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Craft Ale House
Taps: 16 / Bottles: 367
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
708 W Ridge Pike
phone: (484) 932-8180
Monday - Thursday: 11:00am - 11:00pm
Friday & Saturday: 11:00am - 12:00pm
(Place added by: sorryaboutbrooks on 01-07-2009)
Ratings & Reviews
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| Reviews: 40 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
I live about 45 minutes from this place, but it is well worth the drive! I work at the power plant just up the road, so I try to stop in frequently on the way home from work.
I haven't had a bad time there yet, and it's a great place to relax with some friends getting a chance to try some new beers.
The staff there is really friendly and helpful if you are having difficulty making a choice. They're always willing to make a suggestion. Gary (the owner) usually makes the rounds and chats up the customers. Just friendly people all around!
The beer menu changes on a weekly basis and provides a decent mix of local beers with some that are harder to find. The cooler has a decent selection of bottles and bombers and they offer decent discounts on mixed 6 or 4 packs. For those whose thing isn't beer, they allow bottles of wine with no corking fee (wifey LOVED that!).
The food is fantastic! I highly recommend the Pub Burger and the mussels!
I just with that this place was closer to my house. Oh well, better tell the wife we're moving....
03-18-2009 18:50:21 |
More by jlb307
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Well,living only about 3 or 4 miles from the Craft, I have been there quite a few times. Each time i have had a great experience. I usually stop by for a quick pint,but have also dinned there with my wife on a few occasions. The food is very good and like the beers very flavorable!Rob the bartender is very knowledgeable on the beers. Gary,who is a owner is usually there and spends time with his guests. Beer selectoion is spot on and changes often. you can keep up to date at www.craftalehouse.blogspot.com for the current list. This is a welcome addition to what is becoming a little bit of a beer hub with this,the Pickering Creek in Pheonixville and Sly Fox all close by. Worth the trip if your not close.Trust me.
03-13-2009 16:38:55 |
More by sbeppel
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
The first time I visited the Craft Ale House I enjoyed some great beer from the tap, but no food. So I waited to review until now.
We were greeted right away but one of the owners who found us a table quickly, even though they where pretty busy. Our waiter was prompt with the menus and willing to answer all of our questions about the food and tap selections. We enjoyed a Green Flash West Coast IPA with our order of fries that came with an outstanding dip. My brother had their fresh perogies which were accompanied by a generous "on the same plate" salad. My wife had their soup of the day, winter squash. I had their mussels with tomatoes and fennel in white beer. Outstanding. The mussels were perfect. We also had a basket of bread which I've been told is made with spent grains from Sly Fox. They have a great rotating tap list and an excellent selection of bottles. If you haven't been there, that you need to go. Check there blog for the latest taps.
03-03-2009 14:20:19 |
More by mfhlucky13
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
Been psyched to check this place out, finally got the chance last night and brought the family...
We arrived at 5:30 (Friday) and the parking lot was already packed - but plenty out back at the Ace Hardware. Atmosphere was awesome - not overdone.. dark wood, pleasant lighting, and a fireplace that we sat in front of on a comfortable couch while the bar waitress brought me a Centenial IPA.
I thought the service was excellent, esp given the amount of time they've been open (1 mo now) and the crowd. From the hostess, to the bar waitress, to our table waitress, to the bartender ... all were on top of their game.
Beer selection was simply outstanding, and they're having a "mini Hop Fest" to celebrate their 1 mo. anniversary. Enjoyed a Founders Centenial IPA before dinner, a Bell's HopSlam with, and a Stoudt's Fat Dog to finish it off. The menu selection was right-sized for this place. We enjoyed the Tipsy Monk mussels (a little cool, but tasty) to start, my wife had Seared Tuna 'warm Asian' salad (done just right), I had the Grilled Hangar Steak - which I simply can not rave enough about - perfectly done and sitting atop some of the creamiest garlic mashed potatoes I've ever had. The kids enjoyed a burger and a large order of chicken fingers -- the fries were AWESOME, with a terrific seasoning. They don't have a dedicated kids menu yet, but our waitress was accomodating in letting us know of the various 'kid-friendly' items they do have available.
We found the value to be EXCELLENT - I'm pretty sure no pint was over $6, entrees were all 12-19, and somehow my wife's seared tuna salad was only 9!
I even picked up a bomber of Russian River Damnation to go ... Can't wait to hit this place regularly.
01-31-2009 14:57:28 |
More by BeerImmediately
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
Stopped by for lunch- a decent amount of customers were already lined up at the bar. The establishment is divided into a bar section (with some pub tables adjacent) and a dining section with a fair number of tables. Classy decor with nice dark wood, a fireplace, and just the right amount of lighting. The atmosphere was quite positive- friendly crowd. The owner (I presume) was frequently working around the bar and socializing with the customers. The beer selection was phenomenal: 16 taps with well-selected craft ales (eg- Troeg's Mad Elf, Lagunitas Brown Shugga). Single bottles were behind the bar- also a great selection. I also noticed another cooler with 6-packs, but was unable to discern the quality/quantity. Prices were extremely reasonable for the beers offered. The lunch menu was a little scarce, but understandable (recent start-up). Nonetheless, the chicken bites (on appetizer section) were tasty and well-proportioned. Service was on key and friendly. The bartender appeared eager to recommend a 'lighter' craft beer to an apparent craft beer newbie. Very pleased with my experience. I'm thrilled that we have a very promising beer bar in this area. Hope to return soon.
01-24-2009 02:27:58 |
More by coalcracker
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Edit: 8/6/2009 - after several more visits, the food seems to have improved(much better burger than previously had), as has the service and quality. Previous reviews...
A - 4.0 Q - 3.0 Ser - 3.0 Sel - 4.0 F - 2.5
I was a bit hesitant to review this place, as it's new but a friend convinced me to write the review and re-rate if needed based on future visits.
My second visit was last night with the family for dinner. My previous visit was a one and done at the bar.
The place is small and quaint upon entry. A bar that seats about 18 is to the left with a cozy fireplace/waiting area directly to the right. Hardwood and tile floors. New, black ceiling tiles with lowly lit lights. Some paintings featuring beer decor hang on the wall. 16 beers on draft. All craft beers on with some locals being featured. Many locals pile in to see what all the "fuss" is about. I witness more than a handful walk in and walk out after realizing that there is a wait for tables and the bar service. The bar starts getting a bit cramped and I get a sense of uneasiness from a few women behind me who are eyeballing me to see if I'm leaving the bar stool, or just stretching...the table's ready anyway. Bar service was hit, or miss. One gent was very attentive, while the other was spacing out a few times and moving at his own pace. Beers were served a bit too cold, IMO but that can be fixed.
On to dinner...
Waitress was nice and pretty interested in giving us good service. One snafu when she forgot my drink order a few times and had to come back to the table but I can understand with the craziness of the night.
Food - I ordered mussels, and a burger. A member of our party was told that they don't have a set up to do large tables all at once yet, so be patient with them. With the newness, I can understand the 45 minutes it took for the food to arrive. We were given homemade bread made with Sly Fox spent grain...very nice stuff! Verdict on the food? Mussels were ok but came out lukewarm. A few undercooked ones, which happens from time to time, especially in a new place. The bread that came with it was toasted over a gas flame...unfortunately, it tasted a bit like lighter fluid because of it. I ordered the burger medium. It came out charred on the outside but rare on the inside. I just sucked it up b/c I wasn't going to send back a burger and wait again. Another person at my table got the same results when ordering the same way. The fries were good. Nice seasoning.
Takeout section is ok. Coolers with some decent singles and six packs at very reasonable prices. My only gripe with the takeout is the lack of room temp beers available but at those prices, I'll take what I can get.
I wouldn't go so far as to call this a "gastropub", as a previous reviewer called it, nor would I invoke a Ramsey connection.
Quite simply, the basics for a nice bar are here to feature good beers and decent pub fare. There are some kinks that need to be worked out first. Good luck! I look forward to bumping up the ratings as it's warranted. At this point, I'm certainly not feeling what the other reviewers were feeling. In fact, the other raters spoke so highly of the place, my hopes were set rather high...perhaps too high. Gary is eager to bring in the beer crowd and is a beer lover, himself. Right now, the food and speed of service need to come up a bit. It's just too new with some question marks(due to newness) to be considered in the upper echelon right now. I'm sure that will change over time.
01-17-2009 19:50:01 |
More by weeare138
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
We were extremely impressed with CAH. Love the simple, comfortable, unpretentious decor and ambience. It's not trying to be olde-timey-pubby like so many places.
Out of the pork, I had an outstanding burger done to a dead-on proper medium. My wife had the Funky Farmhouse mussels which she proclaimed among the best she's had. Excellent fries. Service was good but still (easily forgiven) getting the bugs out. The menu is small but I think Gordon Ramsey would appreciate that, as well as the fact that they do it so well. Hoping for another trip soon for dinner.
We were pleased with the diverse draft selection-We had Flying Fish Grand Cru, Breckenridge IPA, Dock Street Rye IPA, and hmm, I think a Russian River my wife had. Fun to windowshop for bottles as well. Congratulations and good luck to the owners and employees.
01-12-2009 15:00:05 |
More by RC51Mike
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
I had high hopes for this place considering I am 3 minutes away, and sure enough, they have been met.
A- Very cozy and comfortable feel. From the tan painted walls, to the dark stained wood trim, to the dimmed lighting, to the fireplace and the red couches surrounding it. Bar area is very nice with a beautiful dark stained wood bar. Behind the bar is a half wall that seperates the bar area from the dining area which has a drink shelf attached on the bar side. There is only one TV on the right side of the bar. Glad there is not a lot of TVs to give it a sports bar feel, however I do wish there was one more TV on the left side.
Q- Quality of the beer is excellent. I was amazed to see Pliny the Elder on tap after only 5 days of being opened. Plus Founders Breakfast Stout was on tap too. Very quality brews with a focus on the local breweries as well. Victory, Troegs, PBC, Sly Fox, Stoudts, Lancaster.
Quality of the food was excellent too. So far I have had the burger, pulled pork sandwich, french fries, and the funky farmhouse mussels. All were outstanding, especially the fries.
S- Service has been very good. One bartender homebrews and is very knowledgeable about beer. Only problem is they need a computer sale system. When its busy it is tough to keep track of all the paper tabs. Food service was a bit slow the one time I was in there but it was very busy so it was expected. All other times food came out very quickly.
S- Selection was great! They had a style of beer for everyone. And all from great breweries. The bottle selection is great too and will only get better as they get more in. Plenty more refrig space to fill.
Overall, they have done an outstanding job at startup and I am sure will only get better as the kinks are worked out over time. Fantastic beer bar that will be right up there at the top of the list in due time when you think of good beer bars in the area.
01-09-2009 20:14:51 |
More by IPADAN
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5 | $$
A craft ale house only 4 minutes from my house? Are they trying to get me divorced??
Ok seriously I'm really glad to see this place open and have nothing but high hopes for a successful future. I visited New Years eve afternoon 2008.
A: Very cozy and warm. Nice low ceilings with nice warm lighting and wonderful colors. Love the red couches and (don't laugh here) the colorful bathroom. Bar stools are comfortable and the bar layout is nice. I can see how it would be a little tight with a bunch of people since they have bar stools and a small drink shelf on the opposite side of the bar that separates the dining area. Nice music playing in the backround and TVs at the bar make for a relaxing seat at the bar.
Q: Quality of the beer was excellent. I did not have food so I won't comment on that, next time. To the reviewer that commented about two beers being "off tasting", for me they were spot on. Both DFH 90 and the Stoudts Double tasted like they have fresh on tap at other bars. Specifically the Stoudts can be very "warm" from alcohol in draft form and it turned out to be so. My only point here is please don't blame the Craft Ale House for the beer, it is sparkling fresh.
S: Pretty good, the bartender came right over. The issue I did see was that the guy next to me had to remind the bartender that he had 2 beers, not 1, when paying his bill. The lack of a point of sale system really slows down the checkout and ordering process. I hear the purchase of an automated system is in the pipeline. Other than that, service was solid.
S: Exceptional, what else can I say. I missed the Pliny, but the day I was there they had tons of great stuff including the rare Lancaster Tripel. They had locals like Sly Fox, Victory, Stoudts, they have California stuff like Stones, Russian River, they have Belgians, they have DFH, they have it all. Also a nice bottle shop that looks like it will get larger since they had empty cooler space.
F: Next time, I did not try.
V: Good, beers were on par with other local bars, food seemed about the same.
Overall I'm happy they opened and I look forward to many successful and happy years there. I hope the growler fill process happens soon too, but I hear it will. Cheers.
01-09-2009 16:47:14 |
More by Kadonny
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 3 | $$
I've been to the Craft Ale House twice now for dinner and some brews. Within 10 minutes of my first trip to the Craft Ale House I was ready to give the place a 10 out of 10 after having a 10oz. pour of the Victory Old Horizontal, homemade bread made from Sly Fox Brewery spent grains, great service, and a beaufitul atmosphere. The menu looked great ranging from good looking salads, sandwiches, mussels, and some good looking entrees. I chose the burger, cooked medium because that's how I judge any beer bar on how their burger tastes. The burger came out pretty rare, but hey it was the first night of them being open. I ordered a salad with the burger which was delicious, and someone else from my party ordered fries and they were amazing! There is a seasoning on the fries that will blow your mind.. very delicious! I ordered a Dogfish Head 90 minute to go along with my burger and was disappointed with that as well. I am a huge 90 minute fan and have had 3-4 glasses of in in the past 3 weeks from different places and for some reason it had a slightly off-taste. I'm not sure if it was a young barrel, but I found the same thing when I ordered a Stoudts IIPA next. I have had a lot of Stoudts Double IIPA and know what it tastes like, but like I said before maybe they were some young barrels. After finishing my meal and beers I grabed a 4 pack of the Dogfish Head Palo Santo Maron.. can't wait to have a few of those, and they were very decently priced. After my first visit I gave the craft ale house a 7 out of 10.
My second visit was a few days later on the first Friday night of the Craft Ale House being open. The place was pretty busy and we were lucky to get a table for 4. After the first visit the Tanodri Mussles really caught my eye and I wanted to give them a shot. So I ordered them along with a Pliny the Elder. I love the Pliny the Elder.. what a great beer.. in fact so good I ordered another! The mussels arrived and the sauce is pretty good, but they weren't piping hot. They were a little cold, i'm not sure if they had been sitting awhile but now I was 0-2 on my entrees. Overall, they were just ok. But the beers were amazing. We had to ask to get some of that amazing bread, but the server told us they were getting low and we got the last of it. That stuff was amazing! I ordered another Old Horizontal and we finsihed our dinner and headed out. I would say after my second visit the rating was still around a 7 out of 10.
I really like this place and it is wicked close to my house so I think as time progresses the Craft Ale House will soon earn a 10 in my book. The thing with the food is it wasn't just my entrees. I've been there with a group of 3 and a group of 4 and of the 7 entrees I think 3 have really enjoyed their meals. The rest have been just "ok". If the beer lists and service keeps being as amazing as it is and my experience with the food gets better it can happen. Another thing to note is the place is BYOW.. bring your own wine. They only have a beer license and if you would like wine you can bring your own in. I like that! This may also please others, but I will only be enjoying the beer when I visit.
Keep up the good work!!
01-08-2009 14:07:15 |
More by Schnyds11
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Craft Ale House in Limerick, PA
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