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Swans Brewpub / Buckerfield Brewery
Active Beers: 18
Beer Ratings: 192
Beer Avg: 3.72
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery, Store ]
506 Pandora Ave
, V8W 1N6
phone: (250) 361-3310
(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Ratings & Reviews
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| Reviews: 18
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
Interesting décor, to say the least. You feel almost in the lobby of an old art deco hotel. What really floored us was the large, looming painted portrait of Pierre-Elliott Trudeau not too far from the bar. With his haughty, condescending grin, I felt like he was staring straight at me, calling me a hotdog eater and telling to "foodoo-boodoo ma gang de tabarnak". Honest to God, it really fazed me. At least at the few other pubs we poked in on our quickie tour of Victoria, we had Lizzie the second's austere yet grandmotherly likeness welcoming us in. Thankfully we sat down at a table where I couldn't see him, so it didn't ruin it all for me. Other than that, the place was quite charming, along with the rest of the city for that matter. Decor was art-deco/old train station, I liked it. They were about to clear away our section to make room for the band, something not everyone likes in a brewpub, but I think it's great. What else...I found it strange to have the toilets protected by a code lock, but it wasn't the only pub I've been to on this trip that had this "feature". Service was prompt and I got my sampler tray quickly. Selections ranged from uninspired to somewhat interesting, with nothing really catching my eye, save perhaps the Scottish ale that had interesting smokiness to it. It stood out from the rest, but I had better. Didn't get to try any food either. But it was a fun place to visit in good company (certain former prime ministers excluded), if only for a few tasters.
10-22-2008 16:39:56 |
More by Goldorak
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 2 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$
Visited this brew-pub while on my honeymoon in Victoria. Pretty nice place.
A: Normal pub-like atmosphere. Nothing made it stand out. Patio area was nice.
Q: The food and the beer were great, the service was poor, but we'll get to that. Me and my wife tried different beers and food and everything was great.
S: We were in the pub around 2 P.M. and we were one of four tables. Even so it took 20 minutes for a waitress to finally wander over to us and get our drink orders, then another 15 to finally get our drinks, another 10 to place our food orders, then about 45 minutes after we asked for the bill to actually get the bill and pay. Really shoddy service. May have been an off day, but I wasn't impressed.
F: The food was good. The hot wings were tasty and my wife really enjoyed her sandwich. Nothing outstanding, but good nonetheless.
I would love to go back just to try more of the beers, and hopefully be able to try the oatmeal stout they were out of when I visited. But the service was awful and kept us from returning for the rest of our trip.
06-20-2011 17:11:15 |
More by lespaulrocker
British Indian Ocean Territory
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Spent a night in the hotel, and had drinks and some food downstairs. The bar and hotel in general has some great history, and the inside of the bar had a great vibe. Sat in the atrium with great street views, a must on a rare sunny day in Victoria. Food was decent (yam fries, and salmon skewers) - better than your average pub, the beer was good, with the Oatmeal Stout and Coffee Porter being tops. Service was weak, but I'd chalk it up to our server in particular. All in all would definitely go back, and would certainly recommend.
As an aside I'd also recommend staying here; large rooms with excellent views and located in an ideal neighbourhood for walking (i.e. 5 minutes from Spinnakers, great local stores and other restaurants).
*Goldorak's comments about the "looming disapprovingly" portrait of P.E.T. is spot on - too funny.
10-17-2010 23:06:28 |
More by CBA
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | $$
An odd room, attached to a hotel and feels like it. A curious mix of heritage character and anonymous transience. Not the most comfortable room, but it gets bumped up a point for the exceptional people-watching on the busy streetcorner: tourists, locals, and the dregs all mingle there - not to mention the other scenery: wildlife, aircraft, and bridge and nautical traffic.
Swans' beers are uneven, mostly pleasant-tasting but too attenuated - the IPA and the raspberry ale (I generally don't like fruit beers but this one is an exception) were full-flavoured and worth a taste or two. I'm glad the six-beer sampler was on offer.
Service was efficient and anonymous.
They have a beer store attached, where you can buy their offerings in bottles, plus a few other scattered BC micros.
I'll return for their two tasty brews - hey, you can't get them anywhere else - and for the unbeatable street show.
08-07-2009 18:06:39 |
More by stagger
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
easy to find spot in Central Victoria - very "airy" place on a nice spring afternoon. unfortunately the outside area requires a food purchase under BC law, and we werent eating (google Ulla, then go there, immediately). We saddled up at the small bar inside for a few beverages.
the atmosphere inside was pretty bland, which seems to be pretty standard in Victoria. it borrows from a lot of UK themes, which again, standard. The service was attentive, but rather normal. From the reading I did, seems like crappy loud music permeates this place after dark.
there was maybe 8 or 9 taps and they sell by the half-pint, pint and pitcher.
I really didnt have any expectations but found the Extra IPA to be quite good. The Cafe Fantastic double shot porter had a nice coffee flavour but was a bit watery.
It's a lot more convenient than Spinakkers and appears to be superior to Canoe, so if you're looking for a Victoria brewpub, this seems like the practical top choice.
05-29-2012 23:52:32 |
More by dirtylou
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
We were there early monday afternoon, so it wasn't that busy but still there were a few people.
I can't really say anything about atmosphere as we were at the patio (luckily patio was child friendly - the pub itself is no minors) but it looked just like a normal pub, nothing special.
Service was OK, nothing special, put promt and quite helpful. Again, it wasn't busy time at all. Food was great. Menu was nice, lots of variety, lots of dishes to choose from.
Beer was good too. I tried the Oatmel Stout and that was awesome, and the Extra IPA was alright too, I'm just not a huge fan of that style.
So overall it is a nice place and i would definately come back. They have pretty decent liquor store too.
08-11-2008 23:50:36 |
More by Voonder
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | $$
Really enjoyed my time in Victoria, a great beer city in Canada.
Fairly lively place on a Thursday evening, lots of young professionals around with a contingent of grey headed fellas sitting at the bar. A popular place.
Came for the beer and went straight for the samples. Tray of 6 for a very reasonable price. Mix and match among their stable of about a dozen beers (as I remember) most of which were available (written on board behind the bar). Beers were all pretty decent with some pretty good session ales.
Service was uninterested, felt like a bit of a nuisance. Left the place thoroughly sloshed.
01-06-2008 02:06:24 |
More by CanuckRover
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Nice place that offers good food and great beer. Lots of wood and good decor, overall a nice inviting place. I was there on a Monday and it was obvious it was a place for locals to gather after work. I also happened to catch a day that they had all their beers cheaper so score one for me. I wish I would have done the 6 beer sampler they offered, but instead I had a pint of the oatmeal stout and the scottish ale. Service was good but not great, appetizers were good, beer was excellent. A must if you're in Victoria!
01-10-2007 23:24:09 |
More by sockeye101
vibe: 5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$
We checked out Swans in the afternoon, and even then it was still fairly busy. Beautiful old rennovated heritage building on the corner of a busy intersection. The wood and ornaments within the bar are classy and well done, gives the whole place a comfortable and cozy feel to it. We sat in the L-shaped atrium on the outside of the building and watched the action happen and go by outside--great view and scenery.
A curious side-note: Swans is just up the street from some sort of drop-in centre, so if you sit in the atrium along Wharf you get to hear the screeching of tires and horns honking, plus intermittent screams and shrieks as random crackheads wander or run out right into traffic every 20 minutes or so.
Service was polite and professional, or at least our server was very friendly and accomodating. I had the most surreal encounter/conversation I've ever had with a server from another section who started out by shouting at my turned back, "Hey, pay attention to me!" Before that hadn't heard her over the din of the music and other patrons. What ensued I'll write off as just an acid flashback instead...
I sampled a few different pints (brown, stout and pale) and my friend went straight for the sampler option of 6 4 oz. glasses from their decent style selection. I found the beers I tried to be a bit mediocre for their styles, and for the most part on the watery side. Didn't get the opportunity to sample any food this time around, but I've heard from others that it is excellent.
Still, I was thoroughly content with the atmosphere of the pub, the beautiful decor, and sitting in the atrium on a pleasant sunny day, watching the citizens of Victoria bustle along their way, and witnessing the occasional wigged-out crackhead nearly getting mowed down by what was turning into rush hour traffic by that point.
I'm definitely planning on going back again, to sample a few more beers and give them a fair try, as well as to finally try the food. Definitely a place I'd love to spend an entire evening.
03-02-2008 21:02:04 |
More by IronDjinn
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
I visited in July 2009. Located about a 10-to-15 minute walk from downtown Victoria one block away from Government Street. There is no tasting room in the brewery; instead the beers are served in the restaurant on the street corner, next to the hotel entrance. The dining room is large and didn't seem too crowded, even though we were there at lunch time. We sat in the glassed-in patio, which accommodates perhaps ten tables and catches a nice bit of sunlight.
The selection of beers was quite large (ten to fifteen) and all from their on-site microbrewery. Everything is served on-tap. We chose the flight of six samplers. Our server was friendly, informing us about the seasonal specials, and prompt though not too attentive. We ordered the mix of regular and sweet potato fries to accompany our beer, which came with a delicious dijonnaise dipping sauce and was attractively served in the Belgian style, in a cone.
In summary, Swan's is a pleasant and clean establishment for a sit-down meal and beer tasting. The beers were all good and a couple were excellent; I will certainly go back the next time I'm in Victoria.
08-06-2009 20:14:17 |
More by mjbotsch
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Swans Brewpub / Buckerfield Brewery in Victoria, BC, Canada
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