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The J. Clyde
Taps: 60 / Bottles: 200
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
1312 Cobb Ln S
phone: (205) 939-1312
Casks are now tapped on Friday at 4pm; call ahead.
3 Beer Engines.
(Place added by: Poser on 12-08-2007)
Ratings & Reviews
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| Reviews: 37
Reviews by Bonhoeffer:
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$
Wow, has it been 3+ years since I updated my Clyde review? Anyway, couple notes people should keep in mind. They got a new central air unit a couple months ago, so the interior temp problems are a thing of the past. Very nice.
Also, they have a new head chef as of very recently. They had some consistency issues with food in the past, but the new chef is working out the kinks. The food is only going to get better, so if you've ever had a bad food experience here, give 'em another try.
UPDATE on 7/21/08: Just wanted to mention for anyone who's not a regular at TJC, if you visit anytime between now and next summer you'll see a giant wall of empty taps in the front room, and you may wonder what the deal is. That section of the front only recently underwent a complete remodel including the addition of scores of taps. Jerry is going to leave the taps empty until the 6% limit is lifted, as a protest. Once the law is changed, he's going to fill them with high gravity offerings. I get chills just thinking about it :)
ORIGINAL REVIEW on 1/5/08: Glad this finally made it out of the approval queue. It's a long overdue addition to BeerFly.
The J. Clyde opened in Spring of 2007, with the passion and vision of owner Jerry Hartley. He's told me his hope is to eventually rival Decatur, Georgia's Brick Store Pub as the premier beer bar of the South once Alabama's beer laws are reformed by Free The Hops. Jerry is an active member and supporter of FTH, by the way.
Although On Tap's new owners have been doing of great job of expanding that establishment's beer selection, I believe TJC still has the best selection of beer in Alabama. They have a standing order for anything new to be delivered as soon as it hits the distributors' warehouses.
Although he started out with only a handful of taps, he's been working hard to add cooler space for kegs and wall space for tap handles and his draft selection is very impressive right now. His ultimate goal is to have every craft/specialty beer that is available in draft form in Alabama.
Also very notable is that at the time of this review, TJC is the only establishment in Birmingham and only the second place in all of Alabama to offer cask ale (the other is Montgomery Brewing Co). Their first cask offering was Rogue Santa's Private Reserve, which sold out in one night. They continue to work with craft breweries around the country to maintain a supply of cask ales.
Their prices on beer are pretty typical for the area--$4 for many craft beers and higher for things like Samuel Smith's and high end Belgians (of which there aren't many in AL, yet). But every Tuesday and Thursday features half price drafts, which are a steal.
The food is really excellent, in my opinion. I'd take TJC's best entrees over just about any high end restaurant in Birmingham. Fortunately, they've also added their "late night" menu full time, which features cheaper fare like wings and sandwiches. So you can spend as little as $6 on something to snack on with your beer, and as much as the high 20s on a nice dinner entree. Whatever you're in the mood for.
The service is acceptable. Not the best in Birmingham, honestly, but getting good help in the food service industry is a challenge. TJC is still working to establish themselves among Birmingham's long list of high end independent restaurants. I suspect many of the best servers have great gigs at Highland Bar & Grill, Hot & Hot, Daniel George, etc. and wooing them to a newcomer is not easy. But I know Jerry is trying to stay on top of any glitches in service and is working to educate his servers on beer.
Watch college football on the large plasma HDTV during the fall, and enjoy live music most of the rest of the year.
Bottom line, The J. Clyde is actively working to be the best beer bar in Alabama and it will only get better once the 6% and 16 oz limits are lifted on beer in the state. Go here.
09-19-2011 21:28:17 |
More by Bonhoeffer
More User Reviews:
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4 | $$$
This is not the type of place I would expect to find in Birmingham, Alabama.
Met a friend here for a late lunch in route to New Orleans and I was very pleasantly surprised. Very good selection of beer (I say that after coming back from a summer in Brussels) and not terribly expensive (aside from a few things, namely the Belgian beers). I had a flight that was pretty reasonably priced in relation to the selection and a very good burger. Had a recommendation for something from a bartender at the Mellow Mushroom around the corner, but I forgot the name. Regardless, I'd stick with the sandwiches or burgers. And add goat cheese to whatever you get. Pleasant atmosphere, nice waitstaff and bartender, cool interior. Wasn't too packed at 2-4 PM when I was there, but there were a few regulars, all of whom seemed nice enough.
If you're in the area, you definitely have to try it out.
08-17-2013 21:52:18 |
More by Dreizhen
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 3 | $$
Great place for great beer selection and quality. Food was average, but everything else about this place was amazing. Definitely try one of the cask beers if you go here - a unique experience that you don't find many places. Had my first World-Class beer here when traveling for work.
03-25-2013 15:21:18 |
More by osupuck19
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$
Great place to hang out and enjoy some beer and food with some friends. This is the first place I ever tried a cask style beer. I definitely recommend trying a cask beer as it is a unique beer experience. I love the pub feel of the place. Our server was knowledgeable of the beer selection. Ask for the beer list as the selection is extensive.
03-25-2013 00:59:17 |
More by RyanInGA
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I have been frequenting the J. Clyde for almost 3 years now as a business traveler. I am in Birmingham about one week a month and usually find myself at the J. Clyde more evenings than not when I am in Birmingham. As far as beer bars go, this used to be THE place to go in Birmingham if you wanted to find unique and hard-to-find brews. The unfortunate thing about that is the staff knew that as well and thought VERY highly of themselves. I have seen a lot of folks get pretty bad service or be sold on crappy beers just so they can empty a keg and put something new on. Thankfully for me I usually get pretty decent service because I've gotten to know most of the bartenders and I tip well, so they remember me even though they don't see me all that often. I'm thinking that now that there are a few new places popping up in town (World of Beer, Hop City, etc) that the J. Clyde may have to re-evaluate their attitudes or risk losing business. Don't get me wrong, I love the place and will continue to frequent it, I'm just saying the staff can be somewhat pretentious. The beer selection can vary from day to day and they aren't real consistent with updating their draft lists so that can be quite frustrating when you ask for 5 beers before you find one they actually still have on tap. The food is really good, I don't know that I've had anything there that I wouldn't recommend. I really love their BLT made with a fried green tomato. Their house made balsamic vinaigrette dressing is also phenomenal.
02-14-2013 13:27:16 |
More by joshodonn
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
UPDATED 4 SEP 2012
This is definitely the best beer bar/restaurant in central Birmingham. They have beers that are not available anywhere else, and their choice has exploded since they opened the refurbished back bar area. Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday are their "insanely busy" days so avoid them if you don't like crowds!
This is the regular pub for my wife and me. We go in on average once a week, usually on Tuesday or Thursday to take advantage of the half price draft!
Food quality and choice are fantastic, and the chef has shown himself to be versatile and willing to experiment.
The owners are trying very hard to increase the choice of beers, aggressively pushing their suppliers to get everything they can despite the 6% restriction on beer ABV in Alabama.
If you ever go there, I recommend the fish & chips - just get the sweet potato fries instead of the chips, have a pint of a good pale ale, and relax while enjoying the friendly atmosphere that is the J Clyde :)
09-04-2012 13:15:09 |
More by StuartCarter
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
It is definitely my favorite place to grab a beer and hang out with friends. The atmosphere is very unique with the old stone walls and wood. It is a great atmosphere. The service can be slow at times but the servers are VERY knowledgable and helpful with the different beer selections. There is a wide variety of beer that will fit most anyones likes. The best food selection is the sweet potato fries, you just can't go wrong. The food is very good! Overall the J. Clyde is a perfect place to kick back and hang out. I would recommend to anyone!
04-13-2012 15:56:36 |
More by Ksims1
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 3 | service: 1 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2.5 | $$$
What good is having a big selection of beers if your customers can't get one? You could sit down anywhere at the J. Clyde and die of thirst waiting for someone to bring you a beer. It would be a good place to go, if they ever hired good people and trained or managed them, which they obviously have no interest in doing. They have always had the worst bartenders and servers in Birmingham, and they just don't care. I have always tried to support them anyway, because I love craft beers, and they do too. However, the last time I went there the "bartender" aggressively ignored me for so long, and pissed me off so bad, I swore I would never go back there again.
12-11-2011 16:57:52 |
More by kopfjaeger
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3 | $$
To reiterate what the previous posts had to say, I was impressed with what The J Clyde has to offer. Very cool setting, especially if wanting to enjoy a game.
The server was very knowledgeable as to the selection that is offered and turned me on to the Heavy Seas Small Craft Warning. Ended up stocking my fridge with it after having tasted it.
The only food we ordered was the fried dill pickles which are a great appetizer to enjoy while partaking in some beverages. Much better than some freaking Butterfish, which is a terrible mixture with a fine brew!
Given the selection, setting, staff, and service I will be visiting this place again. The location is neat given the fact that there are other bars in the vicinity.
12-01-2011 03:28:21 |
More by HeavyCsOptician
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
I love this place. The selection is fantastic! Mississippi is such a desolate waste-land for beer that I really have to pace myself at The J. Clyde because they have so much I want to try.
The food was o.k. but, to be fair, my group only tried a few things. Atmosphere was good and our server was very knowledgeable and friendly. Glassware was appropriate too. I would recommend going early because we had no trouble getting a table at 6:00 but it was packed when we left. I developed a new love for Eisbock after my visit here. The J. Clyde will definitely be on my list of regular stops when we visit Birmingham.
11-25-2011 17:58:26 |
More by TrappistJohnMD
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The J. Clyde in Birmingham, AL
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