Fascinating midtown pub, BRUTOPIA, with its ancient ornamental exterior brackets and live nightly entertainment, boasted English-styled libations on Crescent Rue. Right next to Irish pub, Hurley’s (great draught selection: Murphy’s, Guinness, Harp, Bass, Kilkennys as well as local Canadian faves), this busy bistro served quality food and draughts to my family one brisk April ’05 afternoon.

Open since 1996, Brutopia’s busy brick-walled wood-floored bar features front porch and upstairs lounge (with hidden rear-situated brew tanks). Its rustic appearance afforded a dank inner city appeal and the middling hummus, sausage, and quesidillas went down fine alongside excellent handcrafted beer.

Nut-grained clover-honeyed wildflower-bloomed Honey Beer; lilting cereal-grained honey-glazed yellow-orange-fruited Maple Rousse; sour yellow-fruited rye-dried Golden Wheat; soft-watered wheat-grained grape-vinous Scotch Ale; and mild walnut-imbued cocoa-sugared Nut Brown Ale were decent preliminaries for more interesting fare.

Woody Centennial-Chinook-hopped, grapefruit rind-embittered, lemon-zesty IPA and berry-kiwi-blanched rye-pumpernickel-soured Brutopia Extra Blonde should please bitterer swiggers. Lively raspberry-wheat-fronted, passion fruit-aided, cereal-malted honey-dried Brutopia Raspberry Blonde will appease fruit ale lovers.

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