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John Harvard's Brewery & Ale House

Not Rated.
John Harvard's Brewery & Ale HouseJohn Harvard's Brewery & Ale House
very good

40 Ratings
Ratings: 40
Reviews: 28
rAvg: 3.69
pDev: 10.84%
Active Beers: 194
Beer Ratings: 879
Beer Avg: 3.59
Taps: 0
Bottles: 0
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

1 Worcester Road
Framingham, Massachusetts, 01701
United States
phone: (508) 875-2337

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @johnharvards

(Linked Listing) None, yet.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 40 | Reviews: 28 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Hibernator:
Photo of Hibernator
3.9/5  rDev +5.7%

Classic John Harvard's layout with the nice dark wood and dim lights. Plenty of seating at the bar and dining room area with booths and tables.

Food is standard pub selection with a concentration on burgers, wraps, pizza, salads and apps. Also featured are enticing specials and other quality dishes. We started out with the chicken quesadillas and spilt a pizza & wrap. Food quality is better than average and enjoyable overall.

The beer selection is one of the main reasons you come here though, right? Expect a diverse draft beer selection of about 8 brews.

Selections during my visit included Rye Dunkel Lager, John Harvard's Pale Ale, Fat Turkey Brown Ale, Double Pilsner and Munich Light Lager. The featured beers were Harvest Spice Ale and Imperial Round House Belgian Stout (10.8% ABV).

Word to the wise, you can get a sampler platter that comes with 5 beers for $5.99. Pretty good deal.

I sampled a bunch of of their different beers and ended with the Imperial Round House Belgian Stout that was delicious. Good beers. Service was good too, our waiter was attentive, prompt, friendly and knowledgeable.

Hibernator, Dec 19, 2010
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3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

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3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

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4.25/5  rDev +15.2%

Wizzman, Dec 14, 2013
Photo of GonzoHomebrewer
4.33/5  rDev +17.3%

If I'm going to drink in Framingham, this is really the only place to go. Prices and poor draft maintenance keep me from BBC.... and that's about it. Not too many options in the immediate area, though I still haven't been to the Framingham beer works due to the fact they were delayed in brewing on the premises

The beer is at the worst always true to style and a respectable representation of style and on occassion they hit one out of the park, some of their IPAs are worthy of more praise and the rotating cask selection has recently been a lot more experimentive and fun.

The service cannot be beat. I'm generally here on Sundays after work and it is usually the assistant brewer bartending, "Baggles". Always on top of everything, never waiting for a pour and is quite passionate about brew, the best attributes in a brewpub 'tender

Food is alright, typical american grill/pub style, but the cheap late night offerings are what give it a bump

Quality spot in a bit of no mans land for beer in Framingham.

GonzoHomebrewer, Aug 06, 2013
Photo of GarthDanielson
3.61/5  rDev -2.2%

This is not the easiest place to find if you aren't familiar with the mall setup...it's in a corner between 2 huge anchor stores. Once you find it, it's very welcoming inside...fairly typical brewpub set-up, with the bar area immediately in the front and dinner seating in the back. They had 8 beers on-tap when we went, and it seems that they rotate fairly often. There were a lot of summer-style brews, with one stout. Looking at their beer list, they have plenty of different brews to rotate through. Growlers available to go, and very reasonably priced, between $10-15 for filled ones, depending on style. The food was decent. Standard gastropub menu, with ranges from chowders and chilis to sandwiches and burgers to some more hefty entrees. Our waiter was fantastic...we were there with our 17 month old, and she wasn't feeling overly well, but he was awesome, bringing our stuff out quickly, checking back often, and getting our check out quickly. The hostess, however, was a bitch. She glared/rolled eyes at us when we walked in, I had to walk up close enough to count her gray hairs before she would acknowledge us/seat us, and she mumbled and walked off abruptly after we thanked her for helping (barely). The rest of the experience was enjoyable enough that I don't want to dock the whole place for one person, but she was hell on wheels. Other than that, good place to eat and drink.

GarthDanielson, May 14, 2013
Photo of tigg924
4.38/5  rDev +18.7%

I like John Harvard’s in Framingham and it has improved strides since I was there last. The atmosphere strikes me as an old time bar with the addition of several tvs. There was a good mix of people there for the last half of the Patriots game. They featured about seven different beers on tap, yet their selections were very impressive. A saison, dubbel, and October spice beer among others. Very solid compared to stout, ipa, etc. The beers were high quality in my opinion, but not the best I have had. Certainly none was one that I would not gladly order in most microbreweries. The service was excellent. Our server let us try the beer before ordering and dropped off additional bread when she noticed we still had some hummus to get through. I really enjoyed my hummus and pulled pork sandwich, although my wife’s buffalo chicken wrap left something to be desired. The food by in large was good, but not great. I would certainly come back here if I was in the area. I was really pleased with how much better this place is over the last time I was here.

tigg924, Oct 18, 2011
Photo of beer2day
4/5  rDev +8.4%

Located in the corner of the large Shopper's World. Kind of tucked away.

Very large restaurant with a nice visible brewing operation. Menu is pretty extensive with sandwiches, wraps, burgers, and pizzas. Apps were a huge hit for our kids. Nice kids menus too.

8 beers going the day we visited, with a decent range. Nothing dark, though. I get it's summer, but it is NE. One beer on cask and quite tasty.

Service was very attentive, even though they were crowded. Professionally done.

If you are in the area, worth a stop. Decent place to catch a game. Great way to kill time while the wife shops.

beer2day, Aug 24, 2011
Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.8/5  rDev +3%

This is the only John Harvard's I have visited. It is usually pretty busy I think it is because it is in an outdoor mall/shopping center and right next to a giant shoe warehouse and a arts/crafts store. I don't know if It is coincidence or great planning. They always have a wide variety of styles and for some reason every time I go there it's the first day they are serving a new brew. Had an Imperial Belgian Stout the other day and it was very good. If I took notes probably a b+/a-. The food is pretty good and if you just want a burger and beer it isn't that pricey. The girlfriend loves the fall seasonal pumpkin spice where they dip the rim in some cinnamon sugar.
I like going here every month or so just to see whats new. Being a home-brewer I love seeing the whole brew system behind the bar.

DrinkingDrake, Dec 24, 2010
Photo of DrJay
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

I stop in here fairly often with my family when we're in the area shopping. It's pretty kid friendly - we haven't had any trouble bringing our preschooler here in the past. Most of the time we've sat in the dining room, but the same solid service is available when seated in the bar area as well. The beer selection covers about 7-8 offerings, with a few of these being seasonals or occasional releases. Beers tend to be solid, ranging from mediocre to quite good. Same with the food, with some of our favourites being the pot pie and beef stew. A great place to stop in for lunch and a beer to break up the monotony of shopping.

DrJay, Jun 12, 2010
Photo of morebeergood
3.83/5  rDev +3.8%

Stopped in for dinner last Saturday night. Bit of a wait for a table, but there were tvs above the bar to watch football. This restaurant is certainly kid-friendly: lots of families dining here tonight. Strange ambiance here: looks like a brewpub took over an Olive Garden. Our waiter was very good. Friendly and quick, but did not bother us constantly. He was there when we needed him. Beer selection was pretty good. There were about 9 beers on tap that night. They still have the Harvest Spice Ale on tap, first tapped in September 2009? Kinda old. Tried the two newest beers to be tapped (this past week): the Old # 13 Imperial Porter and the 2010 Stout. The porter was excellent. Food I thought was better here than what I remember at the Cambridge location. My buffalo chicken mac and cheese was tasty, and my wife liked her burger. The mountain of ice cream brownie sundae for $4.99 was a steal. Food and beer prices were all reasonable for a brewpub. Worth a visit if in the area.

morebeergood, Jan 18, 2010
Photo of Jayli
3.63/5  rDev -1.6%

Visited this location with some co-workers last evening. I've been here numerous times before but hadn't had a chance to review. This location is more similar to the Harvard Sq location than the Manchester, CT location - dark wood and stained glass, exposed brewing machines. Service - our waiter was exceptional at first, very attentive, but then dipped off. We took a bit to order appetizers and dinner but there was a pretty big period in between when he would come and check on us. Selection was decent - I always enjoy their beers, however they were out of the two selections that I was most eager to try, on the up side they had two additional offerings to replace what they no longer had. Food is outstanding. I've yet to have something that wasn't incredible there. I always enjoy the food, beer, and atmosphere at John Harvard's.

Jayli, Aug 04, 2009
Photo of mymrnngjckt
2.45/5  rDev -33.6%

Stopped here on a Friday afternoon with some fellow travlers. Waited about five minutes to get seated even though there were empty seats avaialble. The place was your cookie cutter brew-pub. Beer decor on the wall and corny pictures of famous people portrayed as monks. The service was less than stellar. The woman who waited on us appeared to be less interested in us and more interested in what social-political female based movement she could join when she punched out. We waited for beers and also to order food. The beer was unimpressive. I had a winter beer and an oatmeal stout. The oatmeal was decent. The winter tasted like a christmas wreath dipped in rubbng alcohol and scented with Corning Insualltion (the pink one with the panther.) Not good at all.

The food was good. I had a burger which was excellent. A bit pricey, it is a major metropolitian area. I would go back for the food. I would not go back for the service or the beer.

mymrnngjckt, Apr 15, 2009
Photo of Bagman007
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%

Went here on a Sunday night. No problem getting in or getting a table. Got a sampler with my meal. They were out of several of their beers, but I still got a pretty decent selection. The price of the sampler was very affordable as it was only $5.50 for 25 oz of beer. Good deal. I had the buffalo tenders for an appetizer. Very good, but a little hot for me. I got a burger as my meal which was just OK. The prices were definitely cheaper than I thought they would be. Much better than anywhere else in the Boston area that I have been to on this business trip. I would go back here again, though I hope if I do that they have more of a selection of beer available.

Bagman007, Feb 11, 2009
Photo of fitzy84
4.13/5  rDev +11.9%

Was stopping by Framingham and decided to visit this spot. Its location is at the end of a shopping plaza surrounded by a Barnes and Noble, Old Navy, Best Buy etc, right off Route 9. It was lunch time so it was pretty busy. The place is relatively long and big. Many tables and booths so big parties were able to be seated quite quickly during the lunch hour. I sat at the bar which was a round, curved area in the front. Multiple plasma TVs helped make this big place seem cozy, relaxing and also fun.

The bartender was very friendly and informative about the menu. The place offers free bread with oil. I had a burger that had some of the best cheese bread I have ever had on a sandwich. The menu also consisted of pizzas, sandwiches, wraps and salads.

While sporting many wines, I believe all they sport for beer is their own. So I had their reasonably priced sampler.

If your going shopping or just want to go to a fun place outside of the hecticness of the Cambridge location or the far drive of the Hancock location, I would say this John Harvard's was a pretty good one. Of course, I need to venture to the other Mass John Harvard's before I can say this one was the best.

fitzy84, Aug 27, 2008
Photo of Yamar18
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%

Went here for the first time last weekend and was pretty happy with my visit. I split a pitcher of Chocolate Stout with my wife and sort of wished I had tried some other things, not because it wasn't good but it limited what I was able to taste. They had about 6 beers available when I was there. It looked like another 3 or so different ones were in the works so it seems like they probably just rotate them out trying different things. The bar area has a nice feel to it with some raised tables as well as lower ones and the dining room in the back of the place was packed with kids. We sat in the bar and I'm glad we did, it was pretty loud back there. This was on a Saturday afternoon though and in fairness, its right near a major mall so the entire area was packed. I would go here again for sure, probably not soon because there are so many places I would like to try but it was good overall.

Yamar18, Jun 03, 2008
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John Harvard's Brewery & Ale House in Framingham, MA
85 out of 100 based on 40 ratings.