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Cock & Bull
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Taps: 38 / Bottles: 600
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
975 Cattlemen Rd
phone: (941) 363-1262
(Place added by: dpend)
Ratings & Reviews
| Reviews: 40
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$$
The atmosphere of this place is great. Lots of wood, cool decor, and a outdoor fireplace. I myself like quite places and even with all the great reviews it is never packed when I go, again to me that is a good thing. There really is not anything more I could look for in a place. If I lived close by this would be my home away from home. The guys I have met behind the bar have been great. Thanks Howie and Frank. They really go out of there way to make you feel at home. The selection is massive. I would like to see some of the more rare Belgiums but that is my personal taste. On my last visit the had the following on tap TenFidy, Storm King Stout, Shiner Black, Delirium Noel, Lindemans Framboise, Brooklyn Cookie Jar Porter, Bells Cherry Stout and many more. I have only had the Pizza and I believe it may be all they offer but it was actually pretty dam good. Now I am not saying this is the place to go if food is your focus but the pie I had kicked ass. All in all I really enjoy this place. I would tell any lover of beer to be sure to visit this place if your anywhere in the area.
Upon my most recent visit to Fl the service here has taken a step back. Frank is no longer there and he was a key component. I actually was served a DFH Shatea in a plastic cup. They said that they were waiting clean cups. C'mon, it's that hard to have clean cups? I would get it if the place was packed, but it was quite the opposite. The attitude of the place has move more to arrogant which I did not like either. This is no longer my favorite Sarasota bar. Sorry Howie! I will still visit as the beer is awesome but the other elements are failing.
04-05-2010 21:02:06 |
More by nopucophop
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | $$
I have had plans to stop by this place for years now and finally had the chance. The atmosphere is where this is at, The place just oozes beer from the cool tin to the awesome lights in the window it just screams craft. The door going into this place was awesome it was on a pully type system with maybe a weight attached to it, very cool. The bottle refrig's were some of the nicest around and displayed well over 300 different beers, well lit and art like. The outside was pretty nice with a bond fire going, it had that college feel to it. Now getting on to the drafts, what a dissapointment they had litterly weak drafts, I was expecting a selection like Redlight Redlight but it was not like that, wrong tap handles, wrong glassware, horrible service, the bartender had no clue. Overall I don't want to bash this place to much the amazing bottle selection, was a plus. I think this place could be one of the coolest beer bars if they bring in rarer drafts. I was a bit letdown for hearing such good things about this place.
02-28-2010 13:42:21 |
More by gunnerman
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$$
So I am in Sarasota to visit some friends and hit up Cigar City Brewery. And one of my friends says that she wants to take me to the cock and bull cause I would love
it. Holy crap...she was right.
It def looks like a dump. From the outside I would peg it as a local bar with a bunch of older white guys playing pool and driking Budlight. BUT...its quite the opposite.
As you walk up the ramp and into the front door your greeted with a massive wall of beer fridges.
Insane...I could not stop starring. I was mezmorized! Great selection...BUT some of the big boys were mad pricey. for example. 750ml of Mikkelers, Cigar City, and other great high end beers were well over $15...I was most suprised by the cost of a bottle of DFH 120. $26!!! but yea...other than the really high end stuff. Everything was priced fair. Atmosphere was awesome. Local young people, pool table, pub vibe, There was this cool living room set up in the back. Plus a porch and back yard complete with bone fire and kegs to sit on as chairs. Friking bad ass place.
01-07-2010 16:45:08 |
More by GOGRANDE
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | $$
Only been there once, and it once absolutely empty. Just me and a couple of bartenders. It just opened for the day, but Jesus, it was after 5 P.M.
The place looks like a dump from the outside. It looks like a standard pub on the inside. Nice wood bar, dart room, pool tables, and a decent size outside deck.
Service was good, probably because i was the only patron. However, the bartenders didn't really talk all that much. It was a like drinking alone.
Selection is phenomenal. The best bottle selection in the Sarasota-Bradenton area. Mostly american craft in twelve ounce bottles. About thirty beers on tap, and good beers, hard to find stuff and big beer. I liked the coolers with all the beer lined up in them. Easy for me, because i have great eyesight.
Overall a great bar. Probably more enjoyable on a friday or a saturday night when it gets a little busy. Quite far from my house in Palmetto. I would go more often if it was closer.
07-09-2009 21:38:32 |
More by JAA
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
So I went here a couple times over the years and it was okay. Then they did the redesign. Wow. I love it there now.
Let me start with my only issue. No menus for the beer. This is an issue because it was hard for me to see what was in the cases. Wayyy easier than it used to be, but still a little bit of trouble. When the staff had time they did tell me what I was looking at though. So, good marks for the staff.
Also they were all very helpful and friendly, even when super busy. I said I wanted a quad and damn if it wasn't the one I love the most.
The bottle selection is pretty good, but I was very impressed with the tap choice. Over the few days there I had the Dogfish Worldwide, 120 and Pangaea. Pretty sweet. They also have an excellent Root Beer on tap. That was nice to have after so much alcohol.
I didn't have any of the food, but I hear its been quite well received. And thanks to Todd for suggesting that I head back here. It totally changed my mind.
01-06-2009 19:04:46 |
More by Zeckster
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3 | $$
Been going to Sarasota for years and was aware of downtown location but no reason to use it. Great place with new coolers, bar and taps. Great people like Howie, Dawn and Tony. Selection is very good and all three will go out of their ways to suggest brews when they know your level of interest and the nature of you taste. I looked over the menu of pizza and sandwichs. Very good. When you have great beer, I don't need food. I will go the five nights I am here and take son and his lady to see what they think.
A Must Visit!
11-17-2008 15:15:23 |
More by tmoneyba
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | $$
The cock & bull is a great beer bar. Others have mentioned the great beer selection, which it does have as nice as possible in FL. They do have a great back patio and large backyard. I would go more frequently if it weren't smokey. The servers smoke while serving, a big negative for me. The place could use much better marketing and more customer friendly hours- they don't open until 8pm on weekends. They do get brewery direct offerings sometimes. Bottom line is that they have great beer. I wish I were able to go more frequently.
09-24-2008 18:08:59 |
More by aubuc1
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
The Cock & Bull Pub is an oasis in Sarasota, where there are only a few other bars with decent selection. C&B blows them all out of the water, though. It's located close to the interstate, in an older industrial part of town. I believe the building used to be a celery-processing plant. So yeah, it's rustic and not spiffy and shiny, but it is by no means a dive.
Walking through the door, you are greeted by the brand new beer cooler and bar, and it is a wondrous site!
(In the first pic you see most of the lineup, but there are at least two cooler doors that couldn't fit into the pic-- one is around the corner.)
So, outstanding bottle selection.... this was not always on display, as the previous coolers weren't large enough. They've got around a dozen taps at this point in their remodeling, though I understand they're getting more. They frequently get specials on draft, such as Rogue's John Locker Stock series, or special one-offs from Brooklyn.
The selection runs the gamut of American, British, German, and Belgian offerings, along with all kinds of stuff from other locales. I'd say their heaviest concentration is Belgian and American. Several Abbey Ales and Saisons to choose from. Prices are generally fair, but can be high for some unique items (like Fantome). You have the option of buying bottles to take home, which is nice.
Foodwise, they've got pizza and sandwiches, and sometimes bratwurst or big pretzels. It's all reliably good, but nothing special or fancy (which suits me just fine). From time to time, they also host exclusive beer-pairing dinners, like one I attended with Garrett Oliver recently.
Once you tear your eyes away from the bottle selection, you notice the charming atmosphere. This is what I imagine British pubs to be like, except that maybe this is larger (there's a second story, closed off now, but that provides a nice high ceiling). Wood everywhere, nice round tables, a pool table, and a cozy side-room that has a couple of couches and a comfy chair. Classic beer bottles set up all over the place.
Moving outside, there is a large porch (with a roof) with big tables, plus an extra bar for really busy nights. Down the porch steps, and you walk out into the large beer garden. Straight ahead is a big fire pit, set in the middle of a brick walkway. Spent kegs and plastic chairs surround the fire. On either side are many large picnic tables, and beyond is a modest patch of lawn, big enough to walk your dog around (folks readily bring their dogs, and I've even seen a cat on a leash there!). Still outside, there is a small makeshift stage for bands to play-- I understand they're going to remodel this and make it more professional. I love the beer garden.... this is usually where I head, because I can't stand smoke. It's nice to gather with a bunch of friends around a picnic table and talk.
Howie and Dawn are the owners, and if you get the chance to talk to them, you should. They're very friendly and love to talk beer, and are loyal to their regulars. Anytime I come in, I feel like family. The other bartenders, Tony, Frank, and Leah, are also nice folks and fun to hang around. These folks are not rude-- in fact, I have witnessed their amazing patience and good humor as they attended to asshole fratboys who whistled for the bartender.
Now, here's the thing: the warm, welcoming atmosphere I enjoy here is not going to be experienced by every visitor, especially if it's on the weekend. Fridays and Saturdays the place can be very busy, and at times there are bands playing, bringing tons of folks who would not normally be at the best beer bar in Florida. During these times, you may encounter rude fratboys or perfectly friendly death metal fans. Take it in stride. Also, if it's really busy, you're not going to get to chat up the bartenders, they just do not have the time. Unfortunately on these nights, you may also only have the option of a plastic cup for your beer. Otherwise, you can enjoy nice Belgian chalices and tulips, large German steins and the like. But, I imagine that they've probably lost too many of these to theft or damage on rowdy weekends. So, I recommend stopping in during the week, or on Sunday nights.
After visiting well-known beer bars in other cities, such as The Toronado (San Francisco) and The Map Room (Chicago), I can appreciate them, but I really value how much space and personality we have here at the Cock & Bull. This is a place where you can chat up a stranger, gather with 30 of your friends to party, or just sit by yourself with a beer and a book. I will miss it when I leave town.
05-04-2008 19:46:51 |
More by plastroin
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
With a complete remodel of the bar area they are second to none. The selection is unparalleled in the Southeastern United States and one must travel to New York City or Boston and still you may not surpass their selection. All the different styles are represented as well as many of the great beer producing countries. If you are a beer person than this is your place. There are over 600 bottles and 42 draft beers to chose from. The staff are helpful and knowledgeable and I have found are quick with a recommendation. I have watched many people stand in front of the new cooler, mouth agape and requiring assistance. The challenge is not what to drink but where to start! This is must visit if you enjoy your beer.
Also, they are pet friendly! WOW, beer and pet friendly, what more could you ask?
02-26-2008 23:35:32 |
More by gatordan
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
I'm not sure what happened to my old review, but it's gone. So here's a new one.
I'm usually in here twice a week, and haven't yet found any place else in Sarasota as likely to draw my dollar for a pint. The atmosphere might not be everyone's idea of awesome -- it's an old barn-type building in an old agricultural district, and smoking is allowed inside. But the high ceilings do a lot to mitigate the cigarette smoke, and the back deck and fire pit(!) offer room to spread out and enjoy Florida's cool winter nights. The crowd can get a bit raucous but is usually pretty laid back.
The owners, Howie and Dawn, know their beer, and the bartenders have good knowledge as well. Sometimes there is table service, but usually, patrons are expected to go to the bar and order and bring their empties up. Food is brought out to the tables when it's done.
Let's mention the food, shall we? A pizza oven makes for some excellent and creative pies and grinders, and toppings are plentiful for both. Pretzels are doughy and warm, served salted or unsalted with beer cheese or mustard available. I recommend the beer cheese. There's not a full kitchen menu, but what is available is decidedly tasty. It gets a 4 only because the variety is limited.
The draught selection is diminished right now because of renovations, but there are six taps up, I believe, which on a recent visit included Avery's Keiser and Penn Weizen, though the taps do change frequently. I think the plan is for 40-something taps, all told (there were 20 or so before renovations started, IIRC). The renovated bar has finally come out from behind a tarp, and it's lovely, with slices of trees lacquered into the surface and the gorgeous new cooler behind the bar shows off plenty of craft brews and imports behind its five? six? glass doors.
Some of the brews will set you back a piece; others won't hurt the wallet. Yes, some are available cheaper at Whole Foods, but that's a grocery store, not a bar, and Whole Foods doesn't pour them into appropriate glassware for you. If you haven't been lately, give it another whirl!
Edited to add: One thing that does detract from the atmosphere is some of the graffiti. While bathroom graffiti is expected in a bar, such liberal use of a certain anti-gay slur is a bit off-putting, and made one of my friends feel downright uneasy in a place that should be welcoming. Also, I'd have expected more clever graffiti from the eclectic bunch who frequent the pub. I look forward to those walls being completely covered with the cutouts from beer packs and cases that now just provide a smattering of the decor.
01-29-2008 05:24:17 |
More by thryn
Cock & Bull in Sarasota, FL
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