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Fat Heads Brewery & Saloon
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Active Beers: 122
Beer Ratings: 3,488
Beer Avg: 3.9
Taps: 34 / Bottles: -
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
24581 Lorain Rd.
phone: (440) 801-1001
(Place added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-13-2009)
Ratings & Reviews
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| Reviews: 54 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Cleveland, or there about. Maybe the next best thing. Maybe not. Probably not, Definitely not. My trajectory altered northern some, a little out of the way from where I’m coming from and to, but it breaks up the day, I suppose. En route back to Somerset, this Sunday stopover will be my last, unless I get stupid and veer off course again...
A larger than you think space, deep and widening. A series of A-framish wood planks over rafters ceilings, exposed ducts, drop grill lamps and track spots. The walls done in alternating shades of red on one side and green on the other, and bricking. GABF medals mounted about and flatscreens everywhere on which to view lousy sports teams.
Once past the shirt & growler shwag stand up front, off to the right, there’s some brew room action behind glass, with a bar counter piece off the side of it and Danny Boy (farm market) signage & pieces from before this was this riddled about. Across the way, it’s like a long wrench shaped bar, concrete topped with glass shard pieces imbedded offering color & shimmer, kind of maybe, over a wood base, and my feet left to dangle as they do. Seating for nearly 3 dozen, down and all around, on backed chairs, I am occupying one just now. 2 stainless steel bar towers of 8 each at different points, and another with 10 on the end; all with Fathead logo handles.
The barback along the long stretch of the wrench handle holds a center arched logo’d Fatheads window and smaller ones to each side, offering views in on the main brew room; a row of fermenters there. House label prints on the wall above and beery boards to both sides. Further along, a row of 22 guest taps (19 beers, a mix of mostly solid micros with a smattering of import play, plus 2 ciders and a house root beer) over stainless steel, with a pair of hand pumps I now know exist alongside. The 8 house beers are listed above with descriptions, ABV’s, IBU’s, and the guests listed to both sides, all on black paper chalked and thumb tacked in place. The widening area behind the bar holds a center bar island with stacked glassware & tiered booze, over wine shelved below and coolered alongside all of the delicious Lindemans offerings. Back wall holds a large FH mug club shelving unit with glass mugs.
Sampler comes on a carry slot rack for 8 beers being served too cold. Head Hunter IPA, 7.5%, Simcoe, Columbus & Cascade, piney citrusy; Star Light Lager, a Helles style, crisp, a bit grainy but nicely balanced; Bumbleberry Honey Blueberry Ale, light, non-cloying, the honey rounds out nicely, it’s a good boo; Alpenglow Weizenbock, murky, bubblegum, clove spiciness & banana, with a deep fruit Hefeness, good for the style; Bohemian Blonde, a Czech Pils style, crisp, slight Saaz spiciness, lightly bitter with a dry finish; Goggle Fogger Hefe, banananana clovey, very very tasty, I mean, yea, it’s an exceptionally good Hefe; Hop Juju Imperial IPA, 9%, tropical fruit sweetness, an overall, yeah, whatever; Gudenhoppy Pils, a little earthy, but a nice crisp bite there. And I hadn’t noticed it earlier but there is a long narrow wooden arrow pointing to a pair of hand pumps, with glowing lit lettering “cask conditioned ales” signage. The Headhunter IPA (I must say, the cask version is pretty sharp), and the Smoke Smoked Porter (dark chocolate bitterness, and smoke, bitter, awesome). All in all, the Head Hunter IPA, Starlight Lager, Alpenglow Weizenbock, Goggle Fogger Hefe, Guden Hoppy Pils, and the cask Smoke Smoked Porter were the best of ‘em.
And what with it being in the lunch hour and all, I ordered the Smokehouse whole wings, done naked although I took the smoky bbq sauce on the side ‘cause I’m not a damned fool, you know. They were flavorful, but quite the handful. I woulda liked them cooked weller, truth be the known. And Derek’s 4 onion honey & ale soup. (they being onions red & yellow, leeks, and the champion of all onions, the scallion). Soup was very good in its croutoniness and crisp cheesy goo topping.
3 high tops across the floor and a ½ dozen step up booths behind me. To the rear, a pretty goddamn big space with seating sectioned, upwards of 3 dozen tables & booths, and an area on the far end with a pair of pool tables and an ancient Duchess Bowler Game from the 60’s, plus darts & Phil’s Golf Game ’09, and bar counter space on 3 sides. Logo FH pieces, coaster displays and pics of people sporting their Fatheadedness elsewhere adorn. Elsewhere, they’ve got a seating pen outside holding a dozen tables, and a big stand alone tent for a festival past around the other side, with pumpkin & plant decorations.
Got my snack on well and I found most of their beerings to be quite good. I’ll always find a 3:1 guest tap to house beer ratio unusual for a brewpub, but if it works for ‘em, then so be it. It’s a solid house, although they’re all about the Cleveland Browns.
05-27-2011 14:29:55 |
More by slander
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Fat Head's is located in North Olmsted which is southwest of Cleveland. The brewpub is on Lorain Ave a couple miles off I-480. There is a pretty good-sized lot behind the building that is partially shared by a strip mall.
The interior is spacious with the bar near the entrance and a large table seating area past that. The walls are brick with many of Fat Head's beer logos painted on here and there. The bar allows a view of some of the brewing equipment behind glass, as well as a board listing all of the beers available.
As for the beers, there are over 30, with 10 being Fat Head's and the rest guest brewers such as Thirsty Dog, Victory and others (including a collaboration beer with Bear Republic), plus a house root beer. There are samplers available as well. The beers are all above average, especially the award winning Head Hunter IPA, and several stray from the typical formula such as a Heller Bock, a Smoked and the aforementioned collaboration Rye beer.
Service on an early weekday afternoon was good. The bartender was knowledgeable about the beers (both Fat Head's and guests) and was helpful with samples, etc.
The food at Fat Head's is good. I strayed a little from my usual pub grub and hat a Salmon burger and it was good. I have heard their burgers go toe to toe with Beer Engine so I will definitely try one of those next time.
Overall this place is a must stop in the northeastern part of Ohio.
08-01-2010 04:18:47 |
More by Dogbrick
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Loud and boisterous place, you have to shout over the others. Large and buzy,the staff were mostly bossy and harried, although ours was a peach. Very working class, decent guest taps with ane ye out for the new and different. Their own beers are fairly good, although i havehad the standouts in Buffalo before. They fill growlers, including the guest taps. They make the best root beer in the state, and one of the 5 best I have had in the USA, and a growler of that for the family was only $6. ear the main airport, and come with your own group.
07-10-2011 03:15:51 |
More by Sammy
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
It's been a while since I stopped at Fat Heads in Pittsburgh, but by my recollection I'd say Cleveland has a larger operation. The Cleveland location also has a brewery which Pittsburgh does not, so that adds even more space. In Cleveland there are tables for God knows how many people, probably >300. The bar is really long too, offering seating for maybe 30-40 people.
When I stopped in there were 8 house brews on tap and 21 guests, and 1 cask.
Headhunter IPA (both tap and cask)
Phantom Pumkin Ale
Schock the Monkey stout
Boulder Mojo Risin
Brooklyn Sorachi Ace
Troegs Dead Reckoning
Victory Helios Saison
This is an easy choice in Cleveland, stop here!
10-14-2009 16:43:22 |
More by TurdFurgison
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Stop #218 on my world brewery tour.
Around 1:00 on a hot June Saturday afternoon. Three of us sat at the bar in what is probably the largest brewpub I've been to (Stone factoring in the outdoor seating is close).
Twelve house and twenty guest beers on tap. Guest beers arranged by IPA/Pale, Unique American Styles (Green Flash LeFreak, Victory Summer Love, Brooklyn Summer Ale), Belgian Styles, Lager Beer, Stouts Porters & Brown Ales, Wheat Beer, and Hard Cider. Lots of great guest beers on tap along with Miller Lite.
House beers: IPA, Keller Lager, Fest Beer, Blueberry Honey Ale, Hefe, Strong Pale Ale, Triple, Chocolate Stout, Imperial Stout, Rye Belgian, and Chocolate Stout and Hoppy APA on cask.
I had a variety of half pint house beers (4.75 oz for ~$2.00) which is how every brewer should offer beers. All beers were excellent.
We ordered a starter of the garlic fries, and I had smoked wings and my friends had the Cuban. The portions were HUGE. The fries were enough to feed us all. Food was excellent, just too much.
Overall a great experience and worth the trip to the west side of Cleveland.
06-25-2011 14:47:46 |
More by Yetiman420
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
En route to the Meyer shindig, a short skip and jump off of the turnpike.
Atmosphere: A large building, Fat Head's is deceptive, managing to look even bigger on the inside. Awkward-sized steps lead into a foyer that abuts the bar. Seating is further back, with vistas of Lorain Rd. Patio seating is also available. The foyer area has the gift shop as well. The brew room is to the right on entrance.
Quality: Big sandwiches, good beer. Never have four words been so contentedly uttered. Even growler fills were cheap.
Service: Service was prompt and friendly, fast-tracking lunch for the urchins. She even carted my growler bag, replete with three growlers, from the bar.
Selection: Great selection. The house beers were my focus but there were guests on tap and plenty bottled. We made our way through Imperial Bean Me Up, Koko Nuts, Koko Loko, and Lucifer's Lunacy. A mighty good line-up on its own. As I mentioned above, growler fills were very reasonable when considering the quality of the beers (see my reviews).
Food: Sandwiches, pizzas, burgers, salads, wings and more. Grilled cheeses were hits with the tots; my Bob and Martha was warm, spicy and very meaty. Even ksak's salad was super-sized. Very satisfied after that.
If you're nearby, stop. Seriously. Even without Head Hunter on tap the place was great.
09-02-2011 01:56:39 |
More by akorsak
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Look folks, this maybe the best brewpub I've been to. I can't recall any that I enjoyed more. This was definitely the best suited for my rambunctious family. The kids are loud but so was the bustling conversation and lively atmosphere, I don't recall alot of big screens jumping out and ruining the socialization this place has, but there may have been a few near the bar. When we pulled up on the outside of the building on the corner of Lorain where it's located, I realized this place is booming. It's become a center of culture for this area, full packed parking lot hard to find a spot and it's pretty massive. Big Fathead's logos on both the buildings and the grain silo outside. Brewing equipment visible right as you walk in let's you know this place is making the beer, front area has the hostess with a gift shop right behind it I got my black military style cap with the Headhunter IPA log embroidered. Big wooden tables, benches, booths, long bar stretches across the whole front side of the house on the left with seating to my right. Mug club mugs proudly centered behind the main bar area, with guest taps up first with chalkboard art telling me what's flowing. Bathroom area still decorated with pictures from around the world where patrons sporting their Fat Head's gear are representing proud. As you pass the bar, dining area pops up this place was packed, no wait so it's evidently large enough to support the crowd. Selection was awesome, website is updated regularly to see what's pouring.
No Headhunter flowing but I'm kind of spoiled, I get it on tap in the Burgh pretty frequently. My standouts were Vienna Lager, Goggle Fogger hefe, Sunshine Daydreamer IPA, and the Imperial Oatmeal Stout other options flowing were Bumbleberry, Boogaloo Blonde, TBA, Rocket Man Red which they were pouring on cask, Alpenglow Weizenbock, Sorcerer dark Belgian style ale. I don't even see the need for the guest taps when you're pouring this kind of variety, but I name some of the highlights on the guest taps, London Pride, JP Bam Biere, Goose Island Sofie, and Two Brothers Dog Days Dortmunder.
Food was fantastic, I had the Pastrami/Italian sausage headwich, my wife had the Cheesesteak, huge portions with tasty house chips, kids shared some wings, fried pierogies, and a cheeseburger and fries. Look nothing gourmet about the food just barebones delicious pubfare, and they do it well especially with the smokehouse grilled wings.
Service at the tables were dead on, young friendly busy but attentive waitress gave us wonderful service and put up with the kids (who were all worn out from a day at the waterpark).
On the way out in the parking lot I ran into Matt Cole, let him know that I'm a Fat Head's fanatic from the Burgh, and that this place was Grade A. He was carrying a few plaques for the Pittsburgh location, with GABF, and Wold Beer Cup medals. Stand up dude, great brewer, gotta love the fact that they all had the vision to make this brewpub, and a production brewery...big things in store for Fat Head's...I can't wait.
06-08-2012 17:19:51 |
More by WVbeergeek
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Stopped into Fat Heads for dinner with the family while on vacation to Cleveland area. This place was huge inside...much bigger than I had expected it would be. Large u-shaped bar with a few booths against the wall when you first walk in. There's a bunch more tables and a game area further in the back. Pool, darts, skee-ball to keep the kids busy. The only bad part of our visit was the service. It appeared we got the only server who didn't seem to care about the customers. The rest of the ones working were zipping around checking on tables, always visible. Ours would disappear for 10-15 minutes at a time and then we would have to flag her down...ugh. Anyway, the food and beer were both very tasty. Those "headwiches" they have are huge! Pizza was tasty with a great, crispy crust. Salads were big enough to feed a horse. I would gladly stop back in again. Well worth a visit.
07-28-2010 13:00:12 |
More by Imstillthegman
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
WOW! I love this place and if I lived here the local taxi companies would make a mint!
Very large, spacious interior with some great brewery logos painted right on the brick walls. Several rooms inside and the brewery is visible from the rather large bar area. The whole place seems top notch to me.
Service my first visit at the bar was great. Bartender was very attentive and I was even asked by a 2nd bartender if I needed anything while my bartender was getting my beer. The next day our table service was a bit erratic. The girl took an order and walked away so fast she didn't even ask if anyone else needed anything-this happened 4 or 5 times.
Just a killer selection. 10 house beers on tap, 2 on cask and 20 guest beers. I had the Headhunter IPA both on cask and in a growler, kolsch, smoked porter in a growler, Ju Ju double IPA, and a hoppy pils-all great, great stuff.
Sandwiches are just HUGE! Home made chips a bit salty, but they probably have someone walking by the pan throwing salt on them as need be ala Mickey D's.
Just a great place all around and very reasonable. The do growler fills of their guest beers, which is simply a GREAT thing! Growler fills seemed a bit pricey but then again mine locally are 7 to 9 bucks. Wednesdays are $3 off by the way. Well worth checking out in the wurst way!
09-20-2010 03:04:30 |
More by lackenhauser
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
What can I say, I have been a Fatheads mark for as long as I can remember. This, though, was my first trip up to the northern location (I frequent the Pittsburgh location). I have to wonder - what the hell took me so long?
Their beer list is quite impressive. About 10 of their own beers, plus a very vast and tasteful selection of guest taps.
One of the first things that impressed me was the size of the space. Nothing like its burgh counterpart. Plenty of parking - and actually seats open at the bar!
The food was awesome as usually - I tried a DLA (one of this locations exclusives) and it was spot on. Probably one of the smaller headwiches - but still more than 1 human should ever consume in a single sitting.
Up in Smoke on cask - and I in heaven here? They also had the Headhunter via cask. Both were off the charts!
Seriously, they NEED to build one of these in Pittsburgh. The original is charming and has that whole South Side thing going for it. But, seriously, free parking plenty of space, great food and beer - it would be a slam dunk. Put it in Cranberry or something - instant billionaires!
09-15-2010 20:37:17 |
More by gixxerman
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Fat Heads Brewery & Saloon in North Olmsted, OH
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