Big Bear Brewing Company American Grill is a staple in the Fort Lauderdale area and if you haven’t been to this popular spot in Coral Springs, you’ve been missing out. They have something for everyone here, from steaks and seafood dishes to comfort food and of course the craft beer which is brewed on site. We recently stopped in for dinner and found they certainly live up to their stellar reputation.
Big Bear Brewery American Grill is located on University Drive in Coral Springs (aka Restaurant Row). In an area that has more than its fair share of chain restaurants, it’s nice to see a local spot among them and a good one at that. One thing to note is that Big Bear Brewery American Grill is always very busy. If you plan on dining there for dinner, especially on the weekends, plan ahead and expect a wait. We arrived on a Friday for dinner after 6PM and just missed the huge crowd. While there is lots of outside seating, we chose to wait for a booth inside. The bar was packed, but the wait for our table was short, maybe 10-15 minutes.
The décor at Big Bear Brewery American Grill consists of dark brick and exposed wood beams with low lighting. The low lighting make the place perfect for date night – but not so much for us trying to take photos for our blog. Along the walls are gas torch sconces that add a warm subtle lighting to the space. The brewing area is a focal point at the front of the restaurant that takes up two rooms in full view from most of the restaurant.
The menu has something for everyone and the appetizers are definitely for sharing due to the huge sizes. There are steak and seafood options and some unique items like the pretzel crusted chicken breast which seems to be quite popular along with the prime rib. Pizza, salads and sandwiches are also available and they have smaller portion sizes for lunch. The beer cheese soup (served in a bread bowl) just screams comfort food, but we decided to order an appetizer to split instead. They also have daily specials and they seem to be updated on their website daily.
We started with two Grand Finale Imperial Black IPA craft beers (8.8% ABV). These are brewed in house and were just what we needed, a nice hop flavor and 8.8 ABV! They actually came out quite fast and we placed our order.
Half Haystack Appetizer ($6.00) – Served with a remoulade dipping sauce. When they set the plate down, we had to confirm this was the ‘half’ size. It was HUGE! It was freshly out of the fryer and coated perfectly. We found that the actual coating could have used a bit more depth in flavor, but the remoulade sauce helped elevate it. We thought that the half size was still a bit too big for two people, but at $6, we didn’t feel too bad not finishing it.
Salmon on Cedar ($26) – Cedar plank salmon, vegetable, rice. This was the largest piece of salmon I’ve gotten at any restaurant. Perched perfectly on a charred cedar plank, it was cooked perfectly. It was a little crisp on the outside and tender and flaky on the inside. No fishy taste here and I finished it all.
The vegetable consisted of steamed broccoli with shredded parmesan. Simply prepared and healthy, I used some of the lemon that the salmon didn’t need and found it was perfect. The rice was cooked to a fluffy texture and tasted like it did have some butter. Overall a great healthy meal that left me quite full.
Prime Rib Burger ($16) – 8 oz burger topped with cheddar cheese, shaved rare prime rib & caramelized onions. Jeff was on the fence about ordering a prime rib dinner or a burger. This option let him have both. This was a big burger too. The prime rib that was on top was a little on the medium-well side, but was still quite good. The burger was medium was requested and really flavorful. The bun was fresh and branded with ‘Big Bear’, but Jeff had to sacrifice half of the bun. These portions are so generous, you have to leave something out and the bun was the perfect casualty. The fries were really tasty and seasoned with a Cajun spice.
We had to pass on desert since we had already gone beyond the point of being ‘full’. Our server was quite on the spot through our meal and always checked on us and kept drinks full. We really like Big Bear Brewery American Grill and find it to be one of our favorite Brewery Restaurants in the area.
Big Bear Brewing is located at 1800 N University Drive Coral Springs FL 33071.