Venice Ale House
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- 84%Nightlife Lovers
Member Reviews (7)
- Venice Ale HouseCommunity ManagerMember ofLocal CultureBudget TravelersFoodies+ 4Oct 21, 2013
The Venice ale house has a huge selection of beers. This beach front Resturaunt also has phenomenal burgers and sandwiches. One of my favorites is the grilled cheese and tomato soup!
- Venice Ale HouseOct 17, 2013
I rarely make it out to Venice but when I do I'm always reminded at how different the vibe is out there - and how that translates to restaurant service. Our waitress wasn't terrible just...not there. She gave off some serious I'm-too-cool-for-you attitude and never checked on us between ordering and dropping off the check. I will say, though, the food was good: we had a creamy tomato bisque with some amazing crusty sourdough; medium burger on a whole weat bun, grilled veggie tacos, crunchy green beans in a lemon dressing, and guac and chips. All of it was super healthy, organic and fresh. Unfortunately the long wait for a table, crazy people screaming on the boardwalk next to us, and detached waitress kind of soured our experience.
- Venice Ale HouseJul 04, 2012
This could have been the most forgettable consumer experience of all time and I wouldn't have noticed. Actually, I did notice, and from a service aspect, while it wasn't all bad, it wasn't the best. Just as at San Francisco's Show Dogs a couple of nights previous, there was a discernible lack of attention to detail here, a degree of disorganisation and mild nonchalance that tested your faith as to whether, had the Venice Ale House been much busier, the whole thing mightn't have fallen apart. The point is that I really couldn't give a shit. I'm in California.
She was just a bit green, our server, and not terribly smart. And that's ok. I felt sorry for her, as it goes, particularly when the stress of dealing with two enquiries at once caused her to start dropping things. But it doesn't look good when, shortly after having your order taken, someone else comes back to ask not only if, but what, you've ordered. What we'd ordered were two Medium/Rare Grass Fed & Finished Beef Burgers, each with Aged Raw Cheddar and Caramelized Onions ($12 inc. the extras), and one Free Range Chicken, Goat's Cheese and Avocado sourdough sandwich($11). What we initially got were the two burgers with Cheese, Onions and Mushrooms, and a small complimentary glass of Malbec to account for K's course having been farmed out to another table. Still, we were way too involved to be unduly distracted/disappointed and, once we'd all been furnished with food, none of us left much. What was distracting was the guy across the street dressed as a tree, dodging the shirtless show-offs who would intermittently skate by, and in particular the manoeuvre that saw him contort himself and his stilts into the back of a waiting VW.
I'm not sure, you know, going by the extent to which these service standards paled in comparison to those experienced on the east coast recently, that the situation in regard to tipping here shouldn't be subject to a minor review. It ain't enough just to turn up, fuck up, smile, and expect to cream off at least 20%. The industry pay structure, presumably, is designed so as to encourage the best out of its players from the point of view that if they put in, they'll get out what's coming. Achieve the appropriate balance between fun AND competent and the system in place will ensure they are rewarded accordingly. Anything short of that, such as at Show Dogs, which we left without knowing for sure each of us hadn't taken delivery of the other's sandwich, should be acknowledged precisely in terms of what it is; a relative shambles. In the UK you'd leave nothing. Here, anything less than 15% to a waiter/waitress is greeted with the incredulity of someone who's been kicked in the crotch by a perfect stranger. But it'd serve (ironically), less as a pat on the head to someone who's perceived otherwise to be underpaid, and more as an indicator toward the quality of experience. Which has to be the point.
The beer, around which Venice Ale House bases its offer, is sourced entirely from western states. As an amber man, I began with a Fat Tire from Fort Collins, Colorado. K had a porter, a Black Butte from Deschutes brewery in Oregon which I also tried, but not before going with one of the same brewery's Green Lakes. I tend to prefer the darker US brews. I find the sweeter varieties more palatable at the temperature at which they're served, and also, quite predictably, the hops in an amber ale tend to be better balanced. I'm also bored with being twatted across the tongue with IPA's so dry and bitter it's almost worth them coming with a water chaser. For the record, Fuchs, who'd been dancing to the atmosphere this whole time, enjoyed a jam jar of juice and later a protractedly produced Hot Chocolate.
A feature of the VAH offer, true to where they are, is a four or six glass sampler or 'Skate' of beer, a skateboard deck customized to hold a selection of randomly or handpicked 40z pours as a means to introduce you to the range available. I'd probably have gone for this but for the fact we were well into pints by now. Another is how sociable their patrons would appear. I shared a visit to the bathroom with Mark from Georgia. Which isn't to imply anything untoward went down in there, rather that, for future reference, 'are you just going in there to pee?' is all that needs to be asked to hurry matters along when there's a queue forming and there's only one John.
As I say, this being California, you have to try harder than the VAH did to dampen my spirits. Which isn't to say, at the same time, that all objectivity should go out the window. However the Hymnal's founded on principles that dictate even the most miserable treatment, where there's entertainment to be had, can warrant a return visit. From a professional angle there was plenty to improve on here. From that of a consumer, given the range and quality of wet product, of the outlook and the company, it could have been a lot worse.
- Venice Ale HouseJul 04, 2012
Right on the boardwalk in Venice finally some real California dreaming! Venice Ale House is our hood's new awesome local but done Cali style- all local wines and beers and the food is farmer's market fresh. No crisp packets here though many, many Brits. The burger rocks and for the meatless eaters, a comfy grilled cheese with homemade tomato and basil soup. Spoon, the owner doesn't spare an expense on the quality of your food or drink and the crowd in this little spot is a good one.