i love trying new restaurants and bars, and i love it even more when someone else suggests a new place to go. my husband and i joined some friends at The Old Bakery Beer Company in Alton yesterday, and we loved it.
the first time i had Old Bakery Beer, i wasn’t impressed. this was at last year’s Fest-of-Ale at the Missouri Botanical Gardens. i don’t remember if it was the selection that i didn’t like or the flavor — it doesn’t matter because i like Old Bakery now.
unfortunately, i’m the person who finds one beer they like and sticks to it. i’ll try other people’s beer, but i don’t like trying a bunch of different things during a visit. i ordered the Golden Oat, which is a smooth wheat beer with slight floral and fruit notes. i also tried of my husband’s beers, the Light Roast, which is a golden ale brewed with Kaldi’s coffee for a slightly roasted taste.
the food was really good too. we got an order of pretzels and beer cheese to share — if you ever see these on a brewery’s menu, you need to order them. they’re a must. i had The Murray — smoked turkey, ham, bacon, cheddar cheese and honey mustard on sourdough bread — and a side Caesar salad. everything was really tasty, but the salad was a bit overdressed (just how i like it).
the real showstopper at Old Bakery is the space itself. it’s in the old Colonial Bakery along the river, and the owners made an effort to preserve and repurpose many of the original design elements for the brewery. the original subway tile walls are still intact throughout the taproom and restaurant, and the historical artifacts and facts are on display around the space.
my favorite part is the artwork that’s scattered throughout the building. a mural in the restaurant depicts important historical figures in Illinois history, and the chalkboard areas are the perfect spot for an artistic employee to write the daily specials and highlighted beers.
the other awesome thing about Old Bakery is its focus on sustainability. their beer is certified organic and they are local only, from the furniture in the taproom and restaurant to the produce and meats used in their food. you can read more about their sustainability practices here.
Old Bakery’s food menu is about 50% vegetarian, vegan and/or gluten-free, so there’s something for everyone, regardless of allergies or dietary preferences.
if you’re ever in Alton, definitely check out Old Bakery! i’m glad we did.
until next time,