In an odd part of town. Zachary’s pizza place wasn’t too far from here, and I actually expected this place to be on that side of town. I am not an Oakland resident, so I don’t have any valid/constructive way of giving any type of opinion on location. Plenty of parking across the street. My brother and I got there as soon as it opened. Fairly nice tap selection. The ambiance was perfect. The place is fairly slender. I didn’t really venture off into the back, other than to take a piss, but from what I can tell the place was rather small. The bartender was FAST, and as soon as I finished my beer I was asked what I wanted next. Bar heavily favors Belgians (hence the f’in name), but given that, there were some nice beers on tap that weren’t Belgian beers. Nice wood paneling on the insider with a fancy bar area. Regulars seemed like they didn’t care too much about being beer geeks, which was cool (I call them regulars because the bartender was fairly familiar with them). Overall, great experience, and Oakland was a much nicer town than I expected (I only saw a little bit of it).
A little too expensive, and gets a little too crowded, but if you come when it’s not packed it’s a great place to spend some time. I love the wide Belgian assortment, and the cheese platter is delicious!
...well, went down on a Friday night, and it was wayy too packed. The back room was boiling hot, people standing everywhere pretending to know about the beers they were drinking. They had the correct glassware, lots of cool beer memorabilia, and interesting things to look at. Need to go back when it’s not soo packed. Good selection of belgian beers. Pretty sweet place.
nbutler11 (356) Cambridge, England | November 2, 2009| Updated July 3, 2012
Reminds me of Europe in the best way. Very unsuspecting location in northern Oakland around Koreatown. A nearly perfect interior -- wood paneled and very sophisticated. It depends on the day, but their tap and bottles lists have the most reach I hever ever seen in the US. So glad I don’t live near this place because it would absolutely wreck me. The clientele and staff vary to the same degree, but when this place is on there’s no beating it.
Knowledgeable bartenders, great options, and a nice atmosphere. Now that they’ve opened the back room every day, the overcrowding is not an issue. The crowd is a pleasure, especially compared to the folks at a couple of the other premiere beer bars in the Bay Area. Not a lot of Frat types or stumbling drunks.
Wow, wow. Beautiful, stately decor here, an incredibly impressive bottle and tap lineup, very friendly bartenders, and just a great experience stepping into a place like this, even on a quiet Sunday evening. Draft list included: Allagash Confluence, Bockor Rouge, RR Damnation, Drakes Bass Ackwards, Nogne Tiger Triple, Saison Dupont, etc. Countless things to session. Ridiculous bottle selection: huge array of Belgians, Mikkeller, Struise (Pannepot Gran Reserva, $100 a pop!), Lost Abbey, Russian River, etc. Damn impressive place. Look forward to checking it out on a busier night, hopefully soon.
In all my wildest dreams would I ever think of finding an exquisite Belgian beer bar in Oakland ... but here it is.
A small, dark and wonderfully inviting place with a book for a beer menu (or is it a beer menu in a book) with a wide variety of styles. And it’s a short walk to the BART Station as well.
A must for any Bay Area pub crawl.
ajm (202) Los Angeles, California | July 16, 2009| Updated February 21, 2010
The day I went was just after it appeared on the RBSG itinerary. This may be the reason why the taps were uninspired, or it may just be the season (summer). Ambiance is like that little New York bar where detectives meet and only about 16 people have access to the ’back room’. I have since been back though and love it. The bottles are even better and the tap lines are clean as a whistle. Also every beer has the precisely corresponding piece of glassware, which is absurd.
gail (10) San Francisco, California | July 7, 2009| Updated July 8, 2009
The great news about the Trappist is that as of earlier this year they remodeled and opened another room, to be made available during the previously too-crowded times. The earliest reviews reflect a much smaller area.
They take beer seriously, have a charming but un-stuffy ambiance, and the great Belgian and American beers that rotate through the taps here are often stunning. (To say nothing of the library of bottle-conditioned Belgian treasures.)
Disclosure: I know and like the staff and owners, and jI ust finished a Cicerone certification prep class taught by one of their bartenders (she’s also a BJCP judge) and attended by two others. That’s a lot of hardcore beer knowledge, in a group of hardworking and friendly people.
No meals served here but the cheese plate is a nice taste treat.
Another one of my favorite places. Excellent selection of Belgian ales, all served in proper glassware. Walking (staggering) distance to BART. The only downside is that the place is kind of small. It’s worth it, though. Definitely a must for anyone living in or visiting the Bay Area.
Convenient location in downtown Oakland with usually ok parking. Nice interior, but very narrow and small, can get crowded very quickly. Specialized in Belgian beers, however they typically have a couple American craft brews on tap. They serve each beer in the proper glassware, very classy. They have limited food options, mainly cheese plates but these are very good. I enjoy going here even though it is out of my way a bit.