Active Beers: 53
Beer Ratings: 1,881
Beer Avg: 3.77
Taps: 14 / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: Y
Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 65 | Reviews: 47 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by Yetiman420:
3.85/5 rDev -7.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Stop #332 on my world brewery tour.
Full disclosure: If I ever take the leap to making a living off beer it would be to open a Belgian brewpub in an old church (if rehab was fiscally possible). Color me jealous.
Stopped in around 7:00 on a Tuesday in mid December.
Second brewery in a church. The other being Church Brewing in Pittsburgh which is much, much bigger. Vivant is cozy with a very nice bar coming out from the alter (not sure of the religious term for the very front of the church). Cozy booths line the side walls and large wood communal tables on the floor. It was previously a funeral home and I wonder how much time, money, and effort it took to make it this nice.
The friendly couple next to me at the bar said two more brewpubs are opening within walking distance. Lots of great beer choices in Grand Rapids.
I went with two Cambier flights where you get four four ounce pours for $10.
French Style Farmhouse
Oaked Belgian IPA
Red Hoppy Belgian
Belgian Oatmeal Stout
Raspberry Apple Cider (two ciders on guest tap)
I had a male and female (cute with junior dreads) bartender and service could have been friendlier. It's the only thing stopping them from getting an "A" rating. During downtime, they stood at the back of the bar and didn't socialize with the guests. Most questions to them got me a one word response and did even thank me as I signed the check.
To eat I had a wonderful cheese plate with Humbolt fog, point reyes blue, and Chimay. It was accompanied by thin bread and jellies and chutney. It was brought out by the kitchen person with a full description.
The beers were good but not great. The (hoppy) Belgian IPA was probably the best and that isn't even a traditional Belgian style. I like the fact that they had a historic Uytzet but I found it a bit clean and lacking in flavor. Oatmeal stout had the Belgain yeast taste but was way too thin for me for an oatmeal stout.
It's a much broader discussion but good beer in Belgium comes from (aged) bottles and not taps. An attempt to crank out Belgian beers in a quick time frame and serve them on draft creates a void in the soul of the beer. While Vivant has a great atmosphere and fine food, I feel the beer falls short with those well accustomed to Belgian beers. It's still good beer and I could be accused of being too critical. I'm just particular when it comes to Belgian beer.
Overall, it was an enjoyable visit and I would recommend it and will return for a complete dinner next time.
12-14-2011 13:28:56 | More by Yetiman420
More User Reviews:
4.26/5 rDev +2.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.75 | $$$$
Talk about another destination in Grand Rapids. Couple this with Founder's and HopCat and you have the mecca of great beer.
Vivant is located in an old funeral home, but it feels like more of a church to me. Big exposed beams, 25 foot gabled ceiling, with some beautiful stand glass behind the back bar. Very cozy, communal style tables are centered, with some bar style seating between support beams, and booths line the sides of the open format dining room. It has a very warm feel, despite the large space and tall ceilings.
The money is higher end. I love that. I hate that most brewpubs or breweries I go to have pub style food, and it's fairly basic. This food is very well crafted and thought it. Yes it is pub style food, but it's borderline artistic, well thought out, and superb. It's probably some of the best brewpub food I have ever had. I'd put it up there with food from places like HopLeaf and Fountainhead, possibly just below the Publican.
The beer is always solid. They are always offering something not available in a can at the brewpub, and sometimes some pub exclusive cans as well in the swag shop. Service was good and friendly, and knowledgeable about the beer and food. Bartenders are always attentive.
Great, freaking, stop!
12-17-2013 16:17:40 | More by MarcatGSB
4.29/5 rDev +3.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 5 | $$$
Atmosphere: made in an old church and is of a very cool belgian style
Quality: some of the best american versions of belgian beers I have had
Service: pretty helpful since the menu has some foreign and exotic items.
Selection: this is probably the only true down fall I can find of this place: they only have 4 or so menu beers that aren't available in cans at a store. but i do love the constantly changing barrel aged beer selection
Food: wonderful food. very unique and extremely tasty
Overall: love this place: one of the more unique brewpubs and damn good too.
12-12-2013 19:13:41 | More by SportsandJorts
4.16/5 rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.5 | $
Vivant is a great little brewpub. Really enjoyed the church vibe. Our server was extremely knowledgable for a server/waiter. Great brews! Had 6 varieties and really liked 5. Excellent ratio. Will definitely be back next time I'm in Grand Rapids. My only real negative would be with their merch/store. I really wanted a t-shirt but theri pricing seemed a little out of wack.
12-02-2013 21:30:30 | More by teledeluxe
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Brewery Vivant in Grand Rapids, MI
92 out of 100 based on 65 user ratings.