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The Half Door

Not Rated.
The Half DoorThe Half Door

Taps: 10 / Bottles: 110
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

22 Ratings
Ratings: 22
Reviews: 21
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 8.56%
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]

270 Sisson Ave
Hartford, Connecticut, 06105-3136
United States
phone: (860) 232-7827

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: pbrian)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 22 | Reviews: 21 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of packetknife
packetknife

Idaho

3.5/5  rDev -14.4%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2 | $$

The Half Door benefits from being the only decent in-pub bottle selection in town and the taps are better beers (although limited variety) than you'll get most other places in the area. I was introduced to this place by BA and have loved it ever since. Old Engine Oil was my first and still best beer experience there.

It's a bit crammed and on music nights a bit louder and mustier than I'd like (old age I guess). I'd skip any foods there unless you come for lunch I suspect, I always manage to get there quite late.

Parking is a pain in the arse but otherwise it's pretty accessible. Reasonably priced for the offerings and location.

06-06-2005 10:51:51 | More by packetknife
Photo of brewcifix
brewcifix

Connecticut

3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

02-27-2014 12:32:54 | More by brewcifix
Photo of govtmule
govtmule

Texas

3.55/5  rDev -13.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

On nights with Irish music this place is packed. They have some pretty good bands usually on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday and sometimes on other days. The list them on the website.

The food is decent. They have a nice beer list. It's also on their website.

I've found the waitstaff to be a little unattentive, probably because of how busy the place is. It's tough to get a seat on music nights and Irish beer night (I think $3 Irish pints).

If you like live Irish music to accompany your beer, then you've found your spot. I actually prefer The Half Door when it isn't so busy.

It's also a good lunch spot if you work in Hartford.

04-06-2004 19:58:08 | More by govtmule
Photo of SteveO1231
SteveO1231

Connecticut

3.56/5  rDev -13%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | $$$

Stopped in the other night for the first time in a couple years. Tiny place right off of the Sisson Ave. exit of 84. Parking is kind of a pain in the ass. It's really small as you walk in with the bar on the right and some tables and booths to your left. Traditional Irish pub they serve the usual fare and have live Irish music on stage. Service is a bit slow, you're better off grabbing your beers from the bar. Nice tap lineup of European brews, Guinness, Spaten, Boddington's, Killian's, Chimay, Old Engine Oil, Harpe, Bass, etc etc. Even more extensive bottle list ranging from English brews to Belgian and Japanese beers. A bit pricey $7.99 for a Sam Smith Oatmeal. Anyways a pretty cool place, good atmosphere. Nice crowd, good beer list. I like to stop by once and a while for a change of pace.

11-03-2006 04:20:35 | More by SteveO1231
Photo of MaxBrews
MaxBrews

Connecticut

3.74/5  rDev -8.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | $$$$

Stopped by here on after work on a thursday evening 5-7pm, because I was promised Delirium Tremens and Chimay were on tap. Not disappointed they were.

The Half Door is one of Hartford's better places to go and for now my favorite watering hole in Hartford. It is in Hartford's West End which appears to outsiders as a rough neighborhood. However its gone through some gentrification over the years and some nice restaurants are popping up.

Theres no parking lot so try your luck with street parking and be sure to check the signs twice, they're pretty adamant about towing in Hartford.

This place is very small and you could easily miss it from the road. Inside is small as well. Wooden Decor, a nice bar and a few tables. Light is kept low. I visited this on an early evening and it was fairly quiet. Late on Thursday and Friday is when I hear it gets busy.

Theme of this bar is a Irish Pub/Euro beer bar, so don't expect any American Craft beer to be available.

It appears there are several taps, but when you read them many are wasted on things like Guinness, Harp, Smithwicks, and other run of the mill commercial English and Euro beers. I guess they got to pay the bills somehow. However there are also things like Old Engine Oil, Chimay Cinq Cents, and Delirium Tremens on tap.

Bottle list is decent with plenty of Belgian Beers I've never heard
of. Decent selection of English and German beers as well. Prices are very high. $6.50 for a Sammy Smith Oatmeal stout, $20 for a 750 of Chimay. My beers were 7.25 a piece which I suppose isn't terrible for Belgians on tap.

Bartender was friendly and new about the beers he was serving. Poured properly and used all the right glasses, major points on that.

A nice cozy environment. Would stop in again and I'd recommend it to anyone in the area who is a fan of Belgian European beers, just don't come looking for American Craft Beers or a bargain.

12-18-2009 17:07:29 | More by MaxBrews
Photo of ybnorml
ybnorml

Rhode Island

3.85/5  rDev -5.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Very nice little place. I liked the atmosphere and so did the wife. Comfortable and not to shiney. Friendly staff willing to answer questions. It seemed that everyone working took a turn at waiting our table. I overheard that they were short 2 waitresses the night we were there. Very extensive beer list that only suffered from one main weakness....no american craft brews, but also I did not see Bud-slop on the menu Coors and Miller were represented. I had a great Sniender Wiess on draft and the wife really enjoyed her Ephemere Draft. The food was great. I tryed the Cheddar Ale soup as had been suggested by a BA. It was great, deffinitely a hearty pub soup. The only other thing that was a problem is in their present location parking is next to nonexistant. Lastly something the waiter said about thier cask line botherd me " no cask in the warm months because it goes bad and the distributer won't carry any because of the spoilage.

05-31-2004 22:59:12 | More by ybnorml
Photo of Roguer
Roguer

Connecticut

3.86/5  rDev -5.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4 | $$

Small place, but very nice decor. Dark wood, low lighting. When there isn't a big game on the TV, background music is at a perfectly respectful volume.

Beer taps run the gamut from traditional Euro options (e.g. Guinness, Smithwick's), to really nice offerings a la La Fin Du Monde, Delirium Tremens, et al.

Bartender was friendly and knowledgeable. Can't ask for anything more than that!

Nice tap list size, but about half are on beers that most BAs aren't going to choose. Two bottle coolers with some other very nice offerings: plenty of Thornbridge, along with offerings from Belgium, Italy, Greece, and others.

I echo what another review posted: try the Cobblestones. Sliced steak and mushrooms with cheese, juice, and drizzled with A1. Awesome!

Price was decent, for what you're getting: good beer and good food. I would definitely go back. If you're looking for local craft brews, go elsewhere; but if you want a nice Irish pub, and if you want some tasty Belgian beer on tap, then definitely give this place a try!

06-14-2014 20:12:40 | More by Roguer
Photo of BlueHammer
BlueHammer

Connecticut

3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$

I went to the Half Door with a friend on Saturday night for some good beer and grub. I had perused the beer list online before going and had picked out those I wanted to sample. Unfortunately, I was a bit disappointed. My friend and I asked for five different beers before we got to one they actually had in stock. This, according to our waitress, was attributed to a "problem with the distributor". Finally asked for Nostradamus, which they did have and I wasn't disappointed!

The atmosphere was warm and cozy. The bar area wasn't very big and the entire restaurant itself wasn't huge. It's sort of nestled in an unsuspecting corner of Farmington and Sisson Aves. in Hartford. We went in for dinner at around 8 pm and it wasn't crowded. We seated ourselves - no wait time. At around 10 pm a Live band started playing. The music was fun and enjoyable, really a fun atmosphere. After the band started playing it got more crowded. There was a cross-section of ages but more 20somethings than anything else.

The food was very good. As I've said in other beerfly reviews, I am a vegetarian. This was an Irish Pub - generally the two don't mix well. However, one of the first things I noticed on the menu was a vegetarian chili. Delicious! I also partook in the spinach and artichoke dip and the veggie burger (which was a little pricey at $9 considering all you got with it was fries). Also, while the food was excellent, the french fries left something to be desired - I thought an Irish pub would take pride in any potato products but these fries were frozen out of a bag.

The beer was served in the bottle with a glass to pour yourself. Several of the beers we ordered which cost around $7 were brought in the whole pint bottle so you got more than one serving from each. I thought that was a good deal for the price.

Given that there isn't much to pick from in Hartford, I am likely to head back to the Half Door. Given the beers they DID have in stock, I couldn't complain. I might suggest more of a "rotating" beer menu that they can adjust accordingly (the beer menu was more permanent, included in the food menu) so as not to disappoint but once we found something they had, we were happy.

It's a good pick if you're in Hartford. (Despite the lack of parking.)

04-10-2006 13:09:10 | More by BlueHammer
Photo of goodbyeohio
goodbyeohio

Oregon

3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

half door. jammin on weekends, chill other times.

let me judge this place based on what i had last time.. when i was ready to throw a few bucks down... 33cl bottle of rose de gambrinus, aventinus eisbock, chimay cinq cents draft, la trappe quad draft, and and old engine oil.. not in this order mind you. when i said 'rose de gambrinus,' i didn't even have to repeat myself.

the best bottle selection in connecticut.

love the big knot at the end of the bar, kind of like a mini-table attached to it, perfect for small groups.

only negatives are bands that play too loud, ridiculous weekend crowds, and cover charge.

food is great, especially the cheddar soup and the french dip. the irish nachos or whatever they are are no joke either. good eclectic selection, nice dark pub atmosphere. and this is my neighborhood bar! lucky me.

02-22-2005 10:40:39 | More by goodbyeohio
Photo of chuckd123
chuckd123

Connecticut

4.13/5  rDev +1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$

Half Door is a great, very authentic Irish pub in Hartford, CT. Atmosphere works for everything. Great spot for a couple beers after work with friends, good for a date, and definitely great Sunday morning for brunch and soccer (sorry, football) games on TV.

Beer selection is largely European. Not surprising, but within that, tends to lean toward UK brews. Several Belgians on the menu as well (primarily in bottles).

This is not a beer bar per se, but in the fashion of an Irish pub, it's right on.

Food and service is great too.

Crowds vary -- Thurs/Fri nights it gets the UHartford and UConn Law crowds, lunch and after work is an older crowd, and brunch is a neighborhood pub crowd.

If you're in the Hartford area, definitely worth a visit.

10-07-2008 20:31:08 | More by chuckd123
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The Half Door in Hartford, CT
91 out of 100 based on 22 ratings.