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Chicago Area Brewpubs
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  • Post #31 - November 29th, 2007, 7:27 pm
    Post #31 - November 29th, 2007, 7:27 pm Post #31 - November 29th, 2007, 7:27 pm
    d4v3 wrote:Is this place still in operation?


    Lunar still open:

    http://www.lunarbrewingcompany.com/

    Went there a while ago (with Doan), and what's on offer is still frozen pizza (but "good qualty," assures the guy who answered when I called).
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #32 - November 29th, 2007, 7:31 pm
    Post #32 - November 29th, 2007, 7:31 pm Post #32 - November 29th, 2007, 7:31 pm
    David Hammond wrote:Lunar still open: http://www.lunarbrewingcompany.com/
    Wow, they haven't updated that crappy webpage in 5 years. More importantly, how was the beer?
  • Post #33 - November 29th, 2007, 7:41 pm
    Post #33 - November 29th, 2007, 7:41 pm Post #33 - November 29th, 2007, 7:41 pm
    nr706 wrote:I agree completely with everything you've written about these brewpubs, but my question remains - why do you think they're significantly better than GI? (I'd say they're all roughly equal - maybe a little less than equal for Jamesport.)


    Well, i'd have to chalk it up to personal taste and and the quality of beer i can get outside of their establishment.

    To be honest, every six pack of GI beer i've bought i've liked (sans 312), but they've never made it into my regular rotation of staple beers that i'll get weekly.

    The beers that i've had at GI, as i've stated before, i've enjoyed. Although - i haven't been back in quite some time (i guess that says something, too.) Although, maybe we need to schedule an LTH Beer get together?

    But, beers that comes out of Bells or Great Lakes make it into my weekly beer purchases without question. (RIP, weekly Bells purchases)

    At the risk of making a generalization here, any long standing popular micro brewing operation is going to serve and offer great in-house beers. In the very least - good ones.

    But, when it comes down to it, the majority of my drinking is not being done AT GI, and it certainly doesn't take the place of most other beers that i can get around town as well. So, i guess it's just personal taste. I've never really been excited to pick up a sixer of GIs line, but i've skipped home singing with a sixer of Gumballhead.

    Maybe i'm in the minority here - but my friends and i aren't too impressed with the GI choices that we have when we visit the store.

    TLDR: personal taste.

    EDIT: to add, Goose Island's root beer is the best product they have, imo
  • Post #34 - November 29th, 2007, 11:40 pm
    Post #34 - November 29th, 2007, 11:40 pm Post #34 - November 29th, 2007, 11:40 pm
    djenks wrote:Also note - If you're at Bell's with an Illinois license, enjoy the discount! :)

    Not anymore. As of the end of July anyway.

    Kristen
  • Post #35 - November 30th, 2007, 12:56 am
    Post #35 - November 30th, 2007, 12:56 am Post #35 - November 30th, 2007, 12:56 am
    djenks wrote:
    nr706 wrote:I agree completely with everything you've written about these brewpubs, but my question remains - why do you think they're significantly better than GI? (I'd say they're all roughly equal - maybe a little less than equal for Jamesport.)


    To be honest, every six pack of GI beer i've bought i've liked (sans 312), but they've never made it into my regular rotation of staple beers that i'll get weekly.

    The beers that i've had at GI, as i've stated before, i've enjoyed. Although - i haven't been back in quite some time (i guess that says something, too.) Although, maybe we need to schedule an LTH Beer get together?



    You know, of course, that their packaged beers are made in a different facility than their brewpubs, so may vary significantly from what's on tap on Clybourn.

    But I'm always up for an LTH beer get together - we had a good one last spring at Rock Bottom, and another at Edgewater Lounge. Organize something and post on the events board - barring a conflict, I'll be there.
  • Post #36 - November 30th, 2007, 9:07 am
    Post #36 - November 30th, 2007, 9:07 am Post #36 - November 30th, 2007, 9:07 am
    djenks wrote:Well, i'd have to chalk it up to personal taste and and the quality of beer i can get outside of their establishment.


    This statement adds a lot of clarity to me, reading through this thread.

    Is there anyone besides Goose Island who brews in Chicago proper and who sells six-packs at say, Binny's or Sam's?

    There must be something, but I can't think of it.

    I'm not sure how unusual Chicago is in that regard. It seems like a lot of big cities have the one, local micro-giant...Goose in Chicago, Schlafly in St. Louis, Boulevard in Kansas City. I realize Chicago is much bigger than St. Louis and KC, and maybe that's the point here.

    Practically speaking though, as others have pointed out, I always considered Three Floyds, Two Brothers, New Glarus, Capital Brewery, Bell's, Jolly Pumpkin, and others to be my "local" brewers in Chicago, and I was quite pleased with the selection. I did buy a lot more of the aforementioned beers than Goose Island, but I do think that part of that is just natural expansion.

    I bought a lot of Goose when I first arrived in Chicago, but got bored of buying Honkers so often, so I branched out. They also stopped making the Blonde Ale, which I enjoyed.

    I don't know as much about Portland's scene, but in this sense, you could certainly say Denver has more options produced within a smaller radius, e.g., Great Divide, Avery, Left Hand, Flying Dog, Breckenridge, and others. I assume they all have brewpubs, too.

    Ultimately this distinction hasn't been too important to me, but I haven't spent much time in Denver, or anywhere with a similarly robust immediately local collection. Maybe I'd miss it more if I had.

    Here in KC, in addition to Boulevard, there are McCoy's, 75th Street Brewery, and River Market Brewing, maybe more. I haven't been to the latter, but I prefer Goose Island to the others, including Boulevard who is the easily available, six-pack selling equivalent.

    It's odd that even though I prefer Goose Island to Boulevard, I buy Boulevard more often here than I bought Goose in Chicago, probably because I'm still relatively new and want to give the local brew an extensive vetting before turning off the spigot. And their Pale Ale is a pretty good everyday beer.

    They sell Bell's on the Missouri side, but not the Kansas side. It tastes just as good as it did in Chicago, but I no longer consider it a local brew.
  • Post #37 - November 30th, 2007, 9:49 am
    Post #37 - November 30th, 2007, 9:49 am Post #37 - November 30th, 2007, 9:49 am
    d4v3 wrote:
    KSeecs wrote:Lunar Brewing in Villa Park is a great little brewery in a neighborhood bar, their only food is frozen pizza, but they brew amazing beers, particularly in light of the size and character of the operation.
    Is this place still in operation? Anybody been there lately? I went there once a couple of years ago, and really liked what they were doing. Say what you will about Illinois laws, but here is an example of an extremely low capacity small batch brewer that was able to open a joint that sells what is basically homebrew without much problem. Of course, if they tried to sell off-premises, it would be an entirely different story.


    Ah, but one can take home a growler or two.
    "The only thing I have to eat is Yoo-hoo and Cocoa puffs so if you want anything else, you have to bring it with you."
  • Post #38 - November 30th, 2007, 10:26 am
    Post #38 - November 30th, 2007, 10:26 am Post #38 - November 30th, 2007, 10:26 am
    djenks wrote:
    To be honest, every six pack of GI beer i've bought i've liked (sans 312), but they've never made it into my regular rotation of staple beers that i'll get weekly.

    The beers that i've had at GI, as i've stated before, i've enjoyed. Although - i haven't been back in quite some time (i guess that says something, too.) Although, maybe we need to schedule an LTH Beer get together?

    But, beers that comes out of Bells or Great Lakes make it into my weekly beer purchases without question.


    I'd say for me, Goose Island's "regular" beers are usually purchased as a sure bet of something I will like when I am grabbing a sixer of something I have never had and am unsure of. Of these regular I mainly just grab the IPA year round, and often grab whatever is seasonal such as Harvest (didn't like much), Xmas (which is great, working way through second $20 case from CostCo currently), Summertime, etc.

    Now, where I think Goose really shines is the Reserves, and I think those reflect more of the influence of the Brewpub than the Brewery. I'd trade you my last Two Hearted for a Matilda anyday ;)

    LTH beer meeting at the Clybourn Brewpub sounds like it should happen soon. Plan away...

    Jamie
  • Post #39 - November 30th, 2007, 10:26 am
    Post #39 - November 30th, 2007, 10:26 am Post #39 - November 30th, 2007, 10:26 am
    Diannie wrote:Ah, but one can take home a growler or two.
    Good to know. Now I can sample the wares without worrying about driving the 25 miles home while under the influence.
  • Post #40 - November 30th, 2007, 10:44 am
    Post #40 - November 30th, 2007, 10:44 am Post #40 - November 30th, 2007, 10:44 am
    d4v3 wrote:
    Diannie wrote:Ah, but one can take home a growler or two.
    Good to know. Now I can sample the wares without worrying about driving the 25 miles home while under the influence.


    That has been my hesitation about trying Lunar Brewing Company. I know some people who play in a band, Choice of Potato, and they do regular gigs at Lunar. The band is great fun, but the trek to and from Rogers Park is daunting, even if there is microbrew available. Maybe now I'll go hear the band with my favorite nonalcoholic beverage and take a growler home!
  • Post #41 - November 30th, 2007, 1:42 pm
    Post #41 - November 30th, 2007, 1:42 pm Post #41 - November 30th, 2007, 1:42 pm
    djenks wrote:To be honest, every six pack of GI beer i've bought i've liked (sans 312), but they've never made it into my regular rotation of staple beers that i'll get weekly.


    I agree with you--their bottled product is variable. However, whenever I see the Imperial IPA or Bourbon County Stout on sale at the store, they're the first to hit my basket before any of Three Floyd's or Bell's offerings. Their regular brews I buy by the variety 12-pack when I'm at Jewel and feel too lazy to go to a store with a real beer selection. That said, I do like their Oatmeal Stout from time to time because it's a bit lighter and less sweet than my usual stout selections. Oh, and the IPA is good for when I want a change of pace from the usual NW-hops IPAs/APAs and am looking for something with a spicier, British character.


    But, beers that comes out of Bells or Great Lakes make it into my weekly beer purchases without question. (RIP, weekly Bells purchases)


    Bells, sure, but I've never been much blown over by Great Lakes' product. I would actually pick GI over GL for day-to-day drinking.

    I've never really been excited to pick up a sixer of GIs line, but i've skipped home singing with a sixer of Gumballhead.


    Unless it's one of the specialty beers, I agree with you. The regular line-up of GI bottled beers is nothing to get too excited about. I don't think Gumballhead is either (my least favorite TF product), but I don't like American wheats.

    Maybe i'm in the minority here - but my friends and i aren't too impressed with the GI choices that we have when we visit the store.



    EDIT: to add, Goose Island's root beer is the best product they have, imo


    You're nuts. IMO. ;) The Bourbon County Stout and IIPA are the best products they have. I actually was quite impressed by the Imperial Brown Ale, since I generally hate brown ales.
  • Post #42 - November 30th, 2007, 3:33 pm
    Post #42 - November 30th, 2007, 3:33 pm Post #42 - November 30th, 2007, 3:33 pm
    I wish Goose Island still made their Pilsener. I thought it was a great example of that style, and was my favorite "supermarket" beer. The first beer I ever tasted, living in Germany at the age of 8 or 9, was the occasional sip of my Dad's Elbschloss pilsener. That became the ideal standard for me. I thought Goose's version was pretty close. Perhaps it was just that it was fresh, and most imported pilseners get too much of that funky green-bottle flavor by the time they get to the US store shelves.
  • Post #43 - November 30th, 2007, 3:56 pm
    Post #43 - November 30th, 2007, 3:56 pm Post #43 - November 30th, 2007, 3:56 pm
    Has anyone mentioned Piece here? I've *always* enjoyed their beer and it's too bad that the only way I can take it home is via a 64 oz. growler. And while the menu is limited to pizza, I think it's pretty good pizza. The brewpub can be a hard place to eat, though -- it seems packed every night of the week, with waits creeping up to more than an hour. But as far as a way to spend an afternoon, it works pretty well.
  • Post #44 - December 4th, 2007, 6:52 pm
    Post #44 - December 4th, 2007, 6:52 pm Post #44 - December 4th, 2007, 6:52 pm
    I was beginning to wonder if anyone in this thread follows the large brewing events like the GABF and World Cup. Piece has medaled every year since the brewpub opened, and won small brewpub of the year at the last competition. I go there too infrequently because of distance, but when I've been there I have enjoyed all of their beer. I have been to Cologne on three occasions, and their signature beer, Kolsch, is one of my favorites. Piece's version is as close as one can come to the beer made in Cologne Germany. If you like "big" beers, Surrender is one of the best, and I've been to a number of breweries in Belgium- famous for their "big" beers.
  • Post #45 - December 5th, 2007, 10:50 am
    Post #45 - December 5th, 2007, 10:50 am Post #45 - December 5th, 2007, 10:50 am
    RMC wrote:I was beginning to wonder if anyone in this thread follows the large brewing events like the GABF and World Cup. Piece has medaled every year since the brewpub opened, and won small brewpub of the year at the last competition. I go there too infrequently because of distance, but when I've been there I have enjoyed all of their beer. I have been to Cologne on three occasions, and their signature beer, Kolsch, is one of my favorites. Piece's version is as close as one can come to the beer made in Cologne Germany. If you like "big" beers, Surrender is one of the best, and I've been to a number of breweries in Belgium- famous for their "big" beers.


    Prompted by the recent threads I stopped by both Piece and GI - Clybourn this past Saturday after enjoying the nice weather at the Chriskindlemarkt. The Dysfuntionale at Piece which seems now to be an IPA, where before it was a darker American Strong Ale, was a great example of an American/Pacific Northwest IPA. The Amarillo Brillo was also quite good, a fully balanced Imperial IPA with an amazing mouth feel. The red, spinach and cheese pizza was solid and made for a good light lunch.

    GI had a great list of limited production and reserve draughts available as always. I was able to try the Bourbon Imperial Brown Goose for the first time and found it to be an exceptinal example of a barrel aged beer with the bourbon and wood qualities evident but not overbearing.

    Two very different and in my opinion very excellent brewpubs only a stones throw away from one another.
  • Post #46 - May 19th, 2011, 7:37 pm
    Post #46 - May 19th, 2011, 7:37 pm Post #46 - May 19th, 2011, 7:37 pm
    Couple of pics from Lunar. They must have 50 choices by the bottle/can. Maybe 10 on tap?

    Should have brought my tripod.
    Image

    Image

    Be forewarned, the place attracts kind of a motley crowd:
    Image
    i used to milk cows
  • Post #47 - May 19th, 2011, 9:09 pm
    Post #47 - May 19th, 2011, 9:09 pm Post #47 - May 19th, 2011, 9:09 pm
    Nice pics!
    I grew up in Villa Park and I have to say I'm big Lunar fan.
  • Post #48 - May 21st, 2011, 2:22 pm
    Post #48 - May 21st, 2011, 2:22 pm Post #48 - May 21st, 2011, 2:22 pm
    Interesting that the last mention here of Flatlander's in Lincolnshire was going on 5 years ago. We live relatively close by and I work even closer, but because the beer had gotten so bad, it had been several years since we had dropped in for a pint.

    About five months ago, a coworker was leaving the company and her going-away party was held there. I found the beer tasted pretty damned good, but thought it might be just a fluke. Then in mid-March, a friend organized a get-together at Flatlander's. Again, everything we sampled tasted pretty fine. So good, in fact, that my husband and I returned on St. Patrick's Day and found the stout especially to be extremely good.

    Now that the weather is finally getting a bit better, Flatlander's has become one of the stop we make when out riding our bicycles (it is adjacent to a Lake County forest preserve trail). Each time, we have not been disappointed. We talked to the bartender yesterday evening about the improvements we noticed and he said they are now buying much higher-quality ingredients for the beer and trying to get the word out that product has improved. Unfortunately, they were out of the stout yesterday, but we had an IPA and an imperial IPA and found both to be so good, we would have taken home a growler if we hadn't been on our bikes.

    On the other hand, my one and only visit to Mickey Finn's (before Greg Browne became brewmaster) was so bad, I haven't been able to convince myself to return. We know it's now much improved and we have to get there sooner rather than later, but whenever we find ourselves in Libertyville, it seems our feet automatically lead us into the Firkin.
  • Post #49 - April 5th, 2019, 8:01 pm
    Post #49 - April 5th, 2019, 8:01 pm Post #49 - April 5th, 2019, 8:01 pm
    18th Street Brewery named best brewpub in country by USA Today
    The best brewpub in the United States of America is located right in the heart of Northwest Indiana, according to no less an authority than USA Today.

    USA Today named 18th Street Brewery in Hammond the best brewpub in the country in its annual 10 Best Awards, which also conferred honors like Best Beer Scene, Best Beer Label, and Best Brewery Tour. It's a major distinction that could help bring more craft beer tourism to the Region.

    "Indiana's 18th Street Brewery brews up several varieties of beer in their Hammond brewpub, including Imperial Blud Imperial Russian stout, Temporal Purgatory pale ale, Here Comes the Wolf old ale and Sex and Candy American IPA," USA Today said in the citation. "The brewpub also serves pub grub and dinner menus with house-baked bread and pastries."

    Overlord Drew Fox's craft brewery won a popular vote online after it was selected as one of the top 20 brewpubs in the country by an expert panel that included award-winning critic Gary Monterosso, The Hop Review co-founder Jack Muldowney, Bon Beer Voyage CEO Ruth Berman, and world-renowned beer authority and award-winning journalist Dennis Malcolm Byron, who's also known as Ale Sharpton.

    Online poll? Not a fan
  • Post #50 - April 20th, 2019, 11:18 am
    Post #50 - April 20th, 2019, 11:18 am Post #50 - April 20th, 2019, 11:18 am
    It is nice to be recognized. I've been to 18th St. Brwy. a couple of times. Its proximity to the South Shore Line Miller station was a contributing factor. Here are photographs I took. :)
    Image Image Image Image Image Image
    The links you can use, without the fluff, or sales pitch: http://208.84.112.25/~pudgym29/bookmark4.html
  • Post #51 - May 8th, 2019, 11:34 am
    Post #51 - May 8th, 2019, 11:34 am Post #51 - May 8th, 2019, 11:34 am
    Prairie Krafts Brewing in Buffalo Grove will celebrate its 3rd anniversary this Saturday, May 11.

    Unlike past years, no advance ticket is necessary, just pay as you go.
    https://www.facebook.com/prairiekrafts/photos/a.230573953944640/848933278775368/?type=3&theater

    Prairie Krafts Brewing
    1310 Busch Pkwy
    Buffalo Grove, IL 60089

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