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Active Beers: 52
Beer Ratings: 1,855
Beer Avg: 3.75
Taps: 14 / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
925 Cherry St SE
phone: (616) 719-1604
(Place added by: abaculy on 01-18-2011)
Ratings & Reviews
| Reviews: 45 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 3.75 | $$
I had gone to Founders the last couple of years passing through Grand Rapids and decided for a change of pace. I pulled up across the street. The outside of the building had Brewery Vivant on it, and it also had the word chapel. I later found out that it was a former mortuary chapel. I walked into a church-like atmosphere. There were high vaulted ceilings. The tables were long with bench seating like a German beer hall. At the opposite side of the building was the bar. Above it was a stained glass window adding to the church vibe.
I sidled up to the bar. There were probably about 12-15 beers on tap. They were all in house selections. I ordered a sampler. Actually, I eventually had a 4-5 ounce sample of all the beers on tap. They are all Belgian styles ranging from good to very good in taste. Solitude is one of the year round beers. They had a couple barrel aged versions of it that were great.
While sitting at the bar I noticed a gentleman giving the bartender three beers. I could see that they had Three Floyd's caps. I heard him mention the aroma, so I asked if they were Zombie Dust since I had yet to see or try it. He affirmed that it was indeed Zombie Dust, then went to his car and brought one in for me along with a New Glarus Moon Man. I told him it was not necessary but was GREATLY appreciated. He told me to just pay it forward sometime.
Shortly, afterwards my friends showed up, and I moved to the beer hall style seating. I ordered the poutine which is a great comfort food. We decided to take the brewery tour since we were having a good time. We went to the production part of the building which was connected to the brewpub. The tour guide was a server at the pub. He knew very little about the brewing process. The $10 fee was for the four beers that we sampled. I was disappointed with this part of my visit.
I would absolutely go back again. The beer was great. The food was good, and the staff was friendly, courteous, and helpful. The tour was a waste of time and money. Go for the pub and skip the tour. I liked this place way better than Founders.
08-04-2013 19:16:57 |
More by buschbeer
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
My wife and I tried this place during our Michigan beer trip for our five year wedding anniversary.
We were given the option of eating indoors or out; we chose to sit outside. We were seated at a long picnic table like seat. This was strange, but everything else made up for it.
We had one of the sampler trays, which had 4 different beers for 10 dollars or so. Every single beer was great, my personal favorite was the amber abbey ale while my wife loved the Wit. Also have the Belgian IPA and the farmhouse ale.
The food was excellent, and the service was good. Overall, a really good experience.
07-15-2011 00:27:44 |
More by ebby82
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Came here on a Saturday afternoon with nicktbm and our significant others in October 2011. The sign outside invited us to "warm up with beer," so we took them up on the offer.
Inside sports a beautiful and spacious church-like interior with stained glass windows, high ceilings, communal tables, and about 10 seats at the bar. Crowd is locals who mind their own business. Our server was relaxed and welcoming - he helped us along with beer recos and suggested some dishes to pair with our drinks.
We ordered two flights of the Triomphe Belgian IPA, Farm Hand Ale, Big Red Coq, and Heavy Handed Double Chocolate Stout. The IPA and Red Ale were my favourites, and my oenophile girlfriend really liked the Farm Hand. Compared to other brewpubs, the beer selection is limited, since they do not carry any guest taps, bottles, or cellared offerings. But their house beers are bold, tasty, and unconventional, so they get high marks from me.
For food I had a delicious Oxtail Hash with sunny side eggs and English muffin toast. The lady enjoyed her Pork Belly BLT, even though she couldn’t finish the massive portion. Prices are reasonable as most pints are $4-5 and lunch entrees are in the $12-14 range. After our meal we popped into the retail store, where my friend bought a few cans of beer and a brewery t-shirt. The cashier was happy to chat with us while we looked around.
Overall, we were quite satisfied with our experience here and it made for a nice afternoon stop. Vivant is an impressive, quality brewpub with friendly staff, interesting beers, and an attractive, unique atmosphere. I highly recommend this place if you happen to be in Grand Rapids.
11-05-2011 19:39:25 |
More by cratez
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25 | food: 3.5 | $$$
This is a really cool space. It’s an old chapel of some sort. The bar mirrors the arch of the altar. Somebody put a lot of money into it.
The beer is quite good. All Belgian style but with a little more exploration than, say, Ommegang.
The food is pretty good, but not quite what they talk it up to be. The duck confit nachos were yummy. We ordered sausage as well. It came on a bed of the most disgusting kraut I’ve had in a long time. Definitely was par cooked hours prior and dried to crap. Sausage was pretty dry too.
It’s worth a visit. The beer is too good not to.
08-05-2013 02:00:26 |
More by Fluffheady
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
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $
Absolutely remarkable atmosphere! I really loved the size of place. A lot smaller than i thought but it works to make you feel like youre at a private party in a friends pole barn - a pole barn made to look like a beautiful Belgian monastery. The details are amazing in this place. One thing i noticed that probably gets overlooked or under-appreciated are the coat/purse hooks under the ledges between the pillars - speaks to the amount of thought that went into the design. I like the efforts made to be energy efficient including motion lights in the bathrooms. Seems common sense.
The beers are all good, though im not sure any of the ones i tried were outstanding. All seemed to be pretty textbook though they are still many i have not had. only had one dish there - the duck and brie sauce nachos. Holy shit. seemed like a lot of money but you got a decent plate full and it was very rich and filling not to mention delicious. I look forward to trying some other fair.
The service seemed average, nothing out of the ordinary either way.
Overall ill be going there quite a bit because of the quality of products and the atmosphere. Way to go Jason and co for doing it right!
03-21-2011 17:35:39 |
More by Frosty80
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
Brewery Vivant is a new-ish beer bar and restaurant on Cherry in Grand Rapids. It has actually been "open" since mid-December but the "grand opening" was held on St. Patrick's day. I have been there a couple of times and I can tell you that it has come a long way since January when there were only three beers on the menu. The selection is more varied now and it seems to change regularly.
The place is pretty gorgeous I think. It used to be a funeral chapel and it's got the kind of high-ceilinged coziness that I enjoy. Wood beams and an overlook (for where the organ used to be, on assumes) complete the package and the bar is not particularly large but it is ornate yet humble. It looks larger than it actually is, but there is ample seating (more on that).
The beer is a solid 4/5. I have yet to sample one that really blew me away and I've sampled quite a few of them. The Contemplation is my favorite thus far. All the beers I've had a extremely drinkable but I haven't exactly been transported to flavor country yet. Still, they seem to be trotting out new ones every now and again. So far they only have two strong beers (over 9%). I think they should try and make some more of those. A quad perhaps?
The food is high quality stuff and a bit on the pricey side. You won't break the bank, but "The Burger" is 12 bucks - which seems like quite a lot to me but this was one fantastic burger.
Outdoor seating is forthcoming (if it ever warms up!) and they offer a "Monk Club" which comes complete with your own engraved chalice. Cool.
There isn't much to complain about. The lack of actual space causes there to be long waits at certain times. So, if you want to eat dinner there on a Saturday, get your name on the list early. The other problem I have, which some may not find problematic at all, is that half the seating in the place is communal a la the Hofbrau House with long wooden tables. I am not personally a fan of this seating style and with Vivant I could see ending up forced, against my will, to sit next to some sort of undesirable. Of course, lots of people enjoy this sort of thing and it works for Vivant because they seem to be all about community.
From the coasters to the bike-powered television - a tv that has never once been on because it would take too much pedaling - Vivant sees itself as one of these new-fangled sustainable/local places. I wish they would just have a functional tv though and I do hope Vivant doesn't end up too full of itself.
But if you want a friendly place with it's own beer selection and fantastic ambiance, you will be quite happy with Vivant.
03-28-2011 18:10:05 |
More by Gigantis
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4 | $$
Beautiful building redone in a gorgeous architectural way. The beers we had were decent to great. We loved the atmosphere and really enjoyed the cheese plates paired to the beer. The nuts with beer were also great.
We entered and were seated at one of the bench style seats along all the other patrons. Unfortunately that wasn't overly comfortable and the guests next to us (inches away) weren't too social so we jumped at the chance to move to the bar. At the bar we had a great time. Other patrons next to us at the bar were social and we had some good conversations about the beers - if this matters to you...
Overall a great visit. Unfortunately after spending $150 at the bar and another $100 in merchandise (beer and swag) to go, we asked if they could call us a taxi cab and were told flat out no. Not the best way to end an expensive visit. Luckily the restaurant next door had a fantastic valet who hooked us up with wheels back to the hotel.
The beers we took home have been wonderful and we have the growlers to take back and refill.
05-12-2013 15:51:48 |
More by hotsudge
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4.75 | $$$
Love going to this place, great patio and awesome food. A lil expensive but it worth it. Always one barrel aged beer on tap. Just wish these guys would start releasing more of their barrel aged stuff or sours in cans !!! Over all definitely worth a trip if your in Grand Rapids, especially when they have their Wood aged beer festival !!
07-28-2013 17:07:39 |
More by ROBSTARR
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3 | $$
I went to Brewery Vivant on the Monday they opened. What a cool place! Rather small compared to other West Michigan places, there was still a fair amount of seating(which means you the place can get pretty crowded). The interior and exterior are both done up to resemble French/Belgian monastery a.k.a. abbey. I selected 4.0 for selection, but wish I could omit this category. I was told they would have 14 taps, and also have cider and wine. They plan to make their own wine in the future, and currently have Vander Mill's cider on tap(Not sure if they have their own taps or not). The first night, they had a Belgian IPA, an amber(I think an abbey), and one other. When I went back with my parents during the first week of 2011, they had 4 beers on tap (brown, amber, farmhouse, and one other). I would be more comfortable rating their selection when they've everything going at full force, but I do have confidence they will have a good selection relative to their theme. It was pretty crowded and the place will surely benefit from having their outdoor patio open, as many of the tables are like long picnic tables (although there are booths and many other smaller tables, plus bar seats). The mug club mugs are AWESOME! They are like a chalice or big goblet. I rate the foot as 3.0 because it was good, but the amount of fries you get doesn't seem like $5 worth. The beers were good, but not my style. I like a lot of Belgian beers, but the sour aftertaste sometimes gets me. The IPA had this and it just wasn't for me. I believe this may have been an abundance of lactic acid in the beer, but I would need it in front of me again to say for sure.
Overall, I recommend trying this place, as I can only see it getting better!
01-20-2011 01:42:09 |
More by abaculy
Brewery Vivant in Grand Rapids, MI
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