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The City Journals

Live Music & Craft Cocktails at the Barrelhouse

Oct 08, 2015 03:14PM ● By Bryan Scott

By Christina Miller

The Barrelhouse has made some significant changes to their establishment in September and more are coming in October. First, in September they launched Barrelhouse Live, which brings live touring bands to Ogden every Friday and Saturday night. Second, to supplement their extensive craft beer menu, they are launching an expanded craft cocktail menu in October.

Live music is no stranger to Ogden, but according to Shane McConnell, owner of the Barrelhouse, what makes Barrelhouse Live different is the focus on touring bands. The venue can seat 400 people on the ground level, which allows them to bring in musicians that tend to play to larger audiences. September has already brought some significant acts to Barrelhouse Live with RKDN and Joshua James, and McConnell is excited about the bands that will grace the stage in October. The Salt Lake City band, Max Paine and the Grooves who’ve toured the U.S. and been featured at SXSW play on October 3. Then the following weekend, the Provo, Utah based band, The Brocks bring their electronic music and light show to Barrelhouse Live on October 10.  The overall music program will feature indie-alternative, and folk and Americana style acts with other styles included occasionally. “We are building Barrelhouse Live based on the popular music venue, Urban Lounge, in Salt Lake,” McConnell said. So jazz musicians and hip hop artists will also be added to the future line up. 

With Barrelhouse adding their Live program, they also plan to enhance their craft drink program. The Barrelhouse already features over 150 craft beers that includes beers from all the Utah breweries.  Ogden people are really branching out in their beer tastes and there is a growing homebrew movement in Ogden, and these people are looking for a good selection of craft beers according to McConnell. This demand for craft beer has exceeded his expectations. The basement of the Barrelhouse with pool tables, foosball tables, and shuffleboard continues with its lounge feel and will remain open during the Barrelhouse Live events as a place for patrons to relax, be social, and enjoy craft beer. They are featuring a few seasonal beers this month, so for the pumpkin lovers out there, they have a pumpkin ale for you. Also, 1-2 tap takeovers are in the planning for October and with 12 taps downstairs and 16 taps upstairs, it will be a great time to try out a featured local brewery. 

The Barrelhouse has been serving craft beers from when they opened nine months ago. Now, they are taking the craft approach to beer and expanding it to their cocktails. The craft cocktails will feature fresh ingredients, fruit juices squeezed in house, and flavored syrups made from scratch. 

This newly expanded cocktail list will include cocktails that are new to the Ogden drink scene. With the great craft beer selection, beer cocktails will now be served. Also, to fit into the historic feeling of downtown Ogden, classic absinthe cocktails will make their debut at the Barrelhouse. “We can easily adjust most of these classic cocktail recipes to make them work within Utah’s liquor laws,” said Georffrey Vough, Barrelhouse bar manager. The original absinthe drip of water over sugar will be on the menu as well as other absinthe cocktails. Most of the mystique of absinthe has been debunked so it is safe to enjoy without any visits from the green fairy. Vough said it’s the strong black liquorish flavor that makes absinthe more difficult to work with. “That’s a strong flavor that overpowers the other flavors.” But for the absinthe aficionados, there will be 3-4 featured cocktails. 

Warren’s Craft Burger continues to serve food in the Barrelhouse to complement the music and drinks. The kitchen is open until 9 pm on weekdays and 10 pm on weekends and the food is available on both the ground floor and the downstairs lounge. 

The Barrelhouse is a 21 and over establishment and is located at 315 24th Street, Ogden, UT with the entrance on the back of the building from the parking lot. It’s the historic Berthana Building with the large Pioneer Day mural on the wall.   For the most up to date information on the live acts featured at Barrelhouse Live and the upcoming tap takeovers, visit