This is a small local beer bar that attracts both regulars and beer destination seekers. There is a nice selection of west coast micros and imports (mostly Belgian). There is a decent menu of bar food. But the real attraction is the annual calendar of beer festivals including such categories as "Double IPA" and "Barrel aged, " for which the adjacent street is closed to accommodate the large crowds attracted to these events. The staff is friendly and beer-knowledgeable.
Classic joint you can call home. Plus they put on world class fests. Visit here out of respect for the emphasis they put on great beer. One of those places you walk into and discover you have found a beer paradise. This place is one of the go to places on the west coast.
I could see this getting boring if the taps arenít rotating fast enough. But it manages a great old-time feel and the patio is beautiful. Menu is simple but seems honest and well-done: certainly made by hand which takes long when one staffer has a party of five. Good offering of NorCal beers.
Visited this past week, and the tap list was awesome, with plenty of barrel-aged beers left over from the barrel-aged festival. This place was just a great overall experience. The bartender was awesome. She accommodated my frantic excitement about the numerous rare offerings and made sure that I got to taste everything that I was interested in. Value was outstanding: $4 for tulips of barrel-aged stuff like Older Viscosity and Valley Brew 12 Cuvee, as well as PtE. Smaller sample sized snifters were only a buck fifty, and the food was also very reasonable and quite good. Nothing too fancy on the menu, but enough to keep you satisfied while enjoying some great beers. The Bistro will definitely be a top priority in future visits to the east bay.
Small, dive-ish bar in a reasonably pleasant section of Hayward, right next to a Saturday farmerís market. Friendly staff, nice patio outdoors, and excellent hosts for the Barrel Aged Fest, which is probably one of the best and most under-advertised festivals during the year. Their regular taplist tends towards excellent (if easily accessible) hoppy American beers and Belgian bottled selections.
fidel (114) Livermore, California | October 29, 2008| Updated March 19, 2012
Nice down town Hayward spot. Small but good tap list. Proper glassware. Live music.
cs535 (5) Oakland, California | September 22, 2008
This is a little gem of a place in downtown Hayward. They have a great selection of California brewed beer as well as Belgians. There are a couple of the bartenders who really know their beer and have turned me onto some great tasting beers. They have many Festivals that you do not want to miss. Best of all they welcome doggies on the outside patio. They have a dogie water dish inside as well as the staff enjoy giving biscuits to the puppies that visit.
Pretty high expectations. Kind of a let down. Only a handful of beers on tap, and of those, only 3 were ones I would want. I didnít stick around for the music because they didnít have enough good beer to keep me there. Iím sure Iíll try it again, but more looking forward to their festivals.
pinkzambia (61) Boise, Idaho | November 18, 2007| Updated November 19, 2007
The coolest corner neighborhood bar in old town Hayward. They have live music every night of the week. They use proper glassware for the most part. Itís very casual - the menu on the wall is written in dry erase marker. The restroom is a small room that is shared by both guys and gals. Its mainly a bar with a few tables and an outdoor patio. Very cool place. The bartender is really cool and knows a lot about beer as well as extremely attentive to serving you. His girlfriend who sits at the bar and reads Wiccan literature probably knows more! The regulars all love good beer and the stuff they have on tap is all solid micros minus one or two. When I visited they had just had a barrel aged festival and there were a few leftovers I got to try. A must visit bar when in the area for the whole package - beer, environment, music, etc. Oh, you can also get a few appetizers.
My first visit to this establishment was for the Wet Hop Festival where I had the pleasure of meeting beerguy101 and Davecooks. I had a roast beef sandwich that was chalked full of flavor. Yum. They doubled the number of taps from their dozen or so fixed taps with temporary ones for the event. There was just bar seating inside with maybe six stools and outside seating on tiny tables. People were smoking out there so that was a bummer. All in all a nice experience and some excellent wet hop brews sampled.