Free State Brewing Company is next to Liberty Hall at the west end of Massachusetts Street in Lawrence.
The Free State Brewing Company opened in 1989 as the first legal brewery in Kansas in over 100 years. Filling two floors of an attractive old building in a bustling part of the college town of Lawrence, this Brew Pub always feels like something is happening. The are several dinning areas, tucked into interesting spaces on two levels.
Free State appeals to a wide range of customers by providing an exciting menu, excellent food and superior service. Expect to have a hard time making a selection. I always find several items that I really want to try. The menu isn't that large, but the selections are varied and the dishes are described in ways that make each item sound wonderful. Plus there are several specials each day.
Appetizers range from $4.50 to $8.25, sandwiches from $6.75 - $8 including a side dish, and entrees from $7.75 to $17.50. Servings are generous and it is easy to order too much food. For example, Free State Brewing Company's onion rings are enormous and piled so high that they appear about to full over (get a half order unless you are dining with a group).
Free State Brewing Company's beer is included in several of the recipes, giving the dishes unique flavors. For example, the cheddar soup has a blend of Alma white Cheddar cheese, fresh cream and Ad Astra Ale that I'm never sure I like on the first bite, but tastes better with each additional spoonful until I am sorry the dish is empty.
Good entrees at Free State Brewing Company include the fish & chips bourbon barrel strip steak, and chicken & crawfish gumbo.
I am not a beer drinker, so I can't speak to quality of Free State's beers, but my friends who are beer lovers, say that the beers and barley wines are excellent.
Lawrence, Kansas is blessed with a wide selection of great locally owned restaurants. If you eat at least two meals in Lawrence, one of them should be at the Free State Brewing Company.
copyright 2007-2009 by Keith Stokes