Welcome to stop #28 on the Brews and Choos project.
Brewery: Half Acre Beer Co., Balmoral Brewery, 2048 W Balmoral Ave., Chicago
Train line: Union Pacific North, Ravenswood (Also CTA Brown Line, Damen)
Time from Chicago: 16 minutes (Zone B)
Distance from station: 1.7 km (1.6 km from CTA)
Half Acre actually operates two locations: its original brewpub on Lincoln Ave., and its newer and much larger brewery/restaurant/beer garden just south of Rosehill Cemetery. Both are on the Brews and Choos list, but the beer garden is open this summer while the Lincoln Brewery only has curb-side pickup.
I'm actually cheating a little. You'll have to walk more than 1,500 meters from the Ravenswood Metra station to get to the Balmoral Brewery, but Half Acre makes excellent beer and you'll have to pass two other taprooms (Empirical and Spiteful) to get here. It's worth the trip—especially if you make a summer afternoon of all three.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, you'll need a reservation that costs $15.45, which they apply to your bill. Also they've temporarily curtailed food service and dogs on the patio.
As for the beer, their Daisy Cutter Pale Ale (5.2%) has remained one of my go-tos for years. Try their other pales and IPAs when you visit; they're all excellent. And see what else they've made that month.
When they don't have a raging pandemic to deal with, they serve good pub food including weekend brunch.
Beer garden? Yes
Dogs OK? Suspended during the pandemic
Serves food? Suspended during the pandemic
Would hang out with a book? Yes
Would hang out with friends? Yes
Would go back? Yes