Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Gritty McDuff's Brewing CompanyGritty McDuff's Brewing Company
Based on:
18 Beers
1,076 Reviews
Place Score: 86
Reviews: 70
Visits: 128
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: n/a
Taps: --
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

396 Fore St
Portland, Maine, 04101-4026
United States
phone: (207) 772-BREW

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @grittys

Place added by: BeerAdvocate

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Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 70 | Visits: 128
Reviews by woodychandler:
Photo of woodychandler
4.8/5  rDev +26.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Ah, Gritty’s! Cue the WABAC machine. Destination: Portland, Maine, summer 1990. As we materialize on the deck of the USS Normandy (CG-60), moored in the Bath Iron Works (BIW) shipyard, Portland division, our hero and his shipmate, Hoos Warner, have decided to become Mug Club members for the duration of their stay while the ship is in Post-Sailaway Availability (PSA) from mid-April until early October.

During one of his early visits to Gritty’s, Woody is introduced to the resident cook, Jen, and her boyfriend, Trashman. The rest of the summer is then history, spent flitting between Gritty’s and Amigo’s (down Gritty’s back steps and across the cobblestone alley). Gene, the owner of Amigo’s was a nut case and Woody fell in love with one of his servers, (La) Deb Glanville, whose brother will kill Woody if he ever reads this. Over at Amigo’s, Woody was turned on to The Church of the Subgenius by Rev. Bob Core a.k.a. Banjo Bob and he became one of The Regulars, not to be confused with the much-despised Tourists. Woody often closed Amigo’s and then assisted with clean-up, just to avoid going back to the ship.

Days when liberty began early saw our hero on a beeline shot to Gritty’s, where he would have a mug of Pale Ale and sit for hours on end, thinking about nothing. A truly memorable occasion was when a particularly comely (and well-endowed) blonde was working the bar and one of the fellow hard-case afternoon drinkers decided that the soap opera on the television needed to be switched to something more preferable, like a test pattern. This led to a bit of serendipity as, unbeknownst to anyone at the bar, the remote was MIA. This situation meant that the server had to get a stool, stand on it, and reach waaaay up, creating a marvelous silhouette in the afternoon sun streaming through the Fore Street window. All those in attendance were riveted, mouths agape. Soon, the channel had to be changed every fifteen minutes, or so. Sexist? Yep. Chauvinistic? Aye. Piggish? Uh huh. Appealing? Without a doubt. Was she tipped handsomely throughout and at the end of her shift? You bet your sweet bippy. To this day, your humble narrator remains unsure of whether she really did not catch on, since she gave no indication that she had, or whether she played to an enthusiastic crowd of onlookers. It is a memory that, when I eventually have Alzheimer’s and the rest of my mind has fallen into the abyss, will remain with great clarity.

Back to the present. The bus from the train station dropped me off just a stone’s throw away, making it even easier for me to stop in. I entered through the basement and promptly lost my bearings, to go along with my marbles, which have been MIA for some time. Once I recovered, I passed the small downstairs bar and the brewhouse, both to my left, and ascended the steps to the bar. It seemed a bit more extensive than I remembered, with a semi-circular shape that extended into the next room, utilizing four brick archways for access and serving purposes. The place was rife with exposed brick, ducting, wood beams, an original fire door, and best of all, a copper-topped bar. Oh my! The Mug Club mugs abound on hooks above the back bar. There was a copper sign at the left of the back bar announcing house-brewed beers. Finally, there was great mural on the back wall, involving angels in the brewing process. Hell, yeah! Er, well, you get the idea. The washrooms were in the back left restaurant area. It was at that point that I realized how much I missed the place and began to choke up with nostalgia.

The beers that day included: Original Pub; Black Fly; Best Bitter; Sebago Light; Best Brown; and my pick – the Fly Bite, a blend of Black Fly stout and cider. Yum yum. (3,753 characters)

More User Reviews:
Photo of Oleyomoleyo
4.34/5  rDev +14.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Photo of LXIXME
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

Photo of mitch3114
4.19/5  rDev +10.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Photo of Sludgeman
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

Photo of KLHBB
3.94/5  rDev +3.7%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 3.25 | service: 5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3

Fun place, great service. Quiet when I was there, but I can imagine this as a party place. Informal, old world pirate vibe. Beer and food are good enough, but the strength is in the brick and wood charm. (210 characters)

Photo of xtonytx
3.08/5  rDev -18.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.25 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 3

Photo of 31Sam13
4.21/5  rDev +10.8%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of benzalman
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.25

Photo of psweendogg
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

Photo of misternebbie
4.46/5  rDev +17.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Photo of OJT1993
4.04/5  rDev +6.3%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Photo of olradetbalder
3/5  rDev -21.1%

Photo of dwoolley1
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of Rons35
3/5  rDev -21.1%

Photo of DrJGR629
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of illpass78
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of ivyman
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Photo of mr-jj
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Liked the ambiance - kind of reminiscent of a European brown cafe with a lot of tables shared by strangers. Food was good, service was good, beer was just okay. (161 characters)

Photo of Reds76
3.4/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of KarlosT
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Food was ok to good, beers were poor.

Review of the beers:

Wow. Can't believe the high scores (especially for the McDuff's Halloween Ale).

Got a flight at the Gritty McDuff's in Portland ME:
Halloween Ale
Cask Best Bitter
Maine's Best IPA
Pub Style

All were exactly the same amber color, with the same head. The aroma was exactly the same, except for the Pub Style. I also had a pint of their Black Fly Stout, which fortunately did have a different color.

I iterated between their Halloween Ale, their IPA, and their Cask Bitter. All were exactly the same, except that the Cask Bitter was slightly warmer.

When I suggested to the waitress that the beers might have been mis-poured, she said that they were correct, that she was also a bartender, and that she could tell from the color of the pours.

Assuming what I drank was correct ...

I found the beer was watery, and it was as though they used poor quality water. All their beers had an off after-taste ... as though their was a Gritty McDuffs flavor they added to all their beers (including their stout)

Mouth feel was watery. And a little evervescent ... a slight bite from the c02. Interesting, even the cask best bitter had a slight CO2 bite to it.

Very sorry I went to this pub. Food was ok. But the beers were mediocre to poor.

Perhaps I did something to offend our waitress ?? (1,356 characters)

Photo of TheMaineBeerGuy
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Photo of CAMay
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of bcgeiman
3.64/5  rDev -4.2%

Photo of mdaschaf
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

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Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company in Portland, ME
86 out of 100 based on 70 ratings.