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Headed to the North Billerica, Ma Boston area next week

Discussion in 'New England' started by cfrobrew, Jan 7, 2013.

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  1. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    Does anyone know of anything worth checking out up there next week?

    Im going there on business but will have time to kill in the evenings so Im trying to decide if I should stay in Lowell or closer to boston.

    Any suggestions of good bottle shops, pubs and restaurants with hard to get new england craft brews? Im coming from Texas so let me know if you want me to bring anything to trade...
  2. Patrick

    Patrick Initiate (0) Aug 13, 2007 Massachusetts

    If you are in Lowell, I think there is a Beer Works there. The beer is usually decent to great (I've had some good stuff at the Salem location). I'd check chowhound for restaurant recommendations in that area as I've heard of new, nice stuff opening up.
  3. Ataraxia

    Ataraxia Initiate (106) Sep 20, 2012 California
    Beer Trader

    Much more to experience in Boston: Deep Ellum, Mead Hall, Stoddard's, Sunset Grill, Publick House, Lord Hobo, Bukowski, Cambridge Brewing.
  4. rowingbrewer

    rowingbrewer Champion (849) May 28, 2010 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Haverhill isn't to far from lowell. They have a brewpub and a new alehouse that opened a week or so before christmas.
  5. adowney523

    adowney523 Initiate (0) Aug 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    Lincoln Liquors is one of the better bottle shops in the area. They can get some really fresh stuff from time to time (Ithaca Flower Power, Jack's Abby, Lagunitas), but some stuff lingers, so make sure you check the dates. Pricing is pretty good for the area.

  6. BumpkinBrewer

    BumpkinBrewer Disciple (353) Jan 6, 2010 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Came here to mention Lincoln Liqours...good call.
    OP: if you have to stay in the area, other bottle shops include Harringtons in Chelmsford and Liqour shop in Lowell. For bars, you have Beer Works (a brewpub,) as previously mentioned, and a new beer bar called Ward 8 also in Lowell. There is also a British Beer Company not too far in Westford.

    But if you have a car and some time, skip all that, hit up Redstone Liqours in Stoneham and then head on down to Cambridge (Kendall Sq area) and go to the Cambridge Brewing Company (1st class brewpub) and Lord Hobo (1st class beer bar.
    tehzachatak and Ganglani like this.
  7. BleepBloopBlap

    BleepBloopBlap Initiate (59) Aug 19, 2011 Massachusetts

    I live right on the Lowell/Chelmsford line - right near Billerica as well. Lincoln liquors is OK, I'd recommend Georgio's liquors which is new to Billerica, but has a better selection.

    If you're eating/drinking in Lowell, I recommend Ward 8 (OK draft list, decent burgers/pizza) or Fuse Bistro (tight draft list, focusing on MA beers and good food.) There's nowhere in Billerica that's worth your time for beers/food. Also, it's Belgium month at Beer Works, so that might be worth a shot.


    All this said, I think you're better off staying in/as close to Cambridge as possible. You've got Cambridge Brewing Company, MeadHall and Lord Hobo all within walking distance (Kendall Sq.) and you can easily get to Billerica via Rt. 93 which is easy access to/from Cambridge.

    Best of luck and safe travels!
    lhteacher likes this.
  8. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    I guess Im going to need to stay in lowell so I can get to North Birellica easily in the morning. Is it a big pain to head down into Boston from there? Ill be sharing a car so I might take a train.

    Im really looking for some Allagash, Jolly Pumpkin (especially La Roja), Founders, The Bruery, and other northern brews especially sours, Imperial stouts, DIPA's etc mostly stuff that justifies hauling back to Texas. Id like to go to at least one store with good supply and people that know their beer.

    Im planning to leave room on the way up there so if you guys want me to bring something to trade Id love to. That would make the hunt easier for me... Just let me know what and we can meet up in the evenings. Or if you just want to grab a beer I could be down for that too.

    I live in houston so we have Karbach, Jester King, Saint Arnolds, Real ale, live oak, ranger creek, No Label, Southern Star, rahr and sons, etc http://texasisbrewing.com/ We also get a decent amount of other things if you want to compare http://seekabrew.com/distro/index.html
  9. SunDevilBeer

    SunDevilBeer Zealot (529) May 9, 2003 Massachusetts

    Lowell Beer Works is your best closest bet - their Belgian beers this month are pretty good & the Double Pale Ale is always nice. Will also 2nd the Fuse Bistro rec for a great meal with good beer.

    Ditto the rec for Lincoln Liquors in N B'ricka for a package store.

    Can't really recommend driving to Boston/Cambridge, ticking high octane beers, then doing the drinkey/drivey thing back to N. B'ricka/Lowell. Though with the sticker shock you would encounter at a Boston area beer bar, you'd only be able to afford 2 beers anyway. :slight_smile:
  10. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    I was thinking about staying at 93 and 95 so I could take a commuter rail in to down town and then just driving to billerica. Would that be too much trouble?
  11. BleepBloopBlap

    BleepBloopBlap Initiate (59) Aug 19, 2011 Massachusetts

    I'm guessing Woburn area? If so, you're right near RedStone liquors in Stoneham - one of the best stores in the state. Also, that is the Lowell commuter line - so it brings you into North Station. Not too many beer-centric destinations near there unless you want to cab it or use the T (Boston subway system) from there.
    Ganglani likes this.
  12. Hiwattowner

    Hiwattowner Devotee (446) Feb 23, 2008 Massachusetts
    Subscriber Beer Trader

  13. rowingbrewer

    rowingbrewer Champion (849) May 28, 2010 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    the commuter rail goes to lowell, so if you want to spend less time getting to bellerica stay in lowell and you can get to boston on the train.
  14. huuvola

    huuvola Aspirant (225) Oct 29, 2005 Massachusetts

    Ward Eight, a bar in downtown Lowell, has a decent tap list that you should check out. Here's an older thread that might be helpful.

    They might not have the rarer stuff you're looking for (e.g., Jolly Pumpkin), but their Facebook page indicates that they'll soon (or maybe now) have Enlightenment Ales on tap, which is a GREAT new Massachusetts nanobrewer. He distributes primarily in Boston, but his brewery is in Lowell. If it's pouring, don't miss it.
  15. nuggetman

    nuggetman Initiate (0) Jul 13, 2011 Massachusetts

    No where around Lowell will compare to Boston. I say you stay in Lowell, then get on the train in and go to Cambridge brewing company and lord hobo as bumpkinbrewer suggested! You will not be let down by the beers at either establishment! I suggest getting dinner at the brewery and get a late night burger at hobo! Good luck and cheers!

    Also if you can borrow the shared car, Redstone liquors in stoneham (int of 93 and 95) as bumpkinbrewer also suggested is where you can find bottles from all those breweries you mentioned plus more!
    Ganglani likes this.
  16. kgoyette

    kgoyette Initiate (136) Feb 13, 2011 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Lowell. There really aren't any stores here, so forget about that (although a Craft Beer Cellar is coming). Agree with Ward 8 and Fuse Bistro. Different things, but both do a decent job. I also say take the ride, if you can to Redstone. Honestly the best service of a bottle shop I have seen in a long while. When I first got into Craft more, Kamal and Ryan basically walked me through the store and made me feel welcome like no one else. Also Beer Works in Lowell is making some pretty good beers, I feel like they take more chances than Fenway and Canal St (their Boston locations) because they really aren't catering to anyone. So it's definitely a good stop, also if you want to talk about beer Jarrod is there and he is always ready to talk about beer (He's my brother so if you think he is an asshole, that's ok too)
    Ganglani likes this.
  17. kgoyette

    kgoyette Initiate (136) Feb 13, 2011 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Also a quick addition, coming from Texas, you should definitely check out some Cambodian or Vietnamese places to eat. Beer selections aren't great, but both Pho 88 (Vietnamese not necessarily in Lowell, but close) and Simply Khmer (Cambodian) are both amazing places to eat...
  18. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    Yeah Id love to hit a Pho place. At the moment Im thinking of staying in north cambridge and driving to north billerica. Unless the traffic will be crazy around 6 or 7am and 4 or 5 pm up and back respectively.

    Also if anyone wants to trade some stuff Ill have room to bring most Jester King stuff or whatever else youd like from here...
  19. kgoyette

    kgoyette Initiate (136) Feb 13, 2011 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Probably a good choice. That being said, both restaurant suggestions still stand. Traffic shouldn't be to awful in the AM, and won't be bad until you get really close to the city in the Afternoon...
  20. jraras

    jraras Initiate (0) Jan 10, 2011 Massachusetts

    Looks like you're set here, but FWIW I recommend staying in Cambridge/Boston and doing the reverse commute. I reverse everyday and it's not that bad. Cambridge Brewing Company is an absolute must--they have 4 BA beers on tap right now and they're like $6. Awesome! I also strongly agree with kgoyette's Pho88 suggestion - love that place for Pho and other Viet food. Lastly, I'm psyched to learn of Simply Khmer! I need to try this place. Lowell has the best SE Asian food anywhere I've been (haven't been to Asia). I might be around/avail to hit Cambridge / Boston / Brookline (Publick House may have some HF on tap, but we'll see...) places. What nights will you be around?
  21. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    I fly in to boston around 5 on sunday and we are staying in the north cambridge/arlington area. Ill be there in the evenings until friday around 5. Realistically thursday night will probably be my last night out, maybe an early dinner or late lunch friday on the way to the airport.

    Does anyone know where to find brash brewing? Its a beer brewed by the owner of a gastro pub here in houston but some Texas law or expense keeps him from selling it here in TX.

    Looks like we will hit pho 88, Sunset Grill, cambridge brewing, Simply Khmer, Enlightenment Ales, Deep Ellum, Mead Hall, Stoddard's, Publick House, Bukowski and Lord Hobo. Then stock up on stuff to bring home at Redstone Liqours in Stoneham and the craft beer cellar.

    Man you guys are great, Im stoked. If you want to grab a brew send me a message and where. Ill for sure hit somewhere on sunday. If people give me a list of what to bring Ill hit the store and pick up jester king to bring. Just offer something good to trade or pay me back.
    Ganglani likes this.
  22. Patrick

    Patrick Initiate (0) Aug 13, 2007 Massachusetts

    Not sure if you have thought this much through yet, but you can hit Mead Hall, CBC, and Lord Hobo in the same night, Sunset and Deep Ellum in another, and probably Stoddards and Bukowski in one night as well.

    If I were making this trip, I'd skip Bukowski, Stoddards, and Mead Hall if I were forced to cut out anything I didn't have time for. Prioritize CBC, Lord Hobo, and Deep Ellum (Sunset too just because they have a ton of good stuff on tap you probably can't get in TX).
  23. BleepBloopBlap

    BleepBloopBlap Initiate (59) Aug 19, 2011 Massachusetts

    They'll def have Brash stuff at Redstone
    Ganglani likes this.
  24. adowney523

    adowney523 Initiate (0) Aug 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    You plan to visit the Enlightenment Ales brewery? I don't know if they have accommodations for visitors quite yet. Maybe someone else has visited before?
  25. BleepBloopBlap

    BleepBloopBlap Initiate (59) Aug 19, 2011 Massachusetts

    "Looks like we will hit pho 88, Sunset Grill, cambridge brewing, Simply Khmer, Enlightenment Ales, Deep Ellum, Mead Hall, Stoddard's, Publick House, Bukowski and Lord Hobo. Then stock up on stuff to bring home at Redstone Liqours in Stoneham and the craft beer cellar."

    Craft beer cellar is a bit out of the way from everywhere else you're going (even though it's not TOO far from Kendall Sq.). I doubt you'll find anything there that you wouldnt be able to find at Redstone.
  26. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    I stocked up on some das uberkind today. Send a message if you want me to bring some black metal and Ill grab some. We can swap some time in the evenings. If anyone has oude tart or some equivalent sours Id like those.
  27. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    Ill be in town this evening. If anyone wants to meet for some food and great beer post suggestions.
  28. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    Hey guys thanks so much for you suggestions. I had a great time and brought back an awesome haul My bag was very full. Thanks to kamal from Redstone Liquors, Ben from enlightenment ales and Chris for helping me find some great brews to bring back!! Had some awesome stuff on tab and terrific food.
    Ganglani likes this.
  29. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    In fact my bag was inspected by the TSA, I would have liked to see their faces when they opened it up and saw 11 bombers and a four pack :slight_smile: guess they didn't mind because it all made it to Texas safe and sound. I had the cosmos import stout from enlightenment ales today with my wife. It was excellent.
    Ganglani likes this.
  30. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    Sounds like I might be headed back up that way on sunday if anyone has orders to place...
  31. cfrobrew

    cfrobrew Initiate (0) Oct 9, 2012 Texas

    Ill be in Cambridge Sunday night. What's the hot spot to hit for the Super Bowl and some great beer?
  32. huuvola

    huuvola Aspirant (225) Oct 29, 2005 Massachusetts

    Depends on whether you want to focus more on the game or on the beer. Pros/cons of some Cambridge area beer bars:
    • Lord Hobo: Great beer selection, decent food, two TVs (maybe three?), not all of which are easily seen from every seat in the bar.
    • Cambridge Brewing Company: Amazing beer. My favorite place in Cambridge. But only one early model flatscreen, located in the bar area. If you don't care too much about the game, I'd recommend it over all others.
    • John Harvard Brewpub (Harvard Square): Beer is hit-and-miss, food is mediocre, but TVs are brand new and everywhere.
    • Atwood's Tavern: Great beer, great food, no TV. (Not a dig; I love that they don't have a TV.)
    • Meadhall: Lots of craft beer, but TVs are tucked away upstairs (and bizarrely, they weren't open on Superbowl Sunday last year, so check first before you head there).
    • Area Four: Great pizza, small but good draft list, TVs in the small bar area, but frankly the chairs aren't comfortable enough to hang out here for a whole football game (especially the bloated superbowl).
    • Cambridge Common: Good beer selection, average pub grub, small TVs at the bar (but for some reason I think they might project bigger events on a wall? maybe someone else can fill in this one)
    • Redbones (Davis Square): Among the best BBQ in the area (arguably) and always a good draft list. TVs in the small bar area are easy to see, but it fills up quickly -- not sure what it would be like on superbowl sunday.
    • Foundry on Elm (Davis Square): Good beer selection, good food, several TVs in the bar area. My one gripe: they pour their beers in cheater pints.
    • Five Horses Tavern (Davis Square) ... Disclaimer: I hate this place because beers are really overpriced, I had weird service on my one visit here, and there are blaring televisions EVERYWHERE ... but I'll admit it would probably be perfect for watching the game if you want a place that has craft beer and big TVs -- and you don't care about overpaying.
    I know I've missed a few, but that's the list off the top of my head.
    brikelly and Auror like this.
  33. Auror

    Auror Defender (636) Jan 1, 2010 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Off-topic, but I was at Kings for a corporate event the other day and got an Allagash White bottle. Asked for a glass and they poured it into the draft glass and filled it to the brim. I made a mental note to stick to the AW bottles all night.
    BleepBloopBlap likes this.
  34. ljkeats

    ljkeats Devotee (405) Jun 27, 2007 Massachusetts
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    A little outside the Davis Sq neighborhood, but I bet Old Magoun's Saloon http://magounssaloon.com/ would be great for the Super Bowl. Several large TV's, lots of local beers, several German beers, plus I think they're having a chili cookoff that day (so, being from TX, you can poke fun!). BTW - that tap list is a couple of weeks old.

    Just an idea.
    SunDevilBeer and tehzachatak like this.
  35. tehzachatak

    tehzachatak Initiate (0) Sep 19, 2010 Massachusetts

    My go-to for any sports event. They'll probably have at least 8 screens going with the game in a one-room, not huge bar. Now if only they'd get some Jack's Abby on tap. Chili cookoff is 12-3 though, so sadly will be over before the Super Bowl.
  36. kinopio

    kinopio Disciple (328) Apr 30, 2009 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    I would watch the super bowl at Lord Hobo. The TV situation is pretty good. For solid TV setups in Cambridge I would suggest The Asgard or the lower bar at Russell House Tavern. Both will have some good locals on tap for fair prices.
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