The Dive Bar
Taps: 16 / Bottles: 70
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 24 | Reviews: 22 | Show All Ratings:
4.83/5 rDev +5.9%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | $$
Somehow the Dive Bar evaded me for the first 3.5 years or so of my craft beer immersion. Not until I moved recently to the Worcester area did I get around to visiting.
Inside the Dive Bar is well, like a dive bar. Plain, semi-dated decor on the inside with an atmosphere that feels like a classic dive. No fancy things to look at and focus on, just the bar and the patrons really. One TV rests above the bar on which they sometimes play movies, Pulp Fiction this past week. In the summers the atmosphere really becomes fantastic with the OUTDOOR PATIO. In caps because it is my favorite thing about this place. Tons of space and seating in a comfortable outdoor setting, hop plants cascading down the fencing. A great atmosphere for having great beer.
Quality is great. Alec runs both Dive Bar and Armsby Abbey. He knows how to pour his beers and keep everything above standard. The beers always taste fresh and the glasses always promote great head retention. I have never found anything to complain about with quality of the product.
Like the quality, the service follows suit. The bartenders usually know plenty about the beer on draft and available by bottle/can. Servers are quick to get you beer and always helpful if you are staring at the list in question. No snobbery like some similar places can convey.
Selection is always quite nice with the moderate amount of taps present. Last time I visited they had Tart of Darkness and FW Double DBA for the higher end offerings as well as super affordable locals from Jacks Abby, Hoponius Union and Copper Legend, both stupidly fresh. I always expect to find one or two limited things with a great local or solid seasonal selection supporting that.
Prices here are Central MA standards. Usually there are 5-6 beers on draft for $5-6 a pint which is always very nice. The rare and limited drafts usually run around $8-10 which is also about as good as it gets these days.
Dive Bar has become my go to beer destination on any night of the week since I live less than 10 minutes away. Probably my favorite bar in Central MA and something I will miss when I move out of this area.
09-11-2013 15:29:36 | More by cbutova
5/5 rDev +9.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
Been going to The Dive for 10 years - yes 10 years. I have been there throughout the changes in the bar scene, staff and beer selections. I might be a bit biased since I am a retired bartender from The Dive but to this day I still love going there. If you want to have a good beer, in a dark spot with chill music then this is your place. The beer garden is also a great spot to just chill outside in. The staff that is there is knowledgeable and friendly. I love you guys!!
09-05-2013 20:29:54 | More by Sarah-Jean
4.5/5 rDev -1.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
The Dive Bar has become my destination of choice for New Year's Eve. It is typically relatively quiet, yet not dead on that day, offering a pretty laid-back environment to hang out with a few friends and enjoy quality brews (on the other hand, though, it is entirely possible-if not probable-that on other nights, particularly when live music is being played, the Dive becomes a bit more noisy and hectic.) Since I no longer live in the area, my visits here are usually limited to once a year.
The bar itself is dark and somewhat grungy. That is meant in a positive way. There is little glitz, few bells and whistles, and no plasma screen t.v.'s offering sporting events. Those drawing points belong to other places. There is, however, plenty of beer and diving paraphanalia. Most interesting, is the visually-pleasing, authenticly old-fashioned metallic diving helmet that brings to mind an excusionary expedition from an oceanic vessel straight out of Jules Verne. At the back of the establishment is a small, open area sometimes occupied by local bands plying their trade. Throughout, this single-room establishment maintains a homey environment due to a good deal of ambiance-enhancing candlelight. The bar is pretty long, seating 20-25 people, and there a few additional small tables. Overall, I'd guess seating capacity stands around 40. It is a very small place, a hole-in-the-wall so to speak, but comfortable none the less.
Selection and quality are pretty much top-notch. Beers are almost exclusively (if not exclusively) of the American craft variety. The draft list is somewhere in the range of 15-20 and offers a good representation of local breweries like BBC, Pretty Things, High and Mighty, and Mayflower, as well as national standbys such as Weyerbacher, Port Brewing, Ommegang, Smuttynose, Dogfish Head, Victory, Stone, Bear Republic, and many, many others. Bottle selection is somewhere in the neighborhood of 20-40 choices. This respectable number is peppered with high-quality standbys and a couple of legendary brews. Glassware is always chosen judiciously and beers are poured properly at appropriate temperatures.
Service is always great. Barkeeps are willing to offer sample pours, give advice, and help to liven any conversation. I have been impressed that the servers actually have remembered me on visits that were separated by a full calendar year.
The Dive Bar doesn't offer any food inside. There is, however, a sausage stand outside that will take orders and deliver their goods to your seat inside. Good drinking food, too!
Beware, the Dive does not take credit cards.
Overall, this is one of my favorite beer bars to visit. I make a point to try to stop in during holiday visits home. If you're in the area and in the mood for a relatively cheap night of good American brews in a relaxed environment, you simply must visit this place.
01-02-2011 23:41:45 | More by macpapi
3.7/5 rDev -18.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | $$
I have to say that the Dive is being ignored lately. I've been going there for 3 years- at least 15 times.
Take a look at the last time the online beer list has been updated (12/17)- 6 weeks!Lots of crossed-out beers on the beer list last 3 times I've visited. Seems the owner is ignoring this location in favor of the (more profitable?) downtown location at the Armsbey Abbey. Please pay more attention to the Green Street location or just close it down and be done with it.
Maybe it's all gone to his head??
02-07-2010 21:45:43 | More by mgmfallon
4.66/5 rDev +2.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $
A great place, certainly beats any bar in the area. Comfortable atmosphere, friendly, knowledgeable staff, and an always changing selection of great beer.
For a brew novice like me, it's the perfect place to stop by once a week and try new things at a reasonable price.
As a side note, while I was living in Montreal, my favorite bar (for the people, not the beer) was the Barfly. It was a really comfortable, laid-back place that had great bands off the musically beaten path, where the owner would drop in each night with his two old dogs who would make their way around the place checking out the sometimes packed-in crowds. The Dive Bar is the closest I've come to that in Worcester, plus awesome beer (there's even a dog in there every now and again). Can't beat that.
Again - great place, highly recommended.
11-19-2009 16:32:05 | More by CristobalWJ
4.36/5 rDev -4.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
My first official visit to The Dive Bar and it's a shame I put it off so long. It is really the perfect place to enjoy great beer in my mind. Small but comfortable. A long bar in a dark setting with a couple of understated televisions to gaze at and a friendly bartender. The selection is really wonderful, especially for domestic micros. Many of the best brewers are represented and I believe it rotates pretty regularly. Avery's Hog Heaven, Founder's Dirty Bastard, Great Divide's Wood Aged DIPA and easily another fifteen or more beauties on tap, and very little lightweight stuff here. I was surprised at the number of high ABV selections they offered, no complaints here. Although the atmosphere is somewhat of a "dive", as the name states, it is really not at all off the charts low life. It's just comfortable, with great music playing and an amicable attitude amongst the customers and staff alike. And $6 a pint for some of this great quality brew is not bad at all these days. I hated to leave after only two pints but I will be certain to stop by regularly in the future. A new favorite stop for me!
07-01-2009 21:42:16 | More by Durge
4.36/5 rDev -4.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $
I really like the Dive. It's got that quaint friendly hole-in-the-wall vibe, but really is much more than that. It's got a punny dive (as in, dive into the water) theme, so there's lots of old random nautical equipment, and even a fish screensaver on the TV when there's no game on. Very friendly staff, live music frequently including live jazz on Monday from my man Big Al. The place is small but they do a good job with selection. Always some interesting draughts such as Sixpoint, Bear Republic, BBC, Stone, and always a few surprises or something I don't always see elsewhere. Bottle list is small but tight - not really any unworthy beers on there. Wish they had a cask, but like I said it's small, they probably wish they had one too. No food either, but I think you can bring in snacks. If in Worcester, definitely check out the Armsby Abbey owned by the same folks. It's bigger, more selection, and a bit more upscale, but there's something about the Dive that just can't be beat.
Edit: I guess I must've missed the cask, apparently they do tap one every Thursday so be sure to find out about that...
04-09-2009 14:50:32 | More by twelvsies
4.5/5 rDev -1.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
This place is a real panacea in Central Massachusetts.
From the outside it looks like the name suggests- a dive. When you get in the atmosphere is pleasant. Don't judge it by it's outside appearance. Nautical odds and ends decorate the bar to go with the name. Air conditioning and a patio outside make it comfortable.
The beer selection is great. Lots of taps, cask, and a huge bottle list. Beers were served in proper glassware. Nothing to complain about here.
Service was friendly and knowledgeable. The bartender said they are expanding with food and more space soon. Very good all around.
This is a great place. Highly reccomended. Best in place west of Boston in my opinion.
07-20-2008 02:45:25 | More by gotbeer
4.94/5 rDev +8.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
The Dive Bar is hands down the best beer bar in Worcester, although that's not really saying much as generally quality beer establishments in "Wista" are few and far between. But I can't think of a better one anywhere in Worcester County.
It's got great beer vibe, long narrow room with the bar running the length, sporting many taps, 16 I think. Nautical paraphernalia, hence the name "Dive", and craft beer signs adorn the walls. There are live bands and a cask on Thursdays, both are usually great. Also no domestic swill beer is served, which is a plus, but also there is no food at all which is kind of a bummer even a few snacks would be good between beers, no food to interfere with beer bliss I guess.
The quality is top notch, the tap beers rotate weekly so they are always fresh, unless aging is appropriate in which case the beer is cellared accordingly, not to mention the taping system is cleaned regularly. The cask is typically tapped and finished the same day and served at the appropriate temp. The glassware is impeccable, spotless and proper for the style or brand, no questions on quality here.
Service is again stellar, the bartenders are knowledgeable about the beers, answering questions with beer prowess and making poignant suggestions for the less experienced patrons as well as elaborating on the finer points for the higher beer IQ folk. Always sure to serve in the proper glassware and welcome comments and suggestions.
Selection, beer nirvana! Like 16 killer beers on tap, always rotating, just SOME that I have sampled on tap, Allagash White, Dubbel and the Black on cask, BBC Raspberry Strong ale, Imperial Stout and Cabin Fever cask, Stone Imperial Russian, Southern Tier Choklat, Ommegang Rare, Unibroue Trois Pistoles, Sixpoint Brownstone, Youngs Doubble Chocolate and Oatmeal stouts, Dogfish Chicory stout, Mayflower IPA cask (unbelievable) and several outstanding Belgians I just can't remember the names off hand. The bottle selection is also off the hook but I never seem to get there with all the taps in the way.
Ever since I walked in after the new owners took over and converted it from a real dive, I fell in love, I try to make it at least once a week, 40 minute drive for me. No disappointments here for true beer lovers, highly recommended!
05-13-2008 04:34:31 | More by LoboLikesBeer
4.8/5 rDev +5.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I have been in Worcester since 02 and have been to many bars around the area. This place is like my own little heaven on Green Street. I don't live to far from the bar so taking a nice walk (when its not to cold) down to the dive is a good time. When I originally heard about the dive I didn't know what I was getting into. I opened the door to see a whole bunch of nautical stuff and it actually clicked... The Dive Bar, not really a dive but a dive bar it all made sense. I sat down at the far end of the bar and opened the menu. My first thought was "Wow, you don't ever see this selection of craft brews at any other bar". Then I noticed the big chalk board next to me listing off all of the beers on tap. Could that really be St. Bernardus abt 12 on tap, it was glorious.
The quality of the beer is always spectacular. I know there is always going to be a beer for everyone there to enjoy. The glasses are always clean as well as the taps and lines. When I go out to a bar I don't want piss in a cup, I actually like to taste what I am drinking. I could be in the mood for a really hopful flavor to the rich texture and complexity of a stout, I know that the dive always has something for whatever mood I am in.
The service is always awesome, the bartenders are always nice and they know so much about what they are serving. Its always refreshing to see the owner and all of the bartenders taking pride in their knowledge and the bar itself.
The selection is great, the bottles are pretty regular but the 16 taps change from week to week. One of my favorite things to do is to get a sampler. That way you get to try 4 different beers and you don't have to worry, if you dont like it you dont have to suffer through a whole glass. If you do like it then you can order a tall one. The cask is always a good option too, bottle and tap are pretty similar but having a beer on cask is a whole new experience.
They dont have any food. (not yet anyway, I cant wait for the abby to open)
As a side note, I am a big fan of the glassware they have there too. Its nice to actually be able to drink a beer the way its ment to be consumed.
If you want to get a bud light or anything like that you should try some of the different beers that they serve. There are many more flavorful alternatives which everyone can enjoy.
04-01-2008 18:32:58 | More by Azurelimits
The Dive Bar in Worcester, MA
98 out of 100 based on 24 ratings.