Henderson Brewing Company - Brew Pub Review

Henderson Brewing Company
128A Sterling Road, Toronto

Henderson Brewing Company is inconveniently located in an industrial area in Toronto's west end, just north of a massive Nestle chocolate plant so the smell of mediocre (and occasionally burnt) chocolate haunts you as you walk north from Dundas along Sterling. But when I say they're "inconveniently located," I'm speaking as a TTC rider: if you're driving, they have a bloody enormous parking lot, and if you're on a bike they have their very own entrance from the West Toronto Railpath - so only the TTC riders are going to complain.

The bar area seats 25 to 30 at some of the world's plainest bar stools and tables. But the view is pretty good: this is the first place I've been that the vats aren't blocked off in some way. Usually glass. But here, you could get up and walk right in among the vats (and they have a lot of vats). I suspect the staff wouldn't take too kindly to you doing that and we didn't attempt it, but it felt like a more welcoming setup to me. They have a couple pinball machines - one was out of service, but we had a great time with the other one.

They do flights (four beers, 5 oz each, $10.50), so I had Henderson's Best (a bitter), Ghost of Prohibition (dark lager), Studio Two Export Stout, and UPA (an IPA). I wasn't enthusiastic about the bitter - but bitters have never been my style so my judgment on that one shouldn't be trusted. But here's the thing: I quite liked all the others, and that's pretty damn unusual. They're serving good beer. The dark lager leans more to the roasty notes of a stout, although far more mild. The stout leans slightly to the sweet, but that's something I favour - very tasty. And the IPA was a really fine example of its type.

This is my sixth review of a Brew Pub since I started my Toronto Beer Map, and this is the best experience so far: a good space, not too loud, welcoming staff, and really good beer. Recommended!

They close at 2200 every night, with last call being 2100. They have a bottle shop in house, and some of their beers are available through the LCBO and the Beer Store. They don't serve any food, but you're welcome to bring your own (which we did).