Saddle Mountain Brewing Company is a craft brewery and restaurant located in a strip mall in Goodyear, Arizona, just west of downtown Phoenix. The brewery was founded by Jacob and Laura Hansen, a local couple who had a passion for brewing their own beer at home. They took this passion and love for craft beer and eventually opened a craft brewery in the West Valley, which was in need of good craft beer. The name Saddle Mountain comes from the name of a mountain in nearby Tonopah, Arizona where Laura was raised.
Though not located in central Phoenix, Saddle Mountain Brewing Company is only a quick drive from almost anywhere in the Phoenix Metropolitan Area. Its location along Interstate 10 is perfect for those who are driving between Los Angeles and Phoenix. Since I was making this drive myself from Sedona to Los Angeles, I decided to stop by for lunch and a beer before continuing on back to California.
As I walked through the door and into Saddle Mountain Brewing Company, I entered a large, open dining room where the main dining area scattered with tables flowed into the bar area to the right. The open concept made the already big room feel much bigger.
At first, the interior design seemed stark with a modern, industrial décor. You had cinderblock walls, exposed lighting and air ducts, metal pipes, and polished concrete floors with black ceilings and gray walls. Thanks to the tall ceilings and big windows allowing in plenty of sunlight, the place felt bright and spacious.
Those wanting to watch the game with a cold beer will find a few televisions hanging above the bar. Also adoring the walls were paintings of planes, a reference to Jacob’s passion of flying and his love for our military. They also offered a military discount which I thought was great.
For a Monday afternoon, I was surprised how busy the restaurant was. With a wait for a table inside, which was surprising during these unprecedented times, I decided to brave the heat and ask for a table on the outdoor patio where there was no wait. Surprisingly, it wasn’t as hot as I thought it would be in the shade, especially with water misters spraying away.
Saddle Mountain Brewing Company Menu
The menu at Saddle Mountain Brewing Company featured all the foods you would want to eat with a cold beer. You had your nachos, wings, pizzas, burgers, and sandwiches and more unique options such as a bison burger and Thai pizza. Other options included an assortment of skillets, beer battered fish, and salads.
Saddle Mountain Brewing Company also offered a happy hour Tuesday through Friday between 3:00PM and 6:00PM and all day on Monday. Happy hour deals will give you $1 off all beers and $2 off starters.
If it’s spicy, I’m probably going to order it. So, it was a no-brainier to order the Fire Burger ($17.00). This burger was big and had a lot going on. You had a house burger blend patty, fire roasted poblano chile, spicy chile pepper blend, poblano cream cheese, pepper jack cheese, fried onion strings, lettuce, tomato, and onion on a brioche bun.
When I was ordering, I forgot to mention to my server that I would like my burger to be cooked medium-rare. Luckily, the fresh and flavorful house burger blend patty was cooked well with just the right amount of pink in the middle. While it wasn’t the juiciest burger I have ever had, the meat wasn’t dry. The patty could have used a little more salt and pepper, but this wasn’t a deal breaker as it still tasted great.
Being named the Fire Burger, I was expecting this burger to burn my mouth. I was even warned by my server when ordering that this burger would be hot. Unfortunately, the burger just wasn’t spicy for me. Maybe it will be for you.
My favorite part of the Fire Burger had to be the fire roasted poblano chile. These peppers packed in so much smoky, delicious flavor with a little kick of heat. I could put these things on everything and anything.
The spicy chile pepper blend, poblano cream cheese, and pepper jack cheese all melted into one creamy, gooey, flavorful layer of goodness. Flavorful? Yes. Spicy? Nope.
Finishing off this burger were fried onion strings, fresh lettuce, sliced tomatoes, and julienned red onion. I enjoyed how the onion straws were lightly fried until the onions were tender. While they weren’t crispy, the onion straws added a nice rich flavor and additional texture to the burger.
Finally, you had a simple, fluffy, golden bun that was both sweet and smoky after being lightly toasted. Being so airy and light, it was impressive how the bun held up to the very last bite. I really thought it would fall apart but this was not the case.
All burgers and sandwiches were served with a choice of coleslaw, carrots and celery, fruit, or freedom fries. For an extra $1.50, you had a choice of onion rings or a house salad. Sweet potato fries were an additional $2.50. I settled on the coleslaw.
The version of coleslaw served at Saddle Mountain Brewing Company was basic. I found the coleslaw to be crunchy and fresh without being overly dressed with mayonnaise. With that said, there was more mayonnaise than vinegar giving this coleslaw a creamy texture which I enjoyed. So, if you prefer your coleslaw with an acidic, vinegary bite, you might be disappointed.
Smoked Cubano Sami Sandwich
Next up was the Smoked Cubano Sami Sandwich ($14.50). I was really looking forward to this sandwich made with house smoked ham, pulled pork, swiss cheese, mustard, and pickles on a hoagie roll. Unlike the other options, this sandwich was served with sweet potato fries.
This thing was packed full of a ham and pork, so much that it was falling out of the roll. A generous portion of house smoked ham added a smoky, salty flavor to the sandwich. I enjoyed how each piece of sliced ham was grilled until lightly charred on the outside, adding to the depth of flavors. Even though the house smoked ham was great, I think the pulled pork was the star. Each piece of moist, tender, shredded pork was full of bold, smoky flavors. It tasted as if the pork had been smoked for hours, and it probably was. There wasn’t much else to it. Just good quality meat and a little smoke is all you need.
In a Cuban sandwich, I would argue that the toppings are just as important as the meat. The tangy, stound ground mustard, gooey melted swiss cheese, and crispy dill pickles not only added texture but complemented the smoky flavors of the ham and pork. This was especially true with the pickles which added a fresh, salty kick and crunchy bite.
To be honest, I wasn’t expecting the hoagie roll to be great. At first, it appeared to be charred to the point of being burnt on the outside. It didn’t look great. Surprisingly, it tasted great. While the bun was slightly charred, it added a smoky component and crunchy bite to the sandwich. After being pressed so thin, I was surprised how moist the bread was on the inside. In the end, the toasted hoagie roll was great.
Served on the side was a generous portion of sweet potato fries. While simple, the fries tasted fresh and not from a bag. I would guess they were cut fresh and fried. They were cooked just right, soft on the inside and crispy on the outside without being greasy. I also enjoyed how the sweetness of the fires complemented the salty, smoky pork.
Being the only customer sitting on the outdoor patio, and with the restaurant busy inside, I thought I would be forgotten by the staff. Luckily, this wasn’t the case. My server was friendly and attentive when greeting me, taking my order, asking if I needed another drink, and bringing the bill at the end of the meal. I couldn’t have asked for better service at Saddle Mountain Brewing Company.
Breweries in the Phoenix Metropolitan Area are a dime a dozen. You can literally find one on every corner. Saddle Mountain Brewing Company was not your typical brewery. Unless you were a local, or driving along Interstate 10 between Los Angeles and Phoenix, then you might miss the brewery located in a strip mall in Goodyear. But yet, the place was packed on a Monday afternoon so I knew the beer and food had to be good. With a large menu full of interesting food options, a good selection of craft beers, happy hour, and great service, I would recommend a visit to Saddle Mountain Brewing Company.
- Great service
- Assortment of flavorful dishes and locally brewed craft beer
- Happy hour
- Cool décor
- Military discount
- Fire Burger was not spicy, at least for me
- Not the best location but a quick drive from anywhere in Phoenix
15651 W Roosevelt St, Goodyear, AZ 85338
GPS Coordinates: 33.456409,-112.395649