Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Obed and Isaac's Microbrewery and Eatery

Recently the fam. and I decided to go down to Springfield, so I could go to a symposium that my professor was speaking at, and Blake and Autumn could play in the pool while I was gone. One of the things I do whenever we go anywhere is search for local beer. Someone may have rolled their eyes at the amount of time I spent looking for beer in Springfield before we even left, BUT it paid off big time.

Springfield is pretty small, I mean I grew up in the Chicago suburbs, so I was expecting it to look like a city... but it really seems more like a big town I guess. Springfield seems to be a city in transition. There were plenty of foreclosed buildings, but also a lot of beautiful historic homes. The city has a historic past (Home of Honest Abe, and Route 66), the state capital, several museums, and has a state university. These things don't really seem to be the foremost thought when you get there. This city which is supposed to represent (in my opinion) the state of Illinois looks vacant. One of the few areas that looked well maintained was the historic district in downtown. This is where I found the gem.

Obed and Isaac's Microbrewery & Eatery is inside of a beautiful, but unassuming historic home. The Architecture of the restaurant, and the neighboring home (owned by the same people) is beautiful. There is quite a bit of a story behind these two buildings, they were not originally located in the historic district, but were moved. You can check out some pictures from the house moving on the website.

The interior of the restaurant is very vibrant and bright, with a gorgeous bar, amazing wood and glass features, and some really extraordinary artwork on the walls. When we walked in Florence and The Machine were playing, I knew that this was going to be a good place for lunch.
I feel really awful, because I was enamored with the portraits that adorn the walls in the restaurant  but cannot find the name of the artist. If you know who the artist is, please let me know.
Portrait of Abraham Lincoln

Portrait of Mary Todd Lincoln
Portrait of another woman

Since it was early on a Saturday afternoon, it seemed pretty empty, we got seated right away. Shortly after we ordered the beer flight, the place started to fill up. We managed to try every beer they had, that they make.
The Beer Menu
My Beer Flight

I was very excited about the chance to get flights and try all of the beer. I asked our waiter for suggestions, but alas, he wasn't able to give us any, he just pointed to the beer menu and told me what type of beer they were (which was clearly on the beer description)

Another pic of my beer flight

The beers were good. I really liked the Ditzy Blonde, Obed's Pride Amber Ale, and the Black IPA that Blake got in his flight. We even bought some of the Ditzy Blonde to take home.

The beer and the environment were the best part. I got a horseshoe... I had no idea what a horseshoe was, but my rule is if they say it is a local specialty or a chef special, try it. Maybe it is an acquired taste, but the Horseshoe seems to be an open faced sandwich (on a bun) smothered in a cheese sauce and covered with fries. It seems like a whole lot of starch for me. It could have been me, maybe I don't understand the appeal.

Despite my less than ecstatic lunch experience, the place is awesome. If you are in the Springfield area, you really should check it out. I hope that Obed and Isaac's leads the march for Springfield to rebuild itself, and embrace it's history, while remaining current and vibrant. A few more places like this, and Springfield could be a destination in the middle of the prairie.


  1. The Abe Lincoln and Mary Todd Lincoln portraits are by a local artist, Ted Keylon. http://www.tedkeylon.com/painting/
    Come visit Springfield again sometime. The Presidential Museum is great to visit along with my favorite, the Dana Thomas Home, which is a wonderful restored Frank Lloyd Wright home owned by the state. Both are downtown near Obed's. Also in the next 6 months or so there will be another microbrewery, Engrained Brewing Company. http://www.engrainedbrewing.com/

    1. Thank you so much for the info! I loved the paintings!
      We did make it to the presidential museum while we were there, though I would have liked to spend more time there.
      Sounds like Springfield will be getting a return visit. I look forward to checking out Engrained Brewing, getting some more beer from Obed and Isaac's, and finally finding some Rolling Meadows beer too!


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