DuffMan (339) the land of bitumen, beef & beer, Alberta | May 14, 2014
So we’ve been to Champaign every year for the past four years, and on our first trip here we wrote this place off as a loud college watering hole with peanuts strewn all over the place. Well it seems the vibe has changed for the better. On this trip (2014) there was a Founders tap takeover that was quite literally insane, including a vertical tasting of Old Curmudgeon. I’m giving this a mid-range score though, because I don’t know if that was a one-off or what! Can’t wait to try this stop again next year!
So I accidentally stopped here, thinking it was the brewery, and was then very confused when they had no guest taps (suggestion: don’t just type Blind Pig into your smart phone!). It was a crowded place, definite college-aged hangout. The beer list to me, was not impressive. Maybe it is good for the area (I don’t know), but with 2 awesome breweries in the region, I wouldn’t waste my time here!
Nice place to go to get away from the campus bars and drink some quality beers. Was here a month or so ago for a Dark Horse Stout tasting. Got to meet the sales rep and a brewer from DH. The bar itself is dark and had a bit of a grungy feel to it, but a nice bar and plenty of seating for as small a place as it is. Staff was friendly. Beer selection was good.
Great beer bar, in the style of an Olde English pub. Usually 17 or 18 handles, plus a cask-conditioned selection. On a recent visit, the beer selection was not as interesting or eclectic as on previous trips, but still acceptable. Make sure to check out Radio Maria right across the street for good eats and good beer.
Despite some negativity from some of the locals, I viewed this establishment with an unbiased eye. It was too bad that the interior was partially closed off due to a private party as it had a really nice "old world" feel. Regardless, on a beautiful spring day, sitting out front on patio sets was a refreshing change-of-pace on our six-hour pub crawl. We found a nice selection of draught brews served by a friendly, knowledgable bartendress. (Hell... I didn’t even need to look at the bottle menu to get my fill!) I’ll echo Cornfield’s statement of: "Worth repeating."
Nice feeling place, dirty wooden floors, brick, a long old bar.... clean but dark. Service was very good the afternoon that a group of us stopped there. Very nice beer selection, both on tap and in bottles carrying a good handful that don’t make it to the Chicago area. Worth repeating.