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Active Beers: 37
Beer Ratings: 287
Beer Avg: 3.71
Taps: 8 / Bottles: -
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Eatery, Store ]
190 5th Street
phone: (269) 925-8760
(Place added by: CRJMellor on 11-14-2005)
Ratings & Reviews
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| Reviews: 54 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
This was my second visit to the Livery, and on a friday night things were a little more hoppin. We lucked out and sat next to the brewer, Steve, who held a wealth of knowledge. It was fascinating to hear his endless ideas about brewing, and his passion really showed. His beers are very creative, and cover a wide range of styles at any given time. They have 3 cask ales, which is worth a whole extra point for selection itself. I also tried a merlot cask-aged cider that was really interesting. The chalkboard menu is broken up into ales, lagers, specialty, and others (cider/perry). Double Paw has been my all around favorite on both trips. The basement atmosphere is more cozy at night, when there are a few more patrons. Food is standard deli-fare, sandwiches, burritos, pizza, etc. Got a chance to peek upstairs where there's a second bar and stage for live music. The historical building is really a unique spot. A true oasis in the area.
01-04-2009 00:46:32 |
More by emerge077
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | $$$
A solid place, by the Lake, and worth going out of the way for, both the town and the brewpub. opens later in the aft, I arrived early and that was fine and staff was starting with some of the better brews. Casks, well done spot ons for their styles. Bartender is right there for you, very friendly environment of gentle bikers,retired people, musicians and other artsy people like meself. Some hand bottles available, if you ask.Basement, side deck, back tables for rendez-vous. Live music at night.
08-07-2009 00:11:06 |
More by Sammy
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
During a terrible snow and cold freeze of early February 2007, I did a white-knuckler western Michigan loop consisting of the top-rated BA brewpubs in Western Michigan. The trip began in the southwest corner at the Livery in Benton Harbor, up to New Holland in Holland, over to The Hideout, Founders, and BOB in Grand Rapids. Individual reviews are below and my rankings from a total experience are New Holland, The Hideout, The Livery, Founders, and BOB.
My perspective is based on visits to almost 200 brewpubs across North America. Im an avid homebrewer and craft-beer drinker but no means an expert on the contest judging of beers. I know good beer when I taste it.
The Livery really is off the beaten path. I visited on a slow Monday at 4pm. It's in a promosing area which the bartenter told me was part of a revived area of Benton Harbor.Since it was the middle of winter and a terrible snowstom, I had to take her word for it. She told me the brewer came from Kraftwerk in Kalamazoo. They had a nice wide selection of beers on tap which included a beer engine not running on a Monday. I had the European Pilsner, Pale, Cherry Belgium, and Bourbon Belgium. The Cherry was amazing. The Paris-Roubox was solid, and the Bourbon was ok. Overall, these were all very well-crafted beers and excellent representations of the craft industry.
This place appealed to me because of the great space, well-crafted beers, nice people, and restricted smoking area. Yes, I am pro clean indoor air and it influences my ratings.
02-07-2007 03:21:27 |
More by Yetiman420
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$
Stopped in a couple of times on our DLD extravaganza.
I liked the vibe here. A nice downstairs bar with about 12 seats at the bar. Well lit and comfortable. Free wifi too, which was a nice surprise after a day of locked networks
A nice, broad selection of beers, with some lagers, a couple of IPAs and some nice barrel aged beers. Quality was pretty good, with mostly good beers and an incredibly disappointing IPA.
Service was pleasant and attentive. We had a good chat with the owner/brewer on Friday. The Saturday bartenders were very nice.
05-03-2009 23:02:32 |
More by sholland119
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Visited as stop 4 on the Michigan trip. ksak, Mike, and Jen were in tow.
Atmosphere: The place has a patio and two floors inside. We chose the basement with a youth center layout (thanks FTB).
Quality: The bartender ran through the offerings with us, a nice tour through the line-up. Restrooms were clean and clientele seemed upstanding (present company excluded).
Service: Bar service, so the standard 3.0 applies.
Selection: 10+ beers on tap or hand pull. We went with the wheat wine, JAK and black IPA. The Black IPA was a disappointment, far too subdued on cask. The Livery seems to keep a good number of taplines flowing.
Food: Skipped eating here.
07-20-2009 03:28:25 |
More by akorsak
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Stopped on a fortunate day, when the IPA was only days old. You could have poured the beer in a sort of respirator device so that I could have breathed it all day and I would have been happy. Blurted out I think I like it better than Pliny.... was I in euphoria?
As for the rest of the line up, they were all solid although I also liked what I believed to be called a Norwegian Brown. I didn't have a growler and they were out but alas the bartender asked the masses if anyone had an extra growler. Into the night one went and minutes later I had my growler. This is a great place, which would be even cooler if they had a few unique or weird beers available and seems a little tiny bit pricey, but those are minor crimes when talking of the magnifitude of the mighty Livery. Will definitely go back, as I have been there 4 times already.
01-13-2011 07:29:09 |
More by MilwaukeeCrusher
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Driving into Benton Harbor, I started to get the feeling I get when driving through the North Side of Milwaukee in July or past Darbo in Madison after dark so I unbuckled my belt, locked my doors, and prepared to blow past red lights. It was a strange sensation to have in a small lakefront community just a few miles north of the Indiana line but each time I thought I was being a bit paranoid I would get another threatening look from folks standing on all the street corners.
Thankfully the Livery was located just a couple of miles off of 94 and after a short drive around Downtown Benton Harbor I arrive unscathed - although the undercarriage of my car wasnt so lucky. The dirt roads and potholed parking lots of Benton Harbor arent exactly kind to Honda Civics.
Once inside the Livery I felt like I had been transported into an alternate universe where Benton Harbor was filled not with boarded up old industrial warehouses but rather, well restored art galleries and music venues run by friendly artsy types. What an out of place establishment the Livery was.
The upstairs bar was closed so I made my way into the small cellar and took up a stool at the bar. I was immediately greeted by the most friendly people, offered samples and insight into the beers, and promptly served. A coffee stand behind me offered soups, simple sandwiches, and assorted snacks and although it was closing down when I arrived, they were more than happy to whip up a hummus plate for me that filled my belly and tasted great.
The beer that I was most interested in trying was the Wheat Triple Bock, a beer I had been one of my favorites at the 06 Great Taste. Sadly, this beer wasnt available but a whole assortment of other cask aged and high gravity beers were. I settled on a snifter of CA Hopplebock and then ordered a growler of Oktoberfest to go. Both were quite good. I was also offered plenty of samples from the kind staff who were just super excited about their product. It was great to see that level of enthusiasm from the staff and I thought that each sample I tasted was spot on for the style.
After leaving I took the business 94 loop south through St. John and a couple other lakeshore towns before reconnecting with 94 a bit north of New Buffalo. This route seemed to take forever and in the future I would recommend taking the business 94 loop back north, even if ones ultimate destination is Indiana or Chicago.
10-04-2007 16:48:31 |
More by DaPeculierDane
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
Visited late on a rainy Thursday night on the way to Madison for Great Taste. Called ahead to make sure they would be open.
Sierrags and I had been here once before and enjoyed ourselves very much, we were anticipating a return. Plus it was nice to share the experience with our fellow BA travelers dashirey and brewslut.
Located in the basement of an old brick building in "downtown" Benton Harbor, a place that has that "We have seen better days" feel. Once inside though all that changes with three beer engines and the ability to have 15+ beers on tap!
For entertainment a pool table adds to the interior brewerania decor.
Mikey, our old school, punk rock loving, tender was the shit! He was generous, like saving us a few hits of what was on cask....he had shut the engines down for the night before we got there..:-( To being simply delightful and talkative about how great Southern Tier Creme Brulee' is, to how STUPID it is that some places wont fill a growler if they arent "their" growler...that rant was priceless!
We even got to see Wally, another tender, to whom Sierrags and I had given a bottle of Troegs Nugget Nectar to last time through. He remembered us and let us know how awesome he thought NN is!
All in all, the Livery is a MUST stop if you find yourself anywhere in southwestern Michigan. The beers are top notch and the ambiance and staff are simply an added bonus!
09-29-2008 06:51:06 |
More by Deuane
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Stopped by right around opening (11:30) en route to Chicago from Grand Rapids for FoBAB 2012.
Really glad I made the stop. I've been wanting to stop here for a couple years now, but just haven't made it thru that far south west in Michigan. Glad I stopped. I was greeted by some crunchy Widespread on the jukebox and a very friendly Mikey G behind the bar. He was very helpful and just a great overall host. It's great a great atmosphere, and a fairly well rounded tap list (bit heavy on the Pale ale side). Had a couple meads on tap as well.
Did not try any food, but looked like a fairly basic menu, probably just what a small place like that needs. Worth a shot, it's a bit off the free way, but well worth it.
11-22-2012 14:07:46 |
More by MarcatGSB
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3 | $
this was the final stop of a beer trip to Michigan, with an arrival of a little after six o'clock. the establishment takes up two floors of the building, with the second level open to live events and a general restaurant area, along with a basement tap room and cafe. there was a blues band playing upstairs, with general music playing in the basement.
atmosphere is true to a basement bar, with rudimentary finishing and wooden tables and chairs. heavy timber structure throughout gives it a historical feel, along with the live music that really gives it an authentic feeling.
quality is good. proper glassware and clean conditions; no complaints.
service was great. the brewmaster was grabbing a brew at the bar, and was happy to talk beer and brewing with a few BAs, quite friendly and with a good sense of humor. the bartender was responsive and open to samples and general inquiries.
selection was great. quite a wide variety, with ales, lagers, and light to strong varietals. the only complaint here is that throughout the spectrum all the brews were imparted with a lightly tart finish, bordering on a lightly sour quality.
food was decent. sandwiches come with a small side of lays potato chips, but the prices were quite inexpensive.
overall, this is a wonderful stop for beer. another plus is that each brew can be ordered in a 10 oz, 16 oz, or 22 oz. glass. very convienient if one is driving, or if one wants to try a few styles without drinking too much. cheers!
01-03-2009 17:48:56 |
More by botham
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The Livery in Benton Harbor, MI
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