Mash Tun Brewpub

January 05, 2007

Mash Tun Brewpub

2204 NE Alberta (entrance on 22nd Ave)
(503) 548-4491
googlemaps
get there via trimet
find a bike route
Monday-Friday, 4-midnight
Weekends, noon - midnight

Mash Tun is just a little brewpub, just a little off Alberta, behind Office. It has a nice little bar, a small room, and a nice covered patio which easily doubles the space. In addition to brewing a few house beers, they have a nice, concise selection of craft beers and imports, and they offer food: not the best food, but the sort of stuff that can prolong your drinking.

Now, brewpubs or taverns that offer undistinguished, inconsistent food isn't that unusual, of course—it sadly seems to be the law (with exceptions like Widmer). But how many of them offer vegan options next to their more meaty third-cousins? I can think of only a handful of places, but Mash Tun is one.

On tap, they have 2 house beers, 3 imports, and 7 craft beers. They also have a handful of things in bottles and cans (brother, clap your hands). None of this is terribly cheap: for imperial pints, the house ales are $4, craft beers are $4.25, and imports are $4.50, with non-tap options ranging from $2.25-$4.50.

I haven't been so crazy about their house beers, but they are very drinkable. The tap selections rotate, so there is always something good on. Last night, for example, there were 4 or 5 different craft beers that I would be very happy to drink. Nice!

In recent times, the place has changed up a little bit. You can still smoke at the bar, or outside, but you have to vacate outside by 10. The jukebox is still there. But the pool table has been replaced by table-tables. I don't know about the wi-fi, but I hope it's still there. We got there shortly before 6, and the place was pretty full.

The new food menu is about a month old, and made up of appetizers, a small collections of soups and salads, and pub grub (which means sandwiches). No more of their wildly erratic fish and chips. Appetizers range from $2.75-$7, with all of the usual deep fried subjects. Tots and fries can come cheesy if you like. There's also vegan red lentil puree & tempeh things, and nachos.

They offer house, caesar, spinach, and a roasted beet salad, a soup de jour, and a chili con carne, $2.95-$7. And for sandwiches ($7.50-$10), they have a burger, and a variety of other things that are served on rolls. Vegan options include a vegan burger & a BLATO (fakin-lettuce-avocado-tomato-onion with veganaise), and there's falafel and roasted eggplant for veggies.

We tried to order cheesy tots, but alas, no tots this evening. So we ordered a cheesesteak and a meatball sandwich, both with their hand-cut skinny fries. And both sandwiches were very edible. The cheesesteak had a nice balance of cheese to meat to cooked yellow onion, and came with a side of good, but not great marinara. The meatball sandwich was dosed in both marinara and melted cheese, but the meatballs were plentiful, tender and tasty. Unfortunately, neither of the rolls the sandwiches came on had been toasted, and the fries are soggy and greasy. Why do some taverns insist on hand-cut fries?

So. Nice patio, nice ever-changing selection of beers, and deep-fried appetizers rock... unless they're fries.

Restaurants in NE Portland, Portland, Oregon Brewpubs

Posted at January 05, 2007 * add entry to del.icio.us

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