The Bobcat Café & Brewery

The Bobcat Café & BreweryThe Bobcat Café & Brewery
The Bobcat Café & BreweryThe Bobcat Café & Brewery
Brewery, Bar, Eatery

5 Main St
Bristol, Vermont, 05443-1317
United States

(802) 453-3311 | map

View: Beers | Place Reviews
Reviews: 25 | Ratings: 41 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Brad007:
Photo of Brad007
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5


I stopped in again today to check out this place. The bar service still needed some work as the bartender kept removing the beer list whenever I wanted to check it out and I had to ask him to bring it back so I could order my next beer. He also failed to heed my request for no onions on my burger, which I then offered to pick off but he just brought it back and they brought out another one. No worries.

But what really impressed me about the bartender (and there is ALWAYS an upside) is that he stopped me from going off the deep end on sampling beers. I have yet to find a bartender that knows when to stop serving people and I'm grateful for that. I was enjoying the beer so much and wanted to keep trying it and taking notes. Warrants a second visit in the near future though.

By the way, the burgers are still too expensive and the selection seems limited to me because for one thing, I'm not a foodie. There also seems to be some information missing on the menu, such as the fact that burgers come with fries and greens on the side and they have a grilled flatbread on the menu but the menu doesn't say what's on it. A bit more work on the menu and service and otherwise, they'd be perfect.

I stopped in at this place to enjoy a few beers and a meal.

The beer selection was awesome, 9 beers on tap of various styles.

The atmosphere was cozy and interesting. Kind of cramped but only in the dining area.

Service was not very good and I'll elaborate. Bartender served me a Lincoln Lager in a glass that was obviously dirty with some crud around the lip of the glass. I pointed this out and he replaced my Lincoln Lager. However, when it came time for me to get my check, he tried to charge me for TWO Lincoln Lagers. I had to point this out before he made his correction. Also, at least one other glass that I used was dirty (mainly smudges). They need to do a better job of washing their dishes because it's simply unacceptable in a professional setting.

Food was decent. I had a burger with Grafton Cheddar and Applewood-smoked bacon, medium. It was excellent. Fries were interesting and were spiced a bit. $12 was a bit much but the quality of the beer more than made up for the cost of the food.

Beer was off-the wall excellent. They have a talented brewer who knows what he's doing. I don't know how good the Ron Cotti era was but I think that Mark Magiera is decent and knows his stuff.

Overall, a very nice brewery and again, my only issue is with the dirty glasses. If you accidentally slip a customer a dirty glass, you need to replace their pint and not charge them double. It is out of their control.

Otherwise, a good place to check out.


 2,695 characters

Brad007 from Vermont, Apr 12, 2009
More User Reviews:
Photo of ryanm3850
5/5  rDev +19.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

ryanm3850 from Rhode Island, Dec 28, 2017
Photo of Mattybuchs
4/5  rDev -4.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5

Mattybuchs from Vermont, Nov 14, 2017
Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4.25

Heading down RT 116, this nice little brewpub offers some pretty good beers, nothing exceptionally bad and nothing that will blow you out of the water, but the food is quite good and they do a great job of keeping the place "happening." They don't offer lunch, and it might not be much of a place to take young children, but I'll give it a shot when I'm able to get a babysitter for my young one. Sometimes, they have a guest tap or two.

 437 characters

Photo of Kegatron
3.98/5  rDev -5%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4.25

Kegatron from Pennsylvania, Feb 11, 2016
Photo of Miccal
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Miccal from Vermont, Sep 25, 2015
Photo of zotzot
3.43/5  rDev -18.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Actually as beer place this is kind of limited
Mediocre beer
Good food
Really rude service
Went up the road to Hinesburg Public House Instead

141 characters

zotzot from Vermont, Sep 01, 2015
Photo of Ajlvt
3.86/5  rDev -7.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

Ajlvt from Washington, Sep 01, 2015
Photo of fastestmanalive
4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4.25

Photo of GormBrewhouse
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.75

Loved the IPA and imperial stout. Dinner was also quite good. Comfortable setting and an attentive staff. I,d stop in again if in the area.

139 characters

Photo of Shogun250
3.79/5  rDev -9.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4 | food: 4.25

Shogun250 from Vermont, Mar 12, 2015
Photo of TBonez477
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

TBonez477 from Vermont, Jan 23, 2015
Photo of yarnbomb
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

yarnbomb from Vermont, Oct 12, 2014
Photo of RDQueena
5/5  rDev +19.3%

RDQueena from Michigan, Aug 08, 2014
Photo of Mini4x
4.75/5  rDev +13.4%

Mini4x from Massachusetts, May 25, 2014
Photo of coombski
3.75/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of WillieThreebiers
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Hopping little brewpub on the main drag in downtown Bristol. Long straight bar on left hand wall seats about 20 with a few closely packed rows of tables opposite the bar. The place was packed and fairly loud. A dozen assorted beers on tap, harried servers, and tasty food.

 273 characters

WillieThreebiers from Connecticut, Mar 16, 2014
Photo of InspectorBob
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

InspectorBob from New Jersey, Feb 26, 2014
Photo of jessehd09
4/5  rDev -4.5%

jessehd09 from North Carolina, Oct 15, 2013
Photo of WRinMaine
4.31/5  rDev +2.9%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

Had the pleasure of visiting the Bobcat during a bike trip through Vermont. It was a highlight of the trip.

Every beer I tried (IPA, brown, lager) was great. I gave selection only a 3.75 because they were out of a few beers (its stout and red ale). The beers are in such high demand the brewpub has a hard time keeping all the taps running, according to Dan the bartender. The brewer only works a few days a week at this point and just can't keep up with demand.

I was lucky enough to order the brewpub's LAST bottle of bourbon-barrel aged sour. It was a dark sour, reminiscent of an oude bruin. It was delicious. Unfortunately, the brewer wasn't there that day to tell me more about this beer.

Definitely worth a visit if you're ever in northern Vermont.

 758 characters

Photo of KingdomBobcat
5/5  rDev +19.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Went here for my 21st birthday with family and friends. Absolutely love this place. Had their IPA, Scottish 90, and a Stout float for desert. Each beer was phenomenal, food was phenomenal, service was great, atmosphere is amazing but good luck making a reservation. Well worth the trip from any direction. Want to go back soon.

 327 characters

Photo of laurastradford
4.6/5  rDev +9.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

We arrived at 7:00 on a Thursday and the place was packed. I am unfmiliar with Vermont so I had not realized that we would need a reservation. We found some seats at the bar after about 20 min. We ordered a delicious sampler of beer that included the Saison, Saison de cassis, huit huit, Zesammenavheit, Baltic Porter, Dennis Hop'rd. The three of us agreed our favorite was the huit huit. We ordered the meat and cheese platter. It hit the spot and had a nice variety. The bartender was extremely sweet and helpful helping us put together a great beer sampler. I would go back if I had a reservation.

 600 characters

laurastradford from New Jersey, Dec 16, 2012
Photo of MsRif
3.75/5  rDev -10.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

This was our first stop on our wedding/honeymoon road trip. We stopped in EARLY...and yet the place was extremely packed. No bar spots, so we opted for a table that was actually reserved for an hour after we arrived, so we had to make it a quick visit. Atmosphere was pretty nice...we were tucked away in a corner by a window where we could enjoy the very nice view which was great. Service was unfortunately slow which was understandable but unfortunate since we were there with a limited amount of time. Not really the server's fault, but it did make the experience less enjoyable since I felt I was in a rush to eat my food. Selection of beers was okay...a little sub-par, but still worth trying. Overall this place was very nice, just not my favorite experience and I think I'll probably skip it in favor of another venue next time.

 836 characters

MsRif from Pennsylvania, Dec 24, 2011
Photo of Digimaika2
4.15/5  rDev -1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Was passing through Bristol on our way to Middlebury and stopped in just after it had opened at 4pm during the week. In fact, the bar was already packed when we walked in around 4:15!

The cafe is quite beautiful inside and reminds me of an old-fashioned general store with lots of old wood, brick, and ornamental details. As we sat at the bar, the service was very attentive and very pleasant from the sole bartender working at that time. She was able to answer any beer-related questions we had, and recommended a couple things from the pub menu for us.

Ended up having the Dennis Hop'rd, Easy Rider, and Saison on-tap - All of which were incredibly good and exceeded our expectations.

As we were there before 5pm and thus restricted to the pub menu we had the Misty Knoll chicken wings and Grilled Flatbread which were both quite good and satisfied us.

Will be stopping in again after our experience of great ambience, beer, and food.

 941 characters

Digimaika2 from Ontario (Canada), Nov 16, 2011
Photo of tyamhydrogen
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 5

The bobcat has stellar local food at reasonable prices, especially compared to similar places in Burlington like the farmhouse. The menu changes with what's in season, and the farms the food comes from are listed, so you know everything is fresh as can be. The beer is quite good, but nothing extraordinary in my experience. Atmosphere is great and Bristol is a great little Vermont town. If you visit in the warmer months be sure to stop by Bartlett Falls up the road for some great swimming and cliff jumping! Would definitely recommend to almost anyone, more so for the food than the beer.

 592 characters

tyamhydrogen from Massachusetts, Oct 22, 2011
The Bobcat Café & Brewery in Bristol, VT
Brewery rating: 3.83 out of 5 with 178 ratings