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Great Waters Brewing
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Active Beers: 34
Beer Ratings: 242
Beer Avg: 3.76
Taps: 8 / Bottles: -
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Eatery, Store ]
426 St. Peter Street
phone: (651) 224-2739
(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Ratings & Reviews
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| Reviews: 41 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I "found" Great Waters on my way to work at the Xcel center, thought i would stop in for a brew on my way to work. Right away after entering i noticed that there was a lot of stone in the building structure, i bet during busy times it is extremely loud and hard to hear your conversation, I know when i was talking to the bartender, who seemingly knew a lot about beer, I had a hard time communicating and it really was not busy. I talked to him about the Ides of March IPA that i was enjoying. I did not realize that there were five varieties of hops. I went during happy hour, cant beet $2.50 pints in St. Paul. T here were a lot of different beers there and i am glad there was a chalkboard located near the bar. There were 4 cask beer and another 5 or 6 on tap. I really liked how looking past the bar i could see the brew staff working at the brew kettle, I thought that was really cool.
03-14-2008 18:22:31 |
More by happygnome
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
You know, I really need to spend more time in St. Paul. After leaving my job in St. Paul, I don't get over to Great Waters nearly enough. This is another top notch Minnesota brewpub. The beer quality is consistently good and many of their seasonal offerings are phenomenal. Off the top of my head, some of my favorites over the past few years have been their IIPA, Imperial Wit and a Belgian-style offering whose name escapes me. In any case, it's evident that Bob puts a lot of heart into his beers. It's also worthy to note that on most, if not all, of my visits, beer has been served at correct temperatures... both pushed and pulled beers. Service has been consistently good from visit to visit, though some of the wait staff definitely has a better grasp of beer styles than others. The selection is usually quite good and they'll often have three beers on cask. The food is good... tasty and varied enough to keep one's interest. On my last visit I had a brie and green apple chicken sandwich which was quite tasty. Overall, this is a really great brewpub and an enjoyable place to visit. I prefer less crazy evenings, but I've always had a good time regardless of circumstances.
02-19-2007 07:40:41 |
More by bucko
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
This is my favorite brewpub in the TwinCities-it's about time I reviewed it. Untypical of brewpubs, the interior does not feature a lot of wood panelling, As a result, it seems open and airy. Ceilings are high and there's a lot of glass-the pub is in the corner of a beautiful older office building in St Paul. There is a nice patio outside, along a small pedestrian corridor. The brew kettles are visible behind a glass partition behind the bar and the brewer(Bob)is usually around and brewing during happy hour. He is happy to chat with and answer questions of customers, always a plus.
The food is quite decent-typical of pub food, with excellent specials, all at a reasonable price. There are often weekend specials not on the regular menu. My only caveat is that the regular menu has not changed in a couple of years-I would look forward to a change, now and then.
The bartenders are quite knowledgeable about the beer and if you belly-up, the service is excellent. Service (and knowledge)is more variable if you sit away from the bar.
The variety of beer is among the best in town. I particularly like cask conditioned ales, and the selection here is just great. They typically have four cask beers, served at the proper temperature, and five cold(pushed)beers. All are tasty and well made(I have reviewed several of them).
All in all. this is a fine place to bring out-of towners looking for new and unusual beers, as well as a relatively inexpensive place to eat. Highly recommended.!
P.S. If you smoke, you must sit outside. But, as the patio is particularly nice during three seasons, it;s not much of a sacrifice.
08-11-2005 08:05:12 |
More by edbeered
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Nicely located in downtown St. Paul. Parking is available on the street or in the several ramps scattered around the area. Stopped by on a sunny and warm Saturday afternoon and surpisingly busy for a late lunch. Had a couple of their cask offerings which I enjoyed. The food is good with a wide selection. Service was excellant and friendly. Great Waters is the place to go for excellant cask offerings. The only downside is that I ordered the IPA and they ran out when the bartender went to pour my serving so I will have to come back in the future to give it another go.
08-02-2008 20:10:36 |
More by morimech
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Whenever I find myself thirsty in downtown St. Paul I stop my Great Waters. The atmosphere is clean, and inviting. I can get quite loud inside though, but they do have a great patio area for when the weather is nice. The beer is usually top notch. They always seem to have eight to ten of their own beers being poured. They have three permanent cask ales that are very well priced. They also rotate quickly through there seasonals, and have something new on tap every time I stop in. The food is top notch. I would go there simply for the food. For the most part it is standard bar fair, but done really well. Pricing for both beer and food leans toward the more inexpensive side of the spectrum especially for the quality you are getting. Overall, I highly suggest Great Waters to anyone wanting a good meal, or a good beer.
07-29-2011 19:43:36 |
More by KarlHungus
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
I have gone to the Great Waters Brewing Company quite a few times but when I was in recently I made it a point to jot down some notes to do a review for this site. I must first of all state that the establishment is family friendly. I usually go in with my children after visiting the Minnesota Children's Museum and not only do I always feel welcome, but the staff gives the impression that they enjoy the children being there. Most recently we went with a large group and 5 children and they still didn't flinch.
As for the actual food and beer. . . it is great. The beer list is always expansive and they have several cask beers as well as several pushed beers at all times. This recent visit there were 4 of each and it was probably the most limited I have ever seen the beer list. Variety is not a problem as the list is constantly changing. They were apparently brewing the day I was there as I could smell the grains cooking somewhere off in the back. The atmosphere and appearance is very bright and appealing. Even the times I have been in during the evening the lighting is adequate to make it feel more "upscale" and not some dive bar. Don't get me wrong, dive bars have a time and place, but I really like the bright and professional atmosphere at Great Waters. It is a very large facility that occupies the Historic Hamm Building in downtown Saint Paul. The bar area is separate from the dining room but the only difference is that the Happy Hour specials are for the bar area only. The bar area has adequate seating for any size group however as I have been in with a group that numbered over 20 and we sat at two long sets of tables (we had a reservation for that one). The service is always great and there are certain individuals that I see regularly that you get the feeling have an awful lot invested in the success of the business. There is a patio right outside of the bar area which is probably important for some as Minnesota restaurants are smoke free. There are tables on the patio for those who choose to dine al fresco. The bathrooms are actually down a hallway in the building and there are certain times on certain days that you need a key. That is probably the only thing that one could try to complain about at this establishment. I was even with a party once that switched from the dining room to the bar to secure happy hour specials and while I was slightly embarrassed the staff didn't tip their hand as to whether they minded or not and actually went on to make us feel quite comfortable. I will review some more beers from here as well, but need to organize my own notes and catalog them first. I can say nothing but good things and believe its a place that any beer lover would truly enjoy.
08-07-2008 03:10:33 |
More by Ragingbull
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
I go to this place fairly often, as I live within a mile of it and it is a nice place to walk to when the weather is being nice.
The atmosphere is pretty good, if at time a little "bright" and sterile feeling. I believe this is because it functions more as a restaurant then a bar. Yes one of the selling points is the unique beer, but there is a lot of dinning room space and it feels pretty family friendly. This is not a bad thing, but it is nice to know what to expect.
On that note, the food is usually quite good. Last summer I had a butternut squash ravioli with prosciutto on top that was fantastic. They also have a couple appetizers to try out.
The beer is usually quite good, with occasional bouts of greatness. I do not think I have ever had a bad beer here, but some were simply good. They have a selection on cask all the time.
Their happy hour specials are good enough, as of the time of this posting they sell pints during happy hour for 2.50, on Tuesdays they offer 1/2 pints for a buck. That would be a good day to sample, I went there this week to do that but unfortunately there was a hockey game downtown so they only kept the "normal" 2.50 pint deal for happy hour but not their Tuesday special. This was upsetting because they had a few interesting beers I really wanted to try, but i did not want t get drunk. That said, 2.50 a pint is q very good value for the Imperial Wit they had on tap, or the Red. I also enjoy their house beer on cask (they serve it both ways).
The service is usually quite good, the Bar tenders tend to be either very friendly, or sometimes quite, but in my experience never rude and always helpful.
01-29-2009 19:55:36 |
More by loytomaki
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Post breakfast during lunch hours already setting the tone for what's left of the day fleeting fast. This, the stay fairly close day with nominal traveling involved breather. I'll surely make up for it tomorrow and tomorrow, and the day after that. For now, it's back to the backup city Minneapolis keeps around just in case...
Fed the meter on North St. Peter and had to trek back a bit to this grand, nearly century old brick & limestone building of awesome ornamentation. Entered off the corner through the big vestibule entrance with barrels, sacks of malt, and plants with sprawling vines atop. Cavernous space with high high high framed ceilings with blended duct work, beige walls over wood slat lowers, deep green trim & moldings, and 4x4 block floor tilings with thick black crisscross borders. Giant windows on both walls off the corner and canopied outside. Rows of sunken spots above and some mounted glass lamps. Flatscreens in the corners and a space on the wall for projection screen action. A potted plant or two, a few shirts displayed for sale, and a framed "Western" jersey from an NHL all star game.
"L" shaped spotty gray formica topped wood bar with a copper foot rail spanning both rooms seating nearly a dozen and a half on green leather chairs. Logoed glass front brewroom behind the bar with a copper kettle or two and a 3 sided, ½ a hex barback counter space below with a row of 8 taps on a single tower. 4 handpumps 2 & 2 off to the left with stacked glassware of all sizes and shapes, and tiered booze & wine, and fridged growls to both sides of center. Small festive gourds displayed here and there, if only (Evil) Davo could be here to enjoy the season.
A dozen and a half tables square sitting mostly angled here overlooking a side seating pen outside. A dozen and a half tables there amidst caged treeing & bubble lampposts along a brick lined strip of pedestrian mall space. And through to the side room, where lies the main stretch of he bar with a Hamms bear painting on the windows of the brew room windows and wine & booze tiered below. A dozen+ tables sit between the bar and front windows, and further along, a narrower side side room seating pretty much the same; framed St Paul pen & ink prints and paintings displayed here for sale.
Tap selections are displayed on a blackboard off the corner. I will opt for the sampler, currently offering 6 house beers (St Peter Pale Ale, 5.5%, nicely balanced; Golden Prairie Blonde, 4.8%, grainy with some light hoppiness; Brown Trout Brown Ale, 5.8%, some roastiness, caramel & chocolatey; Hauch Von Rauch Hefe, 5.2%, band-aid on banana; Tightey Whitey Wit, 5.25%, good wit, coriander & orange; Rye PA, 5.25%, dry hopped, nice spiciness, piney & fruity, good bitterness), and 3 cask beers (New Centurion Mild Ale, 5.2%, darkish, a bit of roastiness; Great Waters House Ale, 4.8%, a good, clean bitter; Black Watch Oat Stout, 5.8%, oaty, some good chocolatey, nutty roastiness). Tighty Whitey Wit, Rye PA & New Centurion Mild Ale are the best of the lot. And it looks like they keep the Ace Pear Cider as well.
Upwards of 4 cask beers on at any one time here, interesting. Happy hour pricing offers a 10 ounce glass for $.99 and a pint for $2.50, so you can loophole maximize the effort in a pair of 10 ouncers for $2, versus paying $.50 more for 4 ounces less otherwise. Pretty sneaky, sis.
Clean, comfortable, inviting place, although the "shared with the rest of the building" bathroom scenario is a bit strange, but I guess that makes them running out of toilet paper someone else's problem. Chuck amok behind the bar friendly and attentive, and we talked with the Town Hall kitchen kids barside with us for a bit. Food they do but we're not in that place yet and Witz has some German meat place he's been going on about. Beer was good overall ('cept for that bananaid Rauch Hefe) and there's a most amazing malt aroma wafting about, it does smell lovely.
12-29-2009 02:00:54 |
More by slander
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$
This was the first place that I visited after meeting up with FeloniousMonk and getting established at his place. There was a light rain falling as I boarded the bus in Minneapolis, but the further we went, the greater the rainfall until I was put off of the bus at the last stop in a torrential downpour. This must have discombobulated me because I promptly zigged when I should have zagged and I was headed in precisely the opposite direction from where I wanted to go. By the time I got in the door, I was (literally) wringing soaked and looked like a homeless nomad. I ordered dinner and went into the Mens washroom to dry off and comb my hair and beard. The fact that I was not thrown out upon entry bespeaks this places willingness to provide good customer service to even the most unlikely of clientele.
This establishment occupied a long stretch of St. Peter Street from the corner of 6th Street up to an arched walkway with loads of outdoor seating on either side of the building. There were several exits along St. Paul, but they all directed me, from the outside, to a corner entryway just before the walkway. The foyer was a big glass and wood booth, with the V-shaped bar at a left oblique. The copper-jacketed brewhouse was visible behind the back bar. On the left end of the back bar was a small cooler filled with pre-filled growlers. To the left of the entryway were a number of tables and chairs and the same to the right of the doorway. The maitre d station was at a right oblique to the doorway and beyond that was an archway with the bar continuing on the other side. Over on that other side was a bunch of tables and chairs with the kitchen off to the left and further to the left, down a passageway and through a door to the left, were the washrooms. They offered color photos for sale that hung on the restaurant walls, which seemed kind of cool and arty.
They had a set-up for four (4) beer engines, but on the occasion of my visit, only Great Waters House Ale and Stonehenge Pale Ale were available. It was too bad because I think that the Brown Trout Brown Ale would have gone great with their meatloaf, which I had for supper. The Golden Prairie Blonde was standard; the Kaiserweizer, while not being my favorite style, had more clove/spice esters than banana, although I experienced them, also. My pick was the St. Peter Pale Ale.
12-15-2006 09:52:53 |
More by woodychandler
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
This was my second trip to Great Waters over the past year. I've always liked this place due to its lovely location in downtown St. Paul. Its a great place to sit outside and have a beer during the summer. Unfortunately it wasn't quite that warm on my visit this time. They have a nice variety of beers. The best thing is that they usually have about 4 or 5 cask offerings. I started w/ their cask mild, Mr. Smooth. What a great beer to start with. It was dead on perfect for the style and very sessionable. My wife and I shared a plate of pub fries for the appetizer. They were ok, but a little over cooked. While we were having our fries, I tried their Rye Summer Ale (forget the name). It was pretty good. It had a nice summery feel to it, but it wasn't really what I was in the mood for. Hopefully they still have it in July, it will definitely hit the spot then. For my meal I had the Southwest Chicken salad. It was ok. For some reason I don't usually equate buffalo wing sauce with a southwest dish. Nonetheless, it was pretty good. I finished the night off with a Tarter Control IPA. Maybe the buffalo sauce burned my taste buds, but this wasn't the most flavorful IPA I've ever had. I'd like to try it again sometime however.
In summary, Great Waters is in a fantastic location in beautiful downtown St. Paul. A great place to have a brew in the summer. Its also close to the Excel Energy Center, so definitely stop by before any event there. The beers are all pretty solid, but the main drawing factor for the true beer geek is their cask offerings. The selection of cask beers is great and they do a great job on these. The food was ok, but definitely not the reason I would go here.
04-21-2008 16:09:54 |
More by brewdoc75
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Great Waters Brewing in St. Paul, MN
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