Milly's Tavern / Stark Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Milly's Tavern / Stark Brewing CompanyMilly's Tavern / Stark Brewing Company
BEER AVG
3.67/5
Based on:
23 Beers
191 Ratings
Place Score: 87
Ratings: 47
Reviews: 37
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: n/a
Taps: 15
Bottles: --
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

500 North Commercial St
Manchester, New Hampshire, 03101-1151
United States
phone: (603) 625-4444

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
On *Firkin Fridays*, we will be tapping a new cask ale which will be available throughout the weekend until it's all gone. Depending on production and consumption, a new cask will be tapped every Friday or other Friday. Look for Firkin Friday details on our website and in our email newsletter.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 47 | Reviews: 37 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lordofthewiens
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

On a rainy Wednesday afternoon, with maybe six patrons, this place looks pretty shabby. I bet there's more atmosphere on a busy night. My wife and I sat at the bar and watched the brewer working. In this huge place, the brewing equipment is in the center, with the bar and tables around it. We enjoyed watching and conversing with the brewer.

The beers, I think, are what people go to Milly's for. It's certainly not the food, which is pub food at its most ordinary. There are eight beers that are always on tap and, when we were there, seven specialty beers. The specialty beers included Li'l Ivan Extra Stout, Illicit Affair (a lambic), Bold Horizons (a Berliner weiss), Hoplicious (an APA), Ploughman's Cherry Porter, Heidelberg Hefe, and an ESB. The Hoplicious was quite good, and my wife enjoyed the hefe. I had a small taste of Bold Horizons, and liked that as well.

We had excellent service, and I think that's because the bartender really enjoys her work, not that there were so few people in the place.

A good place to visit. Ignore the ambience and focus on the beer.

Photo of DrinknFish
4.45/5  rDev +16.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 3

I stopped by Milly's on my way up north. I have wanted to go there since trying their beers at the extreme beer fest back in 2007, but was never able to find it, then again I didn't look to hard. This time I took my usual back roads but the ramp onto the highway was closed and there it was on the way to the next onramp. This place is great; it has that old dive bar feel, but with some of the best beer I have tasted. I ordered the TNT barley wine and was more than impressed. This beer is one of the best barley wines I have ever had, it was very full flavored and you could tell it was aged in a whisky barrel. They served it in the right glass and at the right temperature, which topped it off. The bartender while at times disappeared was a very interesting fellow and knew the beers pretty well, once we got talking beer he gave me small samples of just about every beer on tap. They were all good, but Tasha's Red Tail Ale, from the cask was my favorite. The food was ok, your typical bar food. We missed the happy hour by a few minutes, but this place is still a great bargain. I think the bartender was telling me that they always have a $1 draft of one of their beers, which for the quality of beer you are getting is unheard of. Now that I know how to get there, I think I will be stopping by every time head up north. Next time though I think I will be taking a growler of the barley wine home.

Photo of MugOfGoodness
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Happy hour with some co-workers so that means $2 drafts and 1/2 price appetizers (chicken tenders were great) - had the Hopnoxious IPA and a Oatmeal Stout. The IPA was great, very tasty and the Oatmeal was okay, a little too smooth for me - I wanted an Imperial which isn't the fault of the stout. They were out of the Burton which I bet was good and I did have a taste of the Manch-Vegas IPA which was also very good. The crowd was primarily male which was fine, but the women with us felt a little outnumbered. The waitress service was pretty overwhelmed but the nice bartender took great care of us and delivered the goods.

Photo of altgeeky1
3.58/5  rDev -6.3%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Milly's is a brewpub, but can be disappointing if you are expecting a Marthas or Portsmouth Brewery. Ignore everything except the beer... yes the beer is excellent. If your expectations were not mis-set, you will enjoy Milly's for what it is. I am convinced the no smoking law is going to force some needed improvements in the place.

Atmosphere:
The place is dark, but the bar areas have a cozy feel to it, with heavy dark wood and original mill hardwood flooring. What's notable however is someone thought they could get away with 'parkay' wood squares in the highest traffic area in front of the door, stage, and dining area.

Since the smoking ban, there is less of the death-metal-emo-kid and I have not seen any more of the occasional fat bikers with swastikas (not kidding - this was an element before).

Service:
The has always been high staff turnover, and service could be a downer. If your waitress is talking to another table for more than the length of one song (flirting, and not periodically glancing at your table...), it's one of those nights where you have to fetch your own beer. A manager making quick rounds could catch this problem before people complain. Most recently on a Saturday night, our waitress was good.

Food:
They could definitely use a menu review. Most selections involve fat or grease, although I've had an excellent cold Mediterranean platter, Greek stuffed grape leaves, and perfect salads. Fish and chips is something I'll try everywhere, but at Milly's it was far too greasy.

The beer selection is great. The barley wine, sweet stout, and the 'TNT' are not to be missed. The TNT in is a barleywine fermented in old Jack Daniels casks... served correctly at proper temperature, and low carbonation, the beer has a sharp taste you won't forget.

The 'sampler tray' is 6 two-ounce beers and is a great way to try all the beers. At $6 the sampler is very reasonable.

Happy hour prices are unbelievable, and Tuesday night is happy hour all evening... brewpub beers that start at $1 and go up 50 cents every 30 minutes. Tuesday gets busy very early!

Overall:
I wouldn't want to see the place change TOO much... it's not pretentious and not overpriced. The smoke was one of the biggest complaint... now fixed. It would be smart to fix the floor as it is a bad first impression.

Photo of slander
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Too many miles to cover and too little time to take have taken in everything yesterday, but if you'd seen the crazy Trouble map; pinned locations, hours of operation, directions to everywhere from everywhere, etc., you'd know that it was all planned out quite efficiently. That's how we roll, it's true. Soon we'd start heading back west through Vermont and out to Albany but it's early yet. We'd seen what we wanted to see thus far except for Milly's, which as an early opener, would serve as an acceptable backtracker for lunch...

Milly's is not an old street corner tavern but rather a large cavernous basement brewpub in one of the many old brick buildings in an industrial cluster on the Merrimack River. There's an elevated area for bands just off to one side of the entrance, and a small attached coffee shop to the other side. Down the stairs to the main seating area; 8 tables, a couple of raised bar tables and a gaming corner (Phil's Golf Game 2007 Live and a Simpson's pinball machine). Just beyond that, a large "L" shaped faux marble formica topped bar seating 2 dozen. The barback is a cupboard counter with a piece above holding glassware & tiered booze. A similar unit around the bend with a few towers of one or two taps each, and then a tower of 8 taps at opposite ends of the bar. Behind the bar, 2 rows of fermenters and a copper mash tun. The standard tap selections are listed on a slat chain board and the seasonals on a dry erase board. 3 rows of drop chain link poles hold mug club mugs above and growlers dangle all down the line. A single mounted TV on the corner post. An adjacent bar counter off the front seats 10 on each side of it, and more on the near wall and down around the bend running the far wall towards the rear, where sits a pair of small pool tables and seating in a raised space. A non smoking party room sits separate back there, with a 12 seat marble topped bar, lots of brick and strange seemingly misplaced pillars, 8 tables, nice space.

Ordered lunch; she burgered, and I had a cup of chicken noodle soup and the chicken stir fry, both were good.

We took in all 12 beers on 2 samplers of 6, served in small boxes with rope handles. The Fisher Cat Ale was pale, light, crisp; the Mt Uncanoonuc Golden Cream Ale, a slight hop bitterness and a little sweet; the Amoskeag Harvest Ale, a sweet aroma, golden, slight malt flavor; Tashas Red Tail Ale, copper colored, sweet maltiness, toffee & fruitness; the General John Stark Dark Porter, full bodied, roasty, chocolatey, quite nice; Milly's Oatmeal Stout, sturdy, sweet, dry & rich; the Manch Vegas IPA, Cascade, nice hoppiness; Bo's Scotch Ale, a malt bomb, al-co-hol, and the 4 seasonals, the Canterbury Ale, strange aroma, ick bitterness, may be past it's time; the Hefeweizen, unfiltered, banana, clove and some vanilla; the Innocent Blonde, a nice Belgian golden, fruity, sweet candy, a nice beer; and the Marathon Mild, dark, a slight roastiness, and some maltiness.
And the wildcard... a bottle of the limited release Napoleon's Waterloo, a wild ale with Brettanomyces, golden, tart, slight carbonation. I liked the General John Stark Dark Porter & Innocent Blonde the best.

Then brewer Mike Roy came out and talked with us for a while, that was cool. Some nice beers, here, and a good stop in the opposite direction from where we need to be, where we need to be getting on to.

Photo of beerjournl
4.44/5  rDev +16.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Came back on the way to the airport to go home, it is Friday afternoon and the place is getting busy. Even better than before! Had more of the special brews they had on tap including the Dubbel Secret Probation and the Death March Stout. Both were excellent. This place has some of the best beer on this week-long trip! Had the Brewery Burger and it was good, my buddy had the sampler of some sort and it was average. Great beer, good food, excellent atmosphere except for the damn smokers! We will return!

Stopped here straight from landing at the Manchester airport on a Sunday afternoon. Walking down into the basement that is the bar it was like others have said, a mix of dive-bar and brewpub. It really has character in a good way. Obviously not a corporate chain and my kind of place to hang out. The only people there were at the bar, and it was kind of full. The bartenders were attentive but didn't have a great knowledge of the beer, just adequate. They did hunt me down some bottles of their special offerings that I'll be bringing home to Florida.

So far this place has had some of the best beer of my trip, on par with The Tap in Havehill which I also reviewed recently. If you are looking for a great dining experience this is probably not your place, but they do have a good selection of pub food. We didn't order any food but looked over the menu for a while.

The beer selections really show that the brewmaster is dedicated to the craft, and the taste shows that dedication. I sampled the Manch-Vegas IPA, and the Evil Eye. Both were excellent. I wish I had more time to spend going through the offerings, but I will definitely try to stop here before my flight home just for the beers.

Photo of johnnnniee
3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

2/12/2011
Milly's is weird! I want to say that their is a decent brewpub in town, and sometimes there is. Other times I go here and can't understand why they would serve that to customers. The staff is normally friendly and attentive. The food is usually decent for standard pub fare. The best deal is weekdays between 4 and 7 when appetizers are half price and normal drafts are 1 or 2 dollars. Weekend nights you will normally incur a cover charge and their will be a loud band.

3/4/2007
Milly's is not far from on the way home from work for me. Like some of the previous posters have said this place is in a basement, its dimly lit and hearkens back to a time in my past. The beer makes up for those short comings and then some. They have a good selection of regular brews, and always have more that a couple of seasonals or limited edition brew. Every once in a while you'll get to try one of their cask conditioned brews. Get there between 4 and 7 and the drafts are a buck with half price appetizers. If you want to take some home they will sell you a growler.

Photo of adowney523
4.24/5  rDev +11%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

I tried this place on the night some metal bands were playing. Maybe it was the vibe from the music, but I would have to describe the atmosphere as very dark and grungy. The place has the air of a dark basement.

They had eleven beers on tap including three Belgian-style ales. All the beers I tasted seemed to be of good quality.

Service was excellent. I was always offered another beer before my previous beer was finished.

They appear to have some great deals on certain nights. $3.25 for a pint is about as good as it gets for good craft beer.

I recommend this place for good beer and good deals. Don't let the grungy environment deter you.

Photo of BuckSpin
4.22/5  rDev +10.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I stopped here while on my way to the airport. Milly's is like a time machine. Walk inside and it might as well be 1970. Smoke is thick. There is a spot for a band to set up. Band bumper stickers cover the outside windows. Its below street level, a precussor to the retro "industrial" look in that its REALLY what it looks like - industrial. They just didn't spend $$$ on making it look that way.

In short I half expected to see my idol Tony Bourdain sitting there, cigarette in mouth, pint in hand, waiting to see a Ramones tribute band. Hey, a guy can dream!

The brewing units are clearly visible from the bar, which wraps around the lower section. Raised tables accent the empties waiting to go back to the distributor. Its noisy, loud even, an odd mix of blue collar and well to do white collar - which is immediately a sure bet that THIS is a good place to be.

The beer? They are &^%$#@! serious about their beer. Many flagships, seasonals, limiteds and some really limited they do bottle BUT you can't take it with you....they will open the bottle for you to enjoy there. Had the Evil Eye (Saison) that was awesome, excellent. Bo's Scotch Ale was great, and the General John Stark Dark Porter was good as well. The best part?

ALL PINTS ARE JUST $1.OO DURING HAPPY HOUR!! Are you kidding me? Where or when do you see any brewpub just give away beer like that? I was ready to have my mail forwarded!! And the appetizers are 1/2 price as well during the same time.

I had a Bruschetta that was very good, and of course got my ubiquitous Reuben & fries. I am glad to report they don't scrimp on the corned beef, and it was shaved, a "whunk" of corned beef, nof sliced deli meat.

Service was very good, friendly, loud. The barmaids flirt, the guys BS. The owners get their hands dirty right behind the bar.

There are very, very, very few places like Milly's. Not for everyone, but if you ever wandered how a barrel aged barleywine might have tasted back in the days of no such thing as non-smoking, etc. check it out. And bring my mail back with you!!

Photo of gixxerman
4.18/5  rDev +9.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2.5

Hmm, where do I start. first of all this place is in the basement level of what I belive was once an old mill or something. I was there at 4:30 for the $1 a beer happy hour Mon-Fri 4-7). There was a very mixed crowd, from suits, to laborers, and a few college kids. Definitely a come as you are type of atmosphere. It is a bit smokey, so if you are bothered by smoke be forwarned. The place is big enough, though, that you should be able to find a not-so-smokey spot somewhere. The crowd was very friendly and conversation was easy to find.

Oh, the beer. Well ,I tried the oatmeal stout, pumpkin ale and evil eye. None disappopinted, and the price is right on. I dare you to try and find a better beer value. They have the eight staples, plus the 4 seasonal. The seasonal selection when I was there was the Evil Eye, punpkin ale, hopnoxious, and blueberry ale - this one will set you back $2.

Ok, the food - not so good. Not terrible, sort of typical pub grub, but I don't think I would revisit this place for the food, just the beer. I would stop before of after dinner for a few.

The service was top notch, the barmaid was very pleasant and attentive, but not overbearing. The kind of service you usually appreciate, but is sometimes hard to find. She was very knowledgeable about the beer and answered any question I threw at her.

Overall, a great cheap place to go, spend under $10 and drink some great beer, in a very relaxed atmosphere and good conversation. If I am ever back in Manchester, I will be sure to stop back.

Photo of BlueHammer
3.55/5  rDev -7.1%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3

My team and I made a trip up to New Hampshire just to visit Milly's. I'd never been and they wanted to take me as I am a pumpkin beer fan and theirs had garnered support from the non-pumpkin beer fans among us.

I'd heard a lot about Milly's and had a vision of what it might look like but I was wrong. It's down near the river in the old mill section of the town. Inside looks like a dive bar but in a sense, that can add to the atmosphere - a no-frills type of place.

While we were there, they were setting up for live music. Evidently, the place turns into something of a night club later on in the night.

Not many people were there to eat, most were sitting at the bar. There was only one waitress working and she seemed a little "out-of-it". She forgot to put in an order for our appetizer. The food was good, but not unforgettable. The beer, was another story. It was superb.

I don't think I'll be driving up to New Hampshire again for a trip to Milly's. However, if I'm in the area I will definitely stop by for a brew.

Photo of Seumas
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

How do you fairly evaluate a place that comes across as having a dual personality on each of the criteria used to evaluate it (except value)?

The atmosphere of the place rates as somewhere between average and good as a brewpub, but somewhere between good and exceptional as a tavern.

The brewers are good, but the cater to both the micro afficionado and the Spud-drinker. Read the descriptions, as well as the headings, in the beer menu before you order, or you may be disappointed.

The service was average, the evening I was there. But the willingness of the wait staff was exceptional.

The selection of brews is pretty impressive, even with the proviso expressed when describing quality.

The food was on the average side of good, but the effort the staff took to get me what I wanted definitely raised this rating.

Photo of Zoh
4.1/5  rDev +7.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I go to school at the sattelite campus of UNH which is right next door to the building that Milly's is in, so I am there about once a week. The greatest thing about Milly's is the happy hour; $1 drafts (of excellent beer) and half-price appetizers from 4pm-7pm Monday through Friday.

The atmosphere is hard to pin down. Kind of warehouse-like with it's huge open spaces, but also historic since the pub is in a century old mill building. The bar wraps around the fermenters and has rooms for at least three dozen people. There are also a dozen or so tables on the floor in front of the stage. Pool tables are in the back and there are several tvs around the bar. Unfortuately the decor is somewhat run down, with old tables, chairs, and barstools that could stand to be replaced. Not a problem for me and my buddies, but this never sits well with the wives. The bar can also get pretty smoky, again not a problem for me, but beware of smell-sensitive wives.

Service is usually decent, but not always very quick. It is however, uniformly friendly in my experience.

Beer selection is always excellent with eight standard brews and four rotating seasonals or whatever head brewer Mike has cooked up recently. The standards are a porter, oatmeal stout, IPA, red ale, cream ale, and a few others. Friday is also cask day. This is usually one of their own beer that has been cask conditioned, but occasionally a small batch that that has been casked.

Food is nothing too special. Most of the appetizers are microwaved or deep-fried pub fare. One exception is the sausages that come from a local supplier and are marinated in the pub's Red Tail Ale. Sandwiches are always good and fresh made, but overall the reason to go to Milly's is the beer, not the food.

Since I rarley go to Milly's outside of happy hour, the value for me is excellent. A couple of pints and an appetizer for less than $8 is always a good deal in my book. Even outside of happy hour though, beer is well-priced and food is reasonable.

One of my favorite places in New Hampshire and I encourage all New England BAs to check it out!

Photo of superdudeo
4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5

I have trouble believing that I lived only a fifteen minute walk away but I never have been to this place. Great beer selection. All homemade and really they go out of their way to make good homebrew. The atmosphere isn't much to talk about. It's really open, kind of awkward and the barstools are a little uncomfortable. Also the bartender was bitching about his baseball league and it took me a while to put in my order. Maybe I shouldn't be so picky. Anyways, they have a kickass happy hour. My subsequent trips were great, this is without a doubt a better beer bar than Strangebrew up the road (which doesnt have a happy hour like they do.) Cheap beer from 4-7 every day of the week. Where do you get that?
If you want cheap beer, good beer, and creative beer this is the place in Manchester for you. Kind of hard to find, but isn't that the case for all the good bars?

Photo of hbis2gut
3.83/5  rDev +0.3%
vibe: 2 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I'm truly surprised it took me this long to finally visit since I live 10-15 minutes north of the brewpub and all of my vacations and trips have some kind of beer oriented twist to them.
The location is a bit imposing being under the highway overpass, but the mill building itself seems quite appropriate. Once inside I got a distinct "warehouse" feeling. Very open and without alot of warmth. Initially, the atmosphere is a turn-off for me. This is especially the case when I saw all of the "coors light, budweiser, and other swill" advertised all over the brewpub in the form of flags and posters. I can't understand why a place like this would cater to the Nascar/BudLight crowd when the beers are truly outstanding.

The good news is that the beers were all exceptional. This is especially true when I compare them to the other two NH brewpubs I visited lately, Woodstock Inn and Marthas Exchange. If I had my way, I would combine the atmosphere of the Woodstock Inn and the beer from Milly's.
There were 4 of us that 1st night and we were able to rifle through quite a complement of different beers. We quickly met the manager(possibly the owner), and when I began discussing the beers he had the Head Brewer Mike come out and talk to us for a while. It was a really nice touch and he is a really down to earth guy with and obvious passion for beer. In fact, he was working out the last few days before a beer vacation to Belgium and Germany. He gave us the lowdown on styles he's working on and upcoming cask ales. He also gave us a free sampler of a whisky cask Porter that was just great.

As far as food, we only had apps and sandwiches, but the food was high quality and fresh. There didn't seem to be anything truly unusual for the gourmand types out there but many pub staples and a good variety. This is a nice surprise as well considering many brewpubs seem to treat food as an afterthought...

Long story short, this is a brewpub where the beers speak for themselves. I would revamp the atmosphere and tacky decor if it were my place, but it won't stop me from visiting often to see the regular beers as well as the specials and cask pulls. Also, happy hour here cannot be beat. Great deals on pints and half price apps. 3pm - 7pm? See you there!.

Photo of warriorsoul
3.48/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 4 | service: 1.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Stopped in for lunch and a pint while visiting some local contractors today.
Easy enough to find...right downtown near the Civic Center and easily spotted from afar thanks to a large Milly's sign above the pub itself. Milly's is located on the lower level.
Walk in to a fairly dark building with hardwood floors, a large area for bands, etc.. with the PA monitors still there.
A decent sized bar to seat a dozen or more and tables to seat quite a number of parties...a worn look on the tables and chairs as I felt like I was about to drop through my seat at an adjacent table to the bar itself.
Not used to the smoking anymore, but I was able to stay clear of the smoke quite easily with just a handful of drinkers enjoying a smoke on their lunch break.
The bartender was also the waitress and took my order fairly quickly...asked for the bleu cheese burger, but received the bbq/bacon cheeseburger instead in about 15 minutes or so. No biggie, as the beef was awesome and the burger and fries were both piping hot and delicious.
I only enjoyed one beer...the Manch Vegas IPA which was a solid IPA yet served too cold. Probably goes over well with the locals, as every one of them were drinking bud bottles...sad really, because there were at least 10 different craft brews to choose from. A red ale, IPA, porter, scotch ale, barleywine, imperial stout, anniversary ale and a few others I can't recall.
Reasonable prices on the food and the pint was just $3.25...great deals on happy hours with $1 pints from 4-7 I believe.
I asked the waitress if I could get one of the stronger brews to go and asked to speak with the brewer since he is quite active on the site, but she never came back to me with and answer on the growler and never saw Mike...oh well. It's a shame...would have loved to bring home a nice growler of the Impy or Scotch, but I wasn't going to wait around for an answer...had to get back home to work.
A great place to enjoy a few beers and burger if you don't mind the smoke. Not sure I'd make this a place I would take out of town visitors as the service was a bit inadequate, but I'd come by with a handful of BA's and work on depleting the brews.

Photo of Sycodrummer
4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Milly's is in the lower level of a brewpub/coffee house/night club establishment. A wierd combination, but very good nonetheless.

The interior is very wide open with brick walls and tables scattered across what must become the dance floor when the place is in nightclub mode. The waitress promptly attended to the table and took beer orders which were brought promptly and in the proper glasswear and presentation.

The food selection was fairly typical pub grub featuring burgers, sandwiches, melts, and wrap-ups. The food took quite a long time but was told this was because they were filling a 100+ burger catering order and a lot of the grill space was being used for this. Still, the food was brought out hot and tasted great. Some nachos were also supplied on the house to make up for the wait.

The beer selection had 12 to choose from, 5 of which were seasonal selections. A very varied selection and something to pair with just about anything you order.

Value is very good with it pretty easy to get two beers and lunch for around 15 bucks. A good stop to hit in Manchester and one ill be back to when in the area.

Photo of stalefish666
4.44/5  rDev +16.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

We were on our way north from RI through New Hampshire and stopped in at Milly's in Manchester. The pub was in the basement of the building giving it a dark but warming feeling. It was a Thursday afternoon and really quiet down there which was nice. The brewing equipment was set up directly behind the bar. They had a great selection on tap with about ten brews and three or four seasonals. The bartender was incredibly accommodating. We were able to make up a couple different sample racks and she let us try the seasonal taps on the side. Mike, the head brewer, came over to greet us after we expressed our interest in his beers and explained we were on a beer tour of NH. He really took the time to talk about the beers and the recipes and drew us a map of some other cool places to check out. We favored the Milly's Oatmeal Stout, the Manch Vega IPA and the 7.7% Hopnoxious. The Hopnoxious is a great choice for hopheads! We didn't have food but the rack of ribs looked really tasty. I can't wait to go back to enjoy their fine elixirs. Thanks Mike!

Photo of ILiveOffHops
4.22/5  rDev +10.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I just visited Milly's last night (Wednesday night) with a few friends, one visiting from San Diego. Milly's is located in an old mill down by the river in Manchester. The reason we went to Milly's tonight is because we were informed it was the only place in Manch with much of anything going on. $6 cover, but $1 draft beers and well drinks. If you're having a few or more beers then it is definitely worth it. I'll also have to check out happy hour, supposedly $1 drinks and 1/2 price appetizers.

Anyway, Wednesday night was a dance party essentially. Not my scene, but we found some seats down the end of the bar away from the bad dance music. Once we were situated in our spot the night became much better. The bartenders were attentive to us all night, even though they were serving over a hundred people. They were even interested in what we thought of the beers. The quality of the beer itself was great, very fresh. However they served the beer in a plastic cup! I was taken aback. I know that it was a cheap beer night, but even still at a brewery I expected more. With that said, the beers were very good. I had the Manch-Vegas IPA, the Hopnoxious Double IPA, the Evil Eye Saison and a sip of the Porter, the Alter Ego Alt and the Hefeweizen. I will leave the details of the brews for their own reviews. My advice is to try the Hopnoxious IPA and the Evil Eye.

I will be visiting Milly's again, next time I will go during happy hour or an off night at least.

***

My last review was unfair. I reviewed Milly's on a bad night, Wednesday, college night.

Tonight I visited for happy hour (M-F 4-7 PM 1/2 price apps and $1 drafts!). It was pretty quiet with just a few minute wait to get a beer. Started with the 4th Anniversary, a bittter ale.

I also had the tasty combo platter- mozarella sticks, chicken tenders, potato skins. Food was quick and hot. Portions aren't huge, but the food is prepared with care. Service was good. I followed food up with General Stark's and the Oatmeal Stout. Both VERY good.

The atmosphere is fairly "divey" in that it is dark and smokey, in a very rustic setting- old wooden tables, bars, and bar stools. Definitely not the place for a date, but a damn good bar for a cigar! ... or just a few beers.

Photo of WanderingFool
3.63/5  rDev -5%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

Milly's is closed on Sunday's in the summer, however since a big event was happening in the field across the street they were open for lunch and dinner. When my friends and I arrived we were the only customers in the place.

The restaurant only seats about 50 people. Another 20 or so could sit at the bar and the few tables in that area. This place is more a bar than a restaurant anyway. Being in the basement, it's rather dark and there's a large stage toward the front above the dining tables. This is where the bands set up. In the evening they move all the tables and that area becomes a dance floor.

The menu was your basic pub fare, burgers, soups, chicken, etc. I tried one of their burgers and thought it was good. However, the fryolator was broken so there were no french fries available. At the end of the meal I was a bit disappointed to find out the price wasn't discounted due to the lack of fries. Prices were very reasonable. My burger was under $8 and beers were $3.25. Weekday happy hour you can get full pints for $1 and 2 for 1 appetizers.

Lucky for me I arrived on a day when a couple new beers were brought on tap, an Imperial IPA and a saisson. I tried the IIPA, which was very tasty and the John Stark Porter (malty and chocolatey, yum!). I also had a sip of the Harvest ale, very crisp and delicious. There were about a dozen beers to choose from and I'd love to try them all.

While enjoying some beers the head brewer, Mike, joined us for a while. He told us about his recipies, brewing process and upcoming brews. He's a cool guy and makes some awesome beers!

Milly's is a great bar with some great beer. If you're looking for a dance club with some microbrews this is the place. However, if you want to eat dinner and relax with friends you may not be so happy here. Get your dinner first, then head to Milly's for some awesome brews.

Photo of waughbrew
2.75/5  rDev -28%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 1 | selection: 4 | food: 2

Under the bridge street bridge, in the basement of an old mill building. Dark, dirty,and a little smoky. Three main areas - first you walk into a big open space that is where the dancing/djs/bands must happen. Down a few stairs brings you to the dining area with a bunch of tables and a couple of video games. Procede further and you get to the cavernous bar area, with plenty of seating and room to hang out, a TV, a chalkboard with the beers on tap. Right behind the bar is the brewery with all of the tanks out in the open.
My party sat down in the dining section on a Thursday at 5:30PM and waited for 10 minutes. Nothing. Went up to the bar to see if we could get some attention, and it took me 5 minutes to get the bartender's attention. I was practically waving my hand in the guy's face. After ordering some drinks from our new waitress, we waited another 10 minutes. Nothing. The place was almost empty except for the bar, and the waitress had "forgotten" about us! The porter was nice. After waiting 30 more minutes, our appetizer sampler was served. Pretty crappy. Seemed like microwaved frozen food. The IPA was not good. The scotch was decent but not much to my liking. We decided to eat our main meal somewhere else.
This place is definitely a bar and should not try to be a restaurant. Despite the crap service, this strikes me as a good place to hang out with your guy buddies and have a few beers. Might not be a place for the ladies (the two I was with said it was dirty, shady, and not a place they would go to again). With happy hour from 4-7pm m-f including 1/2 price apps and $1 pints, I would go again just for that.

A guy's place to relax and have some beers.

Photo of ColForbin
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Milly's Tavern is located in the basement of an old textile mill in Manchester (hence the name). There is no obvious sign outside that they brew their own beer. It has nice brick walls and big old windows, but unfortunately, not much thought was put into the decor. The tables and chairs seem like they came from a rummage sale. Some people might like this, but I think in such a grand old building, it might be nice if it was a little more put together.

We were there early on a Friday night and the crowd was dominated by locals. My wife and I sat at the bar. I ordered a Manch-Vegas IPA and my wife (being pregnant) ordered a root beer. She was told that they were all out of home-brewed root beer. Later, however, we saw another bartender serving the root beer to someone else. I flagged him down and asked him to get one for my wife - he had to go to the fridge in the kitchen to get it, but at least he didn't lie like the first guy. I was pretty disappointed.

The IPA, however, was not disappointing - extremely hoppy and fresh with a ton of grapefruity cascade goodness. The food was pub fare - the menu wasn't extensive, but what they had, they made well. The chili for 4.25 is a huge bowl with fresh jalapenos on top served with chips. It was a great meal for not a lot of money. I was traveling, so I only could sample one beer, but if it is any indication, the rest of them should be pretty good.

We missed the happy hour by about 15 minutes. It was advertised as being from 4-7 Mon-Fri and sounded like a great deal: $1 drafts, 1/2 price appetizers and $2 well drinks (yes, they do have a full liquor license). They also serve a couple bottled macros for those of you with less-enlightened friends. Milly's is a pretty good place to stop for a pint if you are passing through, and with live music on the weekends, would be a pretty good place to hang out if you live in the area.

Photo of Bierman9
4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I have now (26FEB04) added a food review to my original review below. Dined here last night prior to a Monarchs game w/Alewife and my Daughters. All dug a combo platter appetizer of mozzarella sticks, chicken fingers and potato skins. Alewife and I dug our Bo's Burgers, and the girls wolfed their chicken finger platters. Typical pub-grub, yes, but plentiful and tasty. We don't go for any fancy fru-fru stuff. And, apps are 1/2 price from 4-7P Monday thru Friday (as well as $1.00 pints!!! Except the Bo's Scotch Ale, at 8% abv, was a whopping $2.00 per pint!!). Service was good, overall, but the place smells smoky even when few smokers are present. Only bummer.

overall: 4.08
atmosphere: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$

*** ***

(Original review of 21APR02): Milly's is located on the site of the former Stark Mill Brewery, which closed in late 2001. Same head-brewer running the show. Had 9 biers on tap yesterday, with a pilsner-type lager, IPA, Scotch ale, porter and stout among them. IPA and Scotch were both quite good; and samples of the others were similarly decent. Service good, but we were there at an off-peak time. Will have to see how they are at busy times... Pints were $3.25ea, except the Scotch Ale (8%abv), at $5.00/pint. They do 6- or 8-bier samplers, too. Prosit!

8

Photo of BillyBrew
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

I really dig this place and wish I appreciated it more when I worked in town.

It took me a few trips to find it, but it is almost under the Bridge Street bridge. Pretty much the basement of an old mill, down a flight into the door and down another half-flight to the bar. A very dark bar even in the afternoon with windows along one side. Very little decoration. A few large, brewery-related paintings of Stark Mill Brewery brews (from before my time). I enjoy how a great brewpub is tucked away in a dark basement, in a dark mill, in a dark city. I hear the nightlife at Milly's is active, but I have never been later the about 7 pm.

I have enjoyed all of thier brews that I have tried, only passing on a few of about ten or 12. They all are extra smooth from extra time spent conditioning. The extra effort is very appreciated. One note is the cream ale, as rare as they are, tasety and smooth.

I have never been there with more than about ten people total, so the service has been great.

The food is limited, but pretty solid and reasonable.

Well worth the effort to find.

Cheers!

Photo of artied2
3.85/5  rDev +0.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Milly's Tavern in Manchester under the bridge....as you will have read elsewhere, used to be called Stark Mill Brewery. Food's OK, the french onion soup was actually very good, mostly pub grub and non-spectacular at that. Good selection of brewed beers, one of my favorite IPAs here, but something for every taste; red ale, brown ale, porter, stout.... Art the brewer keeps a variety of offerings. The only unfortunate thing is their tendency to keep serving beer long after it has lost its sparkle. For example, here it is September/almost October, and today's special was Summer Wheat for a buck a pint....ouch. Art told us there's an Oktoberfest and a pumpkin ale aging, and should be ready "soon". It is certainly worth the trip up the turnpike to give them a try. In a large venue like a beer summit, the beers from Millie's (the fresh ones, not the Summer Wheat in the dead of winter) would compare well with a lot of their better known counterparts. Smoky place sometimes and usually empty on Saturday afternoons, which allows me to get my butt kicked by my wife at the pool tables in the back without any witnesses.
Give it a try...

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Milly's Tavern / Stark Brewing Company in Manchester, NH
87 out of 100 based on 47 ratings.