Bar to Bar Through Beantown
“Yard House is a beer lover’s dream, boasting over 100 taps featuring some hard to find and delicious craft beers as well as their own brews, local legends, and the usual suspects like Bud and Coors Light.”
Address: 126 Brookline Ave
Date of Visit: Sunday, March 18, 2012
Server Name: Stefanie
Yard House is a beer lover’s dream, boasting over 100 taps featuring some hard to find and delicious craft beers as well as their own brews, local legends, and the usual suspects like Bud and Coors Light. They have a large cocktail menu, which Eric claims is for ladies who prefer fruity drinks to beer, but Valerie was excited about all of the options. The vast expanse of the restaurant and bar area at the Boston location is warm and inviting despite the low light and plethora of TVs that adorn the space (if there’s a game on, you better believe Yard House has, or can have, the event on one of their screens).
This pretty much brand-new Fenway bar provides a great alternative to the often bustling Boston Beer Works, more space than nearby Sweet Cheeks or Citizen (but not as many craft cocktail options), and is an upgrade over the dive-like spaces nearby such as Copperfields (and no carding on the way in since it’s a restaurant first). Yard House also offers a back patio off of the of the establishment, which was filled with green beer drinking patrons on St. Patrick’s Day but quieter the next day when we came back to review our cocktails. The tables are massive and would easily fit 6 people, and the appetizer menu provides some tasty items to much on. The staff is super friendly and really know their beer. The menu has a really smart layout, listing beers by “type” but also from least to most complex, making it a bit easier for a novice beer drinker who hasn’t experimented with the 90 Minute IPAs of the world. Beers are served in a couple of sizes, but their namesake is the half-yard, a tall vase-looking vessel reminiscent of the large, plastic tiki drink holders from your college spring break in Cancun, or Eric’s favorite (but not really at all), Tequila Rain…check out a picture of some of our friend’s drinking half-yards below!
The bathrooms here are towards the back of the restaurant to the left of the entrance of the patio, and they’re actually really nice (the men’s room should be larger for such a big establishment) – Val loved the sinks so make sure you check them out. Perhaps the best part is the ability to see through the windows into the keg room on your way by, as it rests along the same wall, or observing the many pipes that adorn the ceiling and bring delicious beer to the taps.
Review: Deciding on what drink I wanted to order here was difficult, but I finally settled on the Gobstopper because I haven’t seen anything similar offered elsewhere before, and I loved the candies as a kid (ok, I still do). First off, the picture is not the best representation of the color of the drink as it was a bit more pink in hue, and I kept wondering how there was Hypnotiq in there without it having a blue color. I could taste the blue liqueur though, almost to the point of it being a bit overwhelming. The great thing is that the flavor of this drink changes much like it’s candy namesake – this is likely due to the many fruity components included. If I had to choose one Gobstopper color to best describe the flavor, however, it would be the yellow one. The drink was definitely a slow sipper, due to both the sweet flavor and the strength!
Eric’s Drink of Choice: Jack’s Melon
Ingredients: Jack Daniels, Dekuyper Watermelon Pucker, cranberry juice, fresh lime
Review: This Jack Daniel’s-based drink tasted less like Jack and more like a delicious fruit punch, which makes it super dangerous (I say that in a lot of posts…maybe I need to start picking less dangerous drinks). While Val & one of our guests, Marisa, claimed the taste of Jack was very apparent, our other guest, Rich, and I couldn’t pick it out until almost the end of the drink.
Pretty well done, the cocktail balanced the flavors of juice and whiskey pretty well (I would’ve liked a bit more of the whiskey burn, but this drink was obviously designed to be sweet). The fresh flavors of the juice made me think that it was prepared in house and not from a concentrate, although my gut tells me it came from a big bottle someplace. The Jack being hidden was good on this unseasonably warm day, but for a restaurant with such attention given to their craft beers, I was hoping for more craft-ish cocktails on the menu. Even a dash of bitters or a bit less sweet would have truly made this cocktail shine – but, for an establishment that highlights beer, they do a decent job with this cocktail!
Wine Prices: Seventeen wines are offered by the glass for $8.25 to $11.25 per glass. Eleven whites and thirteen reds are available by the bottle starting for $24 to $79 each. Four champagnes are also available by the bottle.
Beer Prices: To be honest, there are far too many beer offerings to count! They have ales, lagers, hybrids, ciders, etc. etc. etc. Essentially, if there’s a beer you’re looking for, Yard House is likely to have it. They also offer Beer Floats (beer + ice cream) and “traditional” and “unique” beer blends, such as mixing Hoegaarden White with Timmerman Framboise to make a “Rose Gaarden.” Prices not listed…but the half yards of Wachusett Blueberry were $13.50 each.
Other: Yard House, as mentioned previously, has a lot of mixed drinks on their menu. There is a list of “Skinny Drinks” and multiple Sake offerings. There are 14 Specialty Drinks at $9 each, including the Tuaca Berry Blast and Pineapple Express. Then there’s twenty three House Martinis all for $10.25 each – along with the Gobstopper there’s a Vanilla Cheesecake, Watermelon Martini, Sweet Tart, and Black Orchid, among others.
The full drink menu is online here.