Willimantic Brewing Co.


Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

967 Main St
Willimantic, Connecticut, 06226-2330
United States

(860) 423-6777 | map

AKA - Main Street Café

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Reviews: 105 | Ratings: 155
Photo of jrbchef
4.19/5  rDev -2.3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 3.75

Cool atmosphere, a converted US Post Office. Was here with the family so we sat in the dining room. Great balance of there own beers to "guest' taps. Would like to come back without the kids and enjoy the bar itself. Having tried samplers or flights I can only say all their beers were solid in style and balance of flavors.

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Photo of Rand_ale_Thor
3.41/5  rDev -20.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.25 | selection: 3 | food: 3.25

I was there a while ago...maybe within a year or two, but I do not remember it being as good as everyone else is posting. The atmosphere is their best attribute, and they have quality beer. I could see being a regular if I lived in the area, but I was not excessively impressed being an outsider.

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Photo of datalager
4.4/5  rDev +2.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I went here with my wife for "date night" while the kids were preoccupied with better things, elsewhere. We sat on the restaurant side, so I can't give an impression of the bar, other than how busy and full of life it was.

First the bad. The worst part for us was upon entry. Despite being on time and having a reservation, the front desk took two separate 2-party walk-ins ahead of us?!?!? That was a bit dismaying to me, but after my wife cordially voiced her irritation they miraculously found a spot for us, along with a lame excuse. Then we sat idle for nearly 10 minutes while people around us were seated and immediately waited on. I began to get fairly agitated at this point. When a waiter did finally arrive I did something that is a bit out of character for me...I took a deep breath and let Willi Brew "have it". Our waiter was on the unfortunate end of said rant. There appeared to be a mood of confusion in the air that night, so I hope this was an abnormal experience.

Now the good, which is to say EVERYTHING else about the visit. The waiter, who practically took one up the rear from my disenchanted blowup, was awesome. And I tipped him graciously for his knowledge, friendliness and flat out patience. My wife and I each ordered an appetizer and main course, and agreed that all the food was very good, if not quite outstanding. The menu was loaded with standard pub-like fare, as well as some unique twists like the pulled-pork flat bread pizza that I enjoyed along with numerous beers.

As for the beer (the reason you want to go, right), selection and quality was top notch. There were over 30 brews on tap that night, a solid dozen+ of house, plus plenty of quality Northeastern guests like Smuttynose, Dogfish Head, Hooker, etc... I ordered a sample round of five 4oz. glasses, but ended up with more since the waiter continually brought out extra samples as we discussed styles. Willi's own IPA, Rye and "Willi Whammer" Barleywine ales are ALL worth returning for.

Ultimately, my wife and I both agreed that the restaurant is worth a second visit.

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Photo of nickfl
3.83/5  rDev -10.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This is one of the most interesting brewpub locations I have ever been to. This old post office building has been transformed into a brewpub in a way that retains a lot of the character of the old building. I sat at the bar and it was fairly crowded on a Sunday afternoon. They had six of their own beers on tap plus quite a few guest beers. I tried a 5 beer sampler and then a pint to sample them all and while the beer was kind of hit or miss there was a nice chocolate porter and a pretty decent DIPA in the mix. I had a very good burger and the menu offered quite a few other options for anyone who might want something a little more upscale. As a bonus, they had their own kombucha on tap and while it isn't actually a beer, it is really worth trying. This was definitely worth the visit, and I would definitely come back if I am ever in the area again.

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Photo of socon67
4.15/5  rDev -3.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Went here with a few friends for lunch on a Saturday.

A - Nice crowd of beer drinkers who enjoy qulaity beer. Very laid back and relaxed.

Q - Plenty of their own crafted brews plus plenty of guest taps.

S - Waiter allowed me to sample Brooklyn Concoation Ale since he had previous bad feedback. Servers know their beers and are helpful. Workers care about what they are doing.

Sel- 8 of their own beer plus about 25 taps of other good stuff including some one-offs. Plenty of options for the craft beer enthusiast.

F - Nice menu of options filled with appetizers, lunch choices and entrees. Even without the beer this place is a solid restaurant choice.

V - 4 people with samplers and pints plus lunch was $75. Very reasonably priced.

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Photo of SamuelJackson45
3.93/5  rDev -8.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

A- Very Busy at night which is good a little crowded but no time on waiting for a seat.

Q- A old former Post Office or Bank but the place is hella big. Which amaze me from being from PA.

S- The service was very good for even being busy. The staff was very knowledgeable about the menu and beer selection.

S- I t was all there beers didn't see a guest list. But there brews were very good.

F- Order their burgers which were very tasty and the fries too.

V- Price was very reasonable which the way I like it. Would visit again.

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Photo of mltobin
3.95/5  rDev -7.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

After much procrastination, I finally made the trip out to WilliBrew. It is located right along Main Street in Willimantic, which had more traffic in the middle of the day on a work day than I would have expected.
The setting is a former post office, with a very tall ceiling and a good amount space in general. You can sit at the long bar right at the main entrance or one of their many tables. Their beer sampler of 5 pours is a very good option. Nugget IPA & Salacious Saison were a couple of the favorites that I tried. Food was pretty good, especially the garlic fries. And the staff does a nice job of keeping up with the busy crowd w/ a positive attitude. For those who live closer to WBC, consider yourself fortunate.

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Photo of IEatFaces
4.58/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I have never been dissapointed when I have gone to eat or drink at Willi Brew. Their beer list is always extensive and includes some of the best from all over the place. Not to mention the Willi Brews themselves are all great, I have not had one that I did not like. Their food is also killer. You cannot beat a dining experience at Willi Brew, great atmosphere which is relaxed, a great value in that you are not let down when the food gets to the table, and the beer selection is great. I look for any reason to go to the Willi Brew.

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Photo of number1bum
4.33/5  rDev +0.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Have been here a couple of times now and can't wait to go back again. The building itself is really pretty cool - and old post office with all of the "windows' behind the bar. Lots of wood and well kept. Bar area is quite large, and there's a dining area as well. It's casual and comfortable.

Beer selection is impressive, with 9 or 10 house offerings plus twice as many non-house beers, which is really something. Many brewpubs don't pay much attention at all to guest taps, but at Willimantic they do as good a job in that regard as they do with their own beer. And their own beer is excellent. They've had many hoppy offerings each time I have been there, and they really do seem to do pilseners well, as well. Their India Pils stands out on my most recent visit, and Czech is in the Mail was memorable from a previous visit.

The menu is pretty broad and what I have eaten is good, but not great. Above average for pub-fare, however. I don't rate service terribly high for a couple of reasons. One, while it has been attentive enough, I've definitely noticed a preference to chat with and take care of regulars. Two, on my most recent visit I ordered a cask beer that was kicked, which the server did not find out until she started to pump it; when she told me it was out and I asked for another beer instead, she simply shook out the glass and then poured the new request instead of getting a clean glass. That really is unacceptable at a brewpub.

All in all, however, the beer at Willimantic is excellent and it's well worth seeking out and going out of your way for. I was hooked after one visit and look forward to many more.

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Photo of albern
4/5  rDev -6.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

There isn't that much in Willimantic so this place definitely fills a void. There are unfortunately too many empty storefronts and check cashing type places. There are a few restaurants on main street. WBC and bar are located in an old bank building with lots of period design and sufficient parking. The beers that they brew on the premises are not all that great, but they do have "visiting" beers that should fill the void. I had a salad and sandwich and I wasn't disappointed. When I'm in Willimantic on business, I will stop in here again and try some of their other specialty beers, and hopefully I'll find something I like.

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Photo of koopa
4.14/5  rDev -3.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

After trading for a many a growler from Willimantic, I finally visited the brewpub on my way up to the Cambridge Brewing 22nd Anniversary Party in MA.

Atmosphere: Large building (former post office) with extremely high ceilings and plenty of table seating. The outdoor beer garden / front dining area looked really nice too.

Quality was decent...both food and drink. Nothing that wowed me too much but nothing that disappointed either (well the S.A.S.E. was terrible actually).

Service was decent...attentive, polite, and a bit flirty :0

Prices were decent and I wouldn't mind stopping back some time.

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Photo of spydo99
4.8/5  rDev +11.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Never been before and had high hopes based on BA reviews. I was NOT disappointed. Started with a sampler just to get an over-all feel. Spent the rest of the night with the Coffee Stout. Purchased a growler. Fair price but not great. Kicking myself for not getting a growler of the unfiltered ale. (Euromerica)

Recomend the Euromerica Unfilterd Ale and the Coffee Stout without any hesitation!

They had 40 beers on tap. 14 were Willi-Brews and the rest were guests.

Food was above average for brew bar food but you go for the beer, right?

On a side note, I went on a Friday evening before a concert and very glad I made reservations. I ate and drank in the main dining room, so I can not comment on the pub room.


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Photo of zoolzoo
4.47/5  rDev +4.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Willimantic is a great place to eat and drink, I just wish I lived closer. Im always looking for an excuse to drive up that way.

The bar is tall and long, the ceilings are super high in both the pub and the regular dining area. Somehow, Willimantic still feels warm and inviting. The vibe is local and friendly.

The beer menu is excellent. Not only does Willimantic feature its own brews but also some other guest brews on tap. I have never had a bad Willimantic brewed beer, period. Last time I was there I had an incredibly balanced and tasty IPA, although the name of it slips my mind. Additionally, they sometimes feature cask and vintage selections.

The grub is also good, from my experience. The menu is a little expansive, but the above average pub food here is fresh and will satisfy. The menu features full entres as well. Oh, the BLT is awesome.

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Photo of whisperjet
4.95/5  rDev +15.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I go to UCONN, about a 10 minute drive away, and can't believe I have waited this long to get out to Willibrew. Great looking venue from the outside; it's in the old post office and is very accessible.

There is a great feel about this place as soon as you walk in. Everyone seems to be in a good mood, its loud but not overwhelming. Just has a great energy.

Service was great. I didn't sit in the restaurant, I stayed at the bar but the bar staff was fast and reliable with great insight into their homebrews. Beer selection was really great. They have several homebrews on tap with a nice rotating selection of local crafts.

Food and beer all tasted great and were very reasonably priced. This is absolutely going to be a new favorite spot for me.

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Photo of BeerMaverick
4.9/5  rDev +14.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I visited the Willimantic Brewing Co. because my girlfriend is from CT and she had heard amazing things and once I had researched it I found that it's an AHA member, so I knew it had to be good.

I was not dissapointed...I had 3 beers and they were fantastic. The Most Wanted IPA was most notable since employee were wearing the Most Wanted shirts. It was a very good and extremely hoppy IPA. I also had the S.W.A.K Stout and it was exceptional. Very good if you're in the mood for a sweeter stout. The Black Eye IPA was probably the best Black IPA I've ever had.

I had the Aeropostale Flatbread Pizza and it was great as well...really paired nicely with the IPAs. My girlfriend had the Gurlyville garlic walnut chicken and that was great as well.

Overall one of the best brewpubs I've ever been to.

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Photo of akorsak
4.13/5  rDev -3.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

En route to the wedding, Willibrew is only a slight detour (slight is a relative term). We visited on a Tuesday night, two days removed from the most recent snowfall. The area still hasn't recovered.

Atmosphere: We entered through the bar, a long, spacious wooden one that has televisions on both ends. At least 15 guest taps, by my estimate, joined the 7 tap and 1 cask in-house offerings. Winding our way around to the dining area, we were seating in a large, breweriana-adorned room.

Quality: Service, food and beers were all good. We were even seated at a hoity-toity table reserved for large parties (thank you, Lizzie).

Service: Sarah was friendly and helpful, visiting us regularly, even as the dining area got busier. I returned later that night for a nightcap and the bartender (didn't catch a name) was also prompt.

Selection: This is where Willibrew comes through. In addition to its 8 offerings, the guest line-up includes locals and heavy hitters. I stayed with the in-house line and slowly worked my way through 7 of the 8 in some form or another. Even took a growler of Rail Mail Rye home with me.

Food: Food was also good, the menu punctuated with zip codes for each offering, a nod to the postal origins of the building. My Bulk Mail burrito was good (lighten up on the beans and add more chicken, please). Finger food for shorties is available too.

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Photo of Genuine
5/5  rDev +16.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

I can't tell you the number of times that I have been to Willibrew over the past year.

Sure it's packed most of the time, that's because everyone there knows they make some great brews and awesome food. I have yet to be dissapointed by either their food or beer.

The atmosphere is really nice, quaint, a modern day pub. You enter and immediately feel welcomed.

The service is top notch, every waiter is very knowledgeable about their beers. They make sure that you're not left with an empty glass at any point during your time there.

Selection - Wide selection of mouth watering pub food that has a post office theme to it, very fun. I have yet to have a beer of theirs that is disappointing, I wish that they would bottle and sell some. They always have fresh beer on tap that they have brewed themselves, whether it be IPA's, Stouts, pales, etc..you name it. Their selection is always changing so it's awesome to see what they have that's new.

Food - their food matches their beer, delicious. They make sure that you're not going home hungry.

Value - Priced just right...I believe their beers are only a couple of bucks, food is priced normally, nothing too high...awesome place to go with your friends and enjoy an evening out!

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Photo of hearmerawrrr
4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I went to ECSU (which is a stone throw away) for four years and very rarely came here. This was before I was big into craft beer and it's a good thing because I would have spent all of my money on the beer and food. It's one of my favorite places. We try to go once a month because they have about 5-7 different beers that come out each month. They usually have over 10 of their own brews on tap, along with 30 guest brews (mostly new england) on tap. Food is excellent! Nachos are well worth the price, you get a pile of chips loaded with meat, cheese, and all your favorite toppings. Yes, it is $13 but it is very filling. Better make reservations because they are always busy for dinner time! Bar area tables are first come, first serve.

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Photo of opwog
4.56/5  rDev +6.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

I finally made it out to Eastern CT, an area of the state that I rarely went even when I lived there. But this is the type of place that you pray might open near you when you live in these less accessible parts of the state. I visited from Naugatuck and spent as much time driving, as I did at the pub, which also limits how much actual drinking could be done. So I started with a 12 oz of the Dyvil Hopyard IIPA. Amazing! Then the sampler set was a combination of house and guest beers, all generous sized and it is nice to be able to mix in guest beers (just none of the higher ABV beers). My other house favorite was the Six Shooter (Oyster) Stout.

As far as the place, the building is amazing. Great feel at the bar and I also walked through each room and the patio. Classic New England feel. The staff was knowledgeable and once the bartender found out that I was visiting from CA, the brewmaster/owner (?) David came by for a good chat.

There is good reason for the constant mentioning of Willibrew as a top bar and top brewery. A must visit for anybody in Eastern CT and worth the trip for anybody willing to limit their tasting or who may have a DD.

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Photo of Sammy
3.89/5  rDev -9.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4

I travelled and stayed far from home to see this brewpub, and did come away disapointed. No heavy abvs here in the summer, I was pleased to find three saisons on tap. Near a Best Western, a half hour from Hartford. A very decent and very generous guest tap selection.Roomy inside, with a small but nice patio outside. Good mix of people, ages, decorum. A few rooms filled with tables in this historical building. Parking lot. Near an unusual bridge with big frogs. Bartenderess was a little annoyed at the end of what looked like a hot fussy day,but did not bother me.

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Photo of medic25
4.4/5  rDev +2.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Finally paid my first visit to celebrate my birthday with the family. Great atmosphere in the converted post office; we sat in the dining room, but also checked out the bar which seemed to have great character. The beers were the star of the show. I started with the Saison Noir which was outstanding, then tried a sampler of 5 brews that were all delicious. The food was also top-notch. I had the mussels to start, and a very tasty ribeye for main course. The wife and kids also enjoyed their wings and nachos. The dessert tray was also first-rate, even though we barely had room for it after everything else!
My only wish is that this was closer to home; the beers at under $4 were a bargain, and it's been a while since I drank in a bar with this kind of character.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.3/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I was happy to get the chance to stop at Willimantic with friends on two occasions - once for drinks and the next day for lunch and a brew.

The brewpub is actually a renovated old post office which is a really unique concept - the brewhouse is where the registered malt cage once was I am assuming. the kitchen is downstairs and the bar area is where the mail sorting happened -they have wine bottles stored in the letter slots. The atmospher is casual and relaxed with a friendly locals vibe. The service is very good-quick, friendly, accurate and we met the brewer who gave us a few samples from a barrel that was aging a flanders red - excellent!

The food is well made and tasty - the menu has plenty of variety and some unique items like mandarin chicken wrap. I had the onion ale soup which was really cheesy and delicious w/ pumpernickle bread crust soakin the oniony broth. They have plenty of wing sauce levels too if you enjoy some heat.

I was pleased with the choices of house brews which included a bock, rye, Ipa, pale and wheat but they also have plenty of guest taps which make over 25 choices overall.

The quality and value are well above average -you can tell everyone works together to create a comfortable dining and drinking experience - I am really impressed with the quality level of beers across the board and the people couldn't be friendlier -top notch place to have a craft brew and eat!

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Photo of HopHooligan
3.88/5  rDev -9.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

I've lived in eastern CT for my whole life and only went to Willibrew recently, boy was that a mistake. They have a great beer selection, awesome in house brew and great food. The food is a bit pricey and the beer isn't cheap either, but the quality and selection make up for that. They usually have 8 house brews and a bunch of craft beer on tap. Great beer selection for this area, there aren't too many like it around here. Food is great too, but like I said its a little pricey. Bar side is divided by the brewery from the restaurant. Building is gorgeous, it was previously a federal postal office so it has that grand feel to it with vaulted ceilings and columns out front. Overall a great place for a beer after work with they guys or a nice dinner with the fam.

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Photo of mummy178
4.58/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

We go about once a week for beer and nachos in the bar. This place doesn't win awards and accolades without reason. It is a standout among brewpubs in Connecticut. Owner and Brewmaster Dave Wollner is always brewing something new of his own, as well as offering a large selection of guest microbrews on tap. A true beer lover, or should I say, lovers of TRUE BEER, will know and appreciate what Dave does. It is a destination for those both near and far, and we are fortunate to live within a 20-mile drive of it.

Food offerings range from soups, salads, burgers and sandwiches, to entrees, and while it can go from average to very good (and has been improving), the real attraction is still the beer and rightfully so...it's what Dave excels at and is his true passion and reason for being put on this earth. Thank your respective gods for that fact. But if beer is not your thing, they do have full bar and wine a well.

You may dine in the dining room or the pub, but the pub is where it's at. Full menu is offered there, and the lively bustle and cast of colorful regulars provide an ever-changing venue for people-watching, eavesdropping, barging into conversations with complete strangers, or just seeing and being seen. Play NTN trivia as well if you are adept at multi-tasking, as doing all of the above, with a fork in one hand and a beer in the other, and being expected to prove your intelligence at the same time can prove to be somewhat of a challenge. Service is attentive for the most part, whether at a table or at the bar. The bar staff usually keeps a good eye on the status of the beverage in front of you and it's not often that you go dry.

You really need to attend one of their quarterly beer dinners. Here is where the chefs can step out of the drudgery of standard menu constraints and create dishes that make the guest beer offerings really pop. These are pure magic--you just need to go. The food will rival any of the best restaurants anywhere, as the chefs put quite a bit extra effort and creativity into the menus.

Now, put on your coat and go!

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Photo of hoppymcgee
4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

A diamond in the rough! Really! Willimantic is not the nicest city in the world but "WilliBrew" is definitely doing all it can to change that.

You'll notice as you drive up that it's a staggering, huge, old converted Post Office. You'll also notice that as you pull into the parking lot that there's usually not enough parking.

When you step inside they usually carry all the good "beeriodicals" - Yankee Brew News, Ale Street News, and even BA mag if you're lucky!

As you turn the corner there's the looong hallway style bar (and you'll also notice to the left the restaurant part as you come in the door) with tables to sit at as well. The long, dark wood old school bar is part of what makes the atmosphere almost perfect.

I suggest taking a seat at the bar as you'll get your beers quicker and can also order food. They have many, many taps (and I believe a few cask lines and nitro drafts) that are always offering up fine brews. If you're from out of town, I would try as many of their house offerings as possible - they're great.

Any of the food I've ever gotten has been delicious. I recommend the beer bread for starters (it comes with a creamy cinnamon butter), the hot buffalo/honey bbq wings, and any of their burgers for the entree.

You will not be disappointed with your experience here as they have a very friendly staff and knowledgeable bartenders.

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Willimantic Brewing Co. in Willimantic, CT
3.9 out of 5 based on 656 ratings.
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