Sunday 25th of July 2010 06:41:34 PM link
Finally made it to Bodega after spending a week on vacation.
It had a relaxed, open feel, bar was right up front, with tables along the windows. Couches around the corner entrance, and a lunch counter in the back on the opposite end. Tap handles lined the walls that sported assorted breweriana that will keep you busy looking at it all. First impression of the taps was confusion, saw one tower with maybe 6 taps: Stella, Guinness, Leinies. After sitting down, I saw the second row of taps under the bar with all the good stuff. Even so, I found myself drinking a couple bottles in lieu of draft beer. Tried a Raging Bitch on tap, then moved on to Gumballhead and 2 Hearted. Other taps were ok, but nothing too exciting. No Pearl St., apparently there was a falling out with the owner. Del's Bar down the street has 5 PSB taps, if you're looking for the local beer in town. The bottle selection is extensive, and lists beer style, ABV, and BA/RB scores. I found myself flipping through looking for certain styles, like Saison & IPA on that hot day.
We ordered a couple sandwiches, which were hot and tasty, and came out of the kitchen in a timely way. The Cubano was really good. Service was ok, and we struck up a conversation with a friendly local guy. Best stop in town for beer, check out Pearl St. tap room while in town too. Deaf Ear is a great record store on the same block as Bodega if you're inclined to do some music shopping.
Selection: 4.5 |
Atmosphere: 4 |
Service: 4 |
Friday 4th of January 2008 12:03:33 PM link
I get to La Crosse occasionally for work and as soon as possible, I head to the Bodega.
This is a classic older tavern with a long bar along the interior wall, tables along the large street side windows, high tin ceilings and a small raised area with some gambling games. The place is absolutely loaded with beer memorabilia.
The bartenders are topnotch. They are extremely friendly and helpful. I most have talked beer with one of them for about 15 minutes. He had a ton of knowledge and some real good suggestions. I think its great to be able to talk to someone who is so passionate about his job.
There are usually nice sized crowds, but Iâve never had a problem grabbing a seat. They attract a wide-ranging crowd, with everyone from business folks to college students who were all there to drink good beer.
They offer approximately 12 beers on tap. The bartender said only 4 or 5 are regulars and they rotate the rest. Where the Bodega really shines is their bottle choices. They have a nice bound notebook listing all of their offerings. This is updated on a frequent basis. They will offer anywhere from 300 to 400 bottle selections.
The prices are very fair. They have happy hour specials and even during regular hours, most micros are only $3 to $3.50 per bottle. Most imports are in the same range with only some bigger (size &/or ABV) offerings that were much more. They have a really good selection of WI micros and lots of Belgians. I also noticed some real inexpensive beers such as James Page Amber & City Fest Beer for only $1.50.
If I could change one thing, I would make it non-smoking.
Selection: 4.5 |
Atmosphere: 4.5 |
Service: 4.5 |
Friday 4th of January 2008 10:04:26 AM link
Living in LaCrosse for several years, this is certainly the place to go if you want something different. While LaX is a town in general, that does not lack in quantity of beer (and a insanely cheap prices), this is where the quality lies. Some of my first experiences with micro brews were had here and memories abound with great seasonal choices.
Spanish Peaks on tap was a favorite memory as are the various lambics that pass through. You can spend years finishing off the huge list of choices.
This is also a great place to play some cribbage, sheepshead, even Risk, all available there at the bar. They've expanded the bar into the Ebert's & Gerbert's sub chop that used to be next door so there is plenty of room, even during Oktoberfest.
Great joint, you must check it out!
Selection: 5 |
Atmosphere: 4.75 |
Service: 3.75 |
Wednesday 3rd of October 2007 06:58:21 PM link
The Bodega Brewpub is a real gem set in a most unlikely place. LaCrosse Wisconsin.
Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against LaCrosse. It's just that a place with this kind of selection is more often found in a major metropolitan area.
The Bodega sits proudly along 4th street. The building was the long time home of one of LaCrosse's most famous restaurants.
Two sides of the building are covered floor to ceiling with large panes of glass allowing in natural lighting and a view of the many Oktoberfest revellers that pass on the street.
The bar is rich with old wood and antique beer memorabilia can be found throughout. Collections of old empty beer bottle, coaster from 1000's of other bars, tap handles, and a few insect specimens are also on display.
I spoke with the owner, Jeff Hotson, and was able to find out some of the changes in store for the Bodega.
The Pearl Street Brewery had also been located in this building, but they are now located across town. This has allowed Jeff to expand the bar area all the way to Pearl Street and plans are in the works to open a kitchen.
This place really does have a great selection, everything from A.Le Coq to Zywiec can normally be found here. I know this from my previous visits.
This visit was during the Oktoberfest parade and celebration when the menu and stock are changed to deal with increased volume of foot traffic.
If you are in LaCrosse or just happen to be passing through I highly reccomend that you stop in and see for yourself.
I've been known to say that if this place was located in Chicago I might just spend a little less time at the Map Room. I said might!
Selection: 4.5 |
Atmosphere: 4.25 |
Service: 4.5 |