Dismiss Notice
Introducing: Project Extreme Brewing (a Dogfish Head + BeerAdvocate project)

Ebenezer's Restaurant & Pub

Your Rating: None
Ebenezer's Restaurant & PubEbenezer's Restaurant & Pub
BA SCORE
4.71/5
World-Class
160 Ratings
Ebenezer's Restaurant & PubEbenezer's Restaurant & Pub
PLACE INFO

Type: Bar, Eatery

44 Allen Rd
Lovell, Maine, 04051-3919
United States

(207) 925-3200 | map
ebenezerspub.net

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by DarkStar2222 on 08-16-2005

PLACE STATS
Reviews:
125
Ratings:
160
pDev:
9.55%
 
HISTOGRAM
 
View: Place Reviews | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 160 |  Reviews: 125
Photo of hga2009
4.8/5  rDev +1.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

My wife, daughter and I recently visited this great beer bar on my birthday, March 13th. I knew it had a great reputation, but didn't know what to expect really. All I can say is it is the best beer experience I have ever had in the US.

I have been to some of the best beer bars in Boston on a regular basis, and some of the best beer bars in Belgium multiple times and Ebenezer's stands out for its over-the-top selection of the best of the best. All I can compare this experience to is being in Belgium. There are no middle of the road beers here, only the best. They are also fairly priced.

Our server Hanna was a real nice person and knew the beers front to back. She was very helpful as we had our 6 month old daughter there too.

Chris Lively, the owner of Ebenezer's, really made a great experience legendary as he give me a private tour of his beer cellar. The stuff dreams are made of. What an experience!

He also was serving up some beer on the house as we were about to leave, 1978 Kreik & Lambic Geuze from 1983(?) I can say I had 30 year old beer!

This place lives up to the hype and then some.

Just think of it as a beer bar & restaurant run by an obsessive beer purist, who offers up his world class beer to the customer.

This place is unbelievable! Thank you again Chris, you were a great host for my 33rd birthday!

 1,338 characters

Photo of sholland119
4.5/5  rDev -4.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

Let me pile on and say Ebenezer's is a completely amazing and awesome place! Worth every minute of the 2 hour each way detour on our trek to KtG day!

What a great vibe! We were instantly welcomed by Hanna and Frank as the legendary Chris was out on family business. Throughout the evening we were treated like long time regulars. I can not say enough good things about the service, which was amazingly attentive even at the height of the dinner rush. We had some nice conversations with other patrons as well.

A look at the tap list and we were in heaven. Among other things, we had Abby St. Bon Chien (as good as advertised), Bacchus, Fedelta, Avec Les Bon Voeux, Les Deux Brasseurs, Cantillon Kriek and Framboise '06, Really Old Brown Dog and Brooklyn Blunderbuss. And of course Black Albert, which was the closest thing to a disappointment all night. It was not as good as we remembered from the bottle we had from Belgium last summer but still really tasty.

The chili and steak tips I had for dinner were quite good.

The highlight of the evening was the famous cellar tour, which exceeded any expectations. The first thing the 8 of us saw on entering the cellar was a wire rack with 48 bombers of Beatification. We got to share one, courtesy of Chris's wife Jen, as well as a bottle of the Mikkeller Striuse DIPA and some LaChouffe coffee liqueur. All while taking in the amazing sights (a bunch of 6L bottles of St. Bernie 12, Earthmonk bottles in various sizes, a bunch of Firestone Walker 12, what appeared to be a case (!) of Cherry Adam from the Wood, a lone bottle of HotD Dave reserve sitting in a milk crate...a beer geek's dream shrine!

We were still in good condition to drive the 2 miles back to our B&B but the staff, in a final flourish of awesomeness, will even drive you back to your hotel if you need a ride at the end of the night.

Update: On a recent visit, staff changes made the place a bit less warm and welcoming. Food was also not as good as it has been. Cellar tour still rocks my world, and the tap list is still pretty amazing.

HV

 2,067 characters

Photo of Avalon68
5/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Visited on 2/8 during our trip for KtG release.

We arrived at about 2:00 on Sunday afternoon and were immediately made welcome by Frank(Manager). We ordered 2 Black Alberts and discussed beer a bit. Chris came out about 15 minutes later and after discovering we were BAs from Philly he graciously offered us a tour of his legendary cellar.

Our cellar experience was pretty much the same as all I have read. Chris was incredibly down to earth and friendly, encouraging us to take a look around while he popped a 750ml of Beatification for us to enjoy. We spent the next 30 minutes drinking beer, talking beer marvelling at his amazing collection, and making friends with his German shepherd Chimay. We probably would have stayed down there longer but some snowmobilers showed up and Frank couldn't get free to join us. Not one to leave anybody out, I grabbed his glass of Beatification and we headed upstairs to the bar. Chris followed with a bottle of Earthmonk, poured for us all and we continued our discussion.(with Frank this time)

Their tap selection upstairs was incredible. We had to drive back to Portsmouth that evening so unfortunately couldn't partake as much as I wanted to. The selection was mostly Belgians(I vividly remember the 4 Cantillons) with a few very well chosen American Micros thrown in. We didn't really eat anything, so can't speak to the food. This trip was all about the beer!

I can't recommend this place enough regardless of where you are coming from. It is definitely worth the trip. Chris and Frank are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable while at the same time extremely humble. A refreshing change from many beer bar owners I have met. Get here!

I actually ended up meeting up with Frank the next day at the Kate release. We shared a few bottles I managed to trade for while in NH(between glasses of Kate) and had an awesome time.

This place made such an impression on me that I will be heading back next month to do the tap selection justice.

 1,987 characters

Photo of RunawayJim
4.9/5  rDev +4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

What can I say that hasn't already been said (though I didn't get a cellar tour like the previous reviewer)? Upon entering, we were met with a ton of people, mostly snowmobilers, many of which were not drinking any of the craft beer found on tap or in bottles. That didn't bother us. It seemed like a friendly place and we waited for a table. There were all sorts of signs and posters from Belgian breweries and other bars. We were handed a beer list, which had 4 or 5 pages, the first being the tap list, which is what we wanted. On it we found a handful of Cantillons, a bunch of other Belgians, just a couple of American beers, and Stella Artois (kind of surprised to see that listed). We all ordered a beer while we waited. I had a Forti, which was listed as a hoppy Belgian beer, though it wasn't really that hoppy (Houblon Chouffe would be hoppier). I ordered the combo to try the sausage and the steak tips. The steak tips were out of this world. The sausage was really good, but a bit dry. Our regular waitress didn't seem to know what was going on, but the other one, I think her name was Hannah, was very attentive and once she found out we were into beer brought us a bunch of samples, including Black Albert and a couple Cantillons.

The selection was fantastic, though I would have preferred to see some more American beers listed. They had a 2004 Old Guardian on tap, which was awesome, and a Samichlaus Helles, also awesome. One of the people in our party wasn't overly impressed by her food (there's the hit, along with the dry sausage). Everything tasted very fresh. I was disappointed they had no Earthmonk, but the Black Albert and St. Lamvinus on tap were amazing.

The score hit for atmosphere was because it was extremely cold in the place as they kept the heat down so the snowmobilers wouldn't get too hot in all their gear. IMO, they should let them take off some of their layers and keep everyone else warm. If you go in the winter, dress for the cold.

We stayed at the Olde Saco Inn at the recommendation of Chris, the owner. It was a very nice hotel and pretty reasonable, as it included breakfast. We learned from the innkeeper that if we drank too much, we could get a ride back from Ebenezer's from one of the staff and he'd give us a ride in the morning to get our car. Good to know. We plan on going back up in the summer when there isn't 3 feet of snow on the ground (we were skiing for the week, so it was good for that) and returning to the Olde Saco Inn and will likely take them up on the shuttle service.

 2,544 characters

Photo of sprucetip
4.9/5  rDev +4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

What else can I add? The place and its people are amazingly welcoming. Though Chris is out of town, and Jen taking the night off, we were extremely well taken care of. The food was excellent and the service and hospitality outstanding. There were about 30 taps, mostly Belgian, and many I was unfamiliar with. I had a Het Kapittel Abt first, called a quad on the menu. It was wonderful. Hannah and Frank brought us samples of various beers unprovoked. They both seem to have some passion for sours, which I don't, but tha's fine. A sign inside says they have 800 beers. I don't think there were that many on the menu, but who cares? They've got alot of beer. Though I give a deserved 5 for selection, the American craft section is modest. But it is made up for with Belgians. Frank, the cook and apparently Chris' protege, lead our cellar tour, which included samples of Sturise/Mikkeller double IPA and Struise Pannepot unspiced version. Yum. The Black Albert was especially tasty as well, and on tap.

A big thank you to Frank and Hannah and all the crew at Ebenezer's. I look forward to a return visit sometime. It may be helpful to know that they have a relationship with an Inn nearby where Ebenezer's will give you a ride home, and the Inn will bring you back for your car in the morning. The Inn is very nice, but maybe a bit pricey for college student type budget. But being so far out in rural Maine, you likely have to stay somewhere.

 1,445 characters

Photo of kernal
5/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

The last review really says it all. Heading to Lovell is a challange depending on the weather. But no matter what the weather is, get to this bar. When you walk through the door and see the copper bar top, you see the cooler filled with beer at the proper temperature, you see the infinite amount of taps pouring beers you never dreamed could be on tap, then you meet and get to know the staff it all adds up to one thing, the best beer bar ever.
Each review is correct, this place is a masterpiece. Not only can you try a number of beers you may never see, you have a staff dedicated to the beers and can share with you details that help you make the right decision.
Chris the owner was one of those guys you can spend hours and days talking to, I learned so much about the pub and his passion for making this place even better.
This review is in a lot of ways stating what many have said before. But it is also a THANKS to Chris and Hannah and the rest of the staff for an unforgettable visit, I will be back!

 1,013 characters

Photo of edmedina
4.88/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

My good friend and I made a trip up there as part of what we called the New England Pub Crawl. We did all New England states by car and stopped in at least one pub/bar in three days. Maine was the one state we actually did three stops. Allagash, Gritty Mc Duffs and the main reason to do this trip Ebenezer's. We stopped in on the 16th of Jan. We actually got there early and waited in our car in freezing temps for the place to open. At 3pm on the dot we made our way to the bar and were immediately greeted by one friendliest bartenders, Hannah. Man, she was great. She only had been there since Sept of last year and had a good grasp of the great beers served. She could tell you what you should taste and what to look for in your beer. Now I am going to knock them in beer selection score because they didn't have Black Albert. Yea I ordered it and sure enough the night before the last keg had just been tapped out. Ok, I know that's just being petty. But hey!! where else would you expect to find Black Albert????

We ordered some food which was great. I loved the fries and belgian mayonnaise. My friend ordered beef tip salad and he was not disappointed. So I am not going to go into the beer selection. Come on, we all know how great it is already.

I will say this, we did get to meet Chris and wow was I blow away by his passion. He did take us down to his cellar and he told us about his place. What all of this means to him and how all he wants to do is enjoy the great beer and share it. I did ask him one question: "You have the #1 beer bar in America, what do you look for in a restaurant or bar when you go out?" His response was simply great food, great service and a clean place. That's it. Nothing about the beer selection or someone knowing what to drink with what, nope. Chris' point to us was he wanted his place to be a family restaurant. A place where anyone can bring their family and have a great food with great service and be able to enjoy a great beer. He did say he was humbled that we would make this long journey in the middle of winter to be at his place. Chris, if you read this I believe you accomplished that task. Your staff was great, the food was awesome and your generosity was most gracious. My friend and I were blown away. Nothing else on our journey could compare to what we experienced there.

 2,340 characters

Photo of ImHereForTheBeer
5/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

We were at Ebenezers on the night of a crazy New England ice storm, so we were one of the only guests there. I suppose we were the only ones lucky enough / stupid enough (chose one) to travel out that night for a beer.

After settling in out of the storm, our extremely friendly waitress chatted it up with us for a while and saw that we were really into the beer. After dinner she brought back Chris to say hello. After some more great beer suggestions up in the pub and a great beer conversation, Chris invited us over to his house to check out his cellar... yes ... we know just how lucky we are!

Anyhow, I think that there is a lot more to their deservedly great reviews. It is not just the great beer selections (of which there were just soooo many), but there are plenty of places out there with great beer. It is the whole package. We had great service at the pub with a staff that really knew their beers. The food was creative and delicious (steak tips - yummy) and the pub was intimate, creating a much more personal experience than a larger pub could offer. To boot Chris and his wife Jenny were totally cool and personable.

We met a regular at the bar there that night (John) that had been coming to Ebenezers for what he described as "forever". For years he and his wife drank only Bud and Bud Light, and like a good barkeep, they served it to them with a smile. By John's own words, the laid back and knowledgeable approach at Ebenezers slowly got him into good beer. That's a sign of a great beer bar.

As small business owners ourselves, we know first hand the difference that the personal touch and attention to detail makes. Chris and his team have really done a great job up there pulling together the whole package.

 1,739 characters

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
4.78/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

One of my favorite pubs (if not my favorite!). Tucked away in this small, sleepy town in Maine. Nice atmosphere, very cozy. Small bar though (only like 7 or 8 seats). Lots of quality taps (can't quite remember them all because the last time I was here was in February but off the top of my head: Ayinger Celebrator, Cantillon Kriek, De Ranke, Allagash Black and Curieux, Pizza Port, etc etc.) Not many American beers, this pub specializes in imports, particularly Belgians. A huge Fantome collection, plus some rarities including Chimay Doree and Westvleteren. Lots of Struise too, of course. The owner, Chris, is awesome and very generous, if you get the chance to talk with him. The food is superb too. Truly a must visit, even if you're 7+ hours away. Probably the best pub in America, at least on the East coast.

 816 characters

Photo of gameface23
5/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

I just got back from a trip to Ebenezer's with a group of friends. I can firmly state that this place lived up to even my highest expectations. Chris, the owner, is probably the coolest guy I have ever met. He is so generous and knowledgeable. He took us on a personal tour of the cellar, which contained so many rare & exotic beers that I had to take out my camera and take pictures of some of them.

The selection is loaded with great beers. The beer menu has 6 pages, if I remember correctly. Tons of sour ales, barley wines, and imperial stouts. The ONLY negative is that they only had a few IPA's/DIPA's. But, I probably wouldn't order them anyways because there are so many hard to find Belgians on the menu. I had a Cantillon Vigneronne and De Struise Black Albert, both on tap. I also got a bottle of Pannepot.

I can't believe a world-class beer bar like Ebenezer's is located in Lovell, ME. Chris explained to us that having it there is good for Maine and for the local area. It was interesting to look out in the parking lot and see more snow mobiles than cars.

The food (we ordered a garden salad, chicken fingers, french fries, chowder, and chili) was really good. The french fries and chicken fingers were perfectly fried. All of the food complimented the beers that we were drinking.

I am so happy that I made the trip up there and will definitely be going back soon. It's truly worth the trip from any distance.

 1,432 characters

Photo of evantwomey
4.95/5  rDev +5.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Just got back from a trip here with a few friends and this place is beyond belief. As a native of Maine, I don't know why it took me so long to finally make the trip to Ebenezer's. We walked in shortly after noon so it wasn't exceptionally busy and fortunately we were able to get a table right away. For the first round, two of us ordered a glass of Black Albert, my brother got a two-year old barleywine from Allagash (didn't even know this existed), and another friend got a glass of some grape Cantillon. The Black Albert was great but the Allagash barleywine was phenomenal. Shortly after that I began to ask some questions about different beers and within 2 minutes, Chris is at our table. Chris is probably about the nicest, most genuine dude ever and knows more about beer than anyone I've ever met. As a shot in the dark, I asked him if he happened to have any Russian River brews lying around, and his reply was "I have all of them". He then starts telling us about his cellar, and invites us down to check it out.

I've never seen anything like this in my life. His cellar is like a museum where you can drink the exhibits. I still can't believe the things he had down here...Chimay from 1986, Westvleteren from the late 80s, kegs upon kegs of lambic, cases of Fantome, Bigfoot from every year since 1995...you name it. After talking with Chris for a while, I ask him how much a bottle of Beatification would cost. Rather than charge us for it, he offers one to us for free! So we all go back inside the pub and split a bottle with Chris, needless to say, this beer was fantastic. As a lover of sour beers, this was an experience I won't soon forget. After that, we get some Tsjeeses (a tripel aged w/stone fruits) which was fantastic. My brother had a Koningshoeven quad which was probably the best quad I've ever tasted. As we were getting ready to leave, Chris spotted us across the room and called us over for one last tasting. He produced a bottle of Firestone Twelve and poured us each a small glass. What an amazing beer - huge chocolate and bourbon taste and definitely one of the top imperial stouts (or strong ales?) I've ever had.

This place is amazing and Chris is one of the most generous and friendly people you will ever meet. Plus, the food was great! It is hard to believe such a special place is located in the tiny town of Lovell, but this place definitely lives up to all the hype and far exceeded my expectations.

Go to Ebenezer's!

 2,467 characters

Photo of hossthepatsfan
5/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

I haven't been to hundreds of beer bars but I've been a quite a few and Ebenezer's lived up the legendary status I had expected when I went this past weekend. I gave the "atmosphere" a 5.0 because (to steal a phrase from Denny Green) it was what I thought it was!

Look... if you're looking for a super fancy, hoity-toity beer bar that's going to have a guy in a tux standing in the men's room holding out a white glove for a tip after he hands you a hand towel... you're in the WRONG place. BUT.. if you're looking for a down-home, clean, extremely friendly and comfortable place with the best beer selection and most knowledgable owner in the country Ebenezer's is probably in the top two or three. Atmosphere, to me, means "character" not whether or not there are linen towels in the men's room, and I don't know if there are too many places with more character than Ebenezer's.

I had the honor (and I mean that) of hanging out with the owner Chris for about an hour, talking and tasting beers. Black Albert, Earthmonk, Stille Nacht, St. Barnabus Abt, the recent Allagash/De Struise collaboration... the list went on and on (I can't even remember them all).

The waitresses that were there were extremely knowledgible and friendly. I had a "chimay burger" that was fantastic and when the check came I didn't even blink at the total. It was a couple of bucks but given the beers we had, for as long as we had them, I was pleased to say the least.

 1,450 characters

Photo of yossarian14
4.9/5  rDev +4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I found this place through BA when I was looking for something to do with a couple friends over the Columbus Day weekend. This is Saturday October 11 2008, which is the day that Stone Brewing Co. began distributing in Maine. Stone is available here in Mass but the idea of a wall of taps pouring a dozen different Stone products was too appealing to pass up. Off we went... First of all, I felt like I was going to one of those bars in Swingers where you get to brag just because you found the place. Talk about a hidden gem.

Upon arriving we were treated like regulars for the next 10 hours, thats right 10 hours. Chris, the owner, offered us a spot to set up a tent out behind the bar within 15 minutes of meeting us. His generosity was natural and immediate. Thank you Chris. Set up camp and then helped build a campfire and proceeded to play two-on-two touch football with the fire at the 50 yard line.

Now, they had a different beer line-up and menu for this particular night but the food, drink and prices were beyond all expectations and based on this one experience I'm sure we'll make more than one return trip. Thank You for a great night. Woohoo

 1,159 characters

Photo of joepais
5/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

What can I add about this place that hasn't been said before?
Well let me tell you my take
This place is located pretty much in the middle of nowhere Maine the "Restaurant at the edge of the universe" kind of way. The atmosphere is like a small New England diner meets gourmet food /Beer bar. I walked into the place and immediately felt like I was home.
The hospitality of Chris, his wife (who recently just delivered a child) and his staff were some of the best I have ever received in any establishment I have been to.
This man has a passion for Beer and you can tell. Not only from his selection at the bar (one of the best I have ever seen in one place) but in his enthusiasm for beer in general.
The food was crazy good I had cheese plate for an appetizer and a Chimay cheese burger along with some incredible Belgian chocolate bread Dessert.
It was the best beer drinking experience I have had in my life. I'd feel like I was bragging if it told you why so I won't but I will tell you to go and check it out yourself

 1,025 characters

Photo of dnichols
4.85/5  rDev +3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I recently attended the BA "Return of the Belgiums" festival then spent a few days touring the Northeast. Among my desired destinations was Ebenezer's. After a few wrong turns I found the establishment tucked on the edge of a golf course at the edge of town. I got there after the lunch rush but was pleased to see that the bar was occupied by several patron who were all enjoying beers from the bar amazing selection.

I sat in the sun room and was promptly served by an attentive and knowledgeable wait staff. They were friendly and accommodating to my whims and fancies. I began with a Balck Albert (on tap) then progressed to a Het Kappitel Abt (also on tap and one of the ~20 fine brews available from a keg). The latter I enjoyed with a reasonably priced Ruben sandwich which was light on sauerkraut, was loaded with corned beef, and heavy on a tasty "special" sauce.

Following lunch I surveyed the extensive beer menu and was pleased to find so many of my favorite Belgium's, as well as prime North American craft brews (~200 so so based on a fast count). My eye was attracted to a "market priced" Westmalle Extra which I ordered. The beer was served with reverence and while enjoying I was treated by a visit at my table by Chris, the owner of Ebenezer's. In addition to the fine conversation with Chris I was treated to samples including a Val-Dieu Grand Cru and a De Dolle Oerbier.

My only regret is that I was forced to leave the bar far earlier than I wanted to. I was staying the evening in Portland and then traveling on to Boston and home. I highly recommend Ebenezer's...it's a destination bar that all lovers of Belgium beers should experience.

 1,666 characters

Photo of Myphoon
4.63/5  rDev -1.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

If you are anywhere in New England, visit this pub! It is a gorgeous drive and it is well worth the trip.

My wife and I were stunned at the beer selection. The draft list was exceptional which included many from Cantillon, De Dolle, a whole slew of Stone (Stone's "coming out" party was the day prior) and many others. The bottle list was even more impressive. There were all the Belgian favorites plus many hard to find nuggets like Thomas Hardy from the 70's, 6-8 different De Dolle beers and even Westvleteren!

Chris the owner noticed my Toronado shirt and introduced himself. We chatted about San Diego and other California beers. He disappeared and returned with a bottle of Pliny the Elder that was bottled on his birthday. He wanted to remind us of the taste of California.

Don't miss this place!!

 810 characters

Photo of bkett01
4.3/5  rDev -8.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

This place truly is in the middle of nowhere. Well hidden near the border of Western Maine, Ebenezer's doesn't appear to have much competition in the area.
Atmosphere is almost like a summer shack with tables casually spread out throughout the interior with beer signs covering the walls. Very average atmosphere.
Service was my main issue. Granted, it was the waiters second night on the job, but when I ask what style a certain beer is the waiter should not say "I don't know" and then proceed to stare at me waiting for me to order it. Water should also not need to be asked for 3 times before finally getting it. I am assuming this service was the exception to the rule as other waitstaff appeared competent.
On to the good. Selection, Quality & Food were all fantastic. The beer list, as far as Belgian selection, is truly world-class. I had three beers, all very good, most interesting one being the Wedding Parfait. The steak tips, as others have mentioned, were delicious and very fresh.
Overall, I am glad I was able to experience Ebenezer's. Is it the best beer bar in America? Absolutely not. But if you're vacationing within an hour radius, it's worth stopping by.

 1,179 characters

Photo of sarita
4.78/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

What can I say about Ebenezers that hasn't already been said? As Snafui mentioned in his review below, he experienced Ebe's at a unique time during the Belgian fest and w/ a large party of 13. I was among that party and concur with everything he already stated below. In addition to that though, I'd just like to reiterate how very special it is to drive out in the middle of nowhere Maine and be able to experience one of the best selections of beer on the planet from a person who is so incredibly passionate about beer, food and sharing his passion with others. It was well worth the long drive to experience what Ebe's has to offer, especially during the Belgian fest. Chris and the guys from De Struise made it a truly memorable experience. I only wish we could have stayed longer for the entire fest and the beer dinner.
I also want to mention that Chris' wife Jen was incredibly helpful when we were making our plans for the trip. She spent time with me on the phone telling me about the area, hooking me up with a discount at the inn down the street, and offering us a place to camp if necessary. She was wicked friendly and she seemed genuinely excited about introducing some new folks to the fest.
Also... BEST STEAK TIPS EVER!

 1,237 characters

Photo of snafui
4.78/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

It's going to be hard to write this review since I experienced Ebe's with a large party during a festival, but I'll do my best.

My first impression of the atmosphere was "hmm we traveled a long way for this, is this it?" To put this in context though, we arrived with a party of 13 late on a Saturday night after driving around lost and without cell coverage to find the place, including traveling 2 miles on a dirt road (which Google thought was a good idea). We got to Ebe's and it was in full swing, Somehow we found a table large enough but it was mostly SRO near the bar. The beer selection was great, but we were all very tired, I had a headache, and the table we were at had someone else's old food plates which started to smell not so good. 2-3 beers later we all left for some sleep. The next day was a WHOLE DIFFERENT EXPERIENCE!

We arrived at Ebe's before noon on Sunday. The place was clean, quiet, inviting. We had some amazing beers, mouthwatering food, chatted with the other patrons and staff, and genuinely enjoyed ourselves. We came back later for dinner and I'm still stunned by the experience. Again the food is amazing, the beers were just fantastic. Then the fun started.
The owner, Chris Lively, treated us to an amazing selection of rare beers including some Westmalle extra, some Chimay grand reserve 1999, a russian river bottle line-up, and some innovative blended beers made up on the spot by Urbain of De Struise. From what I understand, Chris is known for his passion, generosity, and amazing beer blending skills and we were not disappointed!
I understand now that the Saturday session, late at night, in the midst of a belgian fest, was probably very taxing on the facilities and wait staff and likely not indicative of a normal night of operation - coupled with the long trip - I'm not judging Ebe's on our Saturday experience.

I guess there are some atmosphere improvements I'd like to see. More comfortable chairs in the dining and porch areas. I think the carpeting should be replaced with something easier to clean, it felt kinda sticky at the end of the night. And I know the mosquitoes were unusually active due to the rain and you're doing your best, but perhaps the screen doors could be improved a bit or something.

My only other complaint is that with the De Struise guys (who are really nice and a lot of fun) around, I really wanted to try their beers but I didn't see any on tap and didn't notice any bottles for sale(though perhaps I missed them). Our crew got psyched up for their beer, most had never had it, and we left a little unsatisfied in that respect. But as I understand it their beer will be served with a special dinner later in the week so I understand holding off on serving until then. Just wish we had some. And you know what? It could just be that we never asked! How embarrassing for us.

Complaining/feedback aside, I am still in awe at what a wonderful time we had there. I'm aching to go back. Earlier in the day while seated in the bar area I felt perfectly at home and didn't ever want to leave. Then later Sunday night we experienced what makes Ebe's truly unique. To top it all off we were back at Ebe's around 10 AM Monday morning tasting lambics and blending beer with Chris and the Struise guys.

Chris thank you for a wonderful time and for being so generous!

 3,340 characters

Photo of DrDogbeer
4.72/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Well- I don't know where to start. Vacationed in Maine, about 15 minutes from here a week ago. It was on my radar from the get-go and I made the most of it. My wife and I went 5 times during the week. It is that good. We went with the kids for lunch and dinner and we also got to go out and hang at the bar a few nites because we had a sitter.
First of all- the selection is that good! The number of draft beers that I had never seen on draft before was amazing! Not to mention the coolers full of amazing bottles (no beer list available to me as they were re-doing it- kind of a pain in the ass, but the waitresses and bartender (Dianne) were great.)
I tried - (and forgive me but I cant remember all)
Cantillion St. Lamvinus, vigeronne, and lou pepe
St bernardus dubbel and tripel
Saison dupont
de glazen saison
De Ranke XX
Troubador obscura
and that was just draft
Also had Kreik de Ranke, Struiselensis, Fantome printemps and more.
We even got my wife to drink some funky stuff!! (although she loved the St Bernardus Witte on draft)
The food was good, as well. The steak tips are amazing and everything else was very good. The kids liked their food, too, and it was great for my son who has a peanut allergy. Pizza was great to pick on at night.
All and all, a really cool place- a bit small in the bar area, and when it gets crowded you may have to wait a bit. But those are hardly worth complaining about. I can not wait to get back up there again. Hoping to return for the Belgian fest at the end of the month!!

 1,520 characters

Photo of JohnQVegas
4.9/5  rDev +4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Everything anyone else has said about this unbelievable place is absolutely true. The beer list is just unparalleled, Chris's generosity is unbelievable, and the entire experience bordered on surreal. Some of the highlights of our trip included:

Struiselensis
Russian River Supplication
Cantillon Lou Pepe Framboise 2005, St. Lamnivus, and Vingeronne
Fantome La Gourmand
Westmalle Extra
a blend of Boon gueueze and Cantillon lambic (I think) done by Struise
Brooklyn Black Ops

We were planning our next visit on our way out the door that night. Spectacular. Make sure you let Chris know you're coming and ask for him when you get there.

 640 characters

Photo of belhav0322
4.83/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

To say that I had high expectations for this place would be an understatement.

To say that myself and three friends based the location of our annual kayaking/golfing trip on the proximity of Kezar Lake to Ebenezer's is somewhat embarrassing, but true. A lofty reputation indeed.

When all was said and done, we were blown away by everything about this incredible beer oasis in the most random/desolate (if not absolutely beautiful) of locations.

I will leave out the various descriptions of the atmosphere since other reviews have covered that area well. This will also allow me to focus more on my individual experience.

The first words blurted from my mouth when greeted by our amiable waitress on a Sunday afternoon was "Do you have any Black Albert in stock"? She claimed that she was not sure and that she would check. She proceeded to take my back up order (St. Lamvinus, poor me) which was brought to the table along with the other drinks promptly. About 5 minutes later Chris showed up with two bottles of Black Albert in his hand. He then poured a round for our table and explained the wonder that is indeed Black Albert.

Um, it was pretty damn good. We then chatted with him for a while and barraged him with questions. Throughout this time he would disappear and reappear with all sorts of treats that I have not had the honor of trying before (Cantillon Cuvee de Champions, Fantome La Gourmand, and a special west cost DIPA that shall remain nameless to name a few).

In between sips, some sample questions included:

"How in the hell do you get this stuff?"

"Why this location?"

"Do you offer lines of credit?"

I'll let you visit yourself to find out the answers and ask your own.

Needless to say, we were amazed by the great and rare beer we tried and the hospitality of Chris. Here I thought I was a beer geek, but damn, Chris lives and breathes beer. Amongst all this I enjoyed a great lobster roll and a nice piece of blueberry pie. When in Maine...

A few more subsequent visits throughout the week would prove just as amazing. We were treated to some great beers. Chris's love of sour beers is very apparent and we partook in some truly unique ones.

Struiselensis is one of the most amazing and complex beers I have ever had. Sour goodness! Chris is to thank for the recommendation.

We were even treated to having a tour of his beer cellar (along with more amazing samples).

I cannot say enough about Ebenezer's. It was the most unique beer bar and overall bar experience I have ever had the pleasure of enjoying.

From the rare beers hardly never found in the country, great hospitality by Chris and the rest of the staff, and the food (Chimay burger!) make this place one of a kind and a MUST VISIT for any serious beer drinker who can make it there. Well worth the 7 hour drive from the Hudson Valley.

The only downside: We missed the upcoming Belgian beer fest by a little over a month. Drat!!

It is safe to say my fellow travelers had the same feelings as well. Indeed, we will be back next year.

 3,036 characters

Photo of 05Harley
4.9/5  rDev +4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Recently my wife and I visited Ebenezer's with some friends of ours. Need less to say we had a &^%$#@! blast!! Chris, Jen and the staff were awesome. I was amazed at the beer selection. I was especially pleased with the Black Albert Chris shared with us, very, very good. I'm a big fan of Stout's and think this is one of the best I've ever had at 13%. The food was awesome as well. I've had several dishes during my visits and haven't had a bad one yet. The last dish I had was the prime rib, what a meal. If you ever get a chance to visit Ebenezer's make sure you do. You won't be disappointed. Chris and Jen are about the best Hosts you'll find.

 648 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
4.9/5  rDev +4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Rode into town in a pouring rainstorm to try this place for the first time.
This place is a bit off the beaten path, but still close enough to North Conway to get your ass up there. Ebenezer's is on a side road off of route 5 right next to a golf course. Coming north on 5 there will be a sign noting where to turn, and then its only 3/10ths of a mile.
The place doesn't look like much from the outside, kind of a bar inside a barn kinda thing. Inside there are 3 seating areas: a patio as you first walk in, seating inside, and a bar tucked off in the right corner. I sat at the bar and studied the tap handles for a bit, there were between 20-30 and not a BMC to be seen. Off to the right side of the bar is a cooler with LOTS of bottles.
There were 2 menus on the bar in front of me a food menu and a beer menu. The beer menu was larger I think. The beer menu is full of rare and vintage brews from all over the world. The food menu had your standard pub fare and also "real" food.
I had a Chimay burger that was great and a couple of beers that were as well.
I can't say enough good things about this place, the food, the beer, the service, everything was awesome. I hope to return soon and sample some more from this fine establishment.

 1,243 characters

Photo of Hhawk06
5/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Notes from a visit in Feb '08:

Had to make a stop by with my wife while we were on vacation in nearby Conway, NH. Upon first viewing of the menu, I quickly scan for Black Albert. Alas, it is not on the menu! I proceed to ask the waitress if Black Albert was available; she asks, "are you a beer advocate?" I'm in luck! Within the next few minutes, Chris comes out with the fresh pour, unbelievable! Not only did Chris intermittently bring out a new offering every 10-15 minutes or so without prompting, he hung out, chatted, and told us many a beer story. Lets just say he is brilliantly running his business. And I don't even need to comment on the selection, just check out the website.
The food was very good and reasonable, a nice complement to the beer menu. Even more amazing was the final bill. The total was nowhere near the amount we imbibed that afternoon, which left my jaw dropped once again. I came in to Ebenezer's wondering how review after review could be an A+. I was completely prepared to rate it lower if I thought it deserved it. Not by a long shot, this place is beer heaven, and beer advocates are treated like God. This place may be in the middle of nowhere, but you would never regret a weekend retreat.

 1,229 characters

Ebenezer's Restaurant & Pub in Lovell, ME
Place rating: 4.71 out of 5 with 160 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.