City Steam Brewery Café

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City Steam Brewery CaféCity Steam Brewery Café
BA SCORE
3.77/5
Very Good
817 Ratings
City Steam Brewery CaféCity Steam Brewery Café
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery, Beer-to-go

942 Main St
Hartford, Connecticut, 06103-1214
United States

(860) 525-1600 | map
citysteam.biz

Notes:
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Added by BeerAdvocate

BEER STATS
Beers:
54
Reviews:
211
Ratings:
817
PLACE STATS
BA Score:
3.82/5
Reviews:
74
Ratings:
120
pDev:
13.35%
 
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Ratings: 120 |  Reviews: 74
Photo of GreatPondBrewer
3.73/5  rDev -2.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Have been coming to Wild Irish Wednesdays all summer long and loving every minute of it. City Steam is a cool addition to the Hartford area and probably a welcome one. I haven't live in Hartford since before the Insurance bubble broke as it were, but I can't imagine the city supporting something like this in the mid 90s. However, there seems to have been some revitalization and especially with a good captive clientele (especially desperate law students from UConn) they turn a brisk business.

The interior is nicely decorated and quite inviting. There are plenty of old posters on the wall, signage from City Steam and various odds and ends. The bar is dominated by the most spectacular tap handle I have seen. It is a massive 2 or 3 foot tall molded metal head of what appears to be Czar NIcholas. The best part of it (besides the Imperial Stout it pours) is the huge train like whistle that can be pulled after a particularly rousing chorus of Wild Rover. The beer is generally good if a little sterile. The Naughty Nurse is a very good easy drinking beer and good to order in a "bong" while enjoying some music. I have only tasted a little of friend's food, but it all looks very good. The only downfall is that it can get busy so the service tends to be on the slow side. If you can help it get seats at the bar because the bartenders are quick on the draw for another beer. If you are relagated to a table prepare for long waits in between beers.

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Photo of BlueHammer
3.78/5  rDev -1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

I am writing this review after my second visit to City Steam. Both times, we called ahead and got a reservation, just to be sure. They will tell you on the phone that they will only hold the reservation for fifteen minutes after it is made, yet I've never gone in there and seen it to the point that a table would be impossible to get without a reservation.

The interior is absolutely gorgeous - exposed brick walls, several stories, with an open middle area so that you can look straight down from the third to the second to the first floor. It was the site of the first department store in Hartford (actually, I know it has even more historical significance than that). The overhead lighting is dim, but small lamps are provided on each table, a dining feature I absolutely love!

The service this time was good but not spectacular. The waitress was very friendly and fairly knowledgable about the beers. I appreciated that. The food that I did order was very good - though not exactly what I was expecting. (I ordered bruschetta that was not really a true bruschetta but delicious all the same). As a vegetarian, the choices are, of course, limited - but it is important to note that vegetarian options WERE available. My companions, who ordered meat dishes, said they were very tasty!

The restaurant is also conveniently located near to Hartford Civic Center (about a block away) and Hartford Stage (across the street) so it makes a nice, reasonably priced venue for a pre-event dinner.

I will go back again!

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

Making my way to Boston, City Steam was my first stop in the Hartford area. The place is pretty easy to find, easily found off the interstate. 'Twas a very snowy day in CT on this particular day, and I was in the mood for a laid-back friendly atmosphere and something to warm me up. Beer, that is. I found all of these elements at City Steam.

It was early afternoon and snowing heavily, so the sparse crowd was made up mostly of people who appeared to be stopping in for a lunchtime beer from work. I wish I could stop for lunchtime beers at work. I immediately noticed the $5 burger and beer at the bar top special that runs on weekdays, and thought, "yes...this is good indeed." Any beer, any burger...$5. So being a Philly resident and all, I opted for the Philly burger, which was smothered with peppers and onions. Nothing mind-blowing and a bit greasy, but good all in all. Especially given the price. Paired that with their Amarillo IPA, which I found quite well balanced. A nice, moderate American version of the style.

The bartender was a friendly fellow, greeting and having fun with the regulars, and discussing the craptastic whether outside. One of these said regulars sat down next to me and proceeded to talk beer with me for the next half hour. Told him I was headed to Boston: "Oh you must go to Sunset Tap & Grill"...don't worry my new friend, lunch there tomorrow is already in the plans. And with that tap selection, dinner probably is too. What totally got me was that this guy sits down, orders the Amarillo IPA from the bartender, who clearly knows him and has his mug ready for him...but the guy sees that I am moving on to their malty Barleywine and opts for that. Then he goes back to the IPA...then he says, "no...mix the two." Sums up this place nicely...a nice blend of relaxed atmosphere and pretty decent brews. Certainly worth a stop if you find yourself in Hartford.

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Photo of Hautacam
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Very nice atmosphere...stark brick walls..high ceiling..multiple levels in the restaurant part...this is a very old building.
My girlfriend and I came here for dinner and were pretty impresssed with this place...don't know why we waited so long to come here.
The waitress was very friendly and very knowledgable on food and beer selection.
We both had a marinaded pork that the waitress recommended that was excellent...the vegetables were perfect...and the price very reasonable.
We tried the beer sampler to begin. We again decided on the same choice, which was "Careless Love", a Biere de Garde....neither of us had ever had that style, but we loved it and wound up having a second one.
I was very impressed with their smoked scotch ale...very peaty and phenolic...but thought it was too intense for having with dinner.
I would like to linger over one of those as an after dinner ale....it really was great.
All in all, a very good place to eat and drink.

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Photo of deBeers
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This is a great place to drop in and have a pint and appetizer during happy hour. I went on my birthday and was pleasantly surprised.

Ahi tuna was absolutely delicious especially mixed with the sauce, spinach and coleslaw that came with it. Paired this with a wine glass of Belgian wit.

Service was great. Thanks Lloyd, Jenna, Kristen et. al! Decent area at the bar.

They have 83 oz. beer bong/taps that you can purchase for $20 which is cool.

$2 pints of the silky oatmeal stout which was decent and 1/2 appetizers. Having the brew setup inhouse is always a treat as well. I'll definately g back when in the area.

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Photo of goodbyeohio
4/5  rDev +4.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2.5

this is the closest good beer establishment to my job, so i often stop in for that happy-hour pint.

city steam is set up in the old hartford steam building, a beautiful aged brick structure with tremendous ceilings and steam pipes running amok through the structure. you walk in, and a huge z-shaped bar is on your left with the basic black-handled taps (12 or so including root beer and cider) and beer bongs visible in front of fermenters... surrounded by 10 or so high tables and a performance area for acoustic guitar performances and such. a window in the bar area looks out into an alley- great people watching. nice to see ads for all previous beers hanging from the ceiling like ornaments. on the right when you walk in is the 'lunch' area.. where all the suits are eating lunch. this extends upstairs and outside (weather permitting). small tables and a cozy, windowed atmosphere full of wood and tied & vested waiters. in the back when you walk in (all the way in the back) is a real fancy billiards area. couches, velvet, and a small bar. overall, the place has both a laid back and classy feel.

downstairs is a whole different monster, a fully functioning comedy club with access to great craft beer and some decent entertainment. big family-style tables crammed into a low-ceiling cementy hot box. if you go see the comedy in the summer, be prepared to sweat your nuts off. (and make reservations way in advance.. a week or so. they seat you in order of initial contact.

the beer is awesome. there is always something for everyone, from the serious beer nerd to the dragged-along wife/girlfriend. on my last visit, they had a light, a lager, an amber ale, an oatmeal stout, an ipa, a smoked beer, a biere de garde and a belgian wit. everything is of good quality and the bar frequently runs specials (free glasses tuesday & thursday as long as there is no game, burger and beer for $5 before 4pm).

the food is eh. actually, eh to the point of being kinda bleh. its expensive, portions are small and the food is not great. my 'rare tuna' was overcooked and skimpy. burgers are not fresh, obviously from a frozen patty. your best choice is the big pretzel, $4 and filling, served with honey mustard and beer mustard to dip.

staff is always attentive but not always knowledgeable. i have been there many, many times and never ran into the brewmaster. there are a couple of bartenders who can talk beer (and fill growlers properly) and then there are those who cannot. never had a bad pour though and rarely have i sat on an empty glass. good enough for me.. ron is always good about returning emails so that's something said for service, even if i have to wait until i get home to get my answers.

recommended.

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Photo of Nutleybeer
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

For those of you who ever travel to or through Hartford, or just live in the area, this is a great place to come for a good, local beer. I come up here to Hartford for business quite often and usually stay at the Hilton only a block away. Every visit to the city includes a stop at City Steam.

Thankfully I can walk to the place...Hartford's parking is the worst. They are few spots and most of the time you find yourself having to pay $6 to one of the countless lots in the city.

They have a typical menu, with lots of barfood type things...I usually get the pulled pork sandwich with a side of Asian slaw. Not bad and not too expensive for the food. They do have more dinner entree selections beyond sandwiches as well.

Their beer selection is decent...the Naughty Nurse; a pleasant and tasty amber, is their flagship beer. There are usually 2 or so seasonals on tap every time I go. If you adventurous, try the smoked Scottish ale. It is quite smooth and somewhat of an acquired taste. While not too strong of a smoked flavor, it might still be too much for a casual beer fan.

The only thing I ask though, and this is no reflection on this brewpub, can the city clean up some of the street beggers? Last time we were at City Steam, a homeless man approached us outside the door trying to sell us a $20 City Steam gift certificate for $10. This is certainly not the first time something like this has happened either.

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Photo of SteveO1231
4.47/5  rDev +17%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

Great Place!
I love the atmosphere, it's very nice, looks like fine dinning with old cast iron fixtures and woodwork. it's really a casual feel.
Huge spaces to enjoy dinner, beer, comedy, and food
I liked the burgers and the asian chicken wings.
Lots of beer to choose from I was a big fan of the Naughty Nurse Pale Ale
You can order a mini keg and have beers ready off your personnal tap all night while playing pool with some buddies.
The bar is great with TV's all over showing some great New England sports action Go SOX! stop in for a relax atmosphere, good food, laughes, and some great beer!

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Photo of francisweizen
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I went here before heading home from a nice Vermont trip (Burlington and Brattleboro areas). Anyways, this made for a nice place to go as part of my 3 hour-or-so layover on the bus on my way en route to NYC. Atmsophere was a bit cookie-cutter brewpub with a wooden bar and some dangling ceiling signs with their beer labels on them. Sports were on the several TVs located in the bar. Quality of the beers I had were good. I tried the white and the IPA and they were both pretty darn good. The selection was good as well with 10 or so beers on tap and the burger I had was super cheap ($5 for a pint and a burger) and damn good as well. A nice enough place to spend some time. Solid food and beer, good prices. Nothing amazing, but definately worthwhile...

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Photo of packetknife
3/5  rDev -21.5%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

I usually only go to the City Steam for the comedy club in the basement, however I have gone there on other occasions and I don't really recommend it. The high(er) point to the place is the relatively good food given its peers in the area.

Of the beers I favor the Naughty Nurse and their seasonal Porter. Their porter and stout seem a bit watery each time I have them and never are poured with a head. They had a kick-arse IPA once that was by far the best beer I had there but it wasn't available any other time I went.

I'd say you've got a 50% chance of hitting it on a 4.0 night and the other 50% on a 2.0 night. Service is rarely good in my experience with waitstaff that seem really interested in having you leave.

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Photo of Billolick
4.05/5  rDev +6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Very easy on and off the highway to find this place. Multi levels, multiple stuff going on, pool tables, comedy club,lots of flat screens showing sports, lots of patrons having a good time, lots of tasty stuff on the menu, and also lots of pub brewed choices for beer. We went for a bite and a brew on a friday night, they had a duo playing some so so soft classic rock kind of stuff (fairly cheesy and too loud, but easy to get away from cuz, this place is so big and has so many differant areas to go hang out in.) Our waiter was friendly and prompt. Beer sampled (Dexter Gordon, IPA, brown ale) seemed fresh and were tasty, if not amazing. Crowd seemed on the younger side, this is a college town to a certain extent. Fun place, interesting building, worth a visit if in town or just passing through (DONT DRINK AND DRIVE)

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Photo of Rastacouere
3.2/5  rDev -16.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 2.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

Atmosphere: Huge multi-faceted establishment with 2 floors, cinema screens showing sports game. Pool section at the end, nice wooden display, very familial restaurant feel, but there was not more than 15 people in all that space (capacity of maybe.. 300?) on a sunday afternoon. A few original concepts like their tall cylinder pitchers etc. Staff was very friendly if not too geared toward beer. 10 or so taps available which would make it a pretty decent selection if there was not 2 lights, one mild, one commercial cider etc, but still they boast a baltic porter, old ale, one hop ipa and such specialties. Unfortuntely, the beer there really didn't impress me, I tried 10 of their taps and I'd only qualify worth it 2 of those, the ipa and old ale. I was particularly let down with the dry stout, baltic porter and dortmunder. Their house yeast, which I assume is used for all their beers just as a not too clean character that comes out a bit husky/lactic and the bodies are lacking. I had one of their burger which was not awesome, but good if greasy. The people that were with me didn't enjoy theirs very much though.. Overall, I was expecting much more and what's with Hartford being almost empty on that sunday despite this huge buildings neighborhood?

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Photo of yankeeheel
4.05/5  rDev +6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

My crew and I picked City Steam as a gathering point for a pre-show hook up to see Rush at the Meadows, and we made the right choice. The place is mammoth. As toy walk in the bar is cordoned off to the left. I would guess between the bar and the tables you could seat almost 75. Off to the right is a really casual seating area with big sofas, booths, and tables. lots of wood, brass, and leather. In the back is a bag ass pool room. If this isn't enough, they have a patio and a huge upstairs.

Beer....it's good. We basically stuck to the Naughty Nurse and Joan of Arc. Joan was a hands down winner. All beers sampled by my peeps were well recieved. Solid quality. There were about 10 different tap selections. All house brands. After the show we opted for the 3 liter beer bong. Solid move IMHO. Cuts your beer cost down to $2.25 a glass.

Food wise the appetizers I had were quite good. Seasame wings, Shrimp in wantons, and fried clams.

Wow, what a gem they have in Hartford! I will be back.

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Photo of slander
4.05/5  rDev +6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Lunch with the BA's in Hartford. I ain't been here since I don't know when, maybe Zappa at the Bushnell, Floyd at the Civic Center, something, some time ago...
City Steam is out on the strip in a century old building, an old steam powered department store. Crazily spacious, nooks and turns and bends this way and that. Straight to the back, a party room with 8 pool tables and a small bar, jukebox, TV's, benches, tables and couches set about. Nice cast iron railings, marble pieces and French revue posters throughout. There's a perch with a few chairs and couches overlooking this room, accessible only from a flight of stairs around the side towards the front and nearby, a stairwell to the basement comedy club room. Couches and tables in the front room, wrapped around the main staircase that leads up, a table here, a table there, and splits to the left and right, and up again, large arch windows and stained glass, twists and small dining rooms with tables in all corners. And finally back downstairs in the bar area, a handful of round and rectangular tables and a strange semicircle table in a curved outcove that seats about a dozen. Hardwood floors, exposed duct piping, yellow walls, purple ceiling and columns and trim. A strange mural over there in the corner and old Connecticut brewerania (Hull's, New Haven), vintage beer and cigarette ads, and City Steam beer plackards everywhere.
The copper and wood striped "Z" shaped bar seats about a dozen and a half. Fermenters are visible in the front window and behind the bar, and they've got a pull handle for a loud ass steam whistle. WWWHHHOOO!!!
A dozen taps, 9 house beers (Light Lager, Pale Ale, Steam Ale, Atkins Ale, Export, Porter, Wit, Triple, Double IPA), a cider and 2 sodas (root beer and birch beer). I drank the porter ('cause that's what I do) and then the IPA, crisp and nicely hoppy. Beers were good and clean. Had a bowl of the most ungumbolike gumbo in existence, not bad, just ungumbolike, and a solid roast beef wrap. Service was okay, nothing crazy, and I'm not holding a grudge about the growler incident... Someone managerish approaching, saying, "Can I ask you what's in that growler?" and me responding, "No". Fact of the matter is that I walked in with a 2 litre growler of the Heavyweight Black Ocean (thanx, Tom) to share with my frenz. While I didn't covertly smuggle the thing in under my coat, I also wasn't quite brandishing the thing in the air like the whole King Arthur growler-in-the-stone Excaliber myth. It was somewhere in between. Anyway, they bagged me as we were more than halfway through it. Some old blue law still on the books regarding the bringing of good NJ beers onto premises or something. Says she, "I'm going to have to ask you to pour that out". Says me, "I'm sorry, but that just ain't happening". We compromised with "quickly downing" what we had poured and me parking the partially filled growler out in Evil's clown car. Like I said, I'm not holding a grudge, they were just doin' their job, I just thought it was good comedy and worth noting.
Many of the other reviews for City Steam bark about the scene there. It was all good. We had no problems on this dead Sunday afternoon...

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Photo of sulldaddy
3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Visited this pub after a trip to MA. Have been meaning to visit for many months now. It was a Saturday so not exactly a beer appreciating crowd. Mostly people just sluggin beer. I got a strange look from a bar neighbor when my beer came in a snifter (barleywine). the beer I sampled was tasty and service was fairly quick. Lots of room to explore the building and would have shot a rack of pool except for the reunion occurring in the pool room. I think I would like to come back and try more of the beers when there isnt such loud music and loud teeny boppers around. The breweriana collection was very nice and I definitely dug some of the posters. I will be going back and will probably edit this review.

***for women BAs. My girlfriend used the bathroom here and thought it was the grossest facility in a nice pub she has seen. There was TP everywhere and only one roll for the 3 stalls. So be prepped for a not fun bathroom experience. This could have been a factor of a crowded Saturday nite.
Just wanted to give a heads up.

EDIT: Revisited on a Tuesday evening. Much less crowded and the staff was very attentive to the beer needs of our table and were also able to answer some beer related questions. I think 9 beers on tap had the portor and Dexter strong both of which were tasty. This pub is much more beer friendly on a weeknite and I bet during lunch than a Fri/sat evening. I also had a mix of appetizers that we spilt as a table. Mostly pub grub but all that I tasted were well made and hit the spot. Great spot for some local beers

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Photo of beertraveler
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Located in Hartford's historic Cheney Building that housed the famous Brown Thomson & Company, City Steam is a feast for the senses both inside and out.
City Steam pretty much has everything you need to have a wonderful night out. If visiting the brewpub just for the beer wasn’t enough, you have Hartford’s only comedy club called “Brew Ha Ha” located on the lower level. You have a nice pool room with 8 tables located in the back. Live music with no cover, which is rare in Hartford, as well as Irish Jam Sessions every Wednesday. They also have a great Happy Hour from 4-7 with ½ price appetizers. There’s something for everyone here.
The eclectic, and sometimes eccentric Brew Master, Ron Page, is the man to thank for the wonderful beers here. Along with the 3 mainstays, Colt Light Lager, Naughty Nurse Pale Ale, and their original City Steam Ale, you can find an average of 10 different brews on tap that represent a nice cross section of brewing styles that even includes lagers.
Beers aren’t your style? City Steam offers a Martini menu as well a list of “specialty” drinks that will certainly quench your thirst. Don’t drink alcohol? City Steam has its own brewery made Root Beer, and it’s simply the best I’ve ever had!

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Photo of UnionMade
3.85/5  rDev +0.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Located in downtown Hartford, City Steam is fairly easy to find. Parking can be a problem, particularly if you're planning to go here during working hours on a weekday.
Walking in, the place is a tribute to beer, specifically CT brewed beer. Signs and posters hang on the walls. A bit sedate, not as much stuff as most brewpubs I've been to, with a very clean, professional atmosphere. The kind of place you could take your non beer drinking boss, or some co-workers, I guess. Lots of dark wood, high ceilings, with brewing equipment behind the bar. An interesting heart-of-the-city kind of vibe going on. Signs for the brewpub's beers hang on the walls, with a long bar and tables scattered around. No smoking. I've never been in the dining area, so i have no idea what that's like.
The beer is always fresh, the lines are always clean (with some dirty themes), and the beer is always quite tasty. All the beers are listed with their plato. I don't know the conversion. It's a bit annoying, but whatever. They usually have a variety to choose from, at least 5-6 different beers, with 2-3 regulars that cater to a less developed palate, and the rest geared towards beer lovers. All the beers have a pinup girl sort of theme, which is definitely different. Ron Page makes a good product.
Service is ok. I've had one really nice bartender, a couple snotty ones, and a less than attentive waitress while dining here. The beer is always poured in a glass to suit the style, poured well, but you might not get a smile and a thank you on your way out. Prices are a little steep, but I guess you expect that in downtown Hartford.
There's always a beer or two I'm excited about, but the food menu is a touch dull, and isn't really up to par with the beer. It's decent for sure, you won't leave disappointed, but nothing really special. I definitely come here for the beer on the odd ocassion that I do venture into downtown Hartford.
Worth a stop if you're in the Hartford area. The beer is inventive and well done. It's close to pretty much everything. If you work in Hartford and haven't been here, you're missing out. Hell, if you live anywhere near Hartford and haven't been here, you're missing out.

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Photo of ecoboy
3.65/5  rDev -4.5%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

I noticed VENOM has reviewed this elsewhere with a caveat about "down times." Amen. This is seriously one of the coolest buildings architecturally in which to house a brewpub. All kinds of levels and nooks and crannies to get lost or loud in. I have walked up through all the levels every time I've visited, just to get the true feeling of the place (and to get to the washroom.)

But, having been on weekend nights only, I must report that the place can have an obnoxious vibe. I said "can." You may love it. My very first visit, the doorman told me that I couldn't wear my Burger King Rugrats watch in. He was actually kind of serious. The cover band is playing Jimmy frigging Buffet and I can't wear a goofy plastic watch? I have really disliked the music when I've gone, sloppy beery classic rock and college music played to a really appreciative (read: kinda tipsy) batch of patrons. I look forward to enjoying the beer when the place has a more ruminative vibe. It will probably add atmosphere points.

The food has been really good, and as a traveller from four hours away, I really appreciate that the kitchen is open on weekends until 12:30 a.m. Also worth noting is that the brewery is relatively close to downtown hotels, so when staying in Hartford, it's usually an easy walk for good beer (Naughty Nurse and Fallen Angel come recommended.) Just plan to love it loud if there's music going on.

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Photo of blgianbeer
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

City Steam has vastly improved over the last two years. When I first visited, I was disappointed with the inconsistency of their beer. Most of their selections were not quite balanced enough for the styles they were trying to acheive.
However, now I have friends visit, I bring them here. I tend to drink their specialty brews and have not had one to complain about recently. The Belgian-style ales could use something...perhaps a bit of aging, but are definitely drinkable.
White Rabbit Wit Beer - Perfect amount of spice and malt made for a very refreshing beer
Imperial Porter - Very well-balanced and smooth beer for it's strength
If you are going be in Hartford, I would recommend stopping for a beer.

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Photo of far333
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

This is one of my favorite places in Hartford. True that some of the brews are average, but some are excellent, and the variety is pretty vast. The service is usually very good and the prices are reasonable. The food is better than average, but that's not why you come here. Atmosphere is pretty neat. The place is huge, and has a bar area, several restaurant areas, a casual area with several couches in front of a TV, a pool and game room, several private rooms, an outside terrace, and a comedy club downstairs. There are also various beer/brewery antique posters and other items throughout the building. The bar area has brewing tanks viewable behind plexiglass, and the brewing is done with steam provided by the nearby Hartford Steam Boiler company. Good tips earn a loud blast from the steam whistle.

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City Steam Brewery Café in Hartford, CT
Brewery rating: 3.77 out of 5 with 817 ratings