Wednesday 16th of February 2011 09:29:23 AM link
I've passed through Fredericksburg more times than I can recall, but I had never actually stopped in here until this past summer.
I feel like this is one of those instances where there are actually two, similarly named, closely located establishments, because I can't agree less with anyone else's opinions on this place.
The beer is horrendous. It's all weak, tasteless, and there's very little differentiation between what they offer. It's like they're not really caring about the beer.
Which, in some instances, is okay, if the food is really good. But it's not. I like the German theme because I love me my German food, but I don't like crappy German food, which is what I got here. I don't know how you mess up a sausage being in a region where such good sausage is available, but they did it somehow. It just didn't taste like anything. The kraut it was served with was also all wrong. I didn't finish it.
The service wasn't memorably bad but it wasn't very good either. I sat at the bar and can recall having to wait for things longer than I would expect.
They're doing some great stuff with beer in Austin (Live Oak, Real Ale, 512), even in San Antonio (Blue Star), so I don't really understand why this place is as bad as it is. It's touristy, expensive, and has both bad beer and bad food.
Selection: 0.75 |
Atmosphere: 3.5 |
Service: 3 |
Tuesday 15th of February 2011 08:31:57 PM link
It is nearly impossible for me to pass through this town without stopping at the Fredericksburg Brewing Company! In fact, it is my reward for hiking to the top of Enchanted Rock.
Pioneer Porter is my favorite of all their beers so far. Wonderfully malty with a super creamy head. Bummed I probably just missed their Hoppy Holidaze (A hoppy black), but looking forward to a trip to hike the rock and finish it off with a pint of their Giant (A chocolate stout and Valentine tradition-last year they sold out in a couple weeks). Last October I had an interesting PINK prickly pear beer named Cactus Jack (breast cancer awareness?). And surprisingly I also love their award winning Hauptstrasse Helles.
I almost always sit at the bar (near the tanks ;)and the staff has always been very friendly and accommodating even when the place is rocking. Food is pretty decent, I typically order something German and have the German Potato Salad and Braised Red Cabbage sides.
Parking can be a challenge, especially on the weekend or during special events; its a good idea to check the Fredericksburg Tourism Website before you go.
Selection: 5 |
Atmosphere: 5 |
Service: 5 |
Monday 25th of August 2008 09:39:06 AM link
I stopped by on Monday Afternoon for a beer after work. They had a small crowd and space at the bar. I had their new Mexican style lager. It was light a crisp and perfect for the hot day.
Rick Green, the head brewer, makes seriously good beer, and has won five golds at the GABF. His Pioneer Porter is outstanding.
My only complaint is that he doesn't do German beers very often. A bock once in a while but no hefeweiss.
And while I mostly stop by for a beer, they have some pretty good food. My favorite is the club sandwich!
Selection: 4 |
Atmosphere: 4.25 |
Service: 4.75 |
Sunday 13th of April 2008 08:46:34 PM link
Trendy Tourist Trap? No way, serious beer here.
When I find a brewpub located in the dead center of a very popular tourist destination I think one thing: Novelty. The sheer nature of having an establishment that just happens to make their own beer, in the heart of the busiest street, in a major tourist spot, usually means that the beer quality isn't that important. It will sell regardless based on novelty.
This brewery proves that standard wrong. Let me tell you why.
Fredericksburg is a very old town in the Texas hill country. Founded by German immigrants, you can feel the German culture throughout the area. Located not more than a few blocks from the birthplace of Admiral Chester Nimitz, is the Fredericksburg Brewery. Full menu, Biergarten and the entire brewing system directly behind the bar, this place is a great stop for the beer geek.
And when I say directly behind the bar I mean it. I was told by one of the assistant brewers that you have to stand on the bar to clean out the mash tun. I even noticed that the bartenderβs purse was placed atop the platform where the brewer would perform all mashing and boiling operations.
The menu was limited this evening, with both the Helles and the Maibock being sold out, I headed towards the IPA. Cleverly named "Harper Valley IPA" (a little play on words and tip of the hat to the famous Texan singer-songwriter Tom T. Hall) this was a very nice IPA. At 6.7% abv and 80 IBU's this IPA packed a pretty good lupulin punch. Although the malt profile wasnβt in complete balance with the hops, the use of palisade hops in addition to Chinook and Amarillo hops was a nice touch. The flavor was very memorable and I enjoyed a few of these.
The Pioneer Porter was especially nice, with a rich malty body and caramel notes.
The Enchanted Rock Red Ale had a pretty good malt backbone, settled in perfectly with a balance of Perle hops.
I only tasted a small amount of the Blonde ale, but from what I remember, it was on the average side, but very drinkable.
The atmosphere is what you would expect for a tourist standpoint. People from all over the world were there on vacation. The menu is a very nice mix of Texas and German. Anything from fried pickles and jalapeno slices, to scotch eggs, sandwiches to pizzas.
You can take the beer with you in a growler if you like, or in a plastic cup, which must be a city ordinance or something because you simply cant do that in most parts of the state. Something I will brave to look into.
All in all, I would recommend this brewpub to anyone in the area. The food is great, the beer is excellent and the staff, at least behind the bar, can talk beer and are more than happy to do so. Maybe if your lucky you will get there while they are doughing in, and be able to sit at the bar and watch the whole process firsthand from 5 feet away.
Selection: 4.25 |
Atmosphere: 4 |
Service: 4.5 |