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“Not Too Far from 70 for a Little Something Different”

Gella's Diner & Lb. Brewing Co.
Ranked #1 of 90 Restaurants in Hays
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American, German, Bar, Pub, Brew Pub
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Business meetings, Kids, Families with children, Bar scene
Dining options: Late Night, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Television, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Description: Awarded the Great American Beer Festival's 2013 Small Brewpub and Small Brewpub Brewer honors, the four storefronts the microbrewery and diner call home didn't always look like this. An aluminum facade hid these historic structures for decades as the elements took a devastating toll inside and out on the forgotten buildings. Acquired in 2000, these buildings became the first properties deeded for development as part of the Chestnut Street District's downtown revitalization effort.Along with stabilizing the collapsed ceiling in what is now the brewery, other challenges included replacing chiseled and damaged brick with limestone, unifying the storefronts with a steel I-beam and conforming the different floor levels of the four buildings to ADA standards. Whenever possible, designers incorporated original elements of the buildings into the design.The open kitchen buzzes with culinary activity, savory aromas and fiery spectacle. Acting in stark contrast is the cool calm of the steel brew tanks, tangle of hoses and the sweet scent of barley and hops. The industrial beauty of rusted steel, the cool glare of galvanized aluminum and the raw quality of weathered wood are all perfectly offset by the intimate chatter of patrons over plates of delicious food and pints of handcrafted beer.Historically inspired paintings created by graduates of Fort Hays State University's Art Department add color and culture directly to the authentic brick walls. The paintings are indicative of the signage that once appeared on the sides of downtown structures serving notice of the name of the company or type of services offered within. Patrons entering by the west door of Gella's Diner & Lb. Brewing Co. Are greeted by the artwork entitled "Three Star Harvest". Taken from a 1930s photograph, "Three Star Harvest" is the silhouette of three Ellis County farmers eating lunch in a field. Diners in the second room from the west are treated to a rustic sign once prominent on Eleventh Street in the 1920s. FHSU graduate, Amber Hampton, interpreted historic photos to design both murals. The actual act of painting was a collaboration between Hampton and nationally renowned artist Kris Kuksi of Hays. Kuksi, a graduate turned instructor for FHSU's Art Department, enlisted students from FHSU's Basic Design Class to paint.From hand painted murals to industrial agricultural lighting, open spaces and references to early railroad cars, the brewery and diner convey an industrial farm look for a fresh yet traditional atmosphere that is Hays' alone.Look above the bar and you'll see that the brewery's designer took egg baskets and turned them upside down to create an ambience unlike any other. The black granite for the brewery's bar came from Sylvan Grove, located just east of Hays. The Company M&G Designs provided this granite for Gella's Diner & Lb. Brewing Co. As well as granite for the elevators of Chicago's Sears Tower. A glass wall separates the bar from Lb. Brewing Co.'S stainless steel tanks or "barrels" which produce 310 gallons of beer each run. Lb. Brewing Co. Is capable of producing 1,000 barrels of beer a year. A private banquet facility just off the bar can entertain up to 50 guests, and it's fully equipped to host a variety of functions. Free wireless Internet access is available throughout the diner and brewery.Centrally located downtown, the city's cultural centers, recreation parks, galleries, specialty shops and more are all within walking distance.
Level Contributor
124 reviews
73 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Not Too Far from 70 for a Little Something Different”
Reviewed November 14, 2013

Our party of four had dinner on a Wednesday evening. We were seated promptly and the service was friendly. I tried the raspberry and pumpkin ales. They were both enjoyable. I had the meatloaf. It was good, though the portion size was a bit small. Overall, it is well worth the five-minute drive from 70 to get something different than the chains just off the highway.

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Mark E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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843 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Silverdale, Washington
Level Contributor
135 reviews
67 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Great Atmosphere/Very Accomodating”
Reviewed November 10, 2013

They were recommended by the Hampton Inn Front Desk and we were not disappointed. The cool thing was children ate for free the day we arrived but my recommendation for this diner is keep the kids meals simple. They tried to make them fancy with things that we nor our daughter was accustomed to. We started with the macaroni and cheese which was really good but our daughter wouldn't have anything to do with it...Kraft Mac and Cheese would work? The great part was they made a simple Mickey pancake for us and she was happy as a clam! They went above and beyond for the customer! The pulled pork was good and the waitress was super friendly!

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Kevin B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kansas City, Missouri
Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Cool and Busy Place, Maybe Too Busy at Times”
Reviewed October 29, 2013

I showed up about 8:00pm on a Thursday night an waited about 20 minutes for a seat for one. They were out of the Giro Special for the night, so I ordered the calamari, their Panini Grilled Cheese sandwich, and a side of macaroni and cheese. The sandwich came out before the calamari, and the bread was barely toasted and the stacks of cheese slices were not even melted together. Likewise the macaroni and cheese was only warm. When the calamari came out it turned out to be the best part of the whole meal. The rings were very good and the smaller tentacles were hot and tasty though it was obvious that they were thrown into the batter in a big clump becauseI literally had to cut pieces off to eat it and the middle was a mix of tentacles with no batter on it at all. From the huge number of patrons at the place, I have to assume that they typically do better and I'd like to think that another visit would turn out a lot better.

Visited October 2013
Thank Pete V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Readington, New Jersey
Level Contributor
114 reviews
86 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 155 helpful votes
“Great find!”
Reviewed October 28, 2013

Had dinner at Gella's with a group of friends. The place has a very rustic feel - and it works really well. Very nice bar area. The rib eye steak was one of the best I've had!

  • Visited November 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Lauradids
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kansas City, Missouri
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed October 22, 2013 via mobile

A great find. Good beer and great food. I was in Hays for work and not in the mood for the chains that you will find near the interstate. This place was recommended to me and I was very pleased.

Thank TMarkham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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