Horse Thief Hollow Brewing Company
One more meal on our short trip home and of course, I’m going to pick a brewery.
Saturday night, J, L and I spent the evening with one of J’s friends from high school. They have a four-year-old L and play with and her husband is a craft beer guy. He has “stashes” all throughout his house that he cellars some beers and stockpiles some for trades. Lucky for me, I sort of talked him in to sharing a Heady Topper with me and I shared a Kalamazoo IPA with him. Win-win in my book.
During the course of the evening, he asked me if I had been to a fairly new brewery in Beverly. I had heard of it, but never been there. My in-laws had and when I suggested it for lunch on Sunday afternoon before driving back to Kalamazoo, no one had any objections.
Horse Thief Hollow is on Western Avenue between 104th and 105th Streets in Chicago’s Beverly Neighborhood. The brewery is a store front on a very busy street so parking can be a little tough during peak hours, but we were lucky enough to be there on a slow Sunday afternoon. There was parking available in a small lot right next to the building.
There’s an interesting story on the website about how the brewery took it’s name. Apparently, that part of Chicago was sort of the center of a black market for horses back in the 1850′s.
The building Horse Thief Hollow now occupies, I’m told, used to be a carpet store, so it was a complete redesign when they moved in. The large, open space sports a large bar with several taps of in house brewed beers as well as several regional craft brews.
Right inside the door is a hostess station. We were met right away and shown to a table in the back of the space near the kitchen and fermentation tanks that are out in the open. We all took turns looking over the beer menu while our waitress grabbed a high chair for L.
As is the case many times at small breweries on Sunday, they were out of quite a bit of stuff. I originally asked for the Annexation Ale (IPA), but was told they were out. I ordered the 6410. Untappd calls it an American Pale Wheat Ale. I believe their menu called it a hefeweizen. Whatever you want to call it, it was pretty tasty. Light, crisp, and refreshing. Not too hoppy, but it did pack a lot of flavor. My Mother-In-Law also ordered this beer.
J tried to order a Red Streak Cider, but was originally told they were out of it. They offered a couple other fruity beers and she settled on the Peche Mel’ Scaldis. After ordering that, they realized that there wasn’t enough left in the keg for a full drink, so they offered her something else on the house. A few minutes later, the poor waitress came back again and said they found a keg of the Red Streak Cider and she’d bring J one of those once they got it tapped.
J’s step-dad had a little less drama with drinks as he ordered a Miller Lite in a bottle. He was the only one that didn’t have to come with a Plan B….at least for drinks.
J’s friend’s husband told me the beer at Horse Thief Hollow was good, but the food was fantastic. The menu is pretty standard pub fare plus house smoked BBQ. I didn’t have much of a decision to make. They have a Grass Fed Burger that comes with choice of cheese. I ordered it with bleu cheese and the meat done medium. The juicy, flavorful half pound of grass feed beef from a farm in Roanoke, IN came out with a slightly pink and juicy center and a great flame kissed crust. There’s a whole list of sides to choose from, but I stuck to fries. This turned out to be a pretty outstanding burger and fry combo. All fresh. All cooked perfectly. All delicious.
J surprised no one and ordered the pulled pork sandwich. The pork shoulder is smoked in house with a combo of hickory and apple wood smoke. The large portion of meat comes piled on a sturdy bun with choice of sauce. At first, I told her to go with the 18th Rebellion based Carolina que sauce which is a little more vinegary than she likes. When the waitress came by, she asked if she could have a small cup of the other two just to try it. Turns out, she loved the 773 Stout-based sauce which was thick and sweet. She didn’t need a whole lot of sauce because the meat was so smokey and tender on it’s own, but she poured the small cup of the stout based sauce on top of the Carolina style sauce. J also chose fries as her side.
J’s step-dad tried to order the Grouper Tacos, but that was something else they were out of. Instead, he went with J’s mom and ordered the Cuban. Their spin on this classic sandwich starts with toasted French bread that is then stuffed with smoked turkey, pork shoulder, Grueyere, mustard, and pickles. Both of them seemed to enjoy the sandwich and both took half home for later. J’s mom had ordered the Cuban last time they were at Horse Thief Hollow and liked it so much she decided to stick with it on this trip. For their sides, J’s mom got sweet potato fries while her step-dad stuck to the regular fries.
We ordered L Macaroni and Cheese, but all she really wanted was fries from Grandpa. No need to waste what she didn’t eat. I grabbed the bowl of twisty noodles that were covered in a thick, creamy cheese sauce and topped with scallions. I’m kind of surprised that L didn’t like it because it was very good.
Our bill was a little under $60 and after a few hiccups due mostly to us dining on a Sunday afternoon, it actually turned in to a very tasty meal.
Horse Thief Hollow is a great brewpub on Chicago’s south side. The craft beer scene in Chicago is starting to blow up and people in the city are starting to appreciate craft beers. Horse Thief Hollow is in a unique position on the south side of town offering tasty beers along with a great food menu.