Big Time Brewery & Alehouse
4133 University Way Northeast
Visited on March 8, 2009
Basically being on the campus of Washington University in Seattle, I expected Big Time to be kind of blah. I mean, they could brew cheap beer and sell it to the undergraduates for a pretty good profit. Or they could be an extremely douchey place and cater to the “GTL” crowd.
Then again, the place is in Seattle, which is known for its beer reputation. It’s also known for the birth of grunge and garage bands. I should have known it would be a great spot in all possible ways.
I recall being impressed by the sheer number of beers available, including some cask conditioned options. Most everything on the menu was of superior quality, too. Nothing blew me away, but I was very happy with all the selections.
I think I remember there being a food window, where you order and pick up your grub, which does away with terrible servers. I think I had a decent pizza, but recall the options being rather limited for the menu as a whole. Let’s see what the original review has to say.
Located on a highly commercialized street just south of Washington University, this brewpub somehow manages to shrug off the pop-culture surrounding it and exude a local bar feel. The interior is woody, rustic, homey and exactly what I look for in a neighborhood bar. I would think I was in some Midwest blue-collar bar if I didn’t know any better. I loved the eclectic decorations and the random table sizes and chairs.
The menu is very limited. You can get pizza, sandwiches, chili and baked potatoes. That’s about it. And it’s also expensive. A 8-inch personal pan pizza will run you about $9.00. If it were about two bucks cheaper, it’d be perfect. Because even though the pizza and chili is very good, it is still overpriced. Minus points for no dessert but pre-wrapped cookies.
Astoundingly good beer for such a small operation. There were 10 to choose from, and each was impressive. I could go on and on about seven of their beers which I found to be above average, but I’ll focus on the coal porter, which was offered on cask. The smooth creamyness, slightly warm beer with a deep, complex taste profile knocked my socks off. If you like beer, this is the place to be. I can’t believe a place with this good of homemade beer is on a college campus. But again, it’s overpriced. A sampler of 4, 4-ounce beers ran $5, which is more than a pint. I’d rather smaller samplers of each beer for less per ounce than a pint, which is the way most places run it.
The bartender was on top of her game. Food orders are taken by the customer directly to the food window, which I’m fine with. The order comes out promptly. Not bad.