Rí Rá Irish Pub
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 13 | Reviews: 12 | Show All Ratings:
3.38/5 rDev -15.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3 | food: 4 | $$
Ri Ra has two separate identities. First, it's lunch and dinner service. During this time, Ri Ra's charm as an old world authentic Irish pub comes to life. The service is great, the food is fantastic, and the Guinness is poured perfectly at the best temperature. However, just about all the charm of Ri Ra is lost when the pub turns into a normal bar. The locals flock in, and the place becomes over-crowded with some average at best local bar band playing in the corner. Everything that makes Ri Ra great is lost when the sun goes down. Beyond the perfect pour of Guinness, the beer selection is typical fare for the average bar in the area, with a couple of Shipyard brews on tap, some Sam Adams, and maybe a few local micros tossed in for good measure. If you are visiting Portland and want to try out this legendary bar chain, I'd highly recommend dinner service with a nice, traditional Guinness.
06-23-2013 19:06:19 | More by supercodes
4.18/5 rDev +4.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $
Ri Ra Irish Pub is one of our favorite places to go to whenever we make it to Portland Maine. A great Irish bar, with a great beer selection, if you want to try some of the local Maine brews, there's no better place than Ri Ra.
Ri Ra offers live music on the weekend, a great menu, and plenty of TV's to catch the game on.
Beers are served in their proper glassware. Be sure to order a Baxter Beer so you can try Baxter's cool glass that's shaped like a beer can.
There's lots of options in Portland, but be sure not to skip Ri Ra.
08-17-2012 18:01:58 | More by Larrydoherty
4.38/5 rDev +9.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I didn't know this place was a chain until recently. I went there for a co-worker's going away party and really liked it.
A/S/Q: Not sure what the rest of the Ri-Ra's are like, but the one in Portland, ME has a great beer selection with a fair amount of Maine beers and seasonals. Since I was there with a very large party close to 20 people, we had exceptional service since there were a couple kids there too. For a Saturday night, the service really was spectacular.
S/F/V: The selection of food was more than adequate (it took me awhile to figure out what I wanted). When I got my food (bangors and mash), it was piping hot and pared nicely with a Shipyard Summer ale. The prices seemed reasonable. I would go back and recommend anyone visiting Portland, ME to try it.
11-24-2011 20:22:44 | More by BeerKangaroo
4.18/5 rDev +4.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Located in an old building in the Old Port, you'd never know that this is a chain. Typical pub. Clean, with adequate seating. Nice bar.
Good rotating Irish brew and local tap selection, and plenty of cans/bottles.
Service was great. Server was actually brought over from Ireland (for atomsphere?), and she was terrific.
Food was great. Big portions. Potato cakes, Guiness stew, and fish and chips were very tasty. Great brunch menu.
Prices are very easy as well. Reasonable for pints and grub. I'd go back.
11-14-2011 14:03:36 | More by OtherShoe2
4.33/5 rDev +8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$
I like Ri-Ra and yes, I know it's a chain ... a small chain. But the Ri-Ra in Portland is just really nice. The beer selection is decent -- Maine craft beers and seasonals as well as the expected Guinness, Smithwicks, Boddie's, Stella, etc. (sometimes Murphy's is on tap, too -- which is what I prefer).
They have Jameson's, Jamesons's 12, Bushmills, Blackbush, Bushmills single malt, Powers and Tullamore Dew as well -- all fine Irish whiskeys and much appreciated.
To me what sets Ri-Ra apart, though is the service. In my experience it has always been outstanding. Every. Single. Time. The bartenders -- no matter who is on, no matter how busy, no matter how quiet -- they are fantastic. Attentive, friendly, and professional. They're among the best I've encountered in any city in North America.
The waitstaff is good, too, in the same way. And the food is pretty darned good. (Try the Sunday brunch upstairs!)
There are three distinct rooms: the rustic country pub, the 2-level Victorian-style pub, and the upstairs dining room. The rustic country pub is my favorite and feels like many country pubs in County Clare. The Victorian pub room looks and feels exactly the the Sliken Thomas pub I visited in Kildare, Ireland and attracts a lovely looking crowd. The upstairs is my least favorite, but it has killer views of Portland Harbor (not really a pub).
I like Ri-Ra a lot. Try it!
04-09-2009 00:05:40 | More by zamboni1
3.88/5 rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$
Ri-Ra is a chain so don't go thinking this is a real authentic "oirish" pub. There is one in Boston and one in Burlington, VT as well...however none of them have the location this one has...right on Commerical St. and righ on the water in the Old Port in Portland.
Decent food, 1/2 price burger specials on Tuesdays when I used to go. Never had a bad meal there so no complaints on that end.
Beer selection is sort of heavy on the import side...Guinness, Harp, Smithwicks etc...but they do usually have a Shipyard Seasonal, Geary's Pale as well as Allagash White.
This is not a beer bar but a pub that happens to have an ok beer selection.
Go to Trivia Night, that is awesome.
03-21-2009 02:23:38 | More by indiapaleale
4.2/5 rDev +4.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Right at the waterfront and close to downtown hotels, RiRa is a great place to have a sandwich and a few pints o' the black. They'll pour you a Guinness correctly, and will even draw the shamrock on top for the tourists.
The place is decorated like a Olde-World style pub, with lots of kitsch scattered around to make it look more authentic, perhaps contrived, but scattered about are glaring hints (glossy, professional adware and printing, 'uniforms' that look casual, but aren't, etc.) that there's corporate money backing this charming "little" pub.
So it's a chain. So what? It was close to our hotel and really saved the day.
06-09-2008 20:59:38 | More by cvstrickland
3.83/5 rDev -4.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
Ate here during lunch, so I can't speak for what it's like on the weekends or at night, but some friends of mine in the Portland area say it's a great place during that time. As it was though, it wasn't busy at all.
The beer selection is very Irish with some typical domestic drafts and Maine beer products.
Service was good and the waitress didn't mind taking the time to talk to you. The food was pretty good, but if I was in the area, I don't think I'd go here for the food.
Atmosphere was pretty classy for the dining room area with a raised level, didn't get a chance to see the smaller pub area though. Has a decent view of the waterfront as it's on the oceanside of the street.
12-11-2007 02:39:13 | More by deltatauhobbit
4.05/5 rDev +1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
A nice Irish pub near downtown Portland. There are two levels of this pud, an upstairs (more of a restaurant feel) and the downstairs (more of a pub), I recommend the pub for the atmosphere.
As you walk in there is Irish memorabilia all over the walls, old Guiness and Jameson mirrors and wall hangings. Easy to notice what was on tap; Guiness (x2), Harp, Murphy's Stout, and Smithwick's (a rare find here across the pond). The menu was full of Irish specialties; rashers, mashers, Brown bread, etc.
The service was good, always willing to bring another pint or give us more time to eat, howvever it was a slow day it appeared. I would reommend this to anyone looking for a good, traditional Irish pub.
07-05-2005 13:48:05 | More by HoorayBeer
3.56/5 rDev -11.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
RiRa has a nice and inviting charm upon entering. There appears to be two or three bars on the first floor. There is also another level upstairs. Wooden floors and great wooden bars stand out. A nice gas fireplace adds warmth to the atmosphere. They have live music on some nights throughout the week.
As far as draught beer selection goes, here are the highlights...Allagash White, Geary's, Shipyard Export & Winter, Murphy's, Guinness, Sea Dog Blueberry and Sam Adams Winter Lager. They offer $2.75 pints for specific beers on certain days. On the Saturday that I visited, Shipyard beers were the special. The Winter Ale that I had was fresh and you can't beat a pint for under $3. It appears all draught beer is served in 16 oz tumbler pints. It would be nice to see an upgrade in glassware.
Service was honest and attentive. My interaction was minimal, but overall service was solid. They also have a full menu, I didn't try any food during my stay, but everything that passed by looked really good. Next time I'm in Portland I would like to try the food.
Certainly worth checking out if you enjoy welcoming Irish pubs. The location is excellent on Commercial Street. Not to mention the fact that it's directly across the street from Downeast Beverage. A great 1-2 combo if you are up to it.
02-21-2005 14:53:49 | More by Hibernator
Rí Rá Irish Pub in Portland, ME
90 out of 100 based on 13 ratings.