|La Cabra Brewing
642 Lancaster Avenue | Berwyn, PA 19312
La Cabra Brewing, located in Berwyn, PA, opened its doors in late October 2016. The newest brewery on the Main Line is located in a historic building at 642 Lancaster Avenue across from the Berwyn train station.
Owners and brewers Vern Burling, Andy Iott, and Dan Popernack “needed to build the kind of place we’d like to bring friends and family to.” Their motto is Gran Vecino (“great neighbor”), representing their commitment to making the community a vibrant, fulfilling place to live and drink great beer.
The building, which was originally a general store, was renovated by Chris Linton, who also worked with Conshohocken Brewing Company and Tired Hands Brewing Company. The building features tall ceilings, wide open spaces, exposed stone and brick work, steel beams, and hardwood floors.
The downstairs space includes a full-service dining room, a full bar, and a cozy lounge area with two impressive chandeliers, couches, and goat wallpaper.
The upstairs space features a full bar, a huge fireplace surrounded by cozy couches, and a private room featuring the perfect view looking down into the brewing area. It’s especially gorgeous at night with the blue lights reflecting off the stainless steel tanks and the glitter in the paint.
Head brewer Dan Popernack has built a reputation for making the “best beer you haven’t tasted” according to Philly.com. Popernack brews a wide range of styles on the 7 barrel brewhouse. He has a particular passion for barrel-aging beers.
The bar features 14 taps including one nitro tap. There is also a cask offering. The beers on tap during our visit included:
- Delphi – 4.2% ABV Belgian Pale Ale displays a unique play between Belgian yeast character and German hopping.
- Tabula Rasa Citra – 3.5% ABV Single-Hop Series (changes each time it’s brewed). This batch features the unique aroma of Citra hops.
- Providence Pils – 4.8% ABV Classic German Pils with assertive hop flavors.
- Vespa – 3.0% ABV refreshing and lightly tart version of a traditional Berliner Weisse.
- Co-Pilot – 5.2% ABV Nitro offering featuring bold coffee aroma and rich chocolate flavor.
- Castor and Pollux – 4.0% ABV Table Saison featuring a balance of blue lavender and orange blossom honey.
- LEO – 7.3% ABV American IPA featuring big hop flavor and aroma.
- Cassiopea – 4.8% ABV smooth Kölsch brewed with German malt and herbal Northern Brewer hops.
- Sokol – 5.2% ABV Traditional German style brewed with local Deer Creek rye and hops from the Golden Estate in Downingtown. Deep malt paired with the spiciness of rye and Tettnanger hops.
- Coquette – 3.5% ABV brew fermented with only the 100% Brettanomyces culture; this beer was rested on 250 pounds of mixed berries for a bright and slightly tart finish.
- Bramble (Cask) – Robust Porter aged on blackberries and cocoa nibs.
All of the beers were complex, interesting, pleasant, and clean. Honestly, I enjoyed every beer I sampled. I especially enjoyed Coquette, which was bright and refreshing with the right amount of tartness and subtle sweetness.
Beers are available in 5-ounce, 8-ounce, and 16-ounce pours. Flights come with four 5-ounces pours. Beers in can be purchased to go in 32-ounce Crowlers and 64-ounce growlers.
Local wines from Penns Woods, Bancroft, Pear Grove, and Vynecrest are available, as well as a local cider from Big Hill Ciderworks. Non-alcoholic spritzers include Rosemary Mojito; Passionfruit, Coconut, Lavender; and Blood Orange, Mango.
While the beers were quite impressive, the food is not to be missed either. Executive Chef John Hearn has created a unique menu of Latin-inspired gastropub dishes.
Appetizer options include Shrimp & Grits, Crispy Pork Belly, Duck Fries, La Cabra Wings, Loaded Jerk Chicken Tamale, and Chorizo Flatbread. We enjoyed the Black Bean & Maitake Empanadas, which were superb. Housemade Guacamole was also available.
Salads include the La Cabra House, Blackened Shrimp, and Surf & Earth, which is served with seared tuna, pecan couscous, green goddess moose, mango chutney, and lemon saffron oil.
The tacos are a popular option with choices like Pulled Pork Carnitas, Jerk Chicken, Grilled Mahi Mahi, and Brisket.
Entrees include Blackened Grilled Salmon, Chimichurri Flank Steak, and Madre y Hijo, which is spring chicken, chorizo corn polenta, sauteed mushrooms and onions, brown butter hollandaise with poached egg.
Rich enjoyed the Cubano sandwich, while I had the Portobello Margherita. Another sandwich option is the Pork Belly Black Angus Burger, which has Dan Baker’s name written all over it. Be sure to order the Parmesan Truffle Fries.
While you won’t want to forget to grab some beer to go, also check out the merchandise including t-shirts, hats, pint glasses, and Crowler koozies.
There is street parking available as well as designated spots in the bank parking lot for La Cabra patrons. Enter the building from the parking lot in the rear, or enter through the front off the building off Lancaster Avenue.
The brewery is open Tuesday through Thursday 3 to 11 PM, Friday and Saturday 11 AM to midnight, and Sunday noon to 9 PM.