LinusStick (65) Moon Twp, suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania | August 9, 2011
A nice small craft beer bar. Went to Houston on business and hit this place up hungry for good beer and a light dinner. The menu consisted of 5 or 6 appetizers. That’s it. No big deal I was just hoping for something more substantial. The beer list was typical of a good beer bar. Lots of taps and lots of stuff I can’t get at home in PA. Service was great as well.
The Ginger Man is located in Rice Village and is a Houston institution predating the craft craze. Indoor and outdoor seating, some excellent bar food to compliment a pleasant array of beer. Always a few new beers rotating through. A nice selection of Belgian beers. Exactly what you would expect and want from a small university area beer bar where you can come and have some great beer and conversations with friends. If you're looking for an upscale restaurant and ridiculous beer selection, this ain't your place. Small, quaint, local feel. For that genre, they nail it.
Ginger man is located right next to Rice, which makes it potentially a college hangout, but it wasnt too bad when I was there. Parking is a bit of a challenge but I parked for free a few blocks away. Place is not large, but gets the job done. Smallish bar is right in front. Large taplist, but fits the Yardhouse model pretty well - loads of macros and common craft, toss in a bunch of staple locals and you pretty much are done. Certainly stuff worth drinking but not really a place to slay a whale. Half pours available. Flights as well but only pre-determined ones, which is a huge turnoff for the beer ticker.
Visited on Tuesday 21/05/13 around 3.30-4.30pm.
Smallish bar with wooden floors, scattering of tables and chairs, bit of a dive bar feel.
L-shaped bar, breweriana, mirrors, bottles and the like fill the venue.
Patio garden at both the front and rear.
Fairly quiet when we arrived but started to fill up as we departed.
Service wask OK but not overly attentive.
Average tap selection for me, a good dozen or so TX ticks for me but the choices from the rest of the US including the bottled menu were a little lame.
The flights were useless at best. A European flight, a Belgian flight and a TX flight - their choice of beers not yours. For instance on the TX flight 2 of the 4 beers were pils!
Had some bar snacks, pretzel and dips which were adequate.
Overall not massively impressed, not a patch on the Manhattan Ginger Man, I’d budgeted on 2 to 3 hours here but we left after 75 minutes or so.
Having been to the very different Ginger Man in New York, we were surprised to find that this one was completely different. First of all, the food here is utterly and completely terrible. It seems that they try to make the food as mediocre as possible. Second, the beer selection, while good and not lacking beers for some who has never drank in Texas, was not great. That said, the ambiance and the service at the bar were both pretty nice. I think that we were there during happy hour, so the value was pretty good.
Quaint pub atmosphere with patios in front and back. Service is spotty as is with the Gingerman in Dallas and you will have to be proactive during most times to keep your pitcher full. Selection is usually pretty good, although they use up a lot of space on inferior beers. They do a decent job of rotating 3-5 taps outside of seasonal rotations, so typically something fresh is in play. Food is pretty much terrible as their preztel is the only thing worth eating. Value is okay as they charge slightly less than other locations and the bills are small due to a lack of food. I would label this as a decent neighborhood pub or worth a visit if you are okay with the widely distributed craft brews, but nothing worth getting too excited about if you are looking for anything more.
(Visited 07/2013): Ginger Man’s Houston location is near Rice University south of the city on Morningside Drive. Street parking is available in the neighborhood and I believe I saw a garage as well.
The place looks like a house from the outside, complete with a fence. After walking up and past the porch, the interior opens to a cozy and dark bar that features wood decor, beer bottles lining shelves near the ceiling and a bar along the back wall. There is a board above the bar listing the available beers.
As for the beers, there are around 50 taps, featuring many Texas craft breweries like Real Ale, Karbach, Rahr & Sons and Franconia. Other craft breweries like New Belgium too. Extensive bottle list as well, again featuring many TX breweries.
Service on a relatively busy weekday evening was good. The bartender was knowledgeable about the beer list and made good recommendations.
I did not try any food on this visit.
Overall this bar is clearly one of those quintessential local spots. Despite technically being a chain they clearly focus on the right things and I would definitely visit again.
I had a nice time at this version of the Ginger Man. It was small and a little warm. It isn’t that easy to find hidden in the Rice Village area surrounded by some larger spots. Good stop though. Nice selection of TX beers especially.