Gulu-Gulu Café

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BA SCORE
90
outstanding

19 Reviews
Gulu-Gulu CaféGulu-Gulu Café
PLACE INFO

Type: Bar, Eatery

247 Essex St
Salem, Massachusetts, 01970-3401
United States

(978) 740-8882 | map
www.gulu-gulu.com

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by ohmesohoppy on 04-29-2008

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PLACE STATS
Score:
90
Reviews:
19
Ratings:
36
Avg:
4.01
pDev:
6.23%
 
 
Taps:
24
Bottles/Cans:
32
Cask:
N
Beer-to-Go:
N
View: Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 19 | Ratings: 36
Reviews by currysage1:
Photo of currysage1
3.93/5  rDev -2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Interesting place to be on the Wednesday before Halloween. My girlfriend and I had Absinthe with a couple or witches (real).

But on to the beer.

Gulu-Gulu is my kind of bar, very open floor plan, mix and match tables and chairs, and a couch or two. We sat on a leather couch that was on a stage that on other nights hosts musicians. Very laid back atmosphere.

Bartender was very nice and tried to be as informative as possible, served my Saison Dupont in the appropriate glass. I moved on to a Westiphaner Korbinian after, my gf had a Ommegang Abbey on tap and then Absinthe.

4 taps - Ommegang Abbey and Hennepin, Kruskovice Imperial Pils, and Dogfish 60. Bottle list was much better than I had expected, but I have to say I'm very spoiled with the Moan and Dove and the Dirty Truth. The only reason I knocked the selection was because if they want to play at being a beer bar then they NEED to get a few more draught lines going.

Food sounded very good but didn't try, very Euro style.

All in all it was a very good experience and I would most certainly be back when I'm in the area.

 1,091 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of Cbmcguire
4/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of sliberty
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

This is the best beer list on the North Shore as of this review (6/2/2016).

There is always a great variety of different beers from all over the country / world with a large but manageable tap list and a deep bottle / can list full of quality choices.

The atmosphere is hipster chic with exposed brick, high ceilings, a variety of seating choices including bar, long tables, and couches, and a great location downtown Salem. It's also very near a lot of other great bars and restaurants.

The food is good, especially if you know what to order. The bagel and lox plate is amazing.

Service is very spotty and uneven... or if you prefer to be generous, call it European-style service. After all, the bar is inspired by another of the same name in Czech Republic. You may be waiting a while for food, but if you've got nowhere to be and want the best beer available, this is your place.

 886 characters

Photo of AdaminNH
4.73/5  rDev +18%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Photo of crob3888
4/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of vonnerbeer
4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

Photo of blisscent
4.56/5  rDev +13.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of TylerKitchens
4.71/5  rDev +17.5%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Always an awesome draft list and the bottle selection is extensive. Most of their food is artisanal cheeses and meats, different crepes and breakfast food, and some of the best coffee around.

 192 characters

Photo of TheBungyo
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of emottram
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of mynie
4.14/5  rDev +3.2%

The best word for this place is "cute," followed closely by "busy." The vibe is youthful, but not pretentious, and although the aesthetic is welcoming they're usually too busy to be outright friendly. Bands and open mics take the stage most nights around 8, and it gets loud. That's sometimes nice, other times not so nice, so be sure to check the website and see what's going on there before you head out.

The tap list is the best in town. Lots and lots of middling MA locals, along with a handful of excellent imports, bigger-name crafts from the (Mid)west, and some genuinely good stuff from Maine. Still haven't seen Trillium out here, but this will be the first place that gets it.

Their website tap list is updated regularly, and it includes prices which is really nice. The food is pub fare and it's okay. I--I got nothing else to say. Cute joint, definitely worth stopping by if you're in town.

 917 characters

Photo of Speedbump
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of SuperHop18
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of jarrodddd
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of RKing44
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of Mantooth
3.9/5  rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4.25

Stopped by Salem on a recent vacation - love the laid back hippie vibe of this place. Had an amazing sandwich and a four glass sampler of beers, picked from their 20 son taps. I'm from NC so I was happy to try some Firestone Walker brews I'd not had the chance to pick up before. Great food and beer - if you're in the area... check it out.

 340 characters

Photo of SDean82
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of cincysig
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of HookerBrews
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of Resuin
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of jmmy3
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of Jason
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of nootch23
4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.75 | food: 3.75

Gulu Gulu is one of my favorite places to go in Salem. It can get quite busy at any time of day, especially during the lunch and dinner rushes but during the week they usually have bands playing and an open mic night which will make finding a table hard to find. Overall, the food here is pretty good, their breakfast is amazing. The service can be pretty slack when it gets busy but nothing too horrible.

The beer selection is outstanding. They have about 20 taps and a cooler for bottles. The tap selection always carries a very good variety of styles and tastes. Every now and then they will have a rarity on tap. I believe every Tuesday night is cask night when they will crack open a cask of a local brew. The bartenders know their beer and are great resources to ask about different tastes of the beers and for recommendations. Not all places are like that.

I will always highly recommend Gulu Gulu for beer. It's become our go to place.

 947 characters

Photo of JordanPhraczek
4.69/5  rDev +17%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.75

The Gulu has more than 20 taps, always caters to every craft brew palate, and you cannot beat their prices for craft beer.

If you went to Boston you could spend $2-3 more dollars on every draft beer they have. The service is wonderful for a seat yourself place, and the age demographic is larger than almost any "cool" bar around. I am continuously impressed by the Gulu.

 373 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
4.13/5  rDev +3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Roaming around Salem, and we stumbled into this joint. Interesting vibe throughout, and we had a fun time while we were there. A very eclectic atmosphere, from the exterior to the decorations, the food menu, and the drinks. Lots of fun, and this place gets pretty busy on weekends. The service was great, from the hostess down to the servers. It seems like there are a lot of events going on there, especially local music. We were there on a night when a comic art project was having an opening, followed immediately by a live band. Fun stuff. The beer selection was very decent, with a ton of brews on draft, and even more available by the bottle. I was impressed with the selection. However, do not be fooled by the beer list on the wall. I walked in and was extremely excited to see Founders Breakfast Stout on the wall. When I ordered, I was informed by the waitress that they ran out of that "a long time ago," and that the wall rarely gets updated. They have a menu that they keep up to date, so if you go in and have to wait for a table for a while, do not reference the wall. It can only lead to disappointment. The food was great, and as I said, there is a good variety available, from tapas and appetizers to full blown entrees. Price was very reasonable, and we would absolutely go back when we are in Salem again.

 1,325 characters

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Gulu-Gulu Café in Salem, MA
4.01 out of 5 based on 36 ratings.
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