I know what you are thinking. Well maybe… It depends how familiar you are with Iowa and specifically Kalona. If you are…Then you are thinking,” Why waste a date night at the Kalona Brewery?” The thought crossed our minds as well moments before executing the plan. However, we decided that plans are plans for a reason. And every time we decided to change our plans at the last minute, we have usually been disappointed.
It only just opened up. 2012 to be exact. We managed to arrive between lunch and dinner. which means there was no food. I was prepared for it to be full of a bunch of Drunken Duck hunters watching sports on Big screen TV’s, But luckily it was not one of those places.
It was more like a fine wine tasting experience. Complete with a cheese plate and fried chicken wings dipped in teriyaki with Blue Cheese sauce on the side. Even though I’m not a fan of Blue Cheese anything, This stuff was pretty good.
Cheryl approves of all of them! I was even impressed with the “hopped Up” beer. I still can’t make up my mind if I liked it or not. It was bitter..but more in line with Grapefruit. I actually LIKE grapefruit, but not usually to drink for a refreshment. I believe the taste would temper down with the right food. As it was, Fried Chicken was possibly not the best fried food for that beer. More experimentation is required before I pass my final verdict.
Overall, I was pleasantly surprised at the outcome. We bought two rounds of sample beers are tried them all. We also sprung for the Cheese plate and chicken wings and it all was wonderful. For under $35! The only complaint I would have is that they did not give us any napkins to wipe our hands with. Napkins are usually everywhere. It just meant I had to lick my fingers in public.
The atmosphere was similar to one of those old refurbished buildings that they end up showing off the exposed beams instead of hiding them A nice modern “rustic” touch. I’m not sure what they clientele would be in the evening, but there was at least one baby there during “late lunch” Personally I can’t think of any reason to bring a baby into a bar. ( Or ANYWHERE in public that is not a school) But I’m sure that is more of a reflection of Kalona and the Yuppies that still want to do “adult things” and don’t want to let a Baby put an end to that lifestyle. ( we see them in Panera all the time!)
Aside from the Old men gathering in the bathroom, I thought the atmosphere was normal. Well, Normal for me! Most bars are “Normally” Loud, offensive and chaotic. This one was more on par with a coffee bar. With Jazzy tunes and a warm dim lighting. Think relaxing instead of sensory overload!.
Next weeks Date night will be somewhere new, but the Kalona Brewery was a place I would not mind visiting again. We shall see when the next opportunity presents itself.