Al's of Hampden / Pizza Boy Brewing
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Active Beers: 64
Beer Ratings: 1,024
Beer Avg: 3.97
Taps: 102 / Bottles: 350
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 73 | Reviews: 61 | Show All Ratings:
4.61/5 rDev +4.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25 | $$
Worth noting that the brewery recently re-located so any reviews dated prior to 4/29/13 will not accurately describe the new facility.
Visited on Memorial Day. Considering that the new location has only been in business for a month, a somewhat "sterile" atmosphere was to be expected (it was a bit quiet and everything was clean and shiny). We encountered a very sparse crowd due to the holiday.
Al's has absolutely and undoubtedly the best selection of craft beers in Central PA. I have no doubt that this will become a very popular destination for traveling craft beer hounds and it is certainly worth going out of your way for a visit.
The digital boards are kept up to date and takeout and growler fills are available. The sours and barrel aged offerings were exceptional. The wait staff was pleasant and attentive. I was somewhat confused as to why all of the empty glasses continued to pile up on our table until it was explained to me that patrons are responsible for bussing their own tables. Be sure to bring some extra cash for tips and you cannot add gratuity if paying by credit card.
The food is above average for a beer joint (it's a pizza shop, set your expectations accordingly).
The selection was mind-blowing (as far as its competition in Central PA is concerned). During my visit, Al's featured approximately 20 Pizza Boy brews and at least 20+ other regional offerings.
My only complaint was that they were out of 1L growlers during the time of my visit and there was a curious lack of signage to help direct you to the location (good luck without GPS). I probably would have taken 6 1L's to-go rather than the 3 2L's that I struggled to settle on.
05-29-2013 17:07:37 | More by shadytony
3.6/5 rDev -18.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.75 | $$$
If you like slightly above average tasting food and expensive pricing, this is the place for you. The sad part is that I probably would even pay a little more for the food just because of how conveniently located it is from my house. But when I mentioned to them that the online menu ( on the NEW " Pizza Boy Brewing" web page) shows prices that are lower than their "real" prices, the response that I got was " it's not even on my radar, pick up one of our menus at our location". I cant imagine it would take more than a half hour to update the pricing on the online menu. Therefore, until the online menu reflects the true pricing that they charge, Pizza Boy Brewing is not on my radar either.
05-25-2013 19:47:57 | More by JustBeFair
4.51/5 rDev +2%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4 | $$
The new facility will be a game changer in the area . Anyone traveling route 81 through South Central PA should stop here, whether hungry for great pie or not. Outstanding guest and house taps served in several formats boggle the mind. There's even TV for the video addicted. Check it out ! !
05-08-2013 18:56:52 | More by BeerIsland
4.8/5 rDev +8.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
Understated excellence. The sign says ice cold beer, which could give you the idea that only Bud light waited for you inside. And the name Al's Pizza does not do justice to the amazing selection of hundreds of draft and bottled beers waiting to reveal themselves, the pearl in the oyster. Amazing to walk in the door and be surprised by this gift from God. BrauKon brewing systems, a stellar selection of outstanding beers, perfectionism, and friendly pourers await. A true diamond in the rough.
04-30-2013 03:11:01 | More by BeerLuvver
4.98/5 rDev +12.7%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $
Al's of Hampton is a neighborhood pizza joint however---great/insane beers are made and served there..Pizza Boy Brewing has taken off and become a huge success.. the owner, Al Kominski is amazing.... his brewing co has grown so much, he is relocating across the street into a brand new bigger building. Beer Selection is awesome... 3 cask ales on hand pumps. somethign for everyone.. and a HUGE selection of bottled beers. also Growler fills(specials on Fridays)... Al always stops and takes the time to chat with his customers-- a personal touch that I think makes a huge difference... Check out Al's of Hampton...its right off Interstate 81 - easy on and off...you will be amazed.
03-19-2013 16:48:41 | More by klc17111
3.83/5 rDev -13.3%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 2 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Ok, Al's is a true study in contrasts. Welcome to PA, one of the driest and most up-tight mid-Atlantic/East Coast states when it comes to cold-ones-drinking. Good luck trying to find many places that have the selection of bottles and drafts as Al's does. Generally, you'll find bottles here that most places within 50 miles won't have, and certainly their draft selection is A) solid to excellent, B) in constant rotation, and C) helpful with that big digital board with BA rankings and everything. So for selection they get high marks (particularly in relation to the lack of a bottle section in this geographic area). Atmosphere: OK. It's a pizza shop - plus points for stripped down un-pretentiousness, but it's still a pizza shop with tons of TVs in it. Food is also good. A lot of Pizza. Just sayin'.
Service, on the other hand, is a totally different story. I'm a pretty jovial fellow who will smile and have a kind word for just about everybody I meet. Not at Al's. They have hardened and darkened my soul. The first 3 or 4 times I went in there, I asked one or two questions, such as, "Hey, is this IPA any good?, or, "What size glass can I get a draft in?" You know, very offensive and degrading questions. I'm always met with responses that are at best, indifferent and annoyed, and at worst, outright hostile. Inexplicable. There have been multiple interactions with staff and owners that are too ridiculous to go into detail here. Suffice to say, it left me with a bad taste in my mouth - but not from the beer.
Best left to summary: Damn you, Al's, and your above average beer selection and below average service! I shall return, but not as often as you might think.
01-09-2013 19:58:19 | More by brewsclues
4.05/5 rDev -8.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
Stopped to eat lunch on the return trip from visiting family during the holidays and I'm pretty glad that I did. The place was very small and we arrived right around lunchtime on a Saturday so it was pretty busy and I felt pretty excited that we were able to score a table. There is not much in the way of decor here but the place has a real beer geek vibe to it.
Beer was served at a good temperature and in proper glassware - it was actually a very nice pour with a proper amount of head and everything. Beer tasted fresh and I saw the taplist change twice in the 1.5 hours I was there... There were also tons of folks filling growlers here during my visit.
You go to the counter and place your own order so I don't have a lot of comment on the service - the gent working at the counter was very friendly and pleasant, willing to offer an opinion/suggestion on beers that they were serving on tap.
Very nice selection of taps that included 5 Pizza Boy beers and the rest were regional offerings from pretty decent craft breweries - I only wish that we were not on the road and I could have enjoyed a couple more...
The food was essentially a pizza/sub shop and not very fancy but still enjoyable. Nothing out of this world but not something I would avoid either... I think the pizza was better than the subs but to each their own
Prices were reasonable and average, no complaints there.
12-02-2012 13:55:01 | More by dbrauneis
4.33/5 rDev -2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Took the 2 hour ride out to Troegs to check out the new brewery, a very big upgrade over the old spot they had, and to grab some Scratch beers I don't get to try. Figured since I was out there I'd drive the extra 30 minutes to go to Pizza Boy.
Tough spot to find since it's hidden in a valley off the main road, but once you find the place it's worth the trip. Wasn't sure what to expect as far as size of the place or the crowd, but I was able to get a table with no problem. Place wasn't crowded and most of the traffic was from locals picking up pizza to go and a growler.
Had the bacon cheeseburger pizza and a sampler to start. The Citra Hopgasm and coffee Sunny Side Up were my 2 favorites and ended up getting a growler of both. Brought the coffee Sunny Side Up with me tailgating yesterday and it was the perfect early morning beer. The 11% ABV was nice to keep me warmed inside and the coffee was a nice jolt to the system.
Not sure how many more times I'll be able to go back out there, but I'm hoping when they expand to the bigger place they be able to distribute to Philly or possibly further.
Never had the chance to try any of Terry's beers when he was at Bullfrog, but I was able to try a few of his offerings when he was brewing for Farmer's Cabinet. I'm glad he got out of that situation and things are going well for him
10-15-2012 19:44:20 | More by SPRichard
4.23/5 rDev -4.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
A lot going on here. Its a dinky little place, jammed with several tables, numerous cooler units and the small kitchen all squeezed into one small, cramped feeling room. Its a full menu pizza joint, Italian eatery. Def not the place to take a date or the family. Better to drop in for a bite with the guys or take food to go or just to pick up some of the many fine beers they offer.
Loads and loads of quality locals, regional and national good stuff in bottles in the coolers and they fill growlers from a large variety of taps..always a huge plus. They had numerous growler fill options I would have taken advantage on a regular basis if I was local. They also brew their own beer right here and offer it in growlers. Nice. Very beer friendly athmosphere. I got the feeling I was in the company of many beer geeks ( a good thing) when I visited with my local buddy.
Support this place - they respect beer
09-09-2012 16:05:20 | More by Billolick
3.93/5 rDev -11.1%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
*Note: this review and rating is for the old location. Working on updating soon.
We stopped here on the way back home from Pittsburgh to Philly, figuring we'd have a little mini picnic outside with the dog, as not many good spots are pet friendly (but the wife HAD to bring the dog on the trip :P). If you don't know what you're looking for, this place is hard enough to find, but it didn't help that I put the wrong street number in my GPS. But after backtracking a few miles, I saw the place--it's down a little hill and we drove right past without even noticing it.
As far as atmosphere goes, there's really nothing to speak of. It's a pizza place with a few tables. I'd imagine that it's a nightmare during busy hours. It seems like there should be a few tables outside, but there aren't, and though they won't allow you to take an open glass out, I got a 1L growler of one of their house beers, a small pizza, and we ate and drank out in the car for a little change of pace.
Note: there is no bar here. You order drinks right at the counter.
As far as beer goes, the selection is pretty impressive. Lots of stuff to choose from on tap, including local favorites and about 5 or so micros made right on the premises. Seems like the most random place ever for a microbrewery, but there you have it. And if that's not enough for you, there are tons of bottles to chose from, cold and room temp. Food was basic pizzeria stuff, and the pizza we got I thought was pretty good, even though I kind of scarfed it down, wanting to get back on the road.
Service was fine. It wasn't busy when we visited, but everyone seemed pretty on the ball. Prices were generally pretty good, with $8 for a liter growler fill and $4-6 on pints. I was kind of disappointed that the liter growlers didn't have logos on them, but I got a logo snifter to compensate. I didn't notice bottle prices. The only oddity revealed itself when I asked for a sample of a couple of their beers, and was hit with a $3 bill for each one. $3 for a sampler? And $4.50 for a full pour of the same stuff. Hmm. I don't think I've ever seen a sampler for more than $2, and those were at places much classier than this. I like a little taste before committing to a growler...just a sip...not a $3 shot.
Anyway, overall it was a nice experience, and I wouldn't mind going back if I'm ever in the area again.
05-20-2012 20:50:49 | More by Rifugium
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Al's of Hampden / Pizza Boy Brewing in Enola, PA
97 out of 100 based on 73 user ratings.