Clock Tower Brew Pub, a stone’s throw from Rideau Hall

The Governor General's Residence

Rideau Hall open for public tours!

Beer, Nachos & Wings – Clocktower Things

We were visiting the GG, did the tour first,
Helped us work up one heck of a thirst!
They didn’t have Stella like it said on the sign!
But their micro brew special still went down just fine!

So, Clock Tower Brew Pub won’t go down as the worst..

Sometimes, the best discoveries are made when you are not even looking. Recently, we took our bikes to Rideau Hall with our daughter’s parent’s-in-law. It was not until recently that I was even aware that the Governor General’s residence and grounds were routinely open to the public. After over 35 years in Ottawa, only last year did I first set foot (or wheel, since I was on my bike at the time) on the grounds. It is a sad truth that the locals in almost any town or city are often ignorant of or simply do not avail themselves of the vast proportion of  the many attractions surrounding them. It is only when we are required to play host to out-of-towners that we take notice of local amenities. I am guilty as charged. However, since taking our bikes out of mothballs a couple of years ago now, we have made up for lost time…  


Clocktower Brew Pub , New EdinburghWhere we went: It was a hot day and though the tour of Rideau Hall was moderately interesting even to myself who is not typically a museum kinda guy, when we had toured the building and grounds, we all had a mighty thirst going. Dorothy suggested making our way to Byward Market and grabbing a cool one. Thinking ahead and realizing that this would take us in the wrong direction, I suggested that we strike closer to home and visit our old neighbourhood of New Edinburgh where we lived shortly after getting married long, long ago. Our only recent visit was to The New Edinburgh Pub on the occasion of their Lobster Fest a couple of years ago. So, we set out with no particular destination in mind. As we travelled along Mackay St., we came across the Clock Tower Brew Pub whose sidewalk table umbrellas entice us with visions of cold Stella Artois and Keith’s brews. Without further ado, we dismounted and snagged a table.

What we ordered: When our server brought the menu, it was with some surprise that we discovered that only local micro-brewed beers were on offer. There were, in fact, four varieties offered: A raspberry wheat ale, a blond lager, a red/brown beer and finally a dark ale. Since we were all thirsty, we agreed to take the risk. Dorothy and I opted for the lager and Michel chose the red/brown ale. In a masterstroke of marketing, our server pointed out that since it was past 3PM, all starters were being offered for half price. Aside from thirst, our exertions had also emptied our stomachs, so we chose a serving of nachos and another of wings to tide us over until supper. 

What we got: I suspect that even if the beer had proven to be sub-par, our level of thirst would have made it nonetheless palatable. However, this was not the case and although I would not add it to my list of personal favourites, it was certainly quite palatable. In any case, I do not profess to be a connoisseur of beer in general. The wings and nachos were both above average, if not outstanding.

Worthy of note: Typically, I do not pay cash very often. The main reason for this is that I rarely have more than $20-$30 on my person. As a result, I got a quizzical look from Dorothy when I offered to settle the bill with 2 crisp $20 bills asking for $5 change. I bring this up for two reasons. Firstly, having paid cash, I received no receipt (my fault, I didn’t ask for one). Secondly, after the fact, I realized that a $25 bill seemed, after tax and tip to become $35! . Had it not been for the discount, two starters and 3 beers would have been $50! Even though we sat outside, when nature eventually called, I was required to go inside and was amazed how spacious the interior appeared and was even more surprised by the number of patrons sitting inside supping beer on what was a glorious summer day.


  • Positives: I am grateful for this blog, since it has forced me to broaden my gastronomic horizons and venture into more and different dining establishments than might otherwise have been the case. In any event, this was, on balance, a pleasurable trip and I would not hesitate to stop by again. 
  • Negatives: I was not impressed by the interior which seemed dark and dingy (like many pubs). On another occasion, I might have been disappointed by the relative lack of choice of brews!
  • Recommendation: If you are looking for somewhere new to sip a cold one, this one could be worth a visit!
Category Rating Explanation
Food Quality *** Okay
Price $$$ Reasonable
Decor ** Dingy inside
Service *** Good
Overall Rating *** Worth a try

Clock Tower Brew Pub on Urbanspoon

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