I will be interested to see what the comments are in a few months. But when folks take the time to write reviews, and they are not so good, maybe the owners will take note and make some immediate changes. That place has been a number of restaurants in the past, and all have failed. Unless you have something that is unique and affordable, folks will go once, and then return to their original haunts. The parking has always been a problem down there, and won't improve....ever. Where does the staff park? And if you get a reputation of being overpriced, that is an immediate stab in the heart. I'm going to try it out this weekend, and will write a review of the experience. I am looking forward to seeing how these guys have tried to be different.
Filthy, tasteless, vulgar.
Easy does it...
Do in it easy...?
I will stick with Arizonas
I went to the Biergarten on a Saturday for lunch. I ordered the Pimento cheese roll appetizer (recommended by the server), Pork Schnitzel, tried two different beers, and my dining companion had sweet tea and a salad. The pimento cheese rolls lacked any discernible taste other than 'gooey cheese', could have been Velveeta for all I know. The pork schnitzel was as tough as shoe leather and tasted about the same as one would expect shoe leather to taste. Proper schnitzel, when prepared correctly, has been pounded thin, and could basically be cut with a fork. This was certainly not true of the Biergarten's version which was a carved piece of meat, that was then egg-battered and dredged through flour. Thankfully we passed on the 'beer card'. $50 for lunch that was not very tasty? I do not think so. My lasting impression is that if you desire a large space to hang out and drink beer, this is probably a good option, but I would skip on the food. Parking, as mentioned in several others post is a major problem.
Bay Street Biergarten Review
If you're looking for a great selection of craft beers (mostly offered directly at the bar) or just want a large venue for socializing with a group of friends, this is a great spot. The table taps can be a little difficult to get to when crowded, but still a nice addition that bings a different style of service Charleston has been missing out on. With regards to food, there is pretty decent menu, but quite honestly most people go here for the beer selection, so its generally what you expect (the giant bowl of tattertots with cheese and gravy still always fun at any age). The staff has been friendly and accommodating as well.
The only issue I see is with parking around the area can be a llittle bit sketchy, since the lot always get full. However there is a giant lot that is open on the port terminal road that runs parallel to E. Bay.
The bier card was a golden opportunity to set BSB apart from the pool of comparable establishments. If anything, that should have been focused on for success only. Otherwise when you come down to saying that outside of the bier card, you are just like everywhere else, that really hurts in promoting your brand. If you are just like everywhere else, why don't I just go everywhere else?
I will cut some slack on the servers and their lack of knowledge since that takes time for most new places to overcome. I may try BSB again in a couple of months to see if they have improved. But if they are either no different or if what makes them different is not better, then I don't expect this to be a true and successful biergarten for the many in Charleston who are well-versed in beer.
We want to show some love to Bay Street Biergarten as they showed us love when allowing Bison Branding to vinyl wrap their truck.
I'll have to agree with the naysayers—I think the self-service aspect is a novelty that may be fun to play with once or twice, but I wouldn't be shocked if they start to gather dust once the initial wave of interest dies down a bit. I'd recommend The Craftsmen on Cumberland St. if you're looking for a wide selection and don't want to be punished for not wanting to play bartender. That said, brunch chicken waffles are outstanding and it's a good spot to catch a game.
General FYI: For those of you that aren't a fan of the bier card and/or don't want to learn how to use it, Bay Street has all of the amenities of a normal restaurant/bar. All of the beers at the the tables are in fact available behind the bar. The only beers that require a bier card purchase are those at the craft beer tasting wall (which consists of 6 rotating unique and harder to find craft beers). Additionally, the non-communal tap tables do not require a card and are "activated" by a server. The staff is always eager to help those that want to learn how the system works and learn how to pour their own beer. The card and tap tables are meant to be an educational tool but it is obviously not for everyone. For those that aren't interested in the tap system, there is food, liquor, wine and a huge beer selection that you can easily order the "old fashioned way." PS: the "get a life" comment was not an inside job... but this is :) We hope this clears up some confusion. Prost!
It's frustrating because if you want to order a beer from the taps throughout the restaurant you have to use a prepaid card which charges you by the oz even if only foam comes out. Also hard to view the selection of taps when the restaurant is busy also feels like you're intruding on other customers dinner if you want to go get a specific beer. Then if you want to order from the bar or waitress you only have 13 beer options total. I see what they were trying to do but didn't quite enjoy the experience.
I enjoyed Bay Street Biergarten's beer selection but have to agree with the others that the prepaid card is a scam. Watch out for the free pour, the get you by charging you for half of a glass of head each time a keg is changed. I paid 60$ for a card and was denied my Bombay Sapphire gin martini at the bar, which is unacceptable. And also, what's the deal with the community tables and the fact that one person has to pick up the whole tab? That's not how a community table operates. I like how the poster 'easydoesit' gives the restaurant 5 stars in order to bash a fellow reviewer. That smells of an inside job. Hilarious! In other news, the beef jerky was great!
I agree with the previous commenter about the prepaid cards. For such a vast selection of beer, why am I only limited to 13 options when there is probably 100 other drinks they can make behind the bar. If I’m going to pay you $40 without having a single drink, I’d appreciate you giving me a heads up next time.
Best Gullah food around. All the rice dishes are great, especially the gullah rice. Fried chicken almost as good as my mommas.
How can you review a place if you didn't eat there, didn't mention the beer/cocktails and your only criticism is that you can't use the prepaid car at the bar?
Get a life.
I used to frequent the Boat House in this location and have been to Bay Street one time. I chose a Thursday night that was roughly 2 weeks after opening. It was to capacity at 930p, one in, one out. The inside is very nice, they did a great job with the existing space and built an amazing outdoor patio. I didn't get a chance to order any food this time so i can't speak to that.
I think the pre-paid cards/tap-wall is a novelty that will soon fade. The deal-breaker for me is the fact that I cannot use my prepaid card at the bar. I intend to go back for a food sampling.
Bear Down! In town for business, this Chicago style sports bar is a must see!
Wonderful space for an event. Went to a Guerrilla Cuisine dinner there a couple of weeks ago and was surprised at how pretty the distillery hardware looks with the right lighting and how warm and comfortable the space was - especially for a warehouse and work site, at that (the bathrooms are a literally shining example). A few strategically placed pieces of art (big works well) and beautifully set tables were all that was needed to transform what would be a cavernous area in the back into a really cool, even elegant, venue. I know others worked hard to make that transformation and I WAS under the influence of some fabulous food, but the end result of GC & others' efforts highlighted the possibilities of the distillery space itself. The Striped Pig people proved very hospitable folks, dedicated to their craft and eager to share the process & results with willing fans. Sampled some powerful but oddly delicious moonshine & a more finished product. It is obvious that a great deal of thought went into making this space a welcoming place to hang out, whether for an event or just a visit.
Oh Dear lord
It' quite interesting how at midnight on November 6th your "hottest bartender" was down 300 votes yet still seemed to win. Good to know the winner of Charleston's hottest bartender is predetermined.
Not worth the money, won't be back.
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