After being a brewmaster and brewing consultant for 25 years, Andy Klein decided to start his own craft brewing business. However, he later found out that a restaurant and pub is the best platform for his trade.
There has been a growing interest in craft breweries over the past several years that according to recent surveys, American brewers now account for more than 10% of the country’s beer market.
The Birth of “The Monk’s Cellar”
In 2013, Klein officially opened The Monk’s Cellar, a bar and restaurant that has become a local favorite with its scrumptious dishes that can be washed down with a house-made artisanal beer.
While the restaurant offers a wide variety of house-made beers, they also have imported European beers and wines.
The restaurant’s ambiance and the overall dining experience were all inspired by Klein’s frequent trips to Europe, particularly Belgium, a country with a long history of artisanal brewing that was first started by local abbeys that sold beer as a fundraising method.
Around the 12th century, the monks brewed low-alcohol beer as an alternative to drinking water, which was often unclean. But over the next centuries, the brewing methods evolved, although they were still under abbey supervision.
Belgian-Style Brewing Method
The Monk’s Cellar has its own brewhouse that produces a wide variety of beer styles and tastes, including fruity, tarty, smokey, dark, malty, sweet, bitter, spicy, and “crisp and clean.”
Unlike most American brewers, the Monk’s Cellar uses age-old open fermentation vats in which the yeast is allowed to “breathe” without CO2 saturation, hydrostatic pressure, and other stresses found in closed fermentation techniques.
Modern brewing methods favor closed fermentation mainly for the sake of sanitation. With airtight lids on the buckets, the beer is not exposed to outside elements.
While there is a potential risk of contamination with open fermentation, which is the traditional method, The Monk’s Cellar minimizes it by putting their tanks in a sealed room that is sanitized regularly.
Leaving the fermentor open allows the sulfur and other unpleasant tasting compounds to escape rather than be reabsorbed into the beer. As a result, the restaurant’s artisanal beer has a richer taste than a commercial/conventional version because no compound can obfuscate its “fundamental taste.”
Combining Belgium’s Food Culture and American Flavors
Great beer is best partnered with a scrumptious meal and an excellent dining experience. This is why the restaurant combines Belgium’s renowned food culture and spices it up a bit with rich American flavors.
Perhaps the dish that best exemplifies the Belgian food culture “drizzled” with American flavors is the Steak Frites, which is a Durham Ranch wagyu strip steak grilled and topped with house-made herb butter and served with seasonal vegetables and duck fat fries.
Another house specialty that the local patrons are raving about is the Moules Frites, which is the national dish of Belgium. It is a mussel dish sauteed in white wine, garlic, and butter and served with duck fat fries for a more filling meal.
These are the other house specialties that you may want to try:
* Monk’s Mac & Cheese
*Fish and Chips. The beer-battered freshwater fish is fried until light and crispy and is partnered with house-made coleslaw, tartar sauce, and the sinful-tasting duck fat fries.
*Sausage Plate. Two bratwurst sausages with sauerkraut (fermented finely cut cabbage known for its pleasant tartness) and duck fat fries or green salad as a side dish.
Address: 240 Vernon St. Roseville, CA
Note: The Monk’s Cellar’s convenient location makes it the go-to resto and pub for residents living in mobile home Foothill Farms such as the Meadowbrook Mobile and the Country Squire Estates.
Contact: (916) 786-6665
Monday – Closed
Tuesday – Closed
Wednesday – 12 noon – 9 pm
Thursday – 12 noon – 9 pm
Friday – 12 noon – 9 pm
Saturday – 12 noon – 9 pm
Sunday – 10 am – 8 pm
Delivery / Takeout / Pickup
Indoor dining / Outdoor dining
Note: While the restaurant now accepts indoor and outdoor dining, they are operating at a 30% and 50% capacity, respectively, in accordance with the public health protocol aiming to prevent the spread of COVID-19.