Big Grove-Des Moines

cdface

Well-Known Member
Oct 28, 2014
3,975
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Behind Enemy Lines (IC)
The local competition is pretty good right now. And it is truly local. Big Grove's initial impact will likely be to draw away from the others, not bring new customers into the market.

The Iowa City Big Grove absolutely
brought new customers to the market with the quality of the food and the overall experience. But they were the first place like that in town. I don't know how the brew pubs in Des Moines compare.

I will say that top to bottom I would pick Big Grove's beer selection over the likes of Confluence and Exile, as much as I like some of their individual beers.
 
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baller21

Well-Known Member
Mar 15, 2009
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Mistress Brewing has some of the worst beer out there and has survived somehow...

With a worse location than Kinship too. There’s not much competition in Ankeny though, Firetrucker doesn’t have great beer either but at least they’re on the bike trail.
 
  • Agree
Reactions: tim_redd

goody2012

Active Member
Aug 28, 2014
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With a worse location than Kinship too. There’s not much competition in Ankeny though, Firetrucker doesn’t have great beer either but at least they’re on the bike trail.
The best craft beer spot in Ankeny now is Uptown Garage Brewing. Name is confusing because they don't make their own, but they have a huge selection from local breweries.
 

dmclone

Well-Known Member
Oct 20, 2006
18,776
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50131
The best craft beer spot in Ankeny now is Uptown Garage Brewing. Name is confusing because they don't make their own, but they have a huge selection from local breweries.
Yes, I just visited for the first time last week and they had a good selection. Trailside Tap is also pretty good.
 

k123

Well-Known Member
Sep 14, 2011
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Iowa
I've never had Mistress beer, but anytime I see a business leaning on sexual references as their brand/gimmick, I cringe and avoid.

I agree, I get there is also a joke that "home brewing is the other woman", but each kind is based on cheeky wink at adultery, etc. I'll admit to being a square but I'd rather not drive down street/aisle of "Old Dirty Bastard" this and "Big A$$ Ales/Fans/Tires" that, etc.
 

k123

Well-Known Member
Sep 14, 2011
1,094
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Iowa
I think with the Krause $ behind them, good location, plans for a legit non-'why bother?' patio, and "big out of the gate" size (instead of trying to growing and move in phases), they will really storm this area. Like Surly in Minneapolis - big indoor/outdoor draw.

Some (surprisingly good lately, at least with local/development stories) articles in Des Moines Register with good details:

1 - https://www.desmoinesregister.com/s...h-street-krause-ragbrai-food-beer/7879956002/

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2 - (subscription only)

It's an initial step in a much larger plan — one that seeks to transform the western end of downtown. The project would stretch from the Dico Superfund site south of Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway across the Western Gateway to the long-empty Crescent Chevrolet dealership on the southern edge of Sherman Hill, where Big Grove will become a signature tenant.

If fully realized, the $550 million, 15-year plan would include a pro soccer stadium, an expansive plaza, an entertainment venue, restaurants, a grocery store, more than 800 apartments, shopping, offices and two hotels. And, of course, the popular microbrewery from eastern Iowa, where it has tap rooms and restaurants in Solon and Iowa City.
...

Staying true to the original structure, Big Grove will incorporate elements of the Crescent Chevrolet business into its design, including large windows that tilt into awnings when ajar and a garage door on the north side of the building. Big Grove is working with Slingshot Architecture to customize the design.

The Iowa City taproom features a massive patio space with room for events and concerts and a children’s play area, and the Des Moines plan likewise calls for an expansive outdoor space. A 12,000 to 14,000-square foot patio will wrap around the south and east sides of the building, and, if approved, Linden Street will be removed to accommodate the patio space. A customer parking lot will be available on the north side of the building.

The new taproom also will import a hybrid style of service that evolved through trial and error in Iowa City: The taproom and areas of the patio are served by waitstaff, but a portion of the patio is considered self-service and customers order from the bar.

“It creates more of a free-for-all, a choose-your-own adventure, if you will,” said Danny Standley, managing partner of the Iowa City taproom.

3 - (Also subscriber, argument for more breweries)
 
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cyfanatic

Well-Known Member
Oct 18, 2006
5,071
930
113
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
I love their location in IC, it may be the best place in Iowa. Their location in Solan sucked the one time I was there.

The IC location is unique and cool! The Solon location serves/feels like more of a date/out-for-supper type crowd. Both very good IMO but certainly different from one another.
 

JP4CY

Plaque + alternates = down in the ladies room
Dec 19, 2008
35,384
31,367
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Testifying
The best craft beer spot in Ankeny now is Uptown Garage Brewing. Name is confusing because they don't make their own, but they have a huge selection from local breweries.
Just a FYI Uptown is tied to Reclaimed. Cool place.
 
  • Informative
Reactions: MJ29

baller21

Well-Known Member
Mar 15, 2009
4,050
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They also had some good happy hour specials. Like a free slice of pizza with each beer.

This used to be my go-to happy hour when I lived in Ankeny because I could get a pint of Axeman and a slice for like $4.
 

Cycsk

Well-Known Member
Aug 17, 2009
22,845
8,559
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The Iowa City Big Grove absolutely
brought new customers to the market with the quality of the food and the overall experience. But they were the first place like that in town.


Indeed, that's my point. Others have already stepped into the pioneering role in Des Moines. I prefer to honor them, particularly as they aren't resting on their laurels. They are working hard to crank out more and better stuff.
 

baller21

Well-Known Member
Mar 15, 2009
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I just don’t understand how some people think that Big Grove coming to DM is a bad thing. They are a big name brewer in Iowa and big names drive tourism. Some of the not so good breweries in DM may feel it but that’s only because BG will be kicking their ass in quality and taste. Confluence, Lua, Barntown, 515 won’t be negatively affected because they already have a loyal following. Bottom line is more good beer available in DM which is great for beer lovers.
 

sleestakCy

Active Member
Aug 2, 2013
128
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28
We went to Big Grove in IC weekly for the first few years it was open. Rarely go any more. Still like the beer but the food has really gone down in quality. We've grown a bit tired of the vibe also.

We really enjoy sitting and walking around outside at Alluvial when in Ames.
 

ShortBus

Member
Jul 16, 2010
90
36
18
Ankeny
I disagree. If the competition is that great than how do you explain breweries like Fox and Twisted Vine still being open? And if people really like Big Groves beer and live closer to Des Moines than their other locations than they’ll come here, especially since they said they’ll be doing a lot more draft only experimental stuff in DM.
While I agree with the opinion of the quality of Fox and others on this thread (especially Mistress), Twisted Vine brews some terrific beers.
 

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