Log in or Sign up
Extreme Beer Fest
returns to Boston on March 21 & 22, 2014.
Tickets are on sale now
BeerAdvocate mobile beta: Testers Wanted
. Give it a try and let us know what you think.
Android or Google Chrome user? Get a
14 day free trial to BeerAdvocate magazine on Google Play Newsstand
today! (AU, CA, UK, US only).
Extreme Beer Fest
Google Play Newsstand
Thirsty Bear Brewing Company
Active Beers: 18
Beer Ratings: 207
Beer Avg: 3.67
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
661 Howard Street
phone: (415) 974-0905
(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Ratings & Reviews
next › last »
| Reviews: 59 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Came here about 930PM on the Sunday night of Memorial Day weekend. Another long front-to-back place. Flamenco music playing on this eve. Long bar lines the left side of the room, with brew kettles visible behind glass behind the bar. Right side lined in brick, with numerous tables scattered about, booths along the wall, and with a small stage near the middle right for musical entertainment. Somewhat dimly lit, and rather sparsely populated on this night. Besides bier they have lots of liquor here...anything you might want. Does have a yuppy-ish vibe, as earlier noted; tries to be more of an upscale place. OK, overall. Had 8x biers on tap during this visit, and I enjoyed a couple of pints of their seasonal Maibock ($5.00), served in a great German, stange-type glass. Bartender was quite pleasant, an English chap. He was a few minutes late pouring me my second Maibock, and I wasn't bothered by it, but he comped it for me. Cool. Decent place in general, though I'd hit Toronado or Zeitgeist first, personally.
atmosphere: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: n/a | $$
06-09-2005 18:07:36 |
More by Bierman9
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
This pub has a more upscale feel to it than most of my favorite places. Tanks are very hidden behind an exceptionally long bar. There is a thin eating area fronting the bar. There is also an upstairs area as well. A wide selection was available on tap, at least 6 offerings. These included an IPA, Pils, Stout, Porter, and an ESB, I believe the 6th was a wheat beer. Food is Spanish style, Tapas being the specialty. Looked good but also a bit expensive and I wish I knew how big the portions are. A decent pub in the south of Market area, while I prefer 21st Amendment, I thought this place had a wider selection of brew. One other thing we enjoyed was a good converstation with our bar man who was English. We conversed about the U.K. and cask ale. Nice guy. Worth going to by all means.
06-04-2005 23:59:05 |
More by Mark
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
I hosted a small business diner here. Some of co-workers were initially skeptical, but this place quickly won them over.
As described by others, this is a fairly narrow but long bar/dinning area. The upstairs contained the bathrooms, pool tables and some place for entertaining.
I was there on a Sunday evening which happens to be flamingo night! Some nice guitar playing and dancing entertained us. It really added a unique vibe and I wonder if this weekly event draws a different crowd.
For dinner, we went with a bunch of tapas dishes and some yummy seafood paella. Some of the best food I have ever had at a brewpub. Great combinations of flavors and very fresh ingredients!
The beer was fine, but it didn't blow me away. Still, very solid representatives of the styles. I had a seasonal Mai Bock and the IPA. The brewing equipment is on display behind the bar. I wish I had another chance to sample a few more.
The service was a bit slow, but very friendly. The food did come pretty quickly after we ordered..
I'm very glad I had a chance to stop by.
05-26-2005 18:16:51 |
More by Redrover
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
The atmosphere is business like and somewhat yuppy-ish. There is spacious dining areas downstairs and it looks as though the upstairs is mainly for entertainment with two pool tables and a dart board. They have an area in the middle of the restaurant next to the bar for live flamenco music on Sunday nights.
There are wooden tables and chairs; the bar is hard to figure out, looks like some thick transparent enamel over a type of art work. The restroom was clean. Kitchen is in the open and viewable from the southside dining area as is the brewing equipment behind the bar..
Kind of yuppy-ish but prompt.
A decent selection, no guest beers, and a good concept of cask beer (handpump) however only on certain nights. Their IPA and seasonal Viena Waltz are notables also their possible notables are the Valencia Wheat (similar to a hef) and seasonal Imperial Red (8.5%). The beers seem to be served a little on the cold side but are alright.
Have eaten there in the past, I recall the proportion did not add up to the price but was good. There appears to be some healthy options on the menu. The kitchen is wide open and viewable from the South dining area.
Food is pricey.
04-30-2005 06:13:06 |
More by Troyone
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5
Last visit was during a foolish attempt to drink all 9 beers of the San Francisco Strong Beer Month in one night. (I did 8 of them for the record.)
The Thirsty Bear's concept has always been one of my favorites, but the execution has always left a little to be desired to me.
The menu concept is tapas (which gets translated by some as "yuppie chow") which to me is about as close to perfect for eating with groups over drinks. This is exactly why the Spanish invented this cuisine. Menu varies and has always been good.
The beer on the other hand has always varied. On this particular visit I had the Bearly Legal barleywine and the Winterbock. The winterbock was phenolic and the barleywine was fine, but still relatively lackluster.
The crowd here is my other problem here as the posing yuppies really do invade this place by nightfall. Hey, I like yuppie cusine, not yuppies.
Still a very nice place though.
03-02-2004 08:34:38 |
More by drewbage
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5
On our second trip to Thirst Bear, we were much more impressed with everything. Our first trip was so-so ( the bartender ignored us and the beers were nothing special), but this time we stopped in to complete our stong beer card put on by 21st Amendment, Thirsty Bear and Magnolia. The idea to drink 9 stong beers of various styles and keep a cool glass.
So on this trip we tasted the Bearly Legal Barley wine which was well balanced between hops, malt and alcohol( about 10%), not too sweet and great with the blue cheese on my salad. The Winterbock wasn't as impressive, but still a good showing. A little more astringent then I like in a beer, but with the fried almonds and paprika it was not bad.
Our server was attentive and our food can rather quickly at lunch. After this experience, we might stop in again and give thier other beers a try.
02-20-2004 21:04:55 |
More by boussh
United Kingdom (England)
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3
I arrived at The Thirsy Bear to be greeted by a deafening clattering noise, unfortunately i'd arrived on the Bars regular Flamenco night! fortunately the Flamenco was fairly brief and i could enjoy my beer again in relative peace. I sampled a couple of beers on my visit, Howard St IPA and Polar Bear, both of which were enjoyable.
The bar seemed to be largely food orientated and while the food wasn't bad the servers seemed to be in a hurry to serve us, clear the plates again and free the table for the next customer so my eating experience felt somewhat rushed. The beer wasn't bad but next time i think i'll avoid the Flamenco Dancers...
02-09-2004 23:29:58 |
More by Clembo1957
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5
Seldom is it the case that brewpubs have more than the blah-blah ales and blah-blah lagers. This place had two wheat beers (Belgian and Bavarian respectively), a surprisingly good Vanilla Ale, an wonderful stout with a hefty additional of roasted barley, mmm roasted barley. There were several other beers, I think I counted eight and it was a nice well-rounded variety with some extraordinary stuff. And they have food, good food. It is Spanish Tapas style -- Spanish pub fare. The dishes were very good, but I should say they are larger than your average tapas dishes. My wife and I each ordered three thinking they would be small, but they turned out to be heftier portions than I had ever imagined. This place also has pool tables and stuff like that upstairs and is in walking distance to the museum and 21st Ammendment brewpub. Of 3 brewpubs I went to in SF (21st Ammendment & SF Brewing) this was the best.
10-02-2003 19:12:51 |
More by andyj
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5
This is a very good brewpub very close to the Muscone convention center. There is a decent selection of good brews, with about half a dozen on tap at any given time. I recall the stout as being very decent. I think they have a cask one night of the week. They also serve home made sangria. As for the food, it has a Spanish theme. The tapas (appetizers) are exellent, and go very well with the beers. Try the cod cheeks!
This is a comfortable place, though a bit more of a restaurant and bar than a typical brewpub.
12-29-2002 04:00:36 |
More by UncleJimbo
next › last »
Thirsty Bear Brewing Company in San Francisco, CA
Your name or email address:
Do you already have an account?
No, create an account now.
Yes, my password is:
Forgot your password?
Stay logged in
Top 250 Beers
Change of Address