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“Stock market meets alcohol, in a fun way”

Kalamazoo Beer Exchange
Ranked #5 of 342 Restaurants in Kalamazoo
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $0 - $25
Cuisines: American
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Description: The Kalamazoo Beer Exchange is a two-story multi-tap bar and grill located in the beautifully restored Globe Building in downtown Kalamazoo. Offering 28 rotating draught beers from around the world, The Exchange opens at 6 p.m., where draught beers are priced on real-time sales, like the stock market. Occasional "market crashes" drop beer prices to their all-time low. The food menu features pub fare with a twist, where classic dishes will be made new again.
Reviewed April 19, 2012

The bi-level bar is a great place for friends to meet up. To be warned if you are not an adventurous beer drinker, this is not always a great place to go. The prices of your drinks are always changing, updated about every 10 or so minutes. Prices go up and down, you can watch the trending and try to get the best deal. Or on the other hand you can get it wrong and pay more then you would have had to a half hour ago.

Past the beer 'market' they also have great food. In fact as you walk in the front door will pleasantly greeted by the hunger invoking aroma.

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Thank Skylar C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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279 - 283 of 291 reviews

Reviewed April 8, 2012

My sister in law had read about this restaurant in the Grand Rapids paper and because of its innovated pricing of beers and good food ratings, we decided to try it. The Kalamazoo Beer Exchange is in a former warehouse and has a fun, welcoming atmosphere on two levels with pool tables, two bars and eating areas scattered among the action. Thankfully when we arrived it was early and not very busy because we needed a course on how the “beer exchange” was run before ordering our first pint. Our waiter, Peter was very knowledgeable about the process and the several beers offered on the exchange and explained to us that at 6pm the beer exchange opened and the prices of all the beers were established, but then change, based on how popular they are. Popular beers- the price goes up, while those not order-the price drops. 18 different beers are offered, several hand crafted, brew pub beers, ales, stouts, blends and your standard Miller and Bud. You can purchase several beers in a tasting size (5oz) for $1.50 and have two free tastes in a 2oz size. This was a great way to try several unusual beers and then choose a favorite. The entire process was fascinating and our eyes were glued to the TV monitors, waiting to see how our picks were doing and waiting for the market to crash with plummeting beer prices!

Along with the beer we enjoy ed the mixture of pub food and interesting, innovative main menu items, with the emphases on beer... Salads were between $4-$12 for the Tequila Lime Steak salad and their soups were $3-$4 for a cup. I enjoyed the classic French Onion soup while my sister in law and brother had the thick Wisconsin Beer Cheese soup, which came with a maple brown sugar cornbread muffin which was a bit dry. The menu offered great sounding sandwiches between $7-$10- we had the pulled Pork Sloppy Joe, it was excellent and the huge plate of Fajita Nachos. Main courses were between $8-$18 for the New York Strip and featured pork chops, meat loaf, salmon and Mac and cheese; something for everyone! We enjoyed the food, several beers and were stuffed, thus never even looked at the desert menu. Overall we really enjoyed the evening and was pleased that James, the manager had a few minutes to explain more about the beer exchange concept and how well it’s done in Kalamazoo! Highly recommended! We will be back!

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1  Thank AnnArborMHT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 18, 2012

It was St. Patrick's Day...Irish beer and all the others were flowing. Our friends arrived ahead of us and put our name in for a table. We had a couple beers while waiting downstairs. They had great music playing loud, so you could hear it over the din of all the excitement. Downstairs is a large area with thin tables at which to stand and enjoy a beverage, and there are pool tables available. Our server was decked out for the holiday, super kind and efficient. The mac and cheese was fantastic, and the chicken salad sandwich on croissant was divine! Paired with Wisconsin Beer Cheese soup, their special corn muffins, real butter, and homemade chips -- we had a great time just eating wonderful food, enjoying each other's company, and trying out some new beers! My only complaint is that it was very warm in the restaurant area -- but I think that's to be expected on St. Patrick's Day with as many people that were there.

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Thank Kristen K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 17, 2012

I have been here a few times and they always have some new beer choices on tap. I enjoy reading through the draft menu whenever we sit down. The appetizers selections are pretty good. The homemade chips are a solid choice. I do wish they had some veggies and hummus or something else a little lighter to choose from. If you are getting a salad, I recommend trying the cajun ranch dressing. Check out their blue plate specials but their burgers might be the way to go in most cases.

The downstairs bar has some games like darts and pool (and the restrooms!) so this is perhaps the better area to hang out if you are just there for some beers. The upstairs bar has an enclosed patio on one side which is another area to consider hanging out at the Exchange.

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Thank BEW64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 5, 2012

Oh my goodness .... my husband and I absolutely love this place! The concept is that the beers are sold as if you're trading on the stock market. Prices go up and down depending on the demand, and twice a night or so the market crashes with the sounding of a bull horn and cheers from the crowd. So fun! If you happen to go at the right time (usually after the market crashes ... which is random) you can get really good beers at a great price!

As for the food .... I can't get enough! The Fajita Nachos with Chicken is seriously my favorite dish in Kalamazoo, hands down. The plate was piled high and could easily be shared amongst two or three people. My husband loves their onion rings with the cajun ranch dipping sauce.

The atmosphere is great. Located in one of Kalamazoo's historic buildings, great care has gone into keeping things true to the building. Hardwood floors, exposed wooden beams and brick walls are everywhere giving it that pub feel, but there's tons of seating and space! Pool tables and a standing bar area is located downstairs. If you go on a Friday or Saturday evening you'll have to wait for a table because this place is so popular, but it's so worth it!

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

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