Steamworks Brewing Co.


Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

801 East 2nd Avenue
Durango, Colorado, 81301
United States

(970) 259-9200 | map

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Added by Jason

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Ratings: 35 |  Reviews: 15
Photo of aareid2009
4.7/5  rDev +29.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Photo of woodychandler
4.58/5  rDev +26.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

This was a huge place, located on the corner of E. 2nd Avenue and 8th Street. I began by peeping in the windows of this former car dealership and showroom just to get a sense of its enormity. Wide, long, and high were my initial impressions. Big! The attendant at the m.d.s. came out and told me that this was not China - no Peking! Ha, I'll make the jokes around here, thanks!

The entryway was on the 2nd Avenue side and there was a short vestibule that opened onto a display case full of logo items, including embroidered work shirts, growlers, and patches. My jaw dropped. The m.d.s. was just beyond, with the copper-jacketed brewhouse off to the right and the long, snaking cement block bar with a polished pine wood top just beyond it. High tables and chairs lined the bar area which was fronted by corrugated aluminum. Looking aft on the bar side, there was a short hand-bottling line on the left and the lavatories were on the right. Proceeding aft, on a raised stage, was the restaurant area which was mainly standard restaurant tables and chairs. Continuing aft was their outdoor patio deck with a wood roof and ceiling fans. To the extreme right of the patio was a secondary bar which was open daily after 4 pm. On the deck, by making a button-hook right, I arrived at the smoking area, outside under a circus tent, which used to be their horseshoe pit, but no longer. Back inside, the overhead made of wood with heavy wood beams and joists, was festooned with signage, spinning ceiling fans, swinging lamps, flags, banners, and posters. Busy? Yes, but not in an unpleasant way.

As to my visit in general, not to brag, but if you are not sporting a patch jacket, you may be missing out. Upon arrival, the owner came out and greeted me and gave me a tour, hence the historical background. On the tour, I ran into John Herr, a member of the Lancaster (PA) County Herr family, whose father taught at McCaskey H. S., my alma mater and current teaching site. He took great pride in having graduated from Hempfield H.S. and we had a nice chat after he finished his cigarette. I also met the General manager, who had been dispatched to find patches; the brewer, who took time from a busy brew day to converse with me; and Kate, my server, who was a wonderful, patient person. Frankly, I could have hung out in there all day, but that was not in keeping with the purpose of the trip, which was to keep moving.

Beers: They try to keep twelve (12) to fourteen (14) on at all times. During my visit, they had Third Eye IPA (6.0 %), Conductor Imperial IPA (8.7 %) on both CO2 and N2 taps, Steam Engine Lager (5.2 %), "Our" Mai Bock (8.0 %), Regulator Doppelbock (8.5 %), Prescribed Burn Chili Beer (4.6 %), Hefeweizen (5.1 %), Backside Stout (5.9 %), Lizard Head Red (5.6 %), and Colorado Kolsch (4.7 %). They also offered a Raspberry Imperial Stout, but I opted out of a sample of it. They were out of Engineer Light (4.8 %), but I persevered. The chili beer went well with my salmon entrée and the Third Eye and the Conductor had plenty o' hops to keep me just right. My hops jones reached an all new low (definitely NOT high) while in SLC, UT. Gimme dem hops!

 3,165 characters

Photo of knm
4.55/5  rDev +25.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

What a cool place! Great for the whole family. The kids can color on the concrete floor with chalk. And you can shell your peanuts and throw those on the floor! Then the food-what an amazing menu. The quiche comes with a bowl of soup and a salad, very good. Then there is the blue cheese steak, oh my god! Oh ya, then the beer. I reccomend going on Friday nights with there $1 10oz drafts! This way you get to try several. All of there beers are quite good, but there Third Eye PA is amazing! Can't wait to go back! Cheers

 522 characters

Photo of firkingroovin
4.54/5  rDev +25.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.25

Photo of Chucker17
4.51/5  rDev +24.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Photo of bulldogg915
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of WickedSluggy
4.38/5  rDev +20.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Steamworks is a popular location in Durango for both locals and tourists. The thing you have to be aware of about the locals in Durango is that they are pretty laid back. They don't get in a hurry. They also deal with tourists constantly, and while the economy of Durango runs on tourism, the "employees types" of the various establishments have a love-hate relationship with their guests. People on a holiday can be in a great mood at times, and sometimes they can be super assholes. I was sitting at the bar at Steamworks and one of the locals was telling me about how a woman the night before kept asking him if he was getting ready to leave. She actually suggested that he had been their long enough and that she would like him to leave so that she could have his seat.

Steamworks is not a tourist trap. It is a great location - rustic, lively with all kinds of people. Tourists go there because it is one of the most high-profile joints in town and it has a great reputation for gourmet food and excellent beer. Locals hang out there because it has a great comfortable bar and lot's of their friends work there. The food is pretty spectacular. Go for the specials. Last time it was fried chicken and habanero waffles - Wow! I live in Dallas where there are more restaurants per capita that about any other city in the USA. We know good food. It’s not always easy to find it in Durango, but Steamworks' got it. If you go there - show some class and remember that you are sharing the place with the local slackers. Relax and have a conductor IIPA on tap.

 1,561 characters

Photo of Determined_021
4.38/5  rDev +20.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of Caesar1pup
4.38/5  rDev +20.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

This is one of my all time favorite Brew Pubs and I often daydream about the times that I have been there wondering when I might be able to return.

Their beer is very good but their food is even better. Specifically their Cajun Boil! If you are a fan of seafood then you have to have their boil! Crab legs, shrimp, sausage, red potatoes, and corn on the cob all boiled in a spicy broth and dumped onto wax paper on your table! You can even add crawfish for an extra charge. AWESOME!

I have been here probably six or seven times and have also tried their pizzas, burgers, and steaks which were all very good. There are a number of brewpubs in Durango but in my opinion this is the best. Fridays and Saturdays in the summer often have up to an hour wait but that just gives you more time to sample their delicious brews.

Prices were reasonable for a touristy mountain town and they always have a beer special. Last time I was there I tried the Third Eye P.A. which was very good.

This is one not to miss if you ever find yourself in the Four Corners region!

 1,067 characters

Photo of Yeastcakes
4.35/5  rDev +19.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Atmosphere - Somewhere between a low-key live music brewpub and an upscale restaurant. The place was packed. Several TV's around would make this a decent sports bar. Bar itself was clean and had ample seating.
Service - Service was quick and very good. We got our food in a timely manner and beers were refilled quickly.
Food - Really good quality. I got pasta with grilled chicken and a sun-dried tomato suace. My friends got some great food as well.
Beers - Their flagship beer is their lager which has won several GABF medals. Their kolsh is also good. But they have about another 10 beers on tap if you want something darker. After the lager I got their sampler. Their Hefeweizen has a wonderful mix of spices and phenols. Their IPA and IIPA were also wonderful. Their red ale had a wonderfully complex malt bill. Their stout was also very well balanced.
Cost - Very reasonable. We got 2-3 beers and dinner a person for about $20 a person.

 943 characters

Photo of timlyon
4.25/5  rDev +17.1%

Photo of s3igell
4.19/5  rDev +15.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Popular with Locals and Tourists, Steamworks has the Largest BrewPub in town - both in BrewPub Size and in number of Brews. The Vibe is rather standard American BrewPub, with a menu to match. Catch the Cajun Boil - but don't be afraid to get messy. Or just have some Peanuts - and sweep the shells onto the Floor.
The In-House Beers offered cover the whole gamut, from Pilsners and Lagers through Ales and IPAs to recently added Saisons and Session brews. Regardless of your favored style, Steamworks can pour you a Good Brew.

 530 characters

Photo of coldriver
4.19/5  rDev +15.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.75

Visited with the family on July 6. Despite the huge capacity of this brewpub, we waited 30 minutes for a table on our Saturday night visit. The place was hopping with lively tourists and locals most of whom had probably spent the day enjoying the fantastic outdoor activities the Durango area has to offer (we did a five mile alpine hike).

Steamworks has around 12 or so taps ranging from an imperial IPA, mole stout, and saison to more tourist friendly kolsch, amber, and lagers during our visit. All the beers I tried weren't neccessarily amazing, but certainly tasty and more than passable, and a welcome respite from the three previous area brewpubs we'd tried which seemed to be focused blondes, ambers, and lagers (in fairness we did not go to Carver or Ska).

The food is what really stands out at this place. I'll go so far to say that Steamworks is really a gourmet restaurant disguised as a brewpub. The prices were very reasonable considering the quality of the food. Overall, it's probably the best brewpub food I've ever had. Service was quite good and the waiter was very knowledgeable about the beer selections.

So what's not to like here? Family friendly lively atmosphere, wide selection of good beer, and great food at reasonable prices. Most importantly, the wife and kids (two teenagers) loved it which is certainly not always the case when I drag them along to brewpubs.

 1,395 characters

Photo of Wolfsdenbrew
4.18/5  rDev +15.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Great place to eat and enjoy a few pints, nice bar and plenty of tables for eating in. Nice big patio to enjoy the crisp, mountain air.

Food has always been better than average, the cajun boil is a must, and now they do it every night. Dump everything right onto your table.

Good selection of entrees, apps, and beers. One great thing about Durango breweries/brewpubs is the exchange of competitors beers. You can always find one or 2 competitors' products in each place.

My wife and I enjoyed this place immensely...she had the Engineer Light lager and I enjoyed several pints of the Rock Hopped Pale Ale.

 615 characters

Photo of chileman13
4.05/5  rDev +11.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Steamworks is housed in an old car dealership. It offers different sections, the bar, sections of the rstaurant and 2 patios (one overlooking Durango). The place is usually crowed between 6-8:30Pm. They offer a good selection of grub and great brew. The food can range from salads,burgers, home made pizza to the ever famous Cajon Boil. I had had the Boil, well seasoned, well cooked. add the crawfish and go man go. The buffalo wraps are great and so is the pizza. I have had numerous beers there and have always been satisfied. Try the regulator or conductor IPA and you'll never want to leave.

 596 characters

Photo of drdiesel9483
4/5  rDev +10.2%

Photo of Gerred
4/5  rDev +10.2%

Photo of jbeervt
3.91/5  rDev +7.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4 | food: 3.75

Photo of SlightlyGrey
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.75

Photo of javlin624
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of williamjbauer
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of 2013beer101
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of dcscientist
3.7/5  rDev +1.9%

Steamworks is a smaller brewery in Durango, living in the shadow of Ska, but they still have a few good ones to offer. Don't overlook them on the shelf at the store.

 166 characters

Photo of kingpin1010
3.68/5  rDev +1.4%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75

Photo of Edie
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

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Steamworks Brewing Co. in Durango, CO
3.72 out of 5 based on 760 ratings.
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