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Novare Res Bier Café

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BEER AVG
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Awaiting 10 Ratings
Novare Res Bier CaféNovare Res Bier Café
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

4 Canal Plz
Portland, Maine, 04101-4034
United States

(207) 761-2437 | map
novareresbiercafe.com

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by indiapaleale on 05-28-2008

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BEER STATS
Beers:
3
Reviews:
0
Ratings:
5
PLACE STATS
Score:
98
Reviews:
135
Ratings:
263
Avg:
4.44
pDev:
6.53%
 
 
Taps:
26
Bottles/Cans:
250
Cask:
Y
Beer-to-Go:
N
View: Beers | Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 135 | Ratings: 263
Reviews by opwog:
Photo of opwog
3.7/5  rDev -16.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

I had to grab a late dinner when arriving in Portland and saw that NR was rated well on BA and on Yelp. There seemed to be some confusion initially upon arriving of whether the kitchen was open or closed (different hours on the phone while parking, than 5 minutes later after walking in).

The pros: The food was really tasty and the beer selection was good. The prices were also good for both.

The cons (which I mention in hopes that these might change):

1) If the Red Sox are in the playoffs and somebody asks if there is a TV to watch the game in one of the rooms, the reply should not be; "it is all about the beer here." You serve mainly unshaven community college kids in pseudo-vintage t-shirts that they bought at Target. You are not above having a TV set showing the Red Sox game. I have been to half of the top beer bars in the US and all of them have TV sets.

2) If somebody's GF does not want beer and needs a second to look at the wine list (as short as it is), do not leave her for another 15 minutes having to flag wildly to get her order in while the bar is half empty.

3) Loose that "hot chicks and douchebags" soundtrack playing in there. I do not say that as the grumpy old guy, but as somebody equally aware of what far better music is readily available over that guitar-centric BS that reminded me of my worst night having to sit through that dude from Lacuna Coil.

I might be busting balls in this review, but the beer, food and prices are what is right about this place. The rest of this place should be redone from scratch because the crowd that I saw in there are the type who may write you up on Yelp today, but will move on to "farm to table" dining to impress their fake ID dates next year. You need to build a beer bar that will hold interest of the beer community and make members of that community want to come back and spread the word to others. That is far more important in a business model than temporary hipness.

 1,960 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of rorykanderson
4.54/5  rDev +2.3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Popped in midday Sunday so there were only handful of folks whom were all at the bar. Looked to be ~ 20 or so taps with a great representation from ME and New England in general. Bottle list is unreal - long, wide-reaching, comprehensive and exotic. Lots of those hard-to-find but oft-heard-of lambics. The vibe is the best part of the place - laid back, comfy but with an air of deep knowledge; like if a beer geek ran a bar: low on fluff, deep on content. These folks know their stuff. Highly recommended.

 508 characters

Photo of coombski
4.39/5  rDev -1.1%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75 | food: 3

Photo of KEEPonPOURING
4.58/5  rDev +3.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

First time dropping in at open on a Wednesday. Big place, had it all to ourselves but felt cozy. The bartender was very knowledgeable about the taps and the bottle list, which was INSANE (in an awesome way)! Attentive and welcoming at all times were the staff. Had my first ME lobster roll there. Couldn't beat $12. Best beer bar I've ever been to. I will absolutely be back.

 375 characters

Photo of Thor-just-umm-Thor
4.87/5  rDev +9.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5

Been here many, many times. A must-stop whenever in Portland. Unfailingly good service and the staff knows their stuff. Beer selection is off the charts with an emphasis on foreign and difficult to find beers. Best times are when it's quiet or slow and you can chat with the super-knowledgable staff about beer. Several times after chatting, they have recommended a beer I had never tried -- and it has always been a winner! Schlenkerla Marzen smoked beer on tap? Great recommendation. Now it's one of my favorites. Novare is just wonderful.

 541 characters

Photo of chiefbender
4.93/5  rDev +11%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25

Photo of Nomis
4.23/5  rDev -4.7%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.92/5  rDev +10.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of smb
4.04/5  rDev -9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Photo of zimm421
4.48/5  rDev +0.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.25

Photo of mynie
4.5/5  rDev +1.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75

Maybe my favorite beer bar in New England, aside from Three Penny (but that doesn't count because Vermont is a special wonderland against which other places should not be rated).

Lord Hobo is great, don't get me wrong. They never struck me as pompous or hipster-y, as others have complained about. But the place is still hypey, and hype brings crowds and loudness and very long lines on release days. Also, getting to and from Cambridge is difficult. Novare Res has a selection that actually beats Hobo's, and it's way more accessible.

The bar takes up the basement level of an old brick building. It's fairly dark, even during a sunny day, but never dank or creepy. The lighting is warm and amber, the decor is woody, and the place just feels cozy and comfortable.

The bar is long and the basement is spacious. There's also a deck that can easily hold another fifty or so people. It gets a big raucous and loud late on weekends, but if you stop by before 10 or so the vibe is super chill.

They do a decent job of updating their online taplist but often do not list very rare beers. This is good, I think, as it helps dissuade stampedes for CBS. They do frequent tap takeovers and other events, and everything is always handled very well.

 1,250 characters

Photo of AirBob
4.3/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5

Photo of ArkyVaughan
4.5/5  rDev +1.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75

Photo of Sound_Explorer
4.55/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4

If you have been to the Monk's Cafe in Philadelphia, then this is the equivalent up north. 10 page bottle list and some Rares on a chalk board. Draft list and food keep it going. Interesting spot almost under ground. Good sized patio. It is a bit hard to find as you enter a parking lot behind bank to just see the umbrellas. Still awesome.

 340 characters

Photo of Gavage
4.51/5  rDev +1.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5

This place is a bit off the usual path. Old brick filled bar in one section, and a back room that had some couches and more relaxed atmosphere. Large outdoor area with some tables. This is a great place for Belgian beers, they must have had almost 30 on draft. I think there was only one or two local Maine beers here. The bottle selection is incredible so if you are looking for the hard to find Belgian beer it may be here. The place was very crowded but the bartenders were hustling. Very enjoyable visit.

 509 characters

Photo of texasrat
4.58/5  rDev +3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Great beer spot!

16 characters

Photo of illpass78
5/5  rDev +12.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

What is there to say about about this place? It's the best. Amazing selection of foreign and Maine beers. Menu is just what it should be - mix of great cheese pairings and cut-above pub food. Justifiably beloved.

 212 characters

Photo of dee4maine
4.7/5  rDev +5.9%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25

Photo of ScottP
4.79/5  rDev +7.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Photo of RePhil
4.46/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5 | food: 3.75

Photo of Erockss
4.76/5  rDev +7.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Photo of SveNss0N
4.56/5  rDev +2.7%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 3.5

Photo of -Rick
4.7/5  rDev +5.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

This was the best beer bar we visited while in Portland. A bit hard to find (located in a back alley type location), it was well worth the hunt. A great selection of tap offerings, and an even better list of rare/interesting bottles to try. The food was also quite good. We had a great cheese plate, with all the fixins. Will certainly return here if in Portland again.

 374 characters

Photo of ESCO138
4.95/5  rDev +11.5%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.75

This place was amazing, had CBS on Tap plus too many other great stouts I can't even remember. The staff was very helpful and the atmosphere superb. Would definitely recommend.

 178 characters

Photo of SenatorSpaceman
2.15/5  rDev -51.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 2.5 | service: 1.25 | selection: 1.75 | food: 2.5

This place ended up being a MASSIVE letdown for a spot that is so highly recommended. The vibe/setup is cool but that's where it ends. The selection of American/Maine beers was very weak. Nowhere near the selection of Bissell, Foundation, Oxbow, etc. found at so many other bars in the neighborhood. They were unapologetically out of almost everything we wanted on the food menu and the service was absolutely rock bottom quality.

I'd have a difficult time conveying how offensive the service actually was, but our stomachs and empty glasses spent the night longing for our waitress' attention as she sat and chatted at other tables.

If you only like foreign beers and have no problem with putrid service, then this is the place for you. Otherwise, go somewhere else. There are plenty of better options within walking distance.

 831 characters

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Novare Res Bier Café in Portland, ME
0 out of 5 based on 5 ratings.
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