Taft's Ale House

Taft's Ale HouseTaft's Ale House
Taft's Ale HouseTaft's Ale House
Brewery, Bar, Eatery, Beer-to-go

1429 Race St
Cincinnati, Ohio, 45202-7009
United States

(513) 334-1393 | map
taftsalehouse.com

Notes:
BEER STATS
Average:
3.87
Beers:
82
Reviews:
119
Ratings:
481
PLACE STATS
Average:
4.13
Reviews:
19
Ratings:
52
pDev:
8.72%
View: Beers | Place Reviews
Reviews: 19 | Ratings: 52 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Sludgeman
Sludgeman from District of Columbia

3.96/5  rDev -4.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4 | food: 4.25

Visited on a Sunday night. Not too crowded, with a variety of folks, some watching NCAA basketball tournament and others as families just doing their thing.

V - Built inside an old church, the inside has some of its past architecture, but because the building had been almost abandoned prior to its conversion to a brewery (lost part of its roof in a storm), the vibe is a brewery sports bar inside a old historic structure. Church on outside, brew pub on insider. Love the big picnic style tables and benches, which you'll quite often share with another party. A smallish bar. Well lit and a good beer vibe. A nice place to bring family, friends, dates, etc. 4.0

Q - I thought their beers were well made and there's nothing better than drinking a beer that was made just yards from your table. 4.0

Ser - Friendly, helpful, generally knowledgable, but at times a bit slow or absent. 3.75

Sel - An excellent selection of their brews. A good variety, but the IPAs tended to standout. 4.0

F - A rather limited menu, but enough variety to satsify most. You will not be disappointed. 4.25

Mar 25, 2019
Photo of chinchill
chinchill from South Carolina

3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.25

An exceptional venue with many beautiful and interesting features. A grand staircase leads up to the main floor with a huge U-shaped balcony overhead. The balcony has a bar and a variety of seating. All beers tried have been in the good to excellent range. The steak salad was large and delicious but the hunter stew was disappointing.

Jul 28, 2018
Photo of Bryan12345
Bryan12345 from Texas

5/5  rDev +21.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

I was shocked when I saw an average score of 3.something for this place. It is amazing! Ambiance is second to none, and all the beers are serviceable with a few notable home runs. This is one of my favorite breweries in the country!

Jul 16, 2018
Photo of WoodBrew
WoodBrew from Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Taft's is a cool place....established in an old church. There are two sections...two story main restaurant and bar area....and then a basement bar area.....both really neat. The quality of the beer was great. The service was friendly and attentive. They had 16 of their own beers on tap....something for everyone. I didn't have their food....but heard great.

Jul 08, 2018
Photo of deadonhisfeet
deadonhisfeet from Kentucky

4/5  rDev -3.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Visited in the middle of a workday, so the place wasn't very crowded. It's a beautiful old church with amazing architecture that has been renovated inside into a cathedral of a beer hall. Good service, good food, and a nice selection of beer, but I wish they had some "guest taps" in addition to their own offerings.

Mar 14, 2018
Photo of Brutaltruth
Brutaltruth from Ohio

4.24/5  rDev +2.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.25

Situated in an old church that Taft used to walk by when younger. This fine
establishment pours great ales and serves some darn fine food that is well
presented and tastes as good as it looks. Go for the Big Billy or ale house
sandwich with their delicious red sauce to dip the home made tots into along
with delicious beer cheese and the beer----did I mention the beer???? Solid
representation for all taste buds from IPA's to stouts and porters as well as saisons
and Belgo styles. Something for everyone in a beautifully restored church with an
upstairs that sports a wonderful view.

Check it out---second visit was as good as the first with great service and knowledgeable
staff.

Cheers

May 12, 2017
Photo of francus
francus from North Carolina

4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.5

Taft's is in a converted church. Seating is on benches by long tables so sharing a table with people you don't know will happen. The beer selection was decent and the beers I tried were very good. Most of the food is tri-tip in some form or other, but they do have chicken as well. The food was excellent and the service was good. They do not have any pictures on the walls of the conversion from a church, but if you ask your server they do have a book with all sorts of history of the place. If you're in Cincinnati make it a point to hit this place :)

Feb 16, 2017
Photo of warpig372
warpig372 from Indiana

4.09/5  rDev -1%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 4.25

Overall an impressive setup. The food is amazing and the beer was "OK". The vibe and food is what makes this place good for me. I believe the beer is overrated though.

Aug 09, 2016
Photo of bmantravel
bmantravel from Ohio

3.49/5  rDev -15.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

Converted Church Brewery. They spent a ton of money on the place. You got through the front door, up a dozen steps and the full open area of the church fills your view. The bar is across where the alter would be and there are huge brewing tanks behind it and behind you in the choir. The tables are long, communal set up. The food is OK - they focus on beef tips. The place is beautiful. There is a smaller bar downstairs with a separate entrance, that has a completely different feel.

Jun 04, 2016
Photo of LexingtonBeer
LexingtonBeer from Kentucky

4.65/5  rDev +12.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I am surprised that Taft's Ale House does not have higher reviews.

As for the location, I cannot stress enough how amazing it is. The Ale House is an old converted Protestant Church. It has been completely redone inside to create a two-story holy city of wrought iron, dark woods, tables, dining areas, cozy nooks and private rooms. The building is adorned with an array of Presidential memorabilia that rivals the Preaident Taft House National Park just a few minutes away.

The kitchen menu is not extensive but is of good quality and a step above standard pub fare. It is very meat-based though without too much variety.

Without getting too beer-specific here, they generally have about 12 different brews of their own on tap and brewed in house. There is a range of current standard American popular brews with only a couple more experimental options. All the ones I tried were excellent.

This place is a must to visit. We need more of these types of places in the world.

Feb 08, 2016
Photo of Littrelljoe
Littrelljoe from Ohio

3.89/5  rDev -5.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

If they can handle the noise you should take your parents to see this incredible former church. Their beer is ok and if you go to the lower level they do serve some other craft beers. Food was just ok but overall experience was great.

Jan 23, 2016
Photo of UrbanCaveman
UrbanCaveman from Illinois

4.58/5  rDev +10.9%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.75

As others have said before me, Taft's Ale House (and the basement, Nellie's Tap Room) is a fantastic renovation of an old church building, brought back to grandeur with serious attention to detail - right down to tap handles made out of the wood from one of the original staircases. It's a glorious place to drink beer, whether you prefer the bar atmosphere downstairs, the brewpub vibe on the main floor, or the quieter, more relaxed loft overlooking said main floor.

The same attention to detail goes into the beers - I have yet to encounter one there that has been anything short of decent, and plenty that have been great. The chocolate porter, the milk stout (with and without barrel-aging), the pilsner, the cherrywood amber, the Vienna lager, the marzen; all memorable and repeatable. This made much more sense to me once I found out that the head brewer got his chops at Listermann / Triple Digit, which has been my favorite local brewery for some time.

The food is excellent, if a somewhat limited menu - their take on an upside-down shepherd's pie is savory and tasty, and the smoked wings are delicious.

Right from my first visit, this became my favorite place in Cincinnati to have a beer or three for a night out!

Jan 04, 2016
Photo of beergoot
beergoot from Colorado

3.96/5  rDev -4.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.25 | selection: 4

Spacious, clean, very inviting. Limited food menu yet the smoked wings (with apple slices) and Big Billy au jus sandwich are fantastic. Staff is youn, eclectic and very friendly and helpful.

Oct 15, 2015
Photo of patpbr
patpbr from Ohio

4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4

Great space in a renovated church. 12 house brewed beer taps. Did not try the food but the smell of the Tri Tips being grilled will bring me back alone.

Jul 12, 2015
Photo of djhowell
djhowell from Wisconsin

4.24/5  rDev +2.7%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.75

Brewpub in a fantastically renovated old church which opened spring 2015. The space itself is bright, open, clean, modern, and airy. It's worth stopping in for a beer just to check out the renovation they did.

They had about a dozen of their beers available when we stopped in and a full food menu. The staff was attentive, friendly, and knew the beer they were serving well.

Jun 13, 2015
Photo of target88
target88 from Kentucky

3.96/5  rDev -4.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 1

Great place for a brew on the go. Love the atmosphere and feel of the upstairs in the old church but I do my best work down in the basement!! This has definitely got to be on your bucket list

May 30, 2015
Photo of West_Chester_Ale_Tester
West_Chester_Ale_Tester from Ohio

3.75/5  rDev -9.2%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75

Really nice brewery in an old church. It's in the fancier part of one of the most historically rough neighborhoods in Cincinnati. Parking is bad, bad, bad, but things get better once inside. Upstairs, you have the restaurant with a nice, sometimes too nice, menu. Downstairs is more laid back, with just a bar and tables. They make some nice beer and you can find a few in cans around town. They've recently opened another spot across town. They are in the top tier of Cincy breweries.

May 05, 2015
Photo of KSOZE
KSOZE from Ohio

4.44/5  rDev +7.5%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4 | food: 4.25

Awesome experience. Beautiful place with several levels of the view of this converted church. Beer selection great for being a brand new brewpub. I was very pleased with about half of their selections while the other half were OK. Service great and food very good.

Apr 22, 2015
Photo of Yetiman420
Yetiman420 from Ohio

4.78/5  rDev +15.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Stop #475 on my world brewery tour. Around 3 on a Thursday just after they opened.

As I look through my list of places visited, I'm hard pressed to come up with a another historic location restored to such splendor. Brewery Vivant in Grand Rapids on a smaller scale is the only thing close in my book. Even if you don't want to drink or eat here, take a walk through the building and admire the work they did to restore this old church.

The head brewer comes from another local brewery (Listermann's Triple Digit) where he put together a solid portfolio of beers. I really enjoyed the varieties with coconut, chocolate, etc.

Did two flights of five beers each and was especially pleased to have a Saison on regular rotation. Doubled down on the Mosaic pale lager. A couple flavored beers like a Carribean wheat with key lime, chocolate porter, coffee milk stout, and a coconut brown (which I felt was a bit thin) were done with the appropriate restraint. Also enjoyed the very balanced cherry wood smoked amber. Overall the beers were all very well done and I expect they will only get better as they dial things in over the coming months.

Three bars with the one at street level being most like a pub for crowds (with a growing guest tap list), the main level is nice to take in the wonderful environment, and the top level is less TV's with some relaxed seating.

Taft's easily becomes one of the top 7 breweries I've visited.

Apr 10, 2015
Taft's Ale House in Cincinnati, OH
Brewery rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 481 ratings