St. Paul >Restaurants > Great Waters Brewing Company
426 Saint Peter St, Saint Paul, MN | Directions 5510244.9466806 -93.0971126
Neighborhoods: Downtown, Core
Missing Ingredients – Went here after the Ordway expecting a decent dining experience. Service was prompt and non-intrusive. Atmosphere was somewhat on the cold side, but hey, it's a brewpub and the in-house beer was really pretty good. The food on the other hand was mediocre. Ordered the Jambalaya with Penne Pasta, Shrimp and Andouille Sausage. The shrimp was perfectly cooked, juicy and tender, but the pasta was overdone, not al dente, and for some reason, the andouille sausage was missing. After telling our waiter of the missing meat, she must have had to negotiate with the chef to give us a side plate of some sautéed andouille, that finally arrived after our food was half eaten and sufficiently cold. Mistakes happen, but jeez my neez, this is simple stuff! They could have at least suggested returning the entire plate and re-preparing it properly. They never even offered to adjust the bill. I gave them a pass on that, since we choked down the meal anyway. Needless to say, there are too many other good restaurants in MSP to waste our time coming back to this one.
Beware: what you order is not what you get – Decor is a little sparse; service is OK, beer is good. The trouble is the kitchen is scamming you on the food.
Example: I was there last night and ordered the "Philly Style Steak Sandwich". It is described as "Grilled 6 oz sirloin steak topped with ..." and runs $9.95.
What came was a chopped beef sandwich. The beef was low quality stuff chopped fine and (I'm guessing) kept in a broth until someone ladles out a scoop for a sandwich.
I asked the waitress what the deal was. She said "they cook the steak and then chop it".
After I'd paid for my meal I spoke to a rather shifty, unobliging man who said he was the manager. He tried to tell me that "topped with" on the menu should actually be "chopped with", then gave up on that, agreed they weren't serving a "sirloin steak" and offered to "adjust my check". I didn't accept his offer.
I've also eaten the so-called "Pork Back Ribs" there. While they were perfectly fine they were not pork back ribs, but much cheaper spare ribs.
The cask-conditioned beer was good (poured well shy of a pint, though) and the food wasn't bad. It just wasn't the food I'd ordered. I think someone has taken the initiative to "raise margins" by lowering the quality of your food. Buyer beware.
Use Caution – Was in a group of 14 for dinner. Two of us ordered the "Back Ribs" Upon receiving our meal we found they were in fact spareribs. Called this to waitress attention, she referred us to the manager. The manager said he had been there three years, knew nothing about the cuts of meat and had never received a complaint. He gave us a business card so we could e-mail the owner. Did so and have not received a reply. The backribs currently sale for $4.29 per pound while the spareribs are $ 1.69 per pound. A healthy additional profit by using a bait and switch tactic.
Another in the group had the meatloaf which had a consistancy and taste of a mush.
Great Restaurant near the Ordway! – A group of 6 reserved a table here at 6:00 on a Saturday night. The first members of our party arrived about 10-15 minutes early and were seated right away.
Once we all arrived, we had numerous questions about the menu and our server was attentive and accommodating. If she didn't know the answer to a question, she went to ask someone who did. We had excellent service all night long, and I don't think anyone in our party had to ask for a refill all evening.
We ordered chips and salsa as an appetizer. The salsa was spicy, which was NOT mentioned on the menu (this would be my one gripe about the restaurant - it should state on the menu that the salsa is not for most Minnesota palates), so half of our party could not eat it while the other half who could handle spicy food devoured all of it.
We each ordered something different and every single one of us was happy with our choices. We passed mouthfuls of food around the table and everyone was pleased with everything we tried. The meatloaf was well seasoned and very flavorful, and it was a large portion. I ordered the pork tenderloin, which is not something I would traditionally order at a restaurant, but I was extremely pleased. The meat was moist and flavorful and came with an excellent mushroom sauce on top. Two others ordered burgers and were very happy with them. The last two people ordered the London broil (also a big amount of meat and cooked just as ordered) and the duck, which was glazed with a maple flavor and was everything my husband had hoped for.
We had an excellent experience at Great Waters and we WILL be back soon, whether we have an Ordway show to attend or not!
Food was Better than the Service – Met here for happy hour/dinner on a Friday night. My wife and I and another couple. We first sat outside for a couple of beers before dashing inside due to the rain. One thing I'll say first is that the service was weak. Not rude, but just inattentive and no effort. We had to ask what the specials were and even had to have another wait person chase down ours. We could overhear other tables getting great service by other wait persons, I think we just had a dud.
What did work for us was the beer and food. Both were very good. My friend and I had the Jambalaya which did not impress us at first. It looked very plain and boring but we both thought it tasted better than it looked. My wife had the Pollo Caracas which she raved about. The other gal had the walleye which also was excellent.
Side dishes must have come from cheap tubs sold at Rainbow Foods – While the service at this restaurant was excellent... the food was anything but. I ordered the steak sandwich, which was okay... and then paid $1.50 to upgrade from chips to potato salad. It was horrible, I only took a small bite and couldn't eat anymore. It looked like something out of a big bucket that you'd buy at Rainbow Foods for a picnic or something. The coleslaw and mashed potatoes (which my boyfriend had) were equally as awful. The mashed potatoes were dark brown and way too salty. They looked like they had been made at least 10 hours prior to being served to us. VERY DISAPPOINTING.
Great beer and food – I was in town on a business trip with some colleague and we went to the restaurant twice. They have a list of 38 degree beers from a normal tap and the 54 degree list of cask conditioned beers served from hand pumps. I had a cask Oatmeal Stout and a German Alt that both were excellent, all of us enjoyed the beers we ordered. Two of our party got the chicken and sausage jambalaya and thoroughly enjoyed it. The appetizer chicken wings I ordered were a meal itself. One of us ordered ribs which looked and smelled delicious, since only bones were left on the plate that spoke for itself. Of all the dishes ordered over the two nites only one person did not like what they had ordered, a sausage, mushroom and black olive pizza. He said there was not enough meat to his liking and way to many veggies. He told the server and the manager came over asked what was not to his satisfaction, apologized and promptly removed the item from our check. Great customer service, even after paying the bill we sat around another 20 minutes talking and the staff continued to fill our water glasses and asked if we cared for anything else.
Manager Frank has awful customer service – Beer was great, waitress' was very helpful, but Manager Frank makes me want to never come back. Ordered the Pork Tenderloins, outside was charred on the ends and inside was raw. Ate one end cut, which was not raw, but was overly charred. Cut the next tenderloin and saw it was raw on the inside. Asked the waitress for a new tenderloin since the first cut was charred, and the second one was raw. She agreed. Frank, the manager came over to the table to tell inform, in a condescending tone, that the pork was supposed to be that way, and he would put the pork back on the grill for me. He never once apologized, and came to the table a few more times looking to argue with us. The tenderloin came back after what looked like a ten second microwave and still raw tenderloin. The waitress apologized and did a great job of getting the tenderloin cooked to a medium doneness. I asked the waitress for the name of the manager who came over to talk to us, which was Frank. After a few minutes the waitress came back to inform us they would pick up a round of drinks, and my dining companions meal. My companion's meal was the apple and brie chicken sandwich that was dry and had a stale bun. In the restaurant?s defense the sandwich would have been passable, but when I was so rudely treated by Frank, my companion decided to make a point about the sandwich and told Frank that he no longer wanted the sandwich. Mistakes happen, and with out Frank running this restaurant the poorly cooked tenderloin would have been a minor footnote in an otherwise passable dining experience. I have been to this restaurant in the past, and have had ok experiences, although I have never dealt with Frank before. Frank never once apoIogized for the problem, instead trying to engage us how we were wrong in our thinking. I would recommend avoiding this restaurant as long as Frank keeps is argumentative and poor customer service levels.
Suburban chain atmosphere, but the food is ok. – We've eaten here a few times over the last few years. Each time it gets louder and more full of large groups with children. Our recent visit was a Saturday night. We waited 30 minutes for a table and then were seated between two large groups of parents, toddlers and preteens. I love kids but not when I'm out on Saturday night for drinks. Last time for us.
Great wild rice burger...decent beer – Great Waters is good food with good beers. Nothing is really a standout, but they've got a good outdoor patio and decent bar food. They do a good wheat beer in the summer, and the Blonde, which is usually on the menu is a good. Their Apocalypse is high in alcohol content, but is one of their best brews. Vegetarian must-have is their wild rice burger.
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