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Lots of room in here, three pool tables and lots of booths and tables to sit in plus I nice long bar. The place is beautiful on the inside, go to the website and check out pics. The beer selection is fantastic, taps are always rotating. Bottles include Corsendonk, Unibroue (my Maudite was served in a wide wine glass as that was the closest to appropriate glassware I could get) including Terrible, Three Floyds, Two Brothers heavy handed and bitter end, Ayinger, Hacker-Pschorr, Paulaner, and more, great selection, will keep you interested well into the wee hours of the morning. Kitchen should be opening soon so I will re-review with the food.
had lunch here a few months ago when in town to pick up my son. food was delicious and the beer selection was about as good as you’ll find anywhere in central Illinois. staff was pleasant, friendly and even though our waiter had cute short bangs, nobody hit on him either. ;)
Great beer selection. Good food. Great Ambiance. Service was good, But I was in there early on a Monday So I don’t know how it is around any other time.
This place has the best beer selection for a pub around the CU area.
I just love this place. Good food, good beer, good people. Scott runs a good show. Decent selection of beer on tap and in bottles. Pool tables availabe and TVs for watching sports or whatever. Atmosphere good. Beer selection has many interesting items like trappist beers, lambics, and such. The bartenders know how to pour, too. Their food is good. Not standard bar fare. More upscale cuisine. Have had everything on their menu. The Champaign-Urbana Beer Club meets there on the third Wednesday of the month, 6:30 PM.
Nice place, a long bar, pool tables, plenty of room. The food that I had (a portobello sandwich with sweet potato fries) was pretty good and the others in the group seemed happy with their choices. Very nice beer selection, both on tap and in the bottle. If you’re going to be in the Champaign-Urbana area, you couldn’t do much better for decent eats and some good beer.
Yeah this place isnt that bad. The service is pretty good and they do have a very good beer list and is better than most places listed on this site. If you are in town, you may want to check it out. Since the first time that I was there they have drastically improved the place. Fairly classy joint with a very very solid selection of beer.
Been here a few times now. Better than average food for a bar. Good Italian beef and a pretty good menu all around. Great bottle selection and usually some decent micro and import stuff on draft.
Philip (64) Illinois | August 6, 2005| Updated February 10, 2006
Strictly in terms of beer, Crane Alley does a decent job bringing in some good mircrobrews to counter the Bass, Guiness, Harp junk. Yeti Imperial Stout, North Coast’s Rasputin, and even Bells Batch 6000 have all made their way to the tap list within the past year, and that’s impressive. The service is highly dependent on who your particular server is the night you dine.
*************************** 2006 UPDATE: Food has declined quite a bit over the last few months after their original chef left. The specials aren’t as good, and even some of the sandwiches seem to be more up and down than before. The tap selection is solid, but doesn’t seem to be quite as good and innovative as before either due to the loss of their manager.
As good a beer selection as you’ll likely find in a town the size of Champaign-Urbana, Crane Alley has a nice selection of bottles, and a good rotation of drafts, including some that aren’t widely available. The food is very good for bar food. Lots of sandwich choices (I recommend the chicken salad sandwich), some steak/seafood choices, etc. Most of the food is pretty good. I had some pumpkin tortellini there (seasonal offering) that was to die for! But beef sandwiches (italian beef, steak sandwich) always turn out a bit tough, for me. But, I avoid them, to my pleasure.
I, too, have had bad service here, on occasion. But I go often enough to know this isn’t the norm. Maybe 10% of the time? Hell, bar service is usually inferior to restaurant service, so I’m not gonna complain too much. There’s usually not much of a lunch crowd, so if you want a quiet pint or two, it’s a good choice. At night and on the weekends, it gets pretty crowded.
I had a great Reuben here, and everyone in our large group who ordered meals seemed satisfied. The beer menu was lengthy yet somewhat common to a Chicagoan like myself. Nice atmosphere on an uncrowded, post-graduation afternoon, but it would have been cool to see the place hoppin’ as well. Crane Alley was a fine starting point for a pub crawl from Urbana to Champaign. (Plus it was a hoot to watch Carl order his baba of Roog Buubu Bibba.)