I’d only been to ABV once before and it was just great – the food was amazing and the mead I’d had from the tap was absolutely delicious! The first time I’d been there I’d had a problem finding it and this time I’d also had a tough time finding it – the exterior signage is almost nonexistent and truthfully the parking is almost always packed – it’s worth it though. Once you enter the nondescript doorway it’s like entering wonderland – everything seems brighter and more inviting.
Luckily I was visiting during a lull – it was around two-thirty in the afternoon and I’d just gotten off work, so there was a nice spot near the door and I was able to get out of the heat and inside pretty quickly. Just inside there is a counter where customers can sit and chat and there is a big counter at the bar where customers can order and get service at a regular bar area. There were a few empty tables and I was quickly shown to a nice spot. One of my favorite things about ABV is the esthetic – on the outside it’s a pretty unassuming place in what I’d call an industrial park. Inside it’s a comfortable atmosphere with dim lighting, dark wood, lots of taps of cool beverages, great food, everything necessary for wonderful memories. The first thing you’ll see after getting inside and while being shown to your table is the enormous glass door fridges lining the walls along the south-east and north-east walls (along the right and straight ahead when entering).
There are also deceptively comfortable tables and chairs for visitors to relax upon. My favorite spot is a long bench. One of the simpler-but nicer visual aspects is the hanging lights strung across the width of the room. It adds to the ambiance and makes the atmosphere feel much more intimate and personal. As the title of the establishment says it’s a beer and other kinds of libations haven, so the rows and rows of cool and delicious drinks beckoning customers from the shelves make decisions difficult, though one can always be certain of tasty goodness.
Once I got seated I took another look around. The table next to me had quite a few seats and had a beautiful patina. It had enough seating for at least seven people. The establishment itself looked like it could have at least forty or fifty customers at the same time.
I decided since it was after work to take a look at the tap menu – which was posted above the numerous taps on several digital screens. Now, one thing about me – I’m not a huge beer drinker, but having said that, I do appreciate a good Amber and I’m a sucker for most meads. Luckily at ABV there is a large variety of choices. I’ve never been to a place that has mead on tap, and asked about that, so thought I’d better try that.
I got my mead pretty quickly and it was absolutely delicious!! Just as good as I had hoped. If you’ve never tried mead I can absolutely recommend trying it sometime. This one I had at ABV was light and cool – the perfect answer for a warm day. Just what I was hoping for!! Next, since I’d skipped lunch, as I knew I’d be hitting ABV I perused the menu. Since I’d been here once before I knew the menu was full of delicious items, and it was simply a matter of deciding what scrumptious thing to try today. I think the last time I was here I’d had the beer cheese pretzel to start with, which was awesome. I was going to forego an appetizer today, trying to avoid too much, you understand. I’d also tried an Elk Burger then, so needed to get something new (by the way the elk burger was amazing!!!).
I decided to try a new one – the “fiddy-fiddy” burger, I’ll admit I ordered it without peppadews, which turned out (after I asked) to be some type of sweet pepper – and fries. The combination sounded just wonderful – without the peppers that is. One more thing to keep in mind is that the specials at ABV change somewhat frequently, so if there is something that strikes your fancy, be sure to try it while you’re there, it may not be there when you visit again.
My burger and fries arrived and they were just as delicious as I was hoping just wonderful!!! Super tasty. Very happy with the combination – even the chips on top added to the flavor and texture of the meal. One note – the fries at ABV are absolutely fantastic, if you’re smart you’ll order them and just stick with regular fries and enjoy them, they are just marvelous.
Overall ABV deserves five Heywillamettes due to their excellent selection of cool beverages, great ambiance, and fantastic menu and large selection of taps and brews. I can definitely recommend you all try them out and I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.