Monday, August 11, 2014

Acadia Cafe Review

With our recent multiple trips down to the University/Seven Corners area for the Minnesota Fringe Festival, Sj and I finally got a chance to try out the Acadia Café.  This place has been around for a while and has a reputation for being a good beer bar.  They even have a sign that proclaims "No Crap On Tap!"  We met some of our friends at the bar, regulars who have told me about the place for a long time.

I liked the look of the outside, with colorful hops painted across the sign, indicating a potentially good beer destination.  Inside, the place looks like a cross between an old English pub and a shady University dive bar.  Tin tackers from local and distant craft breweries vie for attention with old British Isles bar decorations on the walls.  A beautiful, stained glass and mirrored English style section of the bar hosts a dual beer engine for cask beers. 

The stained and sticky beer list was impressive, featuring many local brews by Indeed, Schells, Surly, and many more.  Plenty of craft beers from across the country were present as well, such as Tallgrass, Odell, Lagunitas, and Founders.  They had a bunch of somewhat expensive Belgian ales, and my wife ordered a Liefman's Goudenband that I've never seen on tap anywhere!  I ordered a cask Indeed Day Tripper to take advantage of that wonderful looking beer engine.  I was less than impressed with my pour: too much head and a dirty glass.  I expect cask beers to be cloudy potentially so I wasn't bothered by that part of it.  The next beer I ordered also had streaking inside the glass indicating poor cleaning from the previous user.

This is NOT a clean glass, nor a properly poured pint...

We ordered food from the bar, taking a tap handle mounted on a heavy base as our order indicator back to the table.  I went safe and got fish & chips, Sj got a quesadilla.  The food was decent, but very typical of "bar food".  The fish and fries were tasty, but an unhealthy portion of grease glistened everywhere, including all over the paper lining the basket it came in.  Not haute cuisine, but it would do in a pinch.

The place hosts live music frequently on their small stage, as well as Nintendo Night, and some beer events like Beer & Beast.  We were there in the early evening and didn't catch any special events so I can't speak to those. 

Overall, I think this place was interesting, but not high on my list for food or beer.  I was happy with the beer list, but felt that the unclean glassware and iffy pouring did not do it justice.  I got the impression that this was just a college bar trying to differentiate itself from the other local bars by catering to the craft beer drinking crowd.  This is only one man's opinion from one visit, so don't hunt me down with pitchforks and torches if Acadia is your favorite local!  Given how close it is to Town Hall and Republic, I would much rather head to either of those locales for a pint and dinner. 

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