Browning’s Brew Pub was a pretty nice looking restaurant attached to the Louisville Slugger stadium in downtown Louisville. I say “was” because it’s apparently closed now. But apparently it has reopened under the name Against the Grain, so hopefully they’re making good use of the space.
I stopped in to sample their wares and have my first Kentucky hot brown on my way down to Birmingham for the NCAA tournament. I don’t remember the beer or food being all that great, but I do remember it had a fantastic space. However, that space might have gone to the shitter once night came and it filled up with douchebags.
I stopped by this relatively small microbrewery for lunch and to take in a few games of the NCAA basketball tournament while waiting for my ride down to Birmingham. The brewpub is attached to Louisville Slugger Stadium, where I believe a AAA ball club plays, which is very cool. Plenty of plasma screens and square older televisions are peppered throughout the place, although they don’t seem to have satellite coverage to take full use of the many televisions. Decent décor of artistic renderings of brews, hops, barley, etc. Limited seating both at the bar and in the dining area. I’d hate to see how busy this place gets before, during or after a game or event.
I had my first Kentucky Hot Brown, which was delicious, although slightly overpowered by the heavy cream sauce applied liberally to the open-faced turkey sandwich. The bread and turkey were lost although the tomatoes and (mmmm) bacon still provided notes of contrast to the rich sauce. Decently sized menu with plenty of options. Not bad, but not great either.
They had seven or eight of their own brews on tap the day I went, most were quite good, and a few were exceptional. The Saint Hildegard Helles was surprisingly sweet and light bodied—an excellent session beer. The Pale and ESB were decent, but nothing to write home about. Their Bourbon Barrel Imperial Stout was deceptively sweet and complex, and very strong. I would have had a pint of this, or their Roseberry Cask ale (also very strong and sweet but very good) if I didn’t have to drive right afterwards. Instead, I went for the Blacksmith Porter, which was excellently crafted, medium-bodied, complex, and medium-bodied—exactly what I expect a porter to be. That being said, the real star of this brewpub is the She-Devil Pale. They only had enough to give me a taster, otherwise I would have had a pint of this. Extremely well-balanced malty body with a good amount of hops.