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The Liberal Cup Public House & Brewery

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very good

29 Ratings
Ratings: 29
Reviews: 25
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 10.1%
Active Beers: 24
Beer Ratings: 147
Beer Avg: 3.85
Taps: 6
Bottles: 0
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

115 Water St
Hallowell, Maine, 04347-1357
United States
phone: (207) 623-2739

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

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(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 29 | Reviews: 25 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by sprucetip:
Photo of sprucetip


3.6/5  rDev -9.1%

Located in a cool little town adjacent to Augusta (did I hear someone say Disgusta?), Maine. Several other good restaurants and hip shops within a few blocks of a street running along the Kennebec River.

First time I went there we didn't stay long and I didn't get a really good feel for the place, though it seemed promising. I had the Smelt Camp Strong Ale on that visit, and wasn't very impressed. It was more bitter and less malty than I expected. Not bad, but didn't hit the spot.

Returned and had a couple of 20oz "pints" with dinner. Atmosphere is mellow and pleasant. Attractive wood and brick. Not really big. They have music a couple nights per week. My girlfriend and I both were pleased with the quality of the food. Prices are fair, portions large. She liked that they offered smaller portions of some dishes. Service was good, but I didn't pick anyones brain about beer. Not sure how knowledgeable the staff is, though the barkeep saw me straining to see the beer menu and offered some info, and told me what style a couple of beers were.

Only 6 beers on tap, including one on cask. The cask Bitter was good if not amazing, and I liked the Tarbox Stout as well. They call it a cream stout, though it is labeled an American stout on BA. It's a bit of a hyrbrid, creamy feel but with the sharp roasty flavor of an American stout. Again, not amazing but not bad. Pints, 20oz pints that is, are only $3.75. A sampler consisting of 6 beers of 3 ounces is only $4.50.

I don't know that I'd go out of my way to visit the Liberal Cup, but if in the Augusta area, it's not just your best bet, it's your only one.

01-23-2009 03:17:07 | More by sprucetip
More User Reviews:
Photo of anthony23cippy


3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

08-02-2014 15:08:32 | More by anthony23cippy
Photo of johnnnniee

New Hampshire

3.86/5  rDev -2.5%

I stopped in here a couple of times this week while up in the area training for work. Brick front building in the center of downtown Hallowell. Exposed brick with lots of warm wood and lots of brewanaria hanging on the walls. 6 house brews on tap with one guest tap well. The beer ranged from decent to good with no real standouts, but no real flops either. Pub grub and comfort food dominate the menu. I enjoyed the pot roast and the burger I had. Prices seem quite reasonable. I would come back if in the area.

07-22-2014 22:09:00 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of costanzo_mike


4/5  rDev +1%

07-20-2014 03:55:11 | More by costanzo_mike
Photo of coombski


3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

03-29-2014 00:38:17 | More by coombski
Photo of WallyJaz


4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

11-02-2013 19:39:54 | More by WallyJaz
Photo of PJK


4.43/5  rDev +11.9%

The Liberal Cup, located just outside of Augusta, in nearby Hallowell, Maine, is a terrific place. For beers, I had the Ex-Wife Extra Special Bitter, while C. had Dunkel John's Band. Both beers were very much up to snuff. The beers at The Liberal Cup are well worth going out of your way for.

For dinner I had the meatloaf, rolled with bacon, garlic mashed potatoes and spinach. It was hearty and delicious, and we all enjoyed our meals. I really liked this place, not just for the beer and the food, which were both excellent, but also for the atmosphere. It's in an old mercantile building, like a hundred other restaurants in Maine, but the friendliness of the surroundings goes beyond that. The place was quite crowded with locals on a Tuesday night, and I took that as a very good sign.

If you're in the Augusta area you should definitely check this place out.

05-21-2013 00:58:39 | More by PJK
Photo of GarthDanielson

North Carolina

4.2/5  rDev +6.1%

This is one of my favorite stops in Maine. Just outside of the capital of Augusta, it's pretty easy to get to from the highway. The place is cozy, and the dining areas are split into two sides/rooms, with the bar in the main space you first walk into. They do tours on request, and you can see some of the brewing equipment through the windows at the end of the main room. The staff was friendly and attentive, both with the beer orders and food recommendations. Very tasty grub to go along with some very tasty beers. People sometimes get confused by the list of beers on the back of the menu, which hits over twenty brews. However, on the walls there is a list of the current offerings on their 6 taps (including the cask), so don't fall in love with a beer on the menu until you check the current tap list. Great pub fare, as well as local offerings. The food choices border on comfort food, which is always great. Prices were very reasonable, and this is a great place for people to visit when in the area.

09-04-2012 21:01:13 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of smakawhat


4.05/5  rDev +2.3%

Situated in the antique district in Hallowell, right alongside the Kennebec is the Liberal Cup.

Inside you are welcomed to a very warm pub. The building seems to hark back to an older time, there is lots of exposed wood. Ceramic tankards hang above the bar for the regular patrons. Wooden benches, oblong tables, and warm corners abound.

The focus here is on simple but better than average pub food, and of course, beer. It delivers on all fronts.

Lots of the food items are beer centric, from Chicken in Ale, a break apart pot roast that was devine, to beer cheese soup which is real velvety, and plenty of beer battered and fried items (shrimp, clams, chips, you name it).

The beers are also real solid and inviting, and can take you away to a different place. They really picked the right beers to make here for the atmosphere, it suits everything perfectly. They only offer their own, with perhaps one guest tap, and maybe one cask, but who's complaining?

A great place to check out, keep in mind it is VERY popular. I tried in the summer with no luck, and even on a sleepy Saturday in November after Thanksgiving, the place was still quite busy. Give it a shot, but get there early.

11-27-2011 04:21:09 | More by smakawhat
Photo of SevaTse

New Hampshire

3.65/5  rDev -7.8%

Not a bad place overall if you're passing by, but I wouldn't recommend making a destination out if it. The beer I felt was average compared to other brewpubs in the region, and it was not as good as places like Portsmouth or a handful of places in Mass. For food we had beer cheese soup, for which they rotate the beer and cheese on a regular basis, so ours was cheddar and wheat. It was ok at best. However, the fried haddock was above average, but again- if you are nearby, good seafood shouldn't be that hard to find. Their entry in the Maine beer trail states that you don't need to go to England to experience the beer culture, well I wouldn't cancel any British Airways flights with this place in mind, personally.

07-15-2011 15:05:41 | More by SevaTse
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The Liberal Cup Public House & Brewery in Hallowell, ME
89 out of 100 based on 29 ratings.