Ardent Craft Ales

Ardent Craft AlesArdent Craft Ales
Ardent Craft AlesArdent Craft Ales
Brewery, Bar, Beer-to-go

3200 W Leigh St
Richmond, Virginia, 23230-4410
United States

(804) 359-1605 | map

View: Beers | Place Reviews
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Ratings by vabeerguy:
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Rated by vabeerguy from Virginia

3.92/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Feb 16, 2017
More User Ratings:
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Reviewed by BilboBagginses from Virginia

4.64/5  rDev +14.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5
My favorite brewery in rotating suite of beers, from juicy IPAs to refined sours, to lagers...despite the wide variety there is consistent balance in their beers. They aren't exaggerate styles or trends, but instead using fun ideas and craft patience to produce really tasty beer. The vibe is really nice and laid back with a fun outdoor space and cozy industrial indoor space. Service varies a bit depending on how busy they are, but super nice folks who are always looking to make you have a fun time or chat about their latest beers.
Apr 07, 2021
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Reviewed by JohnBarleycorn22 from Virginia

5/5  rDev +23.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5
I love Ardent! Best outdoor beer garden in the neighborhood, and we love that they take covid precautions seriously. Their variety of beers is so refreshing, making top shelf lagers all year on top of the IPAs you'd expect. Now that they serve food, wine, and cider in the beer garden too, it's easy to bring any group for a visit.
Mar 19, 2021
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Reviewed by slander from New York

4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25
Seems like we’ve been in Richmond for dozens of hours now, but it’s really only our second day here and we’re at the tail end of it winding down, me thinks. Really, it’s been a loooooooooooooooooong day with much adventure. We Uber’d to Ardent from the ‘scary but delicious chicken place’ (not how they advertise it). Just an observation but (Evil) Davo may or may not have become completely unmanageable; it’s not for me to say, more than twice, loudly, and with exclamation points…

Enter in through the outdoor deck, a single long room. Boomerang shaped light wood bar on the back wall, stained horizontal wood plank base, and a piping foot rail; seating for 10 on them squared stools people sit on nowadays. A pair of 10 non-descript handled tap towers on the barback with sampler trays in between and glassware boxed on the ends. A single shelf above with glassware running the length. Taps listed on slat boards in alt colored chalkings above (beer, ABV, IBU, and shorty & full pour pricing) on a bamboo pattern looking barback piece.

Cinderblock outer walls with caged & paneled windows and an inner gray-blue painted space around the bar proper. Concrete floors with remnants of whatever covered it once ago, and a rafter ceiling with planking above the bar. Ductwork & skylightish pieces outward. Spotlights on the draft boards, recessed singles over the bar, drop cylinder lamps over the seating, and pans across the floor. A baker’s dozen tables with benches and metal chairings along the perimeter of the room, and bar counter space on a garage door up front space seating 7 on squared stools. Views of the brew room and swag shop from here.

9 beers on tap just now (Saison, 6.7%; IPL, 4.6%; Robust Porter, 6%; Honey Ginger, 7.8%; Mexican Lager, a collab with Dssolvr, 4.9%; Ardent Pilsner, 5%; IPA 14, 6.8%; IPA X, 7.1%; Hazy IPA, 7.8%), as the American sour with peaches and dry hopped Session Saison had both selfishly kicked. So only 3 of 9 were IPA’s (thank you!) I drank the Robust Porter (chocolatey, coffee, good roastiness), IPA 14 (Citra, grapefruit), & IPA X (Citra & Mosaic, tropical fruit). Beers were of the good variety (we likey). Crowls & growls for the fill; bottles & cans in a cooler past the far end of the bar.

Just short of 2 dozen black mesh metal squared tables and picnics outside in the tiered beer garden. Some are umbrealla’d up, others not so much. Strung lighting, a food truck, and a dog named Benjamin. I hazily recall some talk of shrimp tacos and then Davo disappeared. He might have literally just faded away, not sure. Wednesday last call at 9 something was probably for the best with our group. Solid beers, good house.
Jan 23, 2020
Rated: 4.01 by MikeM75 from Virginia

Sep 09, 2019
Rated: 3.98 by macshark from Virginia

Jul 29, 2019
Rated: 3.98 by gabe71tx from Virginia

Jun 17, 2019
Rated: 3.89 by needMIbeer from Virginia

Mar 11, 2019
Rated: 4 by Matt23 from Virginia

Feb 21, 2019
Rated: 4.05 by Gkruszewski from New York

Feb 15, 2019
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Reviewed by JamFuel from Sweden

4.32/5  rDev +6.7%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25
Located in Scott's Addition. Medium sized indoor space and a large patio. The bar seats about 12, and plenty of tables. Vibe is casual and laid back, way less hipstery than say The Veil.

Tap list is about 12-13 strong and very varied. Everything from pilsner to IPAs are available. What struck me is that there are few "trendy" beers here. Yes, there are a couple of IPAs, but even they are more traditional and focused on balance and quality. Everything I tried was at least very solid with the pilsner being the highlight, one of the best American pilsners I've tried.

Service was excellent, but what set Ardent apart a bit was that I started talking to the guy next to me, who happened to be co-founder Tom. Tom was just a great guy, happy to talk about beer and seemed to be really interested in his customers. As a bonus, he let me try their sour, which I really enjoyed. I will return here if I make it back to Richmond again.

Overall, if you just want a few really nice beers without having to wade through 8 almost identical NE IPAs, Ardent is for you. Great place!
Dec 31, 2018
Rated: 4.14 by james24 from Virginia

Nov 09, 2018
Rated: 3.86 by SonOfKyuss from Virginia

Nov 03, 2018
Rated: 3.9 by PhineasMcClintock from Massachusetts

Oct 04, 2018
Rated: 4.13 by StevoQ452 from Virginia

Aug 06, 2018
Rated: 3.95 by Yeeuh from Virginia

Aug 05, 2018
Rated: 4.07 by NotAlcoholicJustAHobby from Vermont

Jun 14, 2018
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Rated by CChafin from Virginia

4.26/5  rDev +5.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4
Nice unexpected beers, not the typical styles. Creative, a very nice change of pace.
Apr 22, 2018
Rated: 3.92 by heddar33 from Pennsylvania

Apr 20, 2018
Rated: 4.47 by jmnobile from Virginia

Nov 22, 2017
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Reviewed by Knapp85 from Pennsylvania

4.21/5  rDev +4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4
Stopped here to meet up with a friend of mine who works at the brewery. We got to try a lot of the beers they had on tap along with some of their recent bottled stuff too. There are some beers that were more impressive than others but none of them were terrible. Don't go here expecting to really get some crazy hyped NE-IPA... that's not really their game. They tend to stick to more traditional styles it seems and that's fine if that is what you like or in the mood for. They had a rather large crowd with some music and a food truck there serving up some interesting seafood. I was impressed that Ardent had the largest crowd of people of all the breweries I hit within Richmond. Props to them though, I dug the place and would return in the future.
Oct 14, 2017
Rated: 4.06 by gregmyster from Virginia

Sep 22, 2017
Rated: 3.93 by mpmcguire11 from Rhode Island

Sep 08, 2017
Rated: 5 by burq from Virginia

Sep 05, 2017
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Reviewed by DoubleSimcoe from Pennsylvania

3.57/5  rDev -11.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75
For some odd reason, this was the most insanely packed brewery of all the ones we visited in Richmond. I am not sure why, considering the beers are not that good and the space is not that large and has terribly soundproofing (the noise was verging on the unbearable).

It's got to be the beer garden outside that makes people flock here like vultures surrounding a dead, rotting cow on the highway.

So besides loud and crowded, the place has got annoying lines and an inefficient way of ordering. And the beer is super average... I tried their Rye Kolsch, Berliner Weisse and Dry-Hopped Hefe and they were all "meh".

I don't get it, and no thanks. Too many better breweries nearby.
Aug 05, 2017
Rated: 3.83 by StoutSnob40 from California

Aug 04, 2017
Rated: 4.25 by CLTbeerGirl from North Carolina

Jul 12, 2017
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Reviewed by oldn00b from Virginia

4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.75
Great selection, great beer garden. Most beers are quality. It is annoying how they do the beer ordering when it gets busy - one person ringing up and someone else making the drinks. One time had person giving me beer give me the wrong beer (one out of three) pointed to the ticket like I knew what was on there, and wouldn't change. The one I didn't want turned out to be the worst beer I had there so that was a bummer. They're a bit of a slave to that system. Otherwise, no complaints and it's a lot of great beers in a great setting I'll definitely go back to more.
May 10, 2017
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Reviewed by vikingpillager from Illinois

2.86/5  rDev -29.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3
Very disappointed with Ardent. Plastic cups, two lines that make little sense, and a fast food pickup approach to serving beer that does not move the lines any faster than just take-and-pay.

Save your money and time and just go to Veil a few blocks away.
Feb 23, 2017
Rated: 3.67 by ha-sheem from North Carolina

Jan 17, 2017
Rated: 3.92 by schroeder1200 from New Jersey

Jan 02, 2017
Rated: 3.93 by oriolesfan4 from Maryland

Oct 04, 2016
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Reviewed by Kubishark from Maryland

4.27/5  rDev +5.4%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4
A nice little place in an industrial looking neighborhood. Lots of seating outside. Fantastic quality on all the beers I tasted. (I particularly love the sweet potato and sage beer.) Great service that's impressively fast. I also like that they do half pours for when you want to have a beer but don't want to fill up too much. Selection is well rounded. Possibly my favorite brewery in Richmond.
Sep 26, 2016
Rated: 4.06 by qcbrewer from North Carolina

Sep 24, 2016
Rated: 4.25 by Stolenface1 from Virginia

Jul 27, 2016
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Reviewed by cjgiant from District of Columbia

3.78/5  rDev -6.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.25
A nice looking place, fairly large with seating around the edges and medium ordering area/bar in middle. Beer garden area outside wasn't in use on a rainy day but adds space. Was there at HH time on a Friday and the place was busy with what seemed like anafter work crowd. Service was very friendly, although the setup and a busy day made the ordering process a little weird, to pick at something.

The beers are straightforward and of decent quality, but nothing stood out as a must have again (though I did get a couple to go). Selection of just under a dozen beers was heavy on standard IPAs, and would've liked a little more styles represented in general.
May 06, 2016
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Reviewed by uvachief from Virginia

3.63/5  rDev -10.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.25
Nice taproom and beer garden. Nice outdoor deck. Very industrial but newly constructed industrial. Good layout. Decent on-site parking. Small brewery. 8 beers on tap today. Their DIPA is quite good. What they do, they do well. Worth a visit.
May 06, 2016
Rated: 3.79 by xt0n1cx from Virginia

Mar 15, 2016
Rated: 3.96 by MisledTitan from England

Jan 24, 2016
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Reviewed by Mshaw78 from Virginia

4.48/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4
Always keep a rotation of IPA's on tap. They make a great rye stout and one of the more laid back (even though they are often busy) breweries in Richmond. It is my favorite to go to in the city.
Jan 20, 2016
Ardent Craft Ales in Richmond, VA
Brewery rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 711 ratings