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Portsmouth Brewery

Not Rated.
Portsmouth BreweryPortsmouth Brewery

Beer Stats:
Active Beers: 119
Beer Ratings: 3,120
Beer Avg: 3.81

Taps: 10 / Bottles: 8
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y

252 Ratings
Ratings: 252
Reviews: 186
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 8.45%
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

56 Market St
Portsmouth, New Hampshire, 03801-3705
United States
phone: (603) 431-1115

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

The Portsmouth Brewery will typically have 6-7 of their own biers on tap, plus usually 3 from their sister brewery, Smuttynose. They may also have a guest tap on, which has seen Moat Mountain and Sierra Nevada as recent "guests". Growlers cost $4.00 for the glassware, then $10 to $18 for the actual brew, depending on the style. Be advised, they don't usually growler any of their stouts. Also available in the pub are 22oz bottles of Smuttynose Big Beers, plus their "Brewers Cellar" offerings, with items such as Chimay and Ommegang. The adjacent store sells a wide array of high-quality clothing, as well as 22oz "bombers" of Portsmouth bier, ranging in cost from $5 to $10.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
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Ratings: 252 | Reviews: 186 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Kegatron


4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$

Visited on 12/21/07.

We drove up specifically to drink the much hyped Kate the Great. Right off the bat, I’ve got to say that we loved the town of Portsmouth. It’s very small and quaint, especially in the downtown area. It had just snowed the day before, so that combined with Christmas decorations and people bustling about downtown really made for a favorable pre-Christmas experience for us as we made our way to the brewpub.

The brewpub is located on Market St. nearly smack dab in the middle of town. The atmosphere here is interesting. As you enter, a rather smallish bar sits to the immediate right with some limited bar seating next to that. Dining seating seems to be scattered allover the place. In the middle of the first floor, around the back, upstairs, in an adjacent room to the left. They seem to need as much as they can get as the place got quite crowded during the busy lunch period that we were there during. The brewing equipment is enclosed to the back right and is prominently featured for all to see. The atmosphere here is fairly laid back and approachable with loads of nautical and beer related themeing throughout. They also have a rather nice adjoining gift shop that sells merch from both the brewpub and its sister brewery, Smuttynose. Of course this is also home to the infamous “To Go” cooler from which you can buy a good number of their products to go in bottles, including the much sought after Kate the Great.

Ah, the beer. Lot’s of good stuff on tap from head brewer Tod Mott and his wonderful crew. Of course, Kate the Great was on tap and it definitely lived up to the hype. What a wonderful beer! However they also had some other great house brewed beers on, including some other fantastic seasonals, such as their Imperial IPA, Winter Rye, Winter Weizen, and staple beers Cream Ale, Milk Stout, and a house IPA. They also had some sturdy guest taps form sister brewery Smuttynose, including Old Brown Dog, Shoal’s Pale Ale, and Portsmouth Lager. The food menu here was also very good with a lot of different choices. My wife and I split their baked vegetarian nachos and then I had a cup of New England clam chowder and a gigantic roast beef sandwich, called appropriately enough, The Beast! The service here was great. Our server was very friendly and did a great job during the busy afternoon rush. One of the assistant brewers even stopped by (when he saw how many growlers we had bought to take back) to discuss our thought’s on Kate and all the hype surrounding her release.

We had a great time at the Portsmouth Brewery. We came for the Kate but found a truly fantastic brewpub with good food, a friendly atmosphere, and some fantastic craft brews. We’ll definitely be making the journey back here again in the future.

01-09-2008 14:36:29 | More by Kegatron
Photo of albern


3.68/5  rDev -13.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$

Particularly noteworthy is the storefront package store where one can find the freshest bottled beers coming from this brewery. It can't be beat. The lack of pretention in the labeling and how the beer is marketed is a refreshing approach. The pub itself is fairly sizeable, typical extended pub fare, the beer choices are all about what's on tap at PBC. This is a great hangout if you want good, fresh beer. If you're looking for a good meal, than perhaps one of a dozen other Portsmouth establishments would surpass this one.

Update December 2008: Still a great store front package store. There are plenty of apparel items, glassware, kitchen magnets, bottle openers, and of course the cooler full of the 750 ml bottles of what's on tap.

12-31-2007 19:47:04 | More by albern
Photo of johnnnniee

New Hampshire

4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$

I've been here several times and finally got around to reveiwing it. With the release of Kate the Great this year I have been here a lot hoping to get bottles. I have yet to get any, but I won't let that reflect my review.

The Portsmouth brewery is just about smack dab in the middle of downtown Portsmouth on Market St. If you can get yourself to downtown you should be able to find it.

The beer is the reason for the trip, and you won't be dissapointed. Just about everything that I've had there has been stellar. If you happen there in the winter try to get some Kate the Great RIS it's just an incredible brew. Dark, roasty, chocolatey, smooth, creamy, yum! They normally have a cask offering and 5 to 10 beers on tap.

The food is good too and many of the selections on the menu are cooked with beer. The last time out I had the chipotle meatloaf that was cooked with Old Brown Dog Ale. Kids menu is pretty good too, Brittany said they had the best cheeseburgers ever. Service has always been great even when they are very busy the staff has always been great for me.

Seating area is a big open space on two levels and even when its not that busy it is very loud inside. When the place is busy it is hard to hear the person you are seated with.
Most of the menu items are pricey. I'm not sure if this is a Portsmouth thing, but I definately notice that dinner out at the Portsmouth Brewery is a bit on the expensive side. For a family of four it is 10 to 15 dollars more than a comperable meal in Manchester.

Overall the food and beverages here are great. I go whenever I have the chance.

12-22-2007 03:58:18 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of drseamus

New York

4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$

Anywhere that I can sit down and have a glass of damn good RIS is a good place to go. This satisfies that criteria. We were seated right next to the window into the brewing area so I could see Tod and another brewer transferring some beer. Nice to see the full life cycle of the beer. The food there is really good. On my two visits there I've had jambalaya and a pulled pork sandwich and they were both excellent. The jambalaya actually had a good amount of heat to it, which is nice to see. The service was a bit slow even though there weren't that many people there but that's my only complaint about the place. Awesome all around, plus they have Kate the Great.

12-15-2007 18:34:17 | More by drseamus
Photo of BeerTruth


4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$

Stopped here the day after Thanksgiving with my cousins. As we walked in we immediately realized how busy this place was. Luckily an employee there suggested we go downstairs. Downstairs?...uh...is there beer down there? As we entered the downstairs bar I was excited to see it wasn't too busy at all. There was a pool table, shuffle board, and a nice flat screen plasma showing the Bruins game. My cousins and I were able to take a seat at the bar and I immediately started conversation with the bartender. I saw a couple at the end of the bar had a sampler "paddle" which I had to order up. It was ten 3 oz. glasses with each of the beers on tap which included a mix of Portsmouth and Smuttynose brews (Oatmeal Stout is to die for). They had an IPA on cask, for some odd reason I didn't get it, don't ask me why. After finishing our brews we were pretty hungry so we ordered the beer battered chicken fingers. They were damn good and the four sauces to dip in didn't disappoint. The bartender was extremely busy but still managed to serve us promptly and with a smile. After paying the bill I had to go home with some bombers so I stopped at the gift store up stairs and picked up some Oatmeal Stouts, Imperial IPA's, and a Cream Ale. Definitely a must if you're ever in the area. I plan on returning time and time again.

11-28-2007 14:01:43 | More by BeerTruth
Photo of joepais


4.45/5  rDev +4.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$

Defiantly the best brewpub in the seacoast for beer selection always rotating their ales that are avalible. The beer sampler is well worth it. Although the food is a little pricey (most restaurants downtown are) the food is alway great . They also have a local cheese plate on the menu that paired well with a lot of the ales the had .A good Hint is to go for early lunch you can sit and watch the brewer work thru the glass wall. It it always a treat . Check out the downstairs bar too it’s a great little find

10-13-2007 22:51:25 | More by joepais
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

4.15/5  rDev -2.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$

The second time I have been here and I wish we had something like this in the Buffalo area a great menu with very solid beers.A large pretty modern place on the inside with chalkboards telling you the days beer offerings all over wich was nice,an extensive menu with alot of different things the clam chowder is some of the best I have had.Around 10 taps ranging from a cream ale to barleywine I had the hop harvest and cream ale both were very good,the food was great as well.I love this place I wish I could get there more often.

10-09-2007 15:07:11 | More by oberon
Photo of n0rmann


4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$

A dark little pub in the middle of downtown Portsmouth. Very good selection of beers brewed on site availalbe, as well as a couple from other breweries, such as Moat Mountain.

The sampler of all 10 available drafts for $6 is a bargain. The barley wine was a standout, and I picked up a growler for $12.

The service was good, especially given the big crowd on Friday night.

The food was also very good. The side Ceasar salad was as big as some served as meals in other restaurants. The mushroom and cheese sandwich was more than filling.

The crowd seemed to be leaning toward families when we were there, but overall, it wasn't bad, although very loud.

09-11-2007 16:02:40 | More by n0rmann
Photo of Hautacam


4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$

Never made it downstairs to the LaPanza room.
It was an amazing ,unusually cool, sunny Aug afternoon, so we opted for the patio, a nice enclosed space in the back...brick walls , wood floor...GO SLOW sign on wall as on the website picture.
Did check out the bar and dining area , all spotlessly clean..brick . light wood...very nice looking place. Good atmosphere.
Our waitress couldn't have been nicer....knew her beers...brought us samples , suggested her favorites for lunch, and quickly served our food. I had the grilled veg. baguette w/ cheese and balsamic-honey sauce and my girlfriend had a salmon sandwich. We both were very happy with the food. We tried the wezenheimer, thaizenheimer ( wheat beer w ginger and lemon grass) and the house IPA. All good. Got a growler of the Thai to go ( the growler with the cyclists on it, of course...there are skiiers and canoes on the others ). Bill was reasonable. Stopped in the retail store for a pint glass. We will go back anytime we are in Portsmouth

08-24-2007 10:38:06 | More by Hautacam
Photo of irishpilot777


2.78/5  rDev -34.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3 | food: 1.5 | $$$

I will start this review by saying we were kicked out the night before because the bartender called us liars and said we had fake ID's because my workmate had a worn Kentucky DL. That being said, we really wanted to try their beer, so we tried again the next day for dinner. There was not even a question due to a much nicer server. I really was looking forward to a good experience. Everything seemed in order, if not a bit contrived and high brow. I don't mind that though, and we ordered off their beer menu which only included their house brews, the best of which were not being brewed at the time(disappointing). The menu seemed to lilt toward the less demanding palate, and was a bit of a disapointment. I ordered a Thai style dinner entree that qualified as the most bland, least inspired thing I have eaten in years. I was completely unimpressed and found myself longing for a pull from the tap at Rich-O's back home in Indiana. I would give this place another try next time I am in NH which will be... never.

08-07-2007 18:39:32 | More by irishpilot777
Portsmouth Brewery in Portsmouth, NH
95 out of 100 based on 252 ratings.