvania, 15209-2671
United States | map

View: Beers | Place Reviews
Reviews: 16 | Ratings: 47 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Seebeej:
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Seebeej from Massachusetts

5/5  rDev +14.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Dec 17, 2016
More User Reviews:
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Pinz412 from Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Jun 10, 2020
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slasich from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -8.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

May 16, 2020
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wvsabbath from West Virginia

4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5

Feb 16, 2020
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rolltide from Pennsylvania

5/5  rDev +14.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Best place in Pittsburgh... Going back next weekend for tacofest!

Jun 24, 2018
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tdm168 from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -8.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Mar 18, 2018
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Jon-Bon-Jovi from Pennsylvania

4.9/5  rDev +12.4%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75

Great place with great employees. They have a wide variety of sour beers that are all very unique to the Pittsburgh area.

Dec 07, 2017
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oriolesfan4 from Maryland

3.93/5  rDev -9.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75

Oct 05, 2017
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krbrevard from Virginia

4.1/5  rDev -6%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4

Truth be told; I am not into Belgian beers. Or sours. Let alone open air fermenting of a Belgian sours. Even though I am not too fond of the styles this place purveys, it is like no other brewery I have been to in a good way. It is a must try if you are in the Pittsburgh area and are a fan of the idea of craft beer.

Jul 08, 2017
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emptyglassagain from Massachusetts

3.93/5  rDev -9.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 2.5

Only wild beers which hurts the selection score I suppose but I was very happy here. Cool vibe and great people along with some pretty good beers. The new kitchen gets them some bonus points too. If you like sour, wild, funky beers this is definitely your place. If you don't then you are missing out it should at least give it a shot.

Jun 30, 2017
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KatieIPO from Pennsylvania

4.07/5  rDev -6.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.5

Jun 14, 2017
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Sabtos from Ohio

4.22/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

This is a cool, rustic spot with a really nice vibe indoors and a cool little partly shaded beer garden outside. Seating is mostly open and communal and would be a really chill spot to hang, but it was a little hectic when we visited due to a little food truck festival. The bar shape and size wasn't great for crowd control, but I don’t think this is the normal situation and its likely an otherwise quaint and mellow bar.

Service was outstanding despite the large, bustling crowd, and even with the wait the bartenders would try to give as complete a description of what you were ordering as possible without taking too much time. They were all knowledgeable and helpful.

Quality of everything we had was very good, unique if not delicious. Beers ranged from a banana sour, to a raspberry Berliner, and a few indigenous and prototype Saisons that all had their own characteristics. There's not many places like this in the tri-state area, especially doing things this well.

Jun 12, 2017
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cesutherland from Pennsylvania

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Jun 02, 2017
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heddar33 from Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

May 21, 2017
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mcpat1993 from Pennsylvania

4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75

Feb 10, 2017
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Zonian1 from Ohio

4.22/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Stop #2/7 on our Pittsburgh brewery weekend. It was too early for dinner (we heard the food was good), so we sat at the bar and ordered a flight. An excellent selection of sour and wild beers. If you want to learn more about this style of beer, then you should visit Draai Laag. The servers seemed very knowledgeable about the offerings and the styles. This is a place I would go to frequently if I lived in the Pittsburgh area. Definitely worth a visit!

Feb 04, 2017
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Cylinsier from Pennsylvania

4.62/5  rDev +6%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5

I go to this place fairly often, the main space is a small tap room with a bar and several tables. There is an outside space that more than doubles seating when it is warm enough. The feel is cozy and a bit rustic. There are games on a shelf. The location is also welcoming to families although I don't think they have high chairs.

In terms of quality, it's all top notch here, but everything is a wild or wild-inspired beer, so it's a somewhat narrow appeal.* If you like sours like lambics, flemish, or famrhouse beers, then there will ALWAYS be plenty for you to choose from. On the other hand, there is basically nothing for people looking for other types of beer here. That's what they have set out to do.

Service is top notch, keep in mind it's a tap house so you're expected to order at the bar. That said, they check on you at your table often. They don't serve food but they pair up with a food truck almost every day, and that food truck serves food through the bar for buying convenience, but usually brings the food to you. Bar staff is friendly, be sure to ask for the story of how they got their relic yeast strain!

The selection is exclusively Draai Laag. They have around 10 taps and a few of those rotate very regularly. You're almost guaranteed to have a few new options every time you visit. They experiment regularly too and have some sought-after seasonals.

Overall this is a great place to check out so long as you are into wild fermented beers. It's all very consistent with flemish styles and these beers could stand up to those any day of the week. If you're looking for something outside that range, you won't find it here. Nevertheless, this place is developing a strong following and will probably start to gain national recognition in the near future and become a draw for beer tourists.

*Note as of late 2017 there are non-sour options regularly available

Nov 06, 2016
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yergermeister from Pennsylvania

3.89/5  rDev -10.8%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Oct 03, 2016
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Ryan15237 from Pennsylvania

4.9/5  rDev +12.4%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5

Aug 07, 2016
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mirvana from Pennsylvania

4.63/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4

If you like sours and wild ales, this is your heaven. Their repertoire shows a wonderful range within that particular style, and everything that I've tasted is a well-developed well-crafted end product. This is my current favorite place in Pittsburgh to drink beer, where this style is not that popular, and hard to come by. My only complaint is that they don't have much for you if sour is not your thing.

Jul 29, 2016
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burnstar from Pennsylvania

4.6/5  rDev +5.5%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5

Low key and surprisingly somewhat fancy for the not so fancy Millvale. Easy to get to right off the exit from 28. Also a great place to chill before seeing a show at Mr. Smalls, a local concert venue (I saw Guided by Voices after my first trip to Draai Laag, which I'll never forget) There's no food but there is often a food truck parked out front- so I ended up getting some pretty stellar greasy breakfast food while here (shout out to Second Breakfast). There's a pleasant outdoor seating are that's near the highway but shielded nicely. It's pretty awesome to have a local brewery specializing in Wild Ales. I had 4 beers and had some sips of others that my wife tried and all were pretty solid. Service was very good and friendly. They had about 8 beers on tap- all sour. Great place- very glad to have it nearby.

Jul 10, 2016
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qcbrewer from North Carolina

4/5  rDev -8.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Jun 30, 2016
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BigRizz62 from Maryland

4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25

Excellent Belgian beers scene brewed on premise. Only drawback no food truck the night I was there

Feb 25, 2016
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ArtAttackEd from Pennsylvania

5/5  rDev +14.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Feb 16, 2016
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LisaPPitMom from Pennsylvania

4.63/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.25

Belgian, complex, quirky, intelligent, fun, hospitable. The only watering hole of our 30-year marriage; we're not bar folk. Two steps off of Rt 28, and effectively the gateway to Millvale. Been open Thurs-Sat with some holiday exceptions and additions. Small parking lot and plenty of free on-street parking. On FB and website is recently-updated. Cool connections to local history: Draai Laag means turncoat, which relates to Simon Girty--a 1700s historical figure for whom Girty's run (runs through Millvale) is named.

Beer: 8 taps, frequent rotation, no growlers, plenty of bottles including some aged. Rouge de Noël (wild cider collab with Arsenal, 7.8%) satisfies my nonhoppy beer-loving, cider-appreciating, complexity-craving palate. R2 Koelschip is their session beer (4.2%, farmhouse). Cru, Haviken, and Ragnarok are "center wheelhouse." St. Angus makes a fabulous (9.7%) winter warmer. Absolutely love the printed extended descriptions of each beer--check them out if you're new, and definitely ask for a taste if you're not sure. Staff are knowledgeable and super friendly. Really enjoy playful collaborations--most recently with Arsenal Cider and with Caliente. Seems like there's been a trend towards sours, this past year. Love how they seek new wild critters for use in brewing.

I've met several people by the food trucks who were in or passing through Millvale towards concerts, some of whom have expressed dismay that there's not a simple pils or IPA on the board. Guessing that answering that need might broaden the clientele.

Atmosphere: doesn't matter much, they're renovating. Closed for January, 2016. Was dark, simple. The bar sat 9-10 and there were maybe 28 seats. The simple open-air Biergarten (added mid-2015) was designed by RISD grad Bruce Thurman: strung lights; high-top, standard table, and picnic seating (some covered); gravel floor; view of St. Nick's (the one with the fabulous political murals)--you can hear the bells. Great place to sit and sip and watch the sky darken. Hoping the reno will maintain low-key, no-TV, games-on-the-table emphasis on the beer and conversation. (We asked for shade structures, trolls, and hammocks. Got the shade structure, and Ryan's promising one troll, but no hammocks....)

Food: in the past, intermittent food trucks and Black Shepherd Farms. During Dec 2015, food on site 6/16 nights. Not sure what's coming after the renovation, but hoping for consistent food options--esp with an average ABV of about 8.

Those who value Belgians, sours, brains, conversation and some whimsical adventure will enjoy Draai Laag most. Close to my heart, as you can tell.

Jan 10, 2016
Strange Roots Experimental Ales in Millvale, PA
Brewery rating: 3.93 out of 5 with 1079 ratings