Monnik Beer Co Opening – Review

IMG_4919 So much anticipation – Monnik Beer Company has been teasing us for years. Last night was the night! It really opened. Brian Holton, Ian Luijk, Meghan Levins, and Scott Hand no longer have to answer the question – “when are you going to open?” The time is now!

When Kelly and I arrived – about 7:30 there was a full house and a wait.

I did not mind the wait – I expected an eager crowd. We ordered beers at the bar, which was crowded two people deep. With beers in hand we waited for a table in the anteroom beside the bar. Kelly had the Pale Ale – tea-like and well balanced. I had the IPA – so juicy and citrusy. I foresee this being a regular in my IPA love circle.

We were seated even before our quoted wait time. The tables are nicely spaced and I did not feel crowded or claustrophobic. I appreciated the numerous vegetarian options among the menu offerings. We ordered the beer cheese with spent grain bread. Wow, I could eat that all night – no entrée needed! The bread is griddle/pan fried and has a nice chewy texture, almost like warm bagel slices. The cheese is flavorful but not too rich. Very tasty.

I wanted to try the roasted root vegetable pie but they were already out, maybe next time. We ordered the Kalette salad and curry baked beans over toast. Both were delicious. I have never had baby kale stalks/bunches like this – seared and served with pumpkin seeds and golden raisins tossed with a creamy mustard vinaigrette. The curry baked beans reminded me of a favorite meal while in the UK – a full English breakfast. Tender beans in a savory tomato sauce and curry spices served on soda bread toast. An elegant spin on a working class dish.

The faintly chocolate and nut-like King George brown ale went very well with the curry beans. I also had the Spacecataz, a brettanomyces saison, which was really interesting. We wanted to try all of the house-brewed beers but we had to pace ourselves and will gladly return for more. Everything we was top notch.

I noted and appreciated the décor. The main dining area has retained the layout of the Zeppelin Café that inhabited this building before Monnik purchased the property several years ago. The remodel has modernized the space – but with a comfortable pub feeling. There are repurposed materials throughout. Even one of the staff has been repurposed! I recognized Mark from the old Zeppelin Café.

Black subway tiles behind the bar give it a clean, sophisticated look and a variety of hanging Edison bulbs give the interior a warm glow. The tabletops and railing appear to be made of maple bowling alley floors. The far wall was decorated with old pressed tin ceiling panels. I did not see the patio or upstairs on this inaugural visit. More reasons to return, right?

I went to Monnik opening night expecting some stumbles or hiccups but the staff was great, the food was great and most importantly the beer was great. It is fantastic for Germantown to have such a high caliber brewpub serving artisan food and beer within walking distance of so many of us lucky folks! Welcome to the neighborhood Monnik.

Monnik Beer Company is located at 1036 E Burnett Ave, Louisville, KY 40217

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