With beers like Sweet Potato Casserole, there’s certainly no shortage of funky in the Funky Buddha brewery in Oakland Park Florida. We recently visited both their new production brewery and their original brewpub and lounge, both in the Fort Lauderdale area.
The new brewery is expansive, with shiny new 120 BBL fermenters in a traditional industrial park setting. The bare bones tasting room is large and bright with high ceilings and windows overlooking the brewhouse. There’s also a decent sized outdoor patio and the obligatory food truck or two parked outside on the weekends providing some grub.
The production tasting room has the standard Funky Buddha offerings like their Hop Gun and Floridian Hefeweizen as well as a selection of more limited releases, such as Small Ax Big IPA and Doc Browns 1.21 Gigawatts on our visit. The brewhouse is shiny and new and word is they will be increasing production this year to include 12oz bottles and cans.
Alternatively, the Funky Buddha Lounge and brewpub is located in Boca Raton Florida and at least as far as atmosphere goes, is notably more funky. Set in a strip mall, this location was the original for the Buddha, opening as a craft beer bar, tea room and hookah lounge in 2010. The interior is dark and comfortable, with some lounge seating, some tables, a long stone topped bar and a rather large stage. Lots of events take place here, music, comedy, open mic and the like and the space is really conducive to that. The beer offerings here range from the Buddha basics (Hop Gun and Floridian) to the unique, like Carrot CAKE Wheat. The lounge offers a light menu of simple bites like hummus and veggies, as well as a full on hookah lounge, with a wide variety of options for those who chose to partake, a tribute to the origin of the Funky Buddha. Next door is a homebrew shop and the original 55 gallon brewery, which now puts out some test batches and one offs for the pub.
Overall, Funky Buddha brews are very good. Between the two spaces, I would lean toward the lounge for a visit as it seems a tad more “authentic” and certainly more interesting. But both locations pour some delicious beers and the future of the Funky Buddha seems bright, and hopefully stays funky.