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Great Dane Pub & Brewing Company (Downtown)
Active Beers: 46
Beer Ratings: 488
Beer Avg: 3.65
Taps: 12 / Bottles: -
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
123 E. Doty St.
phone: (608) 284-0000
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Reviews by Czap:
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$
I really don't have a lot to say about Great Dane. The menu is very extensive and the food is great. The service is fantastic. Their beer ranks from decent to good. Nothing bad, but nothing that will knock you off your feet. The place is huge. It seems every corner you turn leads to another dining area. My wife and I chose to dine in the outside patio. It is very beautiful and we enjoyed it (except when a bird pooped in my wife's hair...minor setback).
However, it feels like a chain to me. A very good chain that I would actually dine in at that, but a chain nonetheless. Chain brewpubs are fine, I have no problem with them. I like that it is out there trying to spread the good beer word to the masses. But Madison is loaded with great, hip beer bars with ecletic and interesting food menus.
That being said, sometimes you are with a crowd that needs something a little more mainstream, and at those moments Great Dane is perfect. So I do like this place, just wouldn't be my first choice, or even my tenth, when in Madison.
10-13-2010 20:44:02 |
More by Czap
More User Reviews:
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Good selection of food that is more or less pub grub and comfort food. Partial to the Mad City meatloaf, personally. Usually a good selection of beers on tap, but my go to is Stone of Scone. Food not expensive, beer a bit pricey. Service has always been top shelf IMHO. This is a must stop when I am in Madison, and I have taken business associates here on several occasions. Nice pub area, excellent pool hall area, clean. Crowd is usually lively but somewhat more restrained, shall we say, than bars closer to UW. Fun place, usually packed.
12-09-2012 01:25:17 |
More by LeRose
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Spent a week in Madison and made it here every night... If you want to check out one of the Great Dane's, this is definitely the one to go to. The selection is awesome, with rotating casks regularly. The place is full of pool tables, shuffleboard, TVs to keep you entertained... and even has one of those new self-serving tables that you can rent out. The food is amazing for bar food... highly recommend the grilled cheese, but you have to add bacon. Service was good and prices are fair, especially if you're there fore happy hour when you can get a pint (real pint) of anything for $3.50. The beers are all quality... nothing seems hurried or mass produced... even the light lager is fully enjoyable. This is by far my go-to spot in Madison.
10-24-2012 20:33:54 |
More by csiewert
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 5 | $$
Finally had a chance to check out this place and was very pleased. The atmosphere was okay - a typical, dimly lit pub-style establishment. Plenty of energy in the place, especially with the Packers game on TV. The service was fine, not particularly noteworthy in any regard.
What really impressed me was the quality of their beer and food. The menu was fairly large with plenty of options, both typical bar fare and some unique WI themed choices. The burger I had was done exactly how I like it, down to the brittle crisp of the Applewood bacon. Both beers I had were also exceptional - the Scottish was very good and the engine pulled porter was one of the better beers I'd had in months. It's always nice to see a brewer take a "standard" type beer and do it so well that it catches you by surprise.
Will definitely go out of my way to visit again.
09-21-2012 03:57:35 |
More by GeezLynn
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$
As has been mentioned numerous times previously, Great Dane is a brewpub conveniently located in downtown Madison. It sits on a corner and is actually fairly large on the inside. There is a bar area and a section with tables and booths.
The beer offerings tend to lean toward the English spectrum with about 8 or so standard year round offering and 4 or so season or rotating taps. Over the course of many visits of Madison, I've managed to have about a half a dozen beers from GD, but I've never been blown away by any of them. While they're almost always technically solid, they also tend to be cautious, "user friendly" beers. Enjoyable, but I'd rather get my kicks somewhere else.
The food at GD is much like the beer. Burgers and sandwiches dominate the menu, but there is a lot choice, including some vegetarian options as well as the option to choose locally sourced meats and cheeses. However, much like the beer, the food plays it safe: It's good, better than average even, but it's not great and I couldn't see coming here for the food alone.
Overall, a decent brewpub, but with The Old Fashioned and Cooper's Tavern within walking distance, I'd rather be somewhere else.
*Kid friendly. Child menu available.
01-12-2012 02:59:23 |
More by Florida9
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$
This place is a decent-sized place on the corner of a few streets near the center of Madison.
Me and my friend sat at a bar type place near the front door. They were offering a glut of beers so we ordered a sampler. Some of the beers (Prageur lager) were pretty good. Others were simple brewpub fare.
We didn't eat so can't comment on that, but the service, especially the bartenders was extremely good despite the place being totally packed to the brims.
Overall it is a solid and worthy stop on a Madison downtown pub crawl.
08-14-2011 14:37:52 |
More by crossovert
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
Stop # 225 on my brewery tour of the world.
This was my second visit to the downtown Great Dane over the course of about five years and I realized I did not submit an initial review. Consider this an updated/initial review.
Visited Thursday in early August around 1:00 in the afternoon. Not much of a crowd and I sat at the bar.
Ordered samples of...
Tri pepper pilsner (three spicy peppers - nice)
Hop jack pale
Czech pils - nice
Beer engine IPA
Firkin scotch ale
I had the seared ahi tuna which was ok for bar standards.
Young female bartender was nice and we chatted a bit about her new interest in sour beers.
As far as brewpubs in historic buildings goes, this one is among the finest I've been to. Very well run with quality beer.
08-09-2011 15:29:44 |
More by Yetiman420
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
I love coming to madison, and this place is the reason why! I have eaten here many times and tried all the beers that they have to offer. I finally got around to reviewing it.
Atmosphere: Nice little spot in downtown madison. Cool bar that also features a alot of things to do with great food and eaqualy great beer.
Quality: Better than average. The beers here are brewed in house and this place allways smells like homebrew. Gotta love that!
Service: Service was a bit slower than usual. We were at the restaurant for about an hour and a half eating lunch. It should have taken about an hour at the most.
Selection: Many offersing on the menu and there is a beer here for about everyone.
Food: Everything that I have ordered here has been great eating. Soups are great, salads are fresh, meat is always cooked to order, sandwich are fantastic.
Value: for 2 people to eat lunch it was under 40 dollars with the tip included. We ate both ate a main course with the GF drinking a rootbeer(thats brewed by Great Dane and is really awesome rootbeer). I had a pint of the porter with lunch. We both had a dessert. I had to be rolled out the door I was soo full! Lots of food, and I thought that they left something off the bill on accident, but they did not. If you have never been to this place you must go!
07-14-2011 06:24:55 |
More by 4DAloveofSTOUT
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I visited the Great Dane while visiting Madison during for a wedding. This place is located in downtown Madison. Huge warehouse-like brewpub - dark wood, large mirrors, lots of room (there is a rathskellar downstairs and a beer garden outside). I sat at the bar area and had a pleasant experience with the bartender who was really nice and attentive. Reminded me of an old English pub in the midwest. There were tons of beers on tap including New Glarus raspberry tart. Of all the beers I tried, I liked the Crop Circle (hefe), IPA, and the Black Earth Porter the best. The rest were a little flattish, watered down, reminded me of Rockbottom brews.
Overall, I was impressed by the selection of beers, the quality of the food on the menu. There was a nice selection of pizza, salads, burgers, sandwiches, and entrees on the menu. I had the beer battered cheese curds. A Wisconsin must-do. The bbq burger and fries I had were just okay. Very reasonably priced here.
06-20-2011 18:20:51 |
More by CuriousMonk
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 4.5 | $$
The Dane certainly has some great food; I've gotten a pork shoulder with mango salso, a Mac & Cheese Pizza, their Mac & Cheese (best dish that I've had there) and the lagered sausage platter (only decent). My fiancee has raved about their meatloaf and has gotten a few other things that escape my mind right now. The beers are pretty solid, nothing spectacular. I like the Crop Circle Wheat (standard hefe, decent), the Texas Speedbump IPA (pretty good), but am not a big fan of the Potter's Run IPA (I wouldn't recommend it; may have been the one time, but it was very flat). I also would steer clear of the Tri-Pepper Pilsner unless you like the taste of a higher quality Miller Lite brewed with peppers soaking in it. The service has always been stellar in my experience, though they do get quite busy. The cheese curds are pretty good, but not as good as some other options (Dotty's or Old Fashioned).
06-08-2011 21:30:36 |
More by HopHeadHurls
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Great Dane Pub & Brewing Company (Downtown) in Madison, WI