Wednesday 29th of December 2010 01:30:24 PM link
Yard House sometimes doesn't take reservations, and it gets really crowded. Be prepared to stand by the front door or the bar area for a little while. However, the bar area is large enough -- a giant circle -- that you can easily stand in small groups waiting there. The televisions are not a focal point of the restaurant, but you can see them anywhere in the place.
I swear they must have 100 beers on tap here, including lots of things that will be tough to find at other restaurants. However, I wonder how often they change out bad kegs. I personally haven't had anything that tasted off here, but I usually drink Belgian selections that might age better than others.
The food is also very good -- the "sliders" appetizer was surprisingly nothing like White Castle sliders except in appearance and then teriyaki ribs were unique and really well-cooked. Entrees range from the cheap -- sandwiches, pizza, and burgers at $10 -- to the expensive with seafood and steaks topping near $30.
The location is really nice, too, because of the pseudo-downtown feel of the street. Parking is available down the whole street, and there's also a garage near the middle of the strip. I suppose it's probably a closer feel to Old Orchard Mall than Clark Street, but it's still nice to see the effort. You can walk out of the restaurant and have several other bars, coffee shops, or dessert places to choose from.
My biggest complaint is the atmosphere. It's usually filled with families with crying babies. Family friendly is one thing, but strollers in a bar is not my thing.
Selection: 4 |
Atmosphere: 2 |
Service: 3 |
Friday 4th of June 2010 10:53:02 PM link
Never been in the area before, but it was weird. Imagine a shopping center laid out as an imitation "village square" for an upscale suburb, halfheartedly trying to resemble little cottages, but in reality an outdoor mini-mall made entirely of brick, with a parking garage more cramped than O'Hare airport. Coupled with the Stepford-esque indigenous peoples, I was almost ready to leave as I walked in the door.
Do you like to eat at mall food courts? How about drinking at a bar in one? Huge airy cafeteria building, oval shaped island bar surrounded by tables full of families. I was one of 3 people at the bar, yet there were maybe 60+ patrons in the place. Something about that speaks to the low priority beer has here. It's pretty much just a gimmick for this chain bar. Ooh, look at all those taps and fancy yard glasses. There are 50 different martinis too, not really impressed. Excess is billed over quality and craft.
It took about 10 minutes after walking in and sitting at the bar to get the sole bartenders attention, he was too busy talking with the waitstaff. There were only 2 other patrons seated at the bar, with maybe 25 chairs on the front side. I don't have leprosy... Gumballhead was $6, and the seasonals were all variations of pseudo-macro. Blue Moon, Sam Adams, etc. I'd say 2/3 were pseudo-macro vs. real craft beer. To their credit, there were 3 Three Floyds beers, a few decent Belgians and Germans, and Belhaven Scottish Stout. The grating atmosphere didn't lend itself to beer appreciation really, with the family cafeteria feel and piped-in Sheryl Crow songs. Won't be returning to this sterile cookie-cutter chain restaurant.
Head down the road to Meier's Tavern at 235 E. Lake Ave. for some authentic character, and a sandwich under $10 with a half liter of DAB. Even better alternatives would be Prairie Moon in Evanston or Firkin in Libertyville... both roughly 20 min. from here, and prime examples of beer-focused restaurants that actually "get it".
Selection: 3.75 |
Atmosphere: 2 |
Service: 2 |
Tuesday 1st of December 2009 11:36:25 AM link
I've been here several times with groups, and the food never disappoints me. The beer is hit and miss, even though they have some 100 on tap. Many are Macro's, but the list seems to be improving, now the menu shows categories which is helpful. They did have 5 seasonals, and my friend got the Leffe Brune he's been seeking. It is a sports bar atmostphere, but the tables are nice, service very good if you get the right person, and food is way above normal bar food.
Selection: 3.5 |
Atmosphere: 3.75 |
Service: 4 |
Sunday 16th of November 2008 09:29:50 PM link
This person needs 3 or more reviews on the site for their scores to start counting.
Sucks! It is really the HALF YARD house.
This only serves half yards, so you wonder why it's called the yard house? The food is okay but very pricey for what you get and the taste. Not recommended at all. They have way too many beers to go through so when you order something that's not bud or miller light it is stale and old. change the name to the half yard house and lower the price of food and drinks and it'll be okay.
Selection: 2 |
Atmosphere: 0.25 |
Service: 0.25 |
Monday 30th of April 2007 04:53:02 PM link
As of this reviewing, this is the first Yard House that I have visited. There are a number of restaurants in this chain of taphouse restaurants, scattered across the country.
If I had to use one word to describe this location, it would be "safe". They have a very large number of taps, but it seems that they are only interested in safe options. They seem to have all the breweries in the region covered (as well as the big imports and the big macros), yet they are not daring in their selections at all.
They have the biggest selling options from each brewery, so unless you are from outside of this region, there will not be that much that is super exciting. And they don't seem to cycle through kegs that quickly, or at least the drafts I have tried have often seemed a bit old.
With all this said, if you find yourself in the area, you might want to give it a shot. They have a pretty good sized food menu too. It seems like my group has normally ordered appetizers, and they have been solid.
This location is in a swanky mall setting, with a large parking deck. I bet quite a few husbands end up spending an hour or two in here while waiting for a shopper.
Selection: 3.75 |
Atmosphere: 4 |
Service: 3.75 |