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Battleship Brewhouse: A MUST for Craft Beer Advocates

I find great comfort in discovering my own little havens, sacred places with an incomprehensible and jarringly beautiful gravitation that pulls me up and out of the deep, dark graves of irrational fear and self doubt that I so often find I have subconsciously dug myself into.

These pieces of personal paradise lead me to a better understanding of who I am at the core of myself. Sometimes I can walk into a bar, a record shop, or even just somewhere in nature and I immediately know that THIS is where I belong. I had a similar experience upon entering Fall River’s Battleship Brewhouse. If you’ve read any of my previous blog entries, you are  probably already aware of the passion that drives me to the experiences and subsequent evaluations of potential candidates for a new sanctuary.

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My prayers for fine craft beer were answered by a simple slogan inscribed on the wall:

 GOT SOME IF YOU NEED IT! BATTLESHIP BREWHOUSE: Fall River’s original craft Beer Bar Est. 2008

After reading their slogan I imagine I looked something like this:

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Pictured: my eager face.

However, if I were to ascribe a facial expression representing my first impression of Battleship Brewhouse, I would have chosen a vastly different stock image of a child’s face from Google.

First Impression:

I pulled into the parking lot of the city’s “Executive Plaza” located at 101 President Avenue, and got a modest first impression of the Brewhouse. It is situated in a shopping plaza between (if my memory serves me well) a nail salon and some kind of juice bar or frozen yogurt shop. I can’t recall an instance in which I arrived at a shopping plaza and thought, “Gee, this going to be an amazingly fun and/or culturally enriching experience that will restore my hope and faith in the human race!” I usually think something more akin to “Well, I hope I don’t see too many overwhelmed mothers employing tragically confused parenting tactics on their hyperactive, McDonald’s crazed, candy obsessed spawn.” A little bit dark? Perhaps, however I really do hate shopping plazas.

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What’s to hate?

My initial expectations of Battleship Brewhouse were meager but to my surprise, any preconceived notions of pessimism were shunned from memory upon entering this holy house of the drink. I walked into Battleship Brewhouse at about 10:30pm on an unforgivably icy March night and my soul was not prepared for what I was about to experience; it was love at first sight.

Why Battleship Brewhouse rules, hard:

LIVE MUSIC-Battleship Brewhouse hosts live music every Friday and Saturday night. As soon as I walked inside, I looked to my right and was greeted by a live band with a beautiful lead singer. The band was an acoustic outfit with an array of musicians of all different ages. There were two guitar players that looked to be close to middle-aged, the lead singer and the drummer appeared to be twenty-somethings, and then there was a tiny little boy in the middle of them all with some kind of chime instrument around his neck that he played with a wooden stick; he was probably ten years old. They were playing a genre of music that is a deeply beloved favorite of mine: jug band music. The band is called The Moldy Suitcases and this is what they look like:

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Best female jug band vocalist with a mold affiliation since Maria Muldaur!

The Moldy Suitcases are far from a typical bar band; watching them perform was my favorite experience of my entire exploration of Fall River’s nightlife thus far. The Suitcases’ jazz tinted folk songs are composed with some of the traditional instruments utilized by blues and folk legends such as the Memphis Jug Band or the later Jim Kweskin Jug Band. The band’s incorporation of a drum kit made entirely out of old suitcases is not only an incredibly original  innovation to jug band music, but it also carries the torch of the century-old folk tradition of exploring tones created by “playing” regular household items. I must mention that there is no need for quotation marks around the word “playing” when describing how they churn music out of  they achieve Luckily The Moldy Suitcases and other fine local talents play at Battleship Brewhouse regularly. Check out their performance dates via their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/themoldysuitcase

UNRIVALED CRAFT BEER SELECTION-

 

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It’s lonely at the top.

Battleship Brewhouse offers 40 craft beers on tap and 80 bottled craft offerings. The only other bar in Fall River that can (barely) hold a candle to the craft selection at Battleship Brewhouse is the Taphouse Grille, however that comparison only applies to the amount of available craft options. In regards to diversity in beer styles and the availability of the latest and most interesting craft beer releases, Battleship Brewhouse stands unrivaled. During my visit I ordered the freshest Troegs Nugget Nectar I’ve ever tasted, Cambridge Brewing’s Audacity of Hops, and finished with the low alcohol by volume (ABV) Monk’s Cafe Flemish Sour Ale to finish out the night.

My sole complaint about my experience at Battleship Brewhouse was that I was only given a five ounce pour of Cambridge’s Audacity of Hops Belgian IPA. Audacity is a fantastic beer but it is by no means expensive, rare, or of high ABV; the meager pour remains a mystery until my next visit when I will hopefully remember to make an inquiry. Even if every craft beer offered at Battleship were five ounce pours (very few others were), I would still drive 45 minutes from my house in Attleboro, while passing several other bars on the way, to Fall River’s Battleship Brewhouse; they just really know how to swoon a craft beer mega-geek.

FOOD AND ATMOSPHERE-

Battleship Brewhouse is also a restaurant with probably close to as many menu options are there are beer taps. Battleship’s Facebook pages states, “Serving Burgers, Quesedillas, Sour Dough Sandwiches, Steaks, Pasta Dishes and Portuguese Cuisine (to name a few).” They also serve barbeque, seafood, vegetarian, and Italian dishes; even the pickiest of stubborn Stanley’s wouldn’t leave the Brewhouse empty-bellied.

The drastic variation of the food choices could be interpreted as a reflection of Fall River’s ethnically diverse populous. In a city where a great number of residents come from different countries and cultures, it would be unwise from a business standpoint to exclude traditional dishes if their is a clear demand for them.

Considering the small size of the building, Battleship Brewhouse has plenty of seating for those who prefer a table and chair over a bar and bar stool.

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I don’t know how many men it takes to operate a battleship, but I’m pretty sure this Brewhouse could fit the entire crew and rid them of their scurvy..or was that just a pirate thing? Never mind.

Whether you’re a proud beer geek, a live music junkie, a rampant foodie, or just someone who wants to go out to eat or grab drinks with friends or the whole family, Battleship Brewhouse is Fall River’s Renaissance man of the local bar scene and my new personal craft beer Mecca of Southeastern Massachusetts. Even if my evaluation of the Brewhouse doesn’t sound like an experience that would appeal to you personally, sgive it a visit and if you still aren’t satisfied, chances are that Battleship Brewhouse didn’t fail you, you failed Battleship Brewhouse.

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Ben Mielbye

 
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