Bear's Lair

Bear's LairBear's Lair
Bear's LairBear's Lair
Brewery, Eatery

2475 Bancroft Way
Berkeley, California, 94704
United States

// CLOSED //
View: Beers | Place Reviews
Recent ratings and reviews.
Photo of mjl21
Reviewed by mjl21 from California

3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5
The Bear's Lair is a great place to hit up if you are in the Cal area for a game or a concert at Zellerbach or the Greek. It is located right on campus. There is street parking available, though it can be tough to find. There are also plenty of pay lots. It is not too far from the Shattuck BART Station. Being as it is on the Cal campus, the decor is all Cal all the time.

It isn't a huge space. The bar is in the middle of the room and takes up most of the space. There are some scattered tables around the perimeter. There is a really nice outside area.

The beers are brewed by Jupiter. They carry a wide selection of styles such as an IPA, Honey Wheat, Amber, Red, etc. They also have a few guest taps and you can usually find some Drakes, BMC, and Trumer. The prices aren't bad for the beers.

They also serve greasy food such as pizza, fries, wings, and nachos, but I have yet to eat anything from there.

The service can be good if it is not busy, but when an event is going on this place gets packed and the bartenders get slow.

The Bear's Lair is by no means destination worthy, but a great place to have a few if you are going to be doing something at the Cal campus.
Sep 01, 2009
Photo of t0rin0
Reviewed by t0rin0 from California

3.28/5  rDev -12.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5
I went here after I saw this place listed as a brewpub here on this site. I have to say that I was dissapointed when I found out that they don't actually make any beer. Also, we had just hiked from Jupiter and Triple Rock. The beer selection was fairly interesting especially because this place is at a university. The bar tenders were nice and helpful. The beers were relatively cheap and I didn't even notice if they served food there. I think we spent about 35 or 40 minutes there, so I may not have seen everything that this place has to offer. If I find myself in Berkeley again I think I'll stick to the breweries.
Jan 10, 2008
Photo of Boneheadmx
Reviewed by Boneheadmx from California

4.35/5  rDev +16.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5
Located right on the UC Berkeley campus, it's a great place to have some beer with friends right after a hard day's worth of classes. There is both inside and outside seating, and a nice jukebox with a huge amount of tunes. There are also several TV screens inside. On any given weekday, the place won't be too crowded and you'll get your beer really fast. The house brews weigh in at roughly $10 a pitcher, and they are fairly good. The Honey Bear is really tasty.

If you're a student here at Cal, you already know this place. If not, come by and try some of the beers and chill out on the patio. It's kind of a laid-back place.
Sep 07, 2006
Photo of DaPeculierDane
Reviewed by DaPeculierDane from Wisconsin

3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5
Allow me to be a male chauvinist for just a moment. I walk into this student center bar and am just flat knocked on my ass by a bombshell bartender. I order a pint of her house porter and the beauty brings me a pitcher, tells me that she can’t charge me because it’s all she has left, and warns me that the beer’s a little warm but that she likes it that way and maybe I will too. Is this a student center or is this heaven? The porter turns out to be great, highly hopped, and indeed better warm than I imagine it would be cold.

The vibe is the same as any campus joint with booze, loud and lively. I was reminded a bit of the Rathskeller back in Madison. A big screen TV was mounted on one wall, some smaller one on the others. The bar was a large rectangle. Tables surrounded it and lay spread out in an adjoining room. Two patios were with in a dozen meters of the bar. The place was absolutely filthy (but in a good way) and the bathrooms…well, try to hold it…

The Bear’s Lair turned out to be a bunch of fun. The staff was outstanding. The selection was very good: About 18 taps (5 house, 5 Jupiter, Kona, Sam, Pyramid Apricot, and a few others). Recomended and within 5 minutes of other beer spots Jupiter and Triple Rock.
May 12, 2006
Photo of misterscooter
Reviewed by misterscooter from California

3.7/5  rDev -1.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5
Having a University in the middle of an urban setting, you have to expect that there are a lot of places to grab a beer. Not only are you right but it is hard to go wrong with any of your pics. While some places are better for a full bar and some are better for beer, the Bear's Lair is best for being on campus. Before or after a game, after a concert, or just on campus, jump in and join the crowd and grab a beer.

I always get the same thing when I'm there and it is almost always very busy. I don't go there for food and I can't comment on it. The service is good because I approach the bar, order and get my beer. No fuss, no muss.

If you are looking for some place mellow and quiet and sit down with your drink, wander down telegraph and look for something else. If you want a lively and loud student atmosphere, step into the Lair.
Feb 28, 2005
Photo of Bang34
Reviewed by Bang34 from California

3.6/5  rDev -3.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4
This is the on campus pub at UC Berkeley. Many Cal sports fans love watching games here and it is the place to be after and Golden Bears sporting event. There is nothing like hoisting a liter to the Cal drinking song along with the Cal Band.

As far as beer is concerned, they have a great selection of "House Brews" which are really Jupiter brand libations offered under school themed names. Anything from pilsner's to stouts are avaialable. They also offer PBR and Miller Highlife for the economy minded student.

I recommend Pedro's Porter, named after the former chancellor's lost dog who if ever found would mean the end of finals forever. It is full boied, chocolately and malty with a nice little bite. It is all that fills my glass there.

Their food is better than average, brick oven pizzas and pub fare.

I always go back there, but it is probably because of the memories, not the beer.
Jan 14, 2004
Bear's Lair in Berkeley, CA
Place rating: 0 out of 5 with 6 ratings