emerge077 (129) RIP Johnnies, Chicago, Illinois | March 12, 2014
78 AMBIANCE 5/5 SERVICE 7/10 SELECTION 10/15 FOOD 8/10 VALUE 8/10 OVERALL 17/20
2014: Been here several times, the food is great. Pizzas are top notch and the BBQ is good. Itís more of a neighborhood place for families. Free parking sunday in the pay lot next door.
2012: Big Bricks has been a long time coming, 2 years or so. Itís a welcome addition to this stretch of Lincoln, a halfway point between the cluster of beer bars north of Belmont and Lincoln Square mainstays. Nearby is Mrs. Murphyís, Resiís, Globe, etc.
Set on a corner, the exterior is a dark stained wood with large wire-reinforced windows, a "Berliner Beer" vintage neon lights up the corner, with Big Bricks sign hanging below it. Inside you can tell the proprietor is a breweriana collector, there are antique signs dotting the interior in small bursts of color against the brick walls, with tin ceilings above. Dim lighting, with intricate tile and a brass rail lining the wide angle corner bar, with tables to the left and booths to the right past a maitre dí station.
At the bar thereís a long bank of 20 taps, and more bottled beers in the coolers on the left side behind the bar. Selection was varied, many imports and west coast options (Anchor, Sierra Nevada, Firestone Walker), seemed to cover a number of styles. Highlights were vintage drafts of Bigfoot and Celebration, Union Jack, Jacobins Rouge, Tripel Karmeleit, Metro Dynamo, Half Acre Over Ale, and more. Bottles included a range of options, on the high end were 3F Schaerbeekse Kriek, Boon Mariage Parfait, and Quarta Runa.
Service has been great overall, though at times questionable, hopefully some staff are quickly learning how to be efficient. Seemed like table service was better than bar service, oddly enough.
Food is great, plenty of smoked bbq fare from their pit smoker, including shrimp & grits, ribs, chicken, salmon, and excellent juicy pulled pork. The sweet heat pizza features the best of both bbq/pizza sides of the menu.
Overall a place in the neighborhood worth checking out for the food especially, good pit stop for a potential bar crawl also.
t0rin0 (1330) Do Not Resuscitate, California | August 27, 2013
68 AMBIANCE 3/5 SERVICE 7/10 SELECTION 9/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 7/10 OVERALL 15/20
Visited August 13, 2013.
First stop after the Trader Joes a block away. The tap list was decent, nothing special but not bad for a pizza place. I suspect that if I would have eaten here I would give this place a higher score. The food smelled awesome and the descriptions on the menu looked appetizing. Instead I ordered a glass of the Weihenstephaner assuming it was the hefe but when it arrived it was the lager. Thatís what I get for making assumptions and not reading the tap handle more closely. $5 for the pint wasnít bad I suppose. Might stop in again for the food, but I could take or leave the beer list.