The bottom line: Old building bursting with old character, inventive food, and fun beer cocktails, what more can you ask for?
I have been wanting to go to Heist Brewery for a while. I kept hearing about it from friends and acquaintances, and I definitely spent some time out on their website exploring their menu. Heist Brewery is located in a historical building in NoDa and is just bursting with old character. The building is more than 100 years old and it used to be a cotton mill. You will feel this as you walk in. I love old buildings and this was certainly no exception. The building itself is somewhat removed from the other bars down the street but has ample parking. And by somewhat removed I don’t mean far per se just not right next door thus not ideal for bar hoping for the lazier or drunker individuals.
There is ample parking space surrounding the building (they have their own lot) and parking is on the side. I went in for dinner on a Saturday afternoon with a friend. It wasn’t really crowded as it was still early. You will notice that the entrance is on the side of the building. Prior to the front entrance there is a small patio area.
I have to admit that I did not get any drinks (How could you Ana! You were at a brewery! Yes, I know). I was more focused on trying their food that day but rest assured that their crafty cocktail list is one of my to dos and you will certainly get an update. If you scroll through the gallery above you will see a listing of some of their cocktail menus.
One thing you will notice while browsing their menu is that you are in for quite a pricey meal. Heist serves small plates (tapas style) to share but they also have sandwiches and burgers if you need a hardier meal (or if you don’t want to share). Do note, that dishes come out as they are made (because they have a small kitchen according to the waiter).
I couldn’t resist getting one of their small plates since as I wanted to try as much as possible. For my meal I chose the Little People Tacos and the The Knome salad. And boy they weren’t kidding when they called them little people tacos. When the they got to the table I found myself starring at five teeny weenie tacos serves on a stone with individual grooves holding each miniature. I loved the presentation! I really liked the dough used for the tacos. It was made from corn and definitely tasted slightly sweet and was very fresh. The little ones were filled with beer braised veal cheek, blue cheese polenta, raspberry chipotle creme, and micro greens. The meat was very soft and had a ground meat consistency. You will struggle not to devour this in one bite and trust me when I tell you that it will be hard to share. I did share, one mind you. Just one. And I almost cried.
The Knome salad was made with baby greens, jerk chicken, gorgonzola crumbles, smoked bacon, nuts, cucumbers, and roasted tomatoes. Overall I would say that if you like those ingredients then you will enjoy the salad. Be warned that the chicken is served cold and all items are served separately. The dressing was served under the greens. Again, I liked the presentation of the dish but I wish it was all mixed together. I found myself taking different bites to combine flavors.
My friend had the Veggie sandwich. This sandwich is composed of roasted red peppers, eggplant, artichoke, sun dried tomatoes, pesto aioli, and baby greens on focaccia bread. She picked the parmesan rosemary tots as her side. She commented that the sandwich was a bit overstuffed so it was hard to keep together. The bottom of the bread did get soggy which made this a little more challenging to eat. She did like the eggplant and said the taste wasn’t overpowering like a portabella would have been (common in many veggies sandwiches). The artichokes were good and not very vinegary. The tots were baked. They tasted fresh and the rosemary and parmesan gave them a nice kick.
I have heard that their brunch is notorious! You can bet that I will be returning in the future to try the cocktails (although some friends were not impressed with the beer, I want to judge for myself) and to try their brunch, and many of their other inventive dishes!