Pittsburgh, PA Edition: Church Brew Works

By Candace Nelson - 7:39 PM

Church Brew WorksI'm not quite sure if there's a better way to get my attention than creating a brewery in a church.

Church Brew WorksIt's kinda edgy and combines two things I enjoy: craft beer and theology. Kinda.

Tony and I were at a conference in Pittsburgh, so, of course, we used it as an opportunity to try a new restaurant.

Church Brew Works is located on Liberty Avenue (just down the road from my father's former workplace). The brewing is done, literally, in the alter of the restored Roman Catholic church.

Their menu is kind of all over the place, from pierogies and cheesesteak to steamed mussels and buffalo meatloaf. The last one was interesting because I haven't seen it anywhere else. Plus it looked to be one of their specials.

Church Brew WorksChurch Brew WorksChurch Brew Works

But first - an appetizer. They have "untraditional pierogies" as a daily special with different fillings. That day was chicken and black bean pierogi with a curry BBQ sauce.

Church Brew Works

It was good. It was different. The sauce was a little sweet, which was nice with the savory filling.

The meatloaf was also different, but I appreciated it. It came with rosemary redskin potato croquettes, braised greens, applewood smoked bacon, garlic chips and roasted tomato demi-glace.

Church Brew Works

The texture was a bit more ... can I say slimey? than maybe beef. But that wasn't necessarily bad. The flavor was OK. Nothing too special. Combined with some of the garlic chips, it was better. That flavor had to be derived from the additions - not within the meat itself. The fried potato pancake was great, and the greens were a bit bitter so combining a bite with all three flavors made for a decent meal.

We also had a beer sampler. Their main beers were a Celestial Gold (light later), Pipe Organ Pale Ale (English pale ale) and Pious Monk Dunkel (Munich-style dark lager) plus some rotating beers. Overall, I felt the beers were OK. Some pretty good, some interesting, some a little less pleasant. But definitely a good bit to choose from.

Church Brew Works

An interesting concept, I think, that's maybe not totally followed through with the menu. The beer was a highlight.

Grade: B
Church Brew Works on Urbanspoon

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