Taps: 22 / Bottles: 85
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 111 | Reviews: 94 | Show All Ratings:
4/5 rDev -14%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
A little re-reviewing after my second visit to Armsby Abbey. Busy on a Friday night at around 9:30pm but we managed to find a table. Service was excellent. I finally got to try the smoked bone marrow and it was spectacular. But I'm knocking down the "selection" score because, again, I was disappointed by the lack of variety. Lots of weird European beers you never heard of, and a ton of IPA's, but not a good Imperial Stout or big beer in sight. Great bottle selection with vintages and rarities, but pricey.
It is the wife’s birthday weekend and we are headed to Maine, where we spent a beautiful birthday years back. Worcester (say “Woosta”) is on the way, so why not enjoy some art at the museum and have lunch at Armsby Abbey!
Located in Downtown Woosta, this is a high-quality beer joint in a town more likely to drink Bud Light than quality beer. Unfortunately, the interior is bland,generic, lacking personality. Soulless like a McMansion, or imagine Applebee’s doing a beer bar. There is no charm here.
But you’re in for a good time here, with good beers and food. The draft list showcases rare and pricey beers from Europe and elsewhere (Hitachino Nipponia, $12; Oppigards Amarillo, $9; De Molen Op&Top, $10, Spain’s Guineu Riner, 2.5%) plus local/regional drafts from Allagash, Sixpoint, Hill Farmstead, Pretty Things… plus Port and Anderson Valley from Cali. All around good,with some treasures (Hill Abner!!!) but lacking variety. No Imperial Stouts, barleywines or big beers.
Food is mighty nice. We had “rillons”, which is deep-fried pork belly, and tried to have the smoked bone marrow but they were out. The bacon-onion pizza was delicious too, and huge. A ton of cheeses, but pricey. Pizza and apps are a better option.
Prices are all over. Hill Abner only $6, imports $9-$10, no price listed on cocktails and spirits but wine does have it. Great bottle selection with cool stuff like Parabola, but pricey ($35 for Parabola, $55 for Old Stock Reserve).
Very good service at lunch on a Friday and overall a great experience. Will return next time I happen to be in Woosta. Oh, parking before 5pm is street only and not too easy… plan accordingly.
10-27-2012 18:50:26 | More by DoubleSimcoe
4.95/5 rDev +6.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Excellent bartenders. Well informed and very helpful as is the wait staff. THe food is interesting and never disappointing. Great, interesting unusual pizzas. excellent macaroni and cheese. If you have non beer drinkers in your party they have good mixed drinks I am told. Breads are excellent and made there. Ambiance is great,. No TV, Music, and other noise. You can actually hear the people you go with.
The beers on tap represent the world and the US. Great choices, nice people, all around a great place to go for a drink and a bite to eat.
10-04-2012 23:10:27 | More by 00766
5/5 rDev +7.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$
The Abbey was one of the first places I checked out when I moved to the MetroWest part of MA. I've never ever been disappointed during any of my visits.
It does start with the atmosphere. Initially it does seem to come off as high-end, but once you get settled in, you realize that it's just as welcoming as any comfort/dive bar you've been in. The bartenders are always nice and very cordial, willing to help out with your beer/food choice. When it gets busy, this, as expected, gets toned down, but you must understand that basically everything they do is labor-intensive. They're not just pouring you a cocktail, they're creating it in front of you. Even when pouring beer, if the pour isn't just right, they'll do whatever it takes to make sure it is.
The selection is unbelievable. On-tap, I honestly think they blow any place in Boston completely out of the water. Their bottle selection is extensive and its always worth checking out as they get any possible Cantillon that is sold in the state, although the Cantillon bottle prices are a tad higher than in some places i've gone to in Boston, but at the same time, I've had Fou Foune and '09 LP Kriek on tap for about $8-$9, so that's not something I'd hold against them.
The food has never been a disappointment. The prices are probably a tad more than most would like to pay, but it is also comforting to know where all your food is coming from. Not to mention everything is of top-notch quality. The brunch also may be the best in the state.
I know some will laugh at me suggesting that the value is reasonable here, but for what you are getting, it really can't be beat. Highly recommended.
09-15-2012 18:35:32 | More by GonzoHomebrewer
5/5 rDev +7.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$$
Armsby Abbey is hands down the best place to "experience" beer in the area, in all of Massachusetts, and possibly beyond. Alec Lopez the owner goes the extra mile to acquire the worlds finest beers on a regular basis. Always a good mix. Always something for everyone. Their bottle list is very extensive and he always keeps a selection of rarities in there to tickle the connoisseur. The staff is very friendly and informative and downright AWESOME. They also now how to navigate you into a pleasant experience if you are new to these kinds of beers or have a preference to certain styles. They allow tastes as well so you will never get poured a beer that you might hate. Food is out of this world. Many a whole pig have been slaughtered for your culinary delight. The produce is all sourced from local farms as is the cheese. The Cheese plates draw me back time and time again. What better to cut the edge of a De Dolle Dulle Teve than a nice hannibelle? My only complaint about the Armsby Abbey is that the tap handles could be made of artisanal hand blown glass that would be cool.
06-11-2012 14:56:45 | More by grotonmarketguy
4.15/5 rDev -10.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Worcester, particularly the downtown area, does not have too many positive connotations associated with it. However, it has gotten better in recent years. One of the businesses that seems to have helped in this is Armsby Abbey.
There is a long bar, as well as a good number of tables. For taps, I believe they have about 20 selections. During a couple visits, I have seen MA brewers including Mayflower, Jack`s Abbery, BBC, others. New England as a whole gets attention, and some Belgians and other US brewers are in the mix as well. For bottles, there is a list with some great options covering different styles, but is not one of those bottles lists that sometimes are larger than necessary.
Food is very good, although a bit expensive. Service is very good, even when they are busy. It is nice to see that have done so well, and with that, it can get crowded at "peak dining/bar hours".
06-09-2012 13:55:19 | More by mltobin
4.7/5 rDev +1.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
Located in an unassuming city in central MA Armsby Abbey has 22 rotating drafts and tons and tons of bottles ranging from $5-$65. The beer prices are reasonable and the selection is great and always changing for the drafts. You could probably come here every day and never have to drink the same thing twice, and you will definitely be ordering more than one beer. The food was nice and the waitresses know what goes well with what; atmosphere was also really good. Packed by 5pm on the weekends!
Reservations for parties of six or more only.
05-26-2012 00:07:52 | More by GalenAnderson
4.48/5 rDev -3.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$$
I've lived in Westborough all my life and I recently just found this hidden gem in the Worcester area. I took my now ex girlfriend out for her birthday her and she loved it.
The atmosphere is probably the biggest drawback being overly dark so it's hard to see anything. But that's as bad as it gets. It's a clean bar and well taken care of.
The service is incredible every waitress/bartender has a good deal of knowledge of what they are talking about and always makes good recommendations with a smile on their face. It's obvious that they love where they work. Why wouldn't you? They get your food and drink out to fast and properly. You can tell they really respect the beer they serve which is always a plus.
Selection-This is my favorite part. For a "beer bar" their selection is out of control. I get as excited as Todd Haug right before he meets people like Kerry King, Vinny Paul or Max Calvera. I'm a huge lambic/geuze fan so you can imagine my content when I see Cantillon on the menu and it's served to me in a Cantillon tulip glass. It seems that they have almost every glass to match every beer they serve. (Being a beer glass collector this excites me to see such rare pieces being served to the public). Their great selection ranges from Cantillon, Founders Breakfast Stout, Aerobier, Fantome, Drie Fountaine, Lost Abbey, Mikkeller, Firestone XV, Stille Nacht, Rigor Mortis by Brasserie Deiu du Ciel,
to all sorts of stuff. With over 130 bottles on tap even the most hardcore beer snob would be hard pressed to find something he didn't enjoy. Oh did I forget to mention that they also have 22 taps which always are changing up.
The food is great and pretty basic. I recommend the mac and cheese it's to die for.
The Abbey is a little bit on the expensive side but that's the cost of being able to drink things you would have a lot of difficulty finding in even Julios or Marty's.
03-27-2012 16:18:55 | More by SalMineo
4.83/5 rDev +3.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$$
I've lived in Worcester for most of my life and let me tell you, I did NOT expect to ever find a place like this here. The atmosphere is awesome. It's hard to explain but it's old fashioned and modern at the same time. I really don't know how to describe it except the perfect beer bar atmosphere. There aren't even any TVs in the whole place so there's no chance of someone stumbling in thinking that it's a sports bar. This place is designed for people who want to hang out and drink great beer. Speaking of great beer, the selection is fantastic. One of the best menus I've ever seen. The prices are a little steep especially for some of the harder to find bottles but that's expected. The quality is great as well and the staff really knows what they're doing when it comes to their beer, the right glassware, and the correct pour. I was thoroughly impressed. Also regarding the staff, the service was pretty quick, especially when it comes to keeping you filled up with beer. I was here on a Tuesday night, and I imagine it could get pretty busy on weekends, so maybe I lucked out on the service end. I also had dinner here and the food was great. I went with my family, and food that we all got included hummus for an appetizer, the soup du jour which was tomato, lentil, and bacon soup, the beets salad, mac n' cheese, and tomato & mozzarella pizza and everything was delicious.
Unfortunately I don't live in the Worcester area anymore, but whenever I come back, I'll be sure to stop in at Armsby Abbey again. If you're in the area and haven't been here yet, do yourself a favor and go. I highly, highly recommend it.
03-21-2012 14:39:16 | More by BlackBelt5112203
4.9/5 rDev +5.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$$
One of my favorite places for both beer and food, and I try and stop in whenever I can.
They have 22 rotating taps that change every few days of mostly Belgian and obscure beers. They also have a lot of bottles available along with a selection of craft liquors.
The food is very good and has many local farm sourced ingredients. The Mac and cheese is my favorite, along with the always excellent desserts. Brunch is really tasty on the weekends as well.
If you are in the Worcester area and are looking for good food and/or high quality beer you should definitely give them a try.
03-17-2012 22:33:56 | More by bled
4.58/5 rDev -1.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$
Great spot. Pleasant atmosphere for lunch. Delicious healthy food. The beer selection was broad, well chosen, and novel. Beer was well served. I started with the Farmhouse Edward on tap, and then had a Saison Dupont from the bottle with my delicious sausage and leek pizza. Struck up a conversation with a real beer guru at the bar and learned a bunch, including about Beer Advocate! I have not been able to get beer off my mind since, and I had no idea that Worcester has a place like this. I definitely will be coming back soon.
01-03-2012 23:24:51 | More by ajc4
Armsby Abbey in Worcester, MA
100 out of 100 based on 111 ratings.