Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro

Boundary Bay Brewery & BistroBoundary Bay Brewery & Bistro

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

1107 Railroad Ave.
Bellingham, Washington, 98227
United States

(360) 647-5593 | map

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Reviews: 43 | Ratings: 65
Photo of dbalsock
4.13/5  rDev +1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

So I've gone a couple times with different experiences each time. I've tried 7-8 of their beers and they were all at least decent. The scotch ale is better than the highland scotch ale, and their oatmeal imperial stout smells a little bit like wet dog, but other than those comments, the only thing I can say about their beer is: very good! The service has been good every time I've gone, with the servers noticing every time I was ready for a new beer. The atmosphere has been pleasant with nice seating and good lighting. Two times I went I ordered a pizza, and each time it had a very different crust. The first was big and fluffy and just how i like it, similar to pizza port in some ways. The second time was flat and not like pizza dough, but like flat bread. Both tasted good, but I definitely prefer the fluffy ones.

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Photo of allergictomacros
3.63/5  rDev -11.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3 | food: 4

Just visited this place today. Atmosphere is relaxed and informal. I had a lovely, smoked salmon pizza here for under 10 dollars. 6 Regular and 3 seasonals on tap when I visited. Kind of a hippie-rustic sort of appeal if you like that kind of stuff. There was a fairly large indoor restaurant as well as an outdoor patio area and a Jazz band playing.

Beers, I found were maybe on the happy side of average. My favorite was the scotch ale, which I found quite good, as well as the blond. Lots of detail on the menu itself for interested parties, including OG and hop and malt varieties used.

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Photo of John_M
4.36/5  rDev +6.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

No disrespect to the many outstanding places on the East Coast, but this place pretty much typifies why I'll always lean to the left when it comes to great beer establishments in th U.S.

The atmosphere of this place is drop dead NW. It has a completely laid back, nothing pretentious feel to it. Although the beer here is clearly world class, the atmosphere is unassuming, ho-hum, go with the flow West Coast. The crowd here really says it all. On this particular Monday afternoon there were families, young hipsters, and old farts like myself hanging out, relaxing, and just having a mellow time hanging out with friends and having a good time. As one enters the brewpub one sees off to the left a medium size bar with around 10 bar stools. There are some rickety old tables and chairs, high ceilings, and left over sails adorning the walls. The furnishings are pretty stark and are nothing fancy, giving the brewpub a minimalist, easy going, nothing pretentious vibe.

The quality of the beers here is off the charts. The regular line-up is stellar, with even the blond and amber worth a try. The imperial oatmeal stout is world class, and the seasonals... sigh. The dunkel bock was pretty much the best I've tasted in the U.S., and the Old Bounder barleywine and imperial IPA just fabulous. My test for outstanding DIPA's is that they have to be so hoppy that they wear my ass out, almost causing indigestion because of the excessive hoppiness and richness. The DIPA here more then meets that test.

The service here is the type of service that is so good it's hard to describe. This is a regular's bar, with most of the customers making this place their home away from home. The cute young bartender, at least on the day I was here, treated everyone accordingly. She seemed to know everyone by name, gave everyone a well deserved ration of shit, and then treated them like they were visiting relatives. She was friendly but polite, familiar but considerate.

As for the selection, the day I was here they had some 9 different beers on tap. Everything was pretty outstanding, though of course some things were better then others. The IPA and scotch ale were no better then fair, but pretty much everything else was outstanding.

This is the sort of place I only wish my friends on the East Coast could visit. At least from my experience so far, there is nothing quite like this on the East Coast, as it completely epitomizes the NW experience. There are plenty of fabulous places here on the East Coast, but there is NOTHING like Boundary Bay. This place is an absolute diamond in the rough; a complete gem. What I wouldn't give to have a place like this in Baltimore....

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Photo of Viggo
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Went down to Bellingham to visit a friend of mine, luckily he lives about 15 minutes walk from the brewery. Atmosphere is a mix of tourists and locals, pretty neat. Big merch area right as you walk in, including a fridge full of bombers to take out. We went and sat at the bar, friendly and knowledgable enough bartender, nice wooden bar, wooden tables, miscellaneous water related items hanging around the bar. I think they had about 11-12 taps, all BB. I had three beers, which were all pretty solid to excellent. The menu is pretty varied and the lamb burger I had was quite nice. I found the prices to be pretty competitive and very reasonable. Very good place, have wanted to go for a while and will definitely go again next time I'm out this way.

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Photo of beertunes
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

okay, full disclosure. as a resident 'hamster this is my local so i am not completely neutural. the beer is excellent. the inside passage ale (ipa) is probably the best seller. ten taps include six or seven regular choices and three or four seasonals. try the latest in the single hop series. they make a pale ale with the same malt bill and only one type of hop. each time they make it they use a different variety of hop. the cabin fever winter ale is my favorite beer of the year here. the place is always busy so bring your patience. when the weather is good the beer garden is the way to go.

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Photo of eballard
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Boundary Bay is a must for any one interested in Washington breweries. It’s a small place but if you know good beer you’ll want to go to the effort to try this beer. It’s hidden in downtown Bellingham but it’s not too hard to find. The brewery it self is a fairly large building for such a small beer but it gives them a great place for a good restaurant. The decor is nautical with lofty ceilings and open spaces. The food is great. They have a wide selection of your standard brew house favorites. The people are friendly and the service is nice but don’t be in a hurry because the whole city runs at it’s own pace and this brewery is no exception. It’s a relaxed atmosphere and family friendly so if you’re a student at Western Washington University this is a great place to take your parents when they are in town. Brewery tours are available by appointment so call ahead and book one. In all if you want to visit a brewery when you in northern Washington you won’t be disappointed if you head here.

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Photo of BDTyre
3.85/5  rDev -5.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Decent joint in downtown Bellingham. Nice decor, although the size of the building can make it seem a little spares at times. The white walls don't help. The place was decked out for Christmas, which was a nice touch. That it is non-smoking/all ages is a definite plus.

Service lost some points due to speed. They were friendly enough, but almost painfully slow. It wasn't busy when we got there, although it had picked up quite a bit at the end. Only one server was on, so I can't really blame her.

Good selection of food, almost a something for everyone place. The food itself was quite good. I've had better, but not often.

Wish i could have tried more of their beers.

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Photo of waldowin
4.5/5  rDev +10%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 5

Was headed up to Bellingham to visit a friend, and decided we should eat at Boundary Bay, having never been there.

Sails drape from the ceiling, light fixtures poking through. Live music outside, wooden tables, and a kitchen entrance right next to the bar, facing the main floor, lead to a relaxed, somewhat noisy atmosphere.

Our waitress was kept very busy, but never failed to check in on us, and keep our food and drinks coming. As soon as a glass was half empty, it was refilled. The empty glasses from our beer sampler platter were cleared almost as soon as we set them down.

We had a plate of nachos to start, and then dove into some lamburgers, which are served on a toasted roll. We had blue cheese added, and it was one of the best burgers I've had.

Of the sampler platter, the Imperial Oatmeal Stout, Scotch Ale, and IPA really stood out. Unfortunately, they were sold out of bottles of the IOS, not surprisingly.

The sampler platter and the burger came to $16 after tax, so it's not dirt cheap, but for the money you really can't beat the food.

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Photo of davidchollar
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

years ago i had a dinner party here, got the sampler set, loved it. i remember it well, because i had already been going to WWU (about 10 blocks away) for a year, but just discovered this place. i was surprised and impressed that a place like this exists, where you can get good food and great beer in a cool, relaxed atmosphere.

last week i took the family on a little trip up to victoria. from there we took the ferry over to vancouver, stopped in B'ham for a short visit on the way back to seattle. we didn't have much time, so i went to boundary bay just to check it out and buy some bottles to take home. the place had obviously been remodeled. there is a big outdoor dining area i don't remember, and the basic layout is different, expanded i think.

i spent some time looking at the t-shirts and sweatshirts for sale, eventually made my way to the bar. i told the bartender i wanted to buy some bottles, and she said all they had was the ESB and the scotch style ale. while i was waiting for her to get some bottles for me, i asked for a sample of the 2003 bounder. WOW. that was one of the most flavorful beers i tasted on my whole 2-week trip, wish i could have had more. i have yet to enter my reviews for the beers, from notes. the ESB was pretty good, i really liked the scotch style ale though it doesn't compare to the awesome fat bastard.

the reason i docked some points for service is that after i walked in, i wandered around for nearly 5 minutes checking out the place and nobody said a word. they looked a little busy with a little late lunch rush, but everybody saw me looking around like it was my first time there and they ignored me. even when i went to the bar, it took a few minutes for the bartender to even notice me, but there were only about 3 guys at the bar. this was a little annoying at first, but then she was nice, helpful and quick. wish i could've tried all they had to offer, but i had to drive. next time i'll stay in town and walk as it's conveniently located downtown.

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Photo of carln26
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I had dinner and a few beers here several years ago when on a sailing trip to the San Juans, but this was my first opportunity to really sit, enjoy, and review this pub. It’s located in downtown Bellingham, very accessible on Railroad Street. Decent space. It looks like it might have been a converted garage, as I sat in the bar area, and there is a large garage door on the front wall. Rustic styling with lots of regional decorations, and some sports goods (bikes, skis, etc) hanging from the ceiling.

Nice friendly staff with prompt service. I like the people here. Primarily locals. Workers, professionals, and college students. Fleece and blue jeans are the attire here, not the dress clothes I had on (I was on my way back from a business meeting in Vancouver), I like the laid back atmosphere.

Nice selection of beer. About 8 on tap including a seasonal winter warmer, and several regulars. All the beers were obviously very fresh, and pretty tasty. Their IPA is exceptional.

Nice selection of food. Plenty of salads, sandwiches, wraps, pasta, fresh seafood, and pizzas. The Thai wrap I had came with a side salad. It was a tasty, light dinner, and was perfect with the hoppy beers I was enjoying. Prices are reasonable, not cheap, but under control.

All together a great place. Worth a stop if you are in the most northern city in the mainland US.

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Photo of Derek
4.38/5  rDev +7.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Well worth the cross-boarder trek, (and only a couple of blocks from the bottle shoppe).

You can see the stainless steel mash tuns from the seats up front. Great atmosphere for a brew pub.

A tray of six 5-oz samples is a reasonable $8. A limited number of their brews are available in 22oz bottles for take-out, and they'll fill a growler with anything on tap.

Some of their beers were a little murky (no finnings or filtering), but they were packed full of flavour. Lots of Pacific Northwest hops.

Not your typical pub grub menu... lots of tasty things to choose from, as well as vegitarian and pescitarian options.

Friendly staff, good service. I'd go out of my way to make it there again!

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Photo of canucklehead
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Had a little bit of trouble finding this place as Railroad Ave is very short but the effort was worth it as I can safely say that these guys brew some great beer.
The bartender set me up with a taster and then threw in all the extra seasonals for free which is nice when a BA's interest is rewarded with being able to taste the whole range. What a range; everything from a light ale to a barley wine , Double IPA ,Dunkelbock and every style in between. Every beer is good with some such as the Double IPA and Barleywine approaching great. The brewer skip came out told me that he is taking over a brewpub in Port Angeles so I hope ther quality will continue.
The food was nicely made and presented and the space was big and bright with lots of outdoor tables for summertime.

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Photo of freed
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 5

For a college kid, this was a great place to take the parents. A nice mix of house brews, pleasantly decorated building, and really good food.

Boundary Bay sits just west the main drag, and is within fairly easy walking distance of much of the town. Its in a old shop building with a vacant lot on one side, which lends itself well for projecting movies onto the wall of the opposite building. Its hard to beat watching a cult classic on the deck with beers during the summer.

The beers themselves are solid NW style beers. Hoppy, Malty, and good. I sometimes find it difficult to distinquish between them, but they are quite good. The Doppelboch is excellent.

A wide variety of foods that really are quite cosmopolitain, and very good. I've never had a bad meal here. Service is good, but nothing that distinquishes itself from other places. There's a nice green feeling about the place, almost like an old Park lodge.

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Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro in Bellingham, WA
3.67 out of 5 based on 853 ratings.
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