After constantly saying, “I really need to make my way down there.” Irene and I finally had the chance to visit Buffalo Brewing a couple of weeks ago, so I though I’d share some of my thoughts and some photos.
Obviously Buffalo Brewing’s biggest draw is the fact that they provide hand-crafted fresh micro-brewed beer on premises. Their current line-up is Buffalo Gold (a pale-colored ale), Chili Beer, Buffalo Drool (a brown ale), Buffalo Red, Hefeweizen and a Rye IPA. Since the Gold was currently out, I decided to go with a sampler line-up of the five remaining beers. I’m happy to say that they were all clean-well made beers.
Judging by the menu, the Chili beers looks to be the same base recipe as the Buffalo Gold but with chili added to the beer after primary fermentation. I don’t have much experience with chili beers, but I was pleasantly surprised by the subtle chili flavor. You would just catch a hit of the heat in the back of your tongue, but it was never overpowering. It always left you wanting more.
The Drool and the Red were both solid session beers, perfect for someone who’s looking to either bring someone into the craft beer fold or for the times you want to have 2 or 3 pints without having to worry about getting fall-down drunk. The stand out beer of the evening for me was the Rye IPA. It had a wonderful floral aroma and the hops matched well with the spiciness of the rye malt.
If I had one qualm with the beer it’s with the “hefeweizen.” True hefes feature a spicy clove and banana aroma which this beer had neither of. This is just another American wheat beer. There isn’t anything wrong with it, but it’s not a hefe. (And Buffalo, you’re not the only one guilty of this, you’re just the first for me to nitpick on this detail***.)
One of the things I couldn’t quite get over when reading through the menu was just how inexpensive things were. Irene and I had two beers, a five beer sampler, an appetizer and also two entrees and I don’t think we dropped more than 35 bucks. That’s a nice little respite over some of the prices we’ve been paying for food and beer recently. While the menu offers a lot of typical bar fare they also offer a lot of buffalo based choices if you’re looking for the taste of beef without all of the fat.
Buffalo Brewing offers a large dining room with a western motif. One issue we noticed with the indoor dining was that because of the high ceilings it can get a bit noisy at times. Buffalo also offers a nice outdoor covered patio if eating alfresco is your thing. They also have a very large bar if you’re looking to just belly up and have a few beers.
One last quick note, I stopped by Buffalo last Wednesday for a beer and was disappointed to find out that a few beers were out and were temporarily replaced with a few O’Fallon beers. Hopefully the next time I show up I’ll be able to have another pint of that tasty Rye IPA.
*** So according to Dave Johnson, he used a true German hefe yeast, the banana and clove just didn’t come through. He’s going to try using a different yeast next time.