I really enjoyed the Wrecking Bar. Nice location, pretty inside, good waitstaff, good food, superb beer, to be considered in any “best of” pub list in this town. I came because they honored Atlanta’s own curmudgeon, DING, of Ding’s Beer Blog. DING is a pain to local brewers, at times curt and insensitive, but he’s a sharp guy (author of some well respected books on chemistry) and in general, for things he’ll bother to fight about, has a reasonable point of view. The Wrecking Bar actually made a brew, 3.7% ABV, an English Bitter that because of its low alcohol content, is classed as a session beer (DING’s position on session beers is nicely stated here). This is, as far as I know, the only time a blogger in Atlanta has had a beer named after him. What’s more, it’s a beer worth drinking over and over.
Other than the DING, I had their stout and their porter, both good beers. Both are drinkable and not in the overkill category a lot of brewers seem to aim for these days.
The food? I had a bratwurst, their kraut and a pastrami sandwich. The sandwich was gooey and full of great meat, but ran a little oily. Had the bread been dry I’d have been happier. That said, I’d suggest they have some ambition in terms of their food, I was certainly happy with what I ate. A pastrami has the problem of being a big sandwich with really juicy meat. A number of pubs I eat at have issues making a dry pastrami.
It would be hard to understate the quality of the atmosphere in this bar on a lazy weekend. It comes close to perfection.
It’s very clear this place is aiming to be the best in town. It’s *almost* there. A little more work on the execution of dishes and it will be there, with superior small brews and food to remember. The combination of great beer, some serious food ambition, and a terrific location make this a must stop for any foodie who fancies a pint now and then.
Wrecking Bar Brewpub
292 Moreland Avenue NE
Atlanta, GA 30307
PS – Easy to miss, from the road the Wrecking Bar looks like a Colonial mansion or part of a palatial golf course. The columns of the 18,000 foot structure are easy to dismiss when driving by. But to note, the ground floor is for events. The bar is in the basement, with the entrance on the side. Jon Watson has a fine discussion of how this building was renovated, worth reading.