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Gritty McDuff's Brew Pub & Restaurant

Not Rated.
Gritty McDuff's Brew Pub & RestaurantGritty McDuff's Brew Pub & Restaurant
BA SCORE
89
very good

48 Ratings
Ratings: 48
Reviews: 35
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 12.31%
Active Beers: 1
Beer Ratings: 2
Beer Avg: 3.52
Taps: 0
Bottles: 0
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

187 Lower Main St
Freeport, Maine, 04032-1002
United States
phone: (207) 865-4321

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @grittys

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: JohnnyP)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 48 | Reviews: 35 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brewandbbq
3.65/5  rDev -6.4%

Nestled just a short distance south of Freeport center, but not really walkable on a cold day.
Typical communal tables in the Gritty's tradition, plenty of knotty pine with a rustic flair. Some rather risque murals are found on the walls.
The waitress was able to recite the beers on tap, while omitting the Oatmeal stout on nitro. Friendly enough and non obtrusive.
The food came quickly and it was hot. The fish and chips were terrificly hot, crispy, and tasty. My wife enjoyed her haddock sandwich with fries. Both entrees were on the meager side. $8.99 for the fish n' chips which was mostly fries with 3 small pieces of haddock. The haddock sandwich had one small piece in it.
They had two cask offerings, of which the scotch ale was very good. Creamy, not too sweet, and in perfect cask shape.
The "large oatmeal stout" on nitro was tasty as well, but hardly "large". Other beers available were the "Vacationland", bitter, and pale ale. Pretty mainstream beers, but that what Gritty's has always excelled with.
By 9pm or so, they were already packing up the place. The benches were being put up on the tables, and felt we should finish up promptly. It seemed early to close up even for a Monday night.
Maybe it's time for Gritty's to bring the beers and food up another level.

brewandbbq, Apr 13, 2007
Photo of lehows
4.28/5  rDev +9.7%

I love this place! Located just south of the shopping district on Route 1 in Freeport. Bar is to the right after you walk in, picnic style tables to eat at in the pub room as well. There is also a great outdoor deck in the back and a cool gift shop in the front where you can pick up beer to-go and other assorted Gritty's gear. What can I say, the beers here are top notch. The Black Fly Stout is just amazing and one of my favorite dry Irish stouts. My girlfriend loves the Raspberry Wheat. The Christmas Ale is also one of my top favs. My routine is to hit L.L. Bean after leaving this place at like 2 am after all the tourists are asleep. This is a must stop if you are driving up 95 or route 1. You'll love it.

lehows, Jan 07, 2007
Photo of msolar
4.33/5  rDev +11%

This is currently my #1 brewpub choice.

We’ve made it a regular stop on any trip up 95 to Maine. The food is better than John Harvard’s but the price is much more reasonable, especially if you buy their specials. (Their stout for $3 a pint!)

My wife loves their food and lighter beers, there’s never been a wait at the Freeport restaurant (Portland can be a wait sometimes), the food is great at a really good price, there’s good outdoor seating, and a good variety of great beers. What more is there?

…And you can always mosey through LL Bean to digest.

msolar, Sep 20, 2006
Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%

Gritty McDuff's is situated on the outskirts of the Freeport, ME shoppign center, just south of the big LL Bean. THe atmosphere is a little different. instead of having single party tables, thay have very long picnic type tables that seat 2-3 parties at once. unique and interesting. unless youre an introvert, it forces you at ties to talk to others which is nice.

i didnt get a chance to try anything off tap this time, but i took some home and was impressed. i cant wait for the autumn to try their Halloween ale.

the food was amazing. i am a huge fan of pub meatloaf and theirs was phenomenal. Their selection wasnt to varied, at least for the lunch menu.

Dollar wise it was pretty standard for a brewpub. Well worth the trip.

sinstaineddemon, Mar 14, 2006
Photo of charlesw
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%

Ah Gritty's... Well, it's in the top 10 brewpubs in the country. Um, what? How the hell is that possible in Freeport, Maine? There are two key factors at work, here... One is about being on the main drag in the main tourist destination for the state (that's a pretty big factor!). The other is about being the closest drinking establishment to several of the LL Bean factories (warehouses, whatever). Well, trust me, there's always a healthy Bean group at Gritty's. And there's always a healthy group of tourists.

It's pretty clean and light and "airy" for a brew pub. Which is kind of nice given how dark and closed in many feel. And yet the very diversity of the people coming in keeps it from being, for me, a good "local".

They try to go local and a little special on the food menu and specials with things like scallop wraps, for example. Most of the non-specials are pub food. The calamari that I had today was VERY BAD.

So, yeah, that was trash talk. Well, the cask beer there is really quite good. I mean, wow. The Halloween on cask is the top. Wow. Awesome. Incredible. I mean, hey, it's probably right up there as Maine's second-best beer. No kidding. Good stuff.

Yes, yes, it's surely worth it if you're in the area to stop by for a pint. Try to avoid going on a weekday from 3 to 5 and, well, lunch time in summer is crazy busy. Oh, and don't go hungry!

charlesw, Sep 30, 2005
Photo of jmz62565
4.33/5  rDev +11%

after a long day of exciting shopping, and hearing "how does this look,honey?" it's nice to walk into a place where quality and relaxation is the name of the game.they have numerous beers on tap,each with there own qualities,and a very good menu.the service is good and very down home.this place has alot of tourists and locals,and i've aways found the locals very nice.the beer is very good,but the food is excellent.Now i can't wait to hear the words "honey, can we go to L.L.Bean?
p.s. you have got to try the fried chicken sandwich,yum yum.

jmz62565, Sep 09, 2005
Photo of HoorayBeer
4.25/5  rDev +9%

Went to Gritty's this weekend. It is a nice place, close to L.L. Bean in Freeport. There is a store with all their brew attire right in front.
Picnic table style seating, two benches and a table. Really quite different from other brew pubs.
We sat outside since it was nice outside. Relaxing place, not a lot of memoribilia on the walls. Two seperate bars, 8 taps per bar, includes seasonals.
Food was decent, a different variety. I had the clam chowder, which was real good, and a spinach and portabella mushroom quesadilla.
All round, good experience.

HoorayBeer, Jul 31, 2005
Photo of ChappyCubsFan
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%

I was expecting much more from my first trip to Gritty McDuff's. I tried their sampler of beers. The IPA was the only beer that got my attention, and they don't bottle it. The place looks very rustic from the outside and as you enter, there is a fairly large store on the right that is set apart from the restaurant where they sell all their t-shirts, bottled beer, pint glasses and several other items. I tried an appetizer and the wife tried a dessert. The food was good. There is large fenced-in area for the kids to run around, almost like a pen. It gave the impression you were on a farm with a pond nearby. The mosquitos kept attacking me as I attacked the beer sampler. Anyway, to sum it up. It was a fun place to visit, but the beers just were not that great. I did purchase a bottle of the Gritty's Best Bitter and drank it later during the New England tour. It was OK.

ChappyCubsFan, Jul 30, 2005
Photo of villainchiwwin
3.9/5  rDev 0%

stopped by on the way to a show in portland. friendly waitstaff, good selection of food and gritty's brews on tap. meals were decent, nothing to come back for (although the beer was). decor was neither striking nor gaudy - sort of generic. outdoor seating was night on a sunny afternoon. although the place was busy, there was good energy and quick service. i'll definately return sometime for appetizers and a few pints. plan a stop if you're in freeport. check out the annex with the store; they sell 12 packs of 22 oz. bombers and 5 liter mini-kegs of all their different brews.

villainchiwwin, Jul 07, 2005
Photo of Hagbard
4.63/5  rDev +18.7%

The other reviewers are spot on, so I'll try to be brief.

As you enter, you can go right or left. Right is the "Tap Room" and left is the "Dining Room." We entered the dining room and I'm not sure what the difference was. The tap room appeared to have a similar layout as the dining room. My only guess is that the tap room is smoking and the dining room is not.

Seating is on big picnic-table-like tables that could seat 6-8 on a side. The room is very large and has a beer hall atmosphere (I'm assuming because I've never been to a "real" beer hall). The menus are printed on newspaper quality paper, with tidbits about the history of the brewery on the side. The beer choices are printed on a laminated menu. On tap were Sebago Light, Best Brown, Best Bitter, Black Fly Stout, and Halloween Ale. They also had the Best Bitter and the Black Fly Stout on cask. Of course I had the 2 cask offerings, both of which were exquisite. I tried to show some of my dining companions the difference between their stout and my stout (cask) and I think I was fairly succesful.

The food seemed to be typical pub fare. I ordered the black jack chicken sandwich (blackened cajun style), which was very good. The shephard's pie looked very good also. The food seemed to be on the high side of average for a brewpub, but it definitely isn't the reason to go to Gritty's. You come here for the beer, that's clear.

The service was great, though it was late and there weren't many parties left so that should be expected. Still, our waitress was very friendly and attentive and was quick to provide refills when needed. No complaints.

There is a gift shop attached to the restaurant that apparently sells Gritty's merchandise plus 22 oz bombers. Unfortunately it was closed by the time we got there so I couldn't take any fresh beer home with me.

This is a must stop when visiting Freeport.

Hagbard, Nov 08, 2004
Photo of WanderingFool
3.8/5  rDev -2.6%

I stopped by Gritty's on my way home from a camping trip in Maine. It was father's day weekend and the place was packed. Parking was limited and we had to circle the lot a couple of times until somebody finally left. Luckily once inside my friends and I found a table right away.

The bar is spacious and reminded me of an english pub. There aren't many seats at the bar, however plenty of picnic tables to sit at along the opposite wall. There is an outside deck that provides additional seating on warm days. A large glass window at the end of the bar lets you look down to the brewing equipment.

We got a couple pitchers of their Vacation Land and brown ale. Both were delicious and cost $12 each. That's $3 per glass. They had about 10 beers on tap and a couple on cask. You can also purchase bombers to bring home for $3.50 each in their gift shop at the main entrance.

The service we had was slow at best. The girl serving us was also working the bar so she was running around ragged. I ordered a cheeseburger which was descent, but nothing out of the ordinary. My friends had no complaints about their food, but also felt it was only average.

One thing we learned that night was that mug club members get $1 drafts on Wednesday and Sunday nights. That's a great deal and I wish I lived a bit closer to take advantage of it. Gritty's offers fantastic beers in a comfortable environment. I'll definitly stop by again when in the Freeport area.

WanderingFool, Jun 21, 2004
Photo of yankeeheel
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%

What can I say about Gritty's that you don't already know? Not much.

I like going here every once in a blue moon. It's a good getaway from the usual bar scene of Portland. Gritty's Freeport is basically laid out as two symetrical rectangles. Left rectangle is the dining area, right rectangle is the bar side. The only difference between the two is that the dining area has rond tables and the bar side has long picnic tables. You can see the brewhouse from the bar side, however, when I go there there is never any activity. Out back is a deck where you can eat, drink, and laze away an afternoon if you like. Gritty's beers are always good quality and there is usually a cask selection on hand. I'm partial to the stout. Up frnt is a gift shop with a big selection of bombers and 6's, as well as Gritty wear.

Maybe I'm a food snob, but I don't find the food here good at all. It's just run of the mill pub fare, and not done well at that. Also, it's a bit overpriced for what it is. Come for the beer not the grub.

yankeeheel, Apr 17, 2004
Photo of moulefrite
4.58/5  rDev +17.4%

Cool place with VERY friendly staff and tasty brews. Stopped in just before my 40th birthday on a recomendation from a B&B owner in the area and I must say I had a most pleasant experience-And, I had our 15 month old daughter with! Picked up some cool local stuff from the gift shop for friends back home after some good pub grub. Tried the fine Halloween ale and a black fly stout. The waitress suggested we mix the stout with a raspberry ale for dessert-nice! Don't miss it if in Freeport, a comfy cozy place to hang your hat!

moulefrite, Oct 14, 2003
Photo of UnionMade
4.78/5  rDev +22.6%

Located right on the main drag in Freeport, down the street from L.L.Bean, it's kind of hard to miss this place. The sign is easy to see, even in the rain.
The exterior kind of looks like a converted house. Wedgewood gray siding, with some exposed log wood. They have a patio in back, with a vaguely rustic feel about the whole place. There's a gift shop to the right of the entrance, with anything and everything Gritty's, including take home beer in 12oz, 22oz, and minikeg sizes. Walking inside, the interior is spacious, but homey. The first thing you smell is the sweet aroma of mash. A mix of a rustic new england inn, a family restaurant, and an english pub. The dining area is to the left of hostess area, and the bar area is to right. We opted for the bar.
The bar area is very tavern like, with a rustic, country feel. Communal bench seating lines the left hand wall, with a beautiful brass bar on the right. All kinds of Gritty's stuff line the back bar, with 6-7 taps of brewpub fresh Gritty's beer, plus two beer engines for your cask ale enjoyment. The brewing tanks are located through a window on the end of the room. The menus look like newspapers, with plenty of little articles about Gritty's, their beer, and the brewing process. Quaint and enchanting.
The service is just spectacular. We were fortunate enough to have Scott Berry manning the bar, where we sat, and he accomodated us an any way he could. Our pints were poured expertly, he offered suggestions on the menu selections, and even allowed me a taste from the bottle of Lagavulin as an apertif. I asked if they had any unused bottle labels for my collection, and he returned with a stack, plus Greg Sansone, the head brewer. Greg was equally pleasant and accomodating, chatting with me for a few moments about beer and graciously accepting my praise before getting back to work.
Both the food and the beer were top notch. The menu covers everything from pub fare to a few fancy gourmet dishes. Their best bitter from the cask is probably worth the 5 hours from CT alone, and the excellent lobster stew was just icing on the cake. All the beer is extremely fresh, clean and properly served at the right temperature. I guess if I had to complain it would be that the halloween ale wasn't on cask yet, and they didn't have their IPA out yet. Boo hoo. The prices were also great, and definitely affordable, considering the touristy area.
This is easily one of the best brewpubs I've been to, across the board.

UnionMade, Oct 01, 2003
Photo of bennybrew
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%

ah! gritty's freeport. a refuge from shopping at the hundreds of llbean stores and other overcrowded outlet stores. and a fine refuge at that.

long wooden tables with benches that i think could seat 8 on a side. two rooms. one, to the right, is a smoking room with a nice bar and a view of the brewery. the other is non-smoking and has a smaller bar (5 seats or so). also there is a nice deck that i've never had a beer on as i rarely get to freeport in the short maine summer.
also a gift shop with ts, mugs and glasses, and cold and warm beer.

the beers are made right there and of fine quality. always something on cask (some for portland grittys). ALWAYS try the cask.

service is relaxed but not at all incompentent. friendly and knowledgeable without pressing or disappearing.

i believe they have the same menu as portland which consists of decent pub fare.

a must stop if in maine.

bennybrew, May 18, 2003
Photo of ecoboy
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%

I am so pleased that Gritty's Freeport location is riding better rating numbers than the Portland location here at BA. My beering and pub friends must have something against the great no-ceilinged mall of Freeport, because they mock my preferring the Freeport Gritty's.

I'll tell you why I prefer it: less cramped feel, more pleasant staff, and outdoor deck for warmer days. Don't get me wrong. As a big fan of Bukowsi in Boston, I know that a punky beer bar has it's place in my heart. But I can't take Bukowski's attitude seriously, and I really feel like every single person at Gritty's Freeport is psyched to serve me, with all attendant questions.

And, even when the place is crowded, it's seat yourself. Near the TV? Wanna look through the windows down at the brewery? Want a bench instead of a chair? Outside? Your choice. Nice.

Gritty's beers are consistantly outstanding, concentrating on British and Irish styles. The food menu turned away from more British fare in the past 5 years: no more steak and kidney pie, no more ploughman's lunch (sigh.) But the barley-coated sandwiches, the artichoke dip, the meatloaf with spinach wrapped into the meat still kick the patookus of places that just slide the same frozen stuff out of the box come mealtime.

ecoboy, Mar 27, 2003
Photo of slander
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%

Karl and Nance keep moving further and further away. One might begin to take that kind of thing personally, one might. We'll go up north every year or other, have a look at 'em, see if they can still stand us, we old college friends. Portland one day, Freeport the other, it's kind of what we do. The latter involves hitting the Bean store, and mulling around some of the other shops in town, including that freaky Civil War place. And then Grittys 'cause it's an easy sell for lunchtime phenomena...

Longer if not seemingly larger than the Portland location, maybe definitely it's just the spreadoutity of it all. Split this way and that way there, the action's in what you would consider the main room, a copper topped "J" shaped bar seating a dozen on the inside wall. Roughly 10 taps on a box tower on the bar and 2 handpumps down just past there. Cooler horizontal behind the bar holding stacked glassware, and counters over shelving to both sides holding booze & more. Pedastooled shelving above on the ends to both sides of a center flatscreen. Large ceramic mug club mug rack over the bar, more mugs on the back wall. Framed Best Bitter 22 in a stained glass box, a Real Ale '98 medal, trophies and such in the windows behind the bar.

8 picnic tables & a roundy on the end adjacent to the bar, and some bar counter space on a wall of windows, overlooking a sunken brewroom holding brick lined brew kettles. Red walls, beige walls to the rear over angled curtained windows, slat red wood below.
Deck out back and lower lawn below; I think they do something down there. Grayish teal ceiling with track spots and drop lamps over the seating. Framed pics, brewery signage, mirrors & trays, mug club Olympics pics, a collage of Gritty's kids which I hadn't really noticed before, hanging murals, and the giant map of Maine to remind you that you're so barely into the state. Taps written on a dry erase board on the end of the bar near a flatscreen there, and another to the rear over the brewroom. Other room, way down at the other end, holding 9 picnic tables & 3 roundies in the center running an "L" around a similar shaped bar to that on the other side. Smaller, tighter, not as lively, me thinks.

Lunching today, chili, yes, is good, yes, and the always amazing barley coated chicken sandwich, crispy crunchy goodness. Every time we go there, my friends mock me and pretend that they don't have it on the menu anymore because they know I eat it every time we're there and how I look forward to it. This sandwich is religion and may have saved my life. And I ain't goin' nowhere 'til I get me one of them blueberry-meth crisp dessert things, lovely. Food was good, as usual, everyone enjoyed their meals. And a beer or two. Started with the Black Fly Stout 'cause I do, and then had a Pale Ale, both were tasty.

Food's good, beer's good, no problems on the service side, and they've got a decent crowd here. Freeport and having been Beaned, we go Gritty.

***Revisit 6 years later on my every year or two's getting back up to Maine, lunchin' Freeport. Chowder of the day is Haddock & corn, was real tasty. Haddock is apparently, a fish, just so you know. And now I'm looking for the bestest chicken sandwich from ever; it used to be called the barley coated chicken sandwich, and was just that, but they renamed it the brewer's sandwich, 'cause I guess he liked it too. I don't see it on the menu and am freaking the fuck out, you know, on the inside. No, wait, it's here, they renamed it again, it's now called the chicken stacker. They need to stop screwing with me and changing its name up every few years. Seriously, I got all a-scared, but all is well now. And it was awesome, just like I remember it being.

7 house beers (Pub Style, Black Fly Stout, Best Brown, Best Bitter, 21 IPA, Raspberry Wheat, Sebago Light) and 2 seasonals (Strong Oatmeal Stout, Scottish) and 2 beers on cask (Blackfly Stout, 21 IPA). The Strong Oatmeal Stout (SOS), at 6.5%, you really get the alcohol; still it's nicely oaty and reeeeal smoooth; the 21 IPA, nice hoppiness, but oh, had a bit of butter to it; and the Scottish, seemed real light, but it was on the heels of the Black Fly Stout, so it's tough to say for sure.

Still Gritty's.

slander, Mar 01, 2003
Photo of BillyBrew
4.45/5  rDev +14.1%

Great destination spot or for just passers-by. Enjoyed by the locals and the 'Flatlanders' (the Out-of-state-folks).

Much larger than the Portland Gritty's. Very beer-hall-like atmosphere in a long building with large, long wooden tables. Two bars, copper glore. Big outdoor porch with big, open and green backyard. A few unobtrusive televisions. Complete with brewery and 'brewtique" for all your Gritty's needs. Our sever was great, even though he was also the barman. Everyone had fresh brews and plates and smiles on their faces.

Naturally, the beer is fantastic. Cask seasonals and the regular line-up. The food selection was good, although different from Portland's. More pizza (brick oven, I think), but a few less vegatarian options (the brewing-grain veggie burger was absent). Always great fish/seafood, the clam chowder was amazing.

Anyways, a great place that materializes Gritty's quality and style. Visit, then repeat. Cheers!

BillyBrew, Nov 03, 2002
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Gritty McDuff's Brew Pub & Restaurant in Freeport, ME
89 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.