The Bodega Brew Pub

The Bodega Brew PubThe Bodega Brew Pub
The Bodega Brew PubThe Bodega Brew Pub
Bar, Eatery

122 S 4th St S
La Crosse, Wisconsin, 54601-3201
United States

(608) 782-0677 | map

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Reviews: 37 | Ratings: 53
Photo of Domingo
3.93/5  rDev -11.1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.25 | food: 3.75

A pretty cool beer-centric bar in the heart of "Bar-town USA," La Crosse Wisconsin. They have 20'ish drafts and hundreds of bottles/cans of all sorts. Most are relatively common, but they do have some hidden gems scattered throughout their menu. Definitely check the boards for specials as they list some items that aren't in the larger print menus.
Food is typical for bars of this sort. It IS a step above most random pubs even if it leans heavily on snacks.
So...this place is fantastic, right? Kinda. With a selection of that size, managing it seems to be a bit of an issue. I ordered an $11(!) Toppling Goliath DIPA that either had dirty lines or came from a keg that had been on too long. The staff didn't seem to be aware that was a thing. A customer beside me returned a PseudoSue that was clearly old and chunky only to be told that "It's supposed to look like that." Luckily another bartender intervened and got her something else. I guess all their cans were old. I feel like their massive line-up is probably causing many bottled and canned offerings to be neglected. Pricing is also a little inconsistent. There are some absolute steals side by side outrageously priced items. None of those things will keep me from going back, but the place isn't without its faults.
You probably won't find a better beer selection within 100 miles and there are some pretty amazing beers available there. It's also a fun place to spend time. However, for a beer-centric bar like this, it's just a little hit and miss.

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Photo of bound4er
4.26/5  rDev -3.6%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 4.25

Had dinner on a recent Friday night with family. This is definitely a beer bar that serves food versus a restaurant that serves beer. That said the food is very good - sandwiches, flat bread, weekly specials, etc. The tap beer selection is also very nice though I was actually expecting more given other reviews. Grapefruit Sculpin and Smells Like a Safety Meeting were both pretty damn good. My wife had a German Hefe whose name escapes me - it was also tasty. Our waitress was friendly and helpful. This is a great spot if your looking for really good bar food to wash down with some really good craft beer.

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Photo of BillRoth
4.48/5  rDev +1.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Was on Beer Safari and happened to be in western Wisconsin. Read on BA that Bodega was the place to go.
Just a great place. Exterior and interior are great, and really push the "we are a serious but fun" craft beer stop. People there were upbeat and fun...but also knew their stuff. Food was elective/cool choices but mostly appetizers, soups and sandwiches. But all was very good...very good...and very generous.
Beer menu was to die for if you're looking for great American and European top notch beers...and a excellent offering of regionals ie New Glarus, Toppling Goliath, Surley...and many more.
La Crosse may be out of your way...but this is a must stop if even remotely close.

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Photo of bwood06
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%

Very interesting beer bar locating on the corner of two streets in downtown La Crosse, WI. Interesting mix of high tables, couches, as well as the bar itself. Small stage for live music. I did not order food but there were specials posted on the chalkboard above the bar. Nothing crazy special but looks to be good food nonetheless. Love how this place organizes it's beer menu although I wish they would have had a few more copies of it. People at the bar had to keep trading the few copies (binders) available back and forth to figure out what they wanted. Will definitely visit again should I be in the area.

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Photo of cervezango
4.24/5  rDev -4.1%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5 | food: 4

The bodega is great primarily because of their selection, they have everything. there is always a great IPA on tap, and tons of hidden gems in bottles in the behind the bar cabinet. There food is very good, I recommend their pulled pork sliders and pizza. Most beer here is expensive but they have cheap pbr tall boys if you not looking to spend too much. Spin the wheel and win rare bottles from there cabinet selection, I won a 28 dollar bottle last spin I did!

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Photo of Powderhornphil
4.05/5  rDev -8.4%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.25

Been here a few times and always enjoyed it. Every time I have been there they have had a New Glarus fruit beer on tap -- really nice to have as an option. Prices have been pretty reasonable. Decent laid back atmosphere.

Lots of bottles to choose from but have generally stuck to one of their 15 taps that have generally been a solid line up.

Recommended for sure.

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Photo of kguard
4.55/5  rDev +2.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

Went there during a free concert, so atmosphere was different from most nights. Pretty crowded. Would have preferred to sit and absorb the beer list while I enjoyed my 3F Dreadnaught. But whatever.
Didn't try and of the food(generic 4). Had just left a food show.
Service was quite good considering the crowd.
Atmosphere was laid back. Not a college party bar.
From what I saw on the beer menu, large list. I like the by country and by style lists.
Local Sconny beers(New Glarus) was limited. Also expected more Toppling Goliath.
Great Bar, I look forward to stopping and trying new brews when I come to town.

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Photo of jreindl
3.96/5  rDev -10.4%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

If you're a craft beer lover, and find yourself in beautiful downtown La Crosse WI., this is the bar for you. As a local, I've spent countless afternoons and evenings here watching the downtown foot traffic through the large windows that run the length of building, reading on one of the many couches or just bellied up to the bar in front of the copper brew kettle turned beer cooler. With the 300+ domestic and foreign bottles, and a dozen+ taps, you're sure to find a beer that suits your taste. The beer menu is conveniently laid out in constantly updated binders either by style or country of origin. Where some selections are surprisingly affordable, others are ridiculously over priced, although a lot of the selection is only available locally at the Bodega (3F's, Mikkeller, etc.). The staff is friendly, enigmatic and knowledgeable, and the bistro style food is always good (great Rubens) and reasonably priced. I like the afternoon/happy hour crowd best. It can be busy on weekend evenings, and you might find it a bit frustrating fighting your way through a sea of drunken college kids power chugging Miller Lite, to order a "good" beer. Still, all in all the finest beer bar in La Crosse. If you're in town, it's a must stop. Cheers.

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Photo of ultimatesamwood
4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.75

Best variety of beer in La Crosse, but doesn't offer as many regional offerings as one would expect.

Great bartenders, especially in the early evening.

Food menu is above average for a bar, but it used to be better when they had a larger selection of vegetarian options.

Mark-up on beer is a little high--one can often find the same beer for a lower price at other bars--but the price 1) drives away college students; and 2) is what one would expect for that selection.

If you are from out-of-town and can stop at only one bar, this is it. If you are a townie, this should be a staple, but not your only bar.

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Photo of jera1350
4.44/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Easily the best beer bar in La Crosse. The atmosphere both times we were there was very loud. A band played one night and it was difficult to have a conversation unless you were yelling. I think the layout of the place is the problem. It's long and narrow which lends to a louder atmosphere. The decor was all beer and mostly craft. Signs and old bottles and cans. Really cool look. The most important thing here is the beer. We were fortunate enough to have some Bell's Black Note. The tap list is about 12-15 deep and changes frequently and covers a wide array of styles. The bottle list is amazing. Over 400 beers available here. Service was solid, but you had to hike up to the bar to get your own beers, which is fine with me. It is a bit pricey here however. Most of the taps are reasonable if not cheap. The bottle list however was extremely steep. $8.50 for a bottle of Weyerbacher Insanity (12 oz.), $38 for a Mikkeller Beer Geek Weasel! Some of the bottle prices were fair, but the majority looked to be about double compared to retail. The place is awesome overall and you are sure to find something terrific in a decent price range.

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Photo of TheStoutHound
4.33/5  rDev -2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

Bodega has over 400 different beers on hand at any given time and typically 15 varieties on tap including imports and domestics. This place gets their hand on some really good brew. Just because a beer isn't in season doesn't mean you wont' find it here. Beyond the phenomenal selection, the bartenders are knowledgeable and quite personable. Beer menus are available enabling customers to browse the selection by style of beer, brewery, or country/state of origin. Relative to La Crosse, WI, prices are fair to high depending upon what you want. At the low end, PBR is $2.25, mid range example: Founders Imperial Stout for $7.00, and high end: GI Bourbon County Coffee Stout (22oz) for $40. Conveniently, bottle prices are listed in beer menus and though the tap beer is not priced, bar tenders will typically inform you of anything over $5 a pint.

The atmosphere at the Bodega is eclectic and welcoming. Hundreds of beer taps, bottles, and signs are displayed around the bar. Seating is available at the bar, pub tables, or couches. Floor to ceiling windows open the lounge up to the main street through downtown La Crosse. The clientele is a very diverse group but typically very friendly and relaxed. The Bodega offers a short food menu of soup and sandwiches with daily specials. A good selection of live music is common during weekend evenings.

If you're a beer connoisseur this is a must stop. If you're in La Crosse and looking for a good time, it can be found at the Bodega.

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Photo of beerwolf77
4.45/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Spent the evening here drinking with a BA buddy and my wife. Glad we did.

The place has a cool coffee house meets beer bar meets cafe vibe. I really loved the breweriana that lined the window sils. Bottles from everywhere and anywhere.

The selection needs a full three ring binder to hold everything. Good lord the choices were endless. Taps and bottles for every beer geek to drool over. The servers were friendly and fast.

We ordered some food and were very impressed. The flat bread was amazing.

Overall I'm so glad I stopped in here. If this place was in Milwaukee the lines would be out the door.

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Photo of qcbeerguy
4.7/5  rDev +6.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I find myself in La Crosse this fine night. When I am here I go to Bodega Brewpub this is by far the beer bar in La Crosse. They have 18 taps and one is dedicated to New Glarus Belgian Red, only bar I know of to have it on tap permanently! Also they have 360 to 370 beers in the bottle. Do I need to go on to give this bar its props, didn't think so.

What can I say this is the place to go when in La Crosse! I plan on bringing my wife and friends to this place. The bar staff is great! John, the manager is a fun surly person once you get to know him. Also Ben and Katie have learned from John if they see you more than once you are a regular and they need to treat you better. Needless to say I have become a regular. It is so ridiculous how quickly they learn your preferences!

So this is a great beer bar, equal to almost any in the Midwest I have been to including the Map Room and the Muddy Pig. Plus they serve some really good sandwiches, in the true sandwich shop type sandwiches. One of my favorites is the Cubano minus the mustard and the pickles. Besides sandwiches they have some good flat bread pizzas.

Tonight I had some great beers! These included the Fish Tale Winter IPA and Central Waters Bourbon Barrel Stout. Also I had tasters of a couple double IPAs. They will always let you try a taster of a tap beer before you buy it. They want you to be satisfied with your beer when you pay for it. They always have a great selection of Wisconsin brews, meaning New Glarus and Capital .

I happily came upon by accident a Goose Island tasting at Bodega. This was run by the local Goose Island Rep. He had one of the most wonderful beers I ever had a Matilda gone wild. It was an accidental beer that got away from the brewer and went sour. This accidental on off beer is one of the greatest beers I ever had, unfortunately it is not available to the average beer drinking public.

I can not stress how much this is a great beer bar! There is unfortunately some bad history between Bodega and Pearl Street Brewing so Pearl Street is not carried at Bodega. Pearl Street does make some good beer so give it a try.

I am a Bodega regular and Damn proud of it! This is a beer bar worthy of a major city such as Chicago but hidden away in La Crosse. John the manager is your typical over educated bar manager, that I am so jealous of because I want to be him! When ever you make it to La Crosse search out Bodega and you will not be sorry!

QC Beerguy

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Photo of optimator70
4.28/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5

I stop here at least a couple times a year when visiting family. This is a MUST stop for me ;) to get some good beer. There is a fantastic selection of beer at this place, and usually a couple good taps as well. I haven't tried the sandwiches yet but heard they are good too.

This may sound a bit gimmicky, but it is a bit of fun to "spin the wheel", which may land you a epic beer or one you may just want to pour down the drain. I think the spin is $2 so it is usually worth it.

It's a very relaxing atmosphere to enjoy some great drinks with friends.

Highly recommend checking it out if you are in the down town Lacrosse area.

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Photo of emerge077
4/5  rDev -9.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Finally made it to Bodega after spending a week on Wisco-vacation.

It had a relaxed, open feel, bar was right up front, with tables along the windows. Couches around the corner entrance, and a lunch counter in the back on the opposite end. Tap handles lined the walls, which also sported assorted breweriana that will keep you busy looking at it all. First impression of the taps was confusion, saw one tower with maybe 6 taps: Stella, Guinness, Leinies. After sitting down, I saw the second row of taps under the bar with all the good stuff. Even so, I found myself drinking a couple bottles in lieu of draft beer. Tried a Raging Bitch on tap, then moved on to Gumballhead and 2 Hearted. Other taps were ok, but nothing too exciting. No Pearl St., apparently there was a falling out with the owner. Del's Bar down the street has 5 Pearl St. taps, if you're looking for the local beer in town. The bottle selection is extensive, and lists beer style, ABV, and BA/RB scores. I found myself flipping through looking for certain styles, like Saison & IPA on that hot day.

We ordered a couple sandwiches, which were hot and tasty, and came out of the kitchen in a timely way. The Cubano was really good. Service was ok, and we struck up a conversation with a friendly local guy. Best stop in town for beer, check out Pearl St. tap room while in town too. Deaf Ear is a great record store on the same block as Bodega if you're inclined to do some music shopping.

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Photo of crossovert
3.95/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3

This place is pretty much in the center of LaCrosse. It is kind of a limp place as far as atmosphere goes.

I stopped in for lunch and it was okay, it is really bare bones. The waiters and bartenders were nice though.

The beer menu is pretty extensive bottle wise, with 15 solid taps. There were a lot of quality things on the menu, both bottles I was served were well within their best by date.

Overall it was a nice stop on the way home during a long ride form central Minnesota to southeast Wisconsin. It would be great to spend a bit more time there to explore the beer menu. The prices were a bit expensive for most beers but there were a few oddballs that seemed quite cheap.

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Photo of newk340
4.78/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

phenomenal bar for beer and food lovers alike. easily the best beer selection in la crosse county. the food and atmosphere are superb as well. the walls and shelves are decorated with hundreds of bottles, beer coasters, and tapping handles. a beer lover's paradise. the owner and bartenders are extremely knowledgeable, friendly and willing to make suggestions based on your particular tastes. they always having something new and/or rare on tap. a great place to just chill without the overly obnoxious din of most bars...

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Photo of e11a627
5/5  rDev +13.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

If you're looking for a place with amazingly good beer, delicious food (flatbreads are my favorite), and an incredibly unique atmosphere of literally ALL ages (~21-70yrs old) then bodega is the perfect place for you. Over 400 different bottled beers, lots o taps (always a delish IPA on tap which is my personal fav), fun wheelspin for only $3.25, amazing bartenders who have a great beer-education, live music most weekends and free popcorn in a perfect, gorgeous downtown setting.
Nothing but amazing things to say about my favorite place to be.

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Photo of hu5om
4.78/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

My favorite bar in La Crosse, hands down. Absurd selection, usually about 400 choices. On Tuesdays the food is all buy 1 get 1 free, and actually pretty decent. A few of the bartenders are friggin beer sages, but some newer ones are wild cards. Hopefully you'll get John or Alishia. The wheel is the thing to do, unless it's busy. You spin a bike tire for 3.25 and each spoke is a different beer. a few losers (bud calamato or minhas light), but a ton of winners, I'm 96% happy with my wheel spins. A first class joint

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Photo of robbyc1
4.28/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Great spot in the old downtown area, Pearl St. Has moved out, now it's a spot with 400 bottles with a wide variety, and 15 taps that have a fer for everyone. Huge place with a long bar, many tables, a cool attitude, homey yet slick. Had the smuttynose baltic porter, a bit pricey at 6.75 for a pint, but well served and overall an attentive bartender. The 400 include many rareities, including de dolle, many Bells, you will find something.

Might be the only decent beer spot in the area, but it doesn't disappoint, plus a Woodmans is nearby for takehome.

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Photo of Onenote81
4.28/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Stopped by here with some friends when I was in town for the holidays. Grabbed a table and sampled some of the brews. Freaking stellar selection! They had 14 taps, all of which were quality brews; they also had several hundred bottles available. One cool thing at this place was this wheel on the wall that you could spin to select a certain number that corresponded to a certain beer. Kind of a fun way to try the many beers available as you never know what you are going to get. I got two of their newer offerings, the NG Unplugged Cran-bic and Lake Louie's IPA, both great beers. If I was around here more often, I would hit this place up all the time. I wish my town had a place like this. Highly recommend you stop by.

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Photo of Ek0nomik
4.08/5  rDev -7.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

I stopped here with a few friends this past weekend. We each got a sandwich with chips and a pickle, and I shared a cup of tomato basil soup with my girlfriend.

The food was fine, fairly priced I suppose. It took awhile to get our food, though.

The atmosphere of the place was fine. Some tables were closer together than others. Had it been a busy night I could see it getting pretty loud, but when we were there it was pretty quite and a nice place to sit and talk.

The bartender didn't seem too knowledgeable about beer, but I could be mistaken. I knew what I wanted, so I didn't ask for any suggestions. It looked like they had quite a few places where they stored their beer, and the temperature at which I got my beer was perfect.

This was the only place in La Crosse that I really checked out for beer, but it was a nice place. I'd recommend this to friends and if I am in La Crosse again I could see myself going back.

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Photo of kbaker91
4.53/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Visited Bodega twice over this last weekend spent in LaCrosse. The first visit was Friday night around 10PM, and the place was busy. Could not find a table nor space at the bar, so my wife & I left after one beer as we didn't feel like getting jostled by a crowd without our own seats. We were going to check out a live band down the street anyway.

Feeling this is not a fair way to judge an establishment that had garnered such good reviews on BA, I made my way there on Saturday afternoon for a sandwich and a few pints. I found a seat at the bar, and was greeted warmly by Bree, the bartender. She was attentive and knowledgable about the beers they offered. I had a SN Torpedo, Founders Double Trouble, DFH 60 minute, and a Great Lakes Irish Red. The bottle menu was extensive, with several breweries represented that are not available in MN (DFH, New Glarus, Founders, etc). I think I counted a dozen taps, a nice mix of styles and breweries.

My sandwich was a sourdough cold cut sandwich. Nothing to write home about, but inexpensive and hit the spot for a light meal.

This being LaCrosse, the prices were cheap, especially when compared to comparable Twin Cities taverns.

Overall, nice beer selection, best by far in the area. What set this place apart from many other similar establishments in my mind is the service. Attentive, unpretentious, friendly are the first three adjectives (adverbs?) that come to mind when describing the service. A definite must-visit for the beer traveler when in La Crosse.

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Photo of natasharai
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

Went to the Bodega with my boyfriend for a bite to eat and a beer. One important thing to note is that they do not actually make their own beer anymore, and if you want any food go in the back to order it.

The atmosphere was pretty good, it was a little loud but everyone was laid back and there was plenty of room to sit at high tops. There was a little area with couches and chairs if you wanted to sit in a more comfortable arrangement.

Their selection was amazing!! 400+ beers in the bottle and I would say 15-20 on tap. They have beer menus that list their bottle selection, listed by beer style, beer name, and brewery which makes it very easy to find what you are looking for!!

The bartender cared about the beer and how it was served, he checked each and every pint glass for water spots and such and the glasses were not chilled which is always nice!

The food was decent, nothing too special but still tasty. We had a pulled pork BBQ sandwich and chips, which came out quickly and satisfied my taste-buds and stomach.

The price was very reasonable for food and drinks!

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Photo of jebert
4.33/5  rDev -2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

I live in La Crosse and there are only a few places that I would consider frequenting in order to:

1) Drink quality beers (bottled or tap).
2) Have a large % of others who enjoy good beer.
3) Enjoy a smoke free environment.

Generally, early in the night the place is well lit, easy to get into, acceptably busy, but generally, easy to find a seat at the bar where one can enjoy the personable staff.

The decor is steeped with of beer paraphernalia, so there's no end to what one might find there. Beer's of all ages seem to appear out of the woodwork. Visiting the bathroom occasionally takes a few extra turns.

Upon entering the Bodega, head straight to the bar. Hanging over the left side is the "on tap" beer sign. John (the beer tender) goes to great lengths to ensure that there are at all times a wide variety of beers on tap to suit any palate. Choose one. From several low end local beers to a couple high end imports, along with almost a dozen micros from around the U.S., there's always a beer to suit your palate. Local micro's to a Belgian Triple. German Kölsh to an Alaskan Smoked Porter. A Michigan Bitter to an Irish Wee Heavy keeps one frequenting the Bodega almost weekly. One thing's for certain - as long as John set's the taps, this place will prosper. John will offer some suggestions that won't take you too far down a path your not willing to follow, unless you ask him to.

Although one doesn't always get the "correct glass", remember that you are in a college town and sometimes, corners must be reasonably cut. If you visit the Bodega during the 1st weekend of Octoberfest, be prepared for plastic only!

The service is generally good. If you can't wait, take action. This isn't a 5 star restaurant, but a great bar in a college town and one of the only places in the area with this selection. Generally, you'll get what you want without asking unless your into the evening.

The beer bottle selection is second to none locally. I do have a few beers at home no longer available at the Bodega, but only because I've squirreled them away. The huge bottle selection combined with numerous taps makes this a regular stop.

Food prices were reasonable. Full sandwiches are $7.00 and served with chips. A ½ order is about half. A special side of chips can't be overlooked. These aren't regular chips.

Taps range from $1.25 up to $11.00 per glass, mostly $3.50 a pint which is a real deal for some of the eclectic beers I've seen there. If you get a chance to meet Jeff, the owner, tell him you saw the review on the Beer Advocate and you absolutely need a beer advisory. He'll help you choose something unique for your palate.

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The Bodega Brew Pub in La Crosse, WI
Place rating: 4.42 out of 5 with 53 ratings