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Taps: 26 / Bottles: 38
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
477 Cambridge St
phone: (617) 787-2337
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Reviews by the
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
Deep Ellum has quickly become one of my favorite beer haunts in the Boston area. Though the place is small and can get quite packed, it never feels totally cramped due to it's high ceilings and bare brick walls. The bar and its massive mirror act as the center piece, projecting some old-school feel, while black and white tiled floors help to open the place up. A great selection of tunes is always on, too; good sound levels.
Beer-wise, they offer 22 brews on-tap, 100 in bottle, and a rotating cask offering. The line-up is tight, well thought, and offers a nice varietal balance that should appease the casual beer drinker to the beer geek. Quality is exceptional, pours are perfect, and proper glassware is a given here. My only issue with the draft beer is that their nitro-blend seems a bit high and too noticeable in some beers. For those in cocktails, they do 'em "slow" here (handmade) and offer some of the best in town; from old-school concoctions to signature blends. Drinks can be a bit pricey, but there' certainly not the most expensive and the quality and service are worth the price regardless.
Food is always solid, with a mix of home-style favorites, classic basics, and some regional twists thrown in. Brunch on Saturdays and Sundays is my personal favorite and the KnoxVegas Biscuits and Gravy are a must. Fries w/ Chili & Pepper Jack are killer. And you've gotta try their Alcapurrias (Puerto Rican taro & plantain fritters filled w/beef, cheese, & spices) and Grubbins (Whitefish fillet between 2 potato medallions, beer battered, served w/tartar sauce, fries & slaw). Reasonable food prices.
Service has always been friendly, attentive, and knowledgeable, and the staff are quick to offer suggestions for the indecisive. I dig that, the fact that there's zero attitude, and the owners practically always there and love to interact with their patrons.
Hands-down one of the best places to drink, eat, and socialize in the area.
12-27-2007 17:30:33 |
More by Todd
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
Just paid them a visit tonight ... Old School bar atmosphere, reminds me of a few 100 year old bars I have been to in NYC. Big mirror behind the bar, brick wall on the opposite side and vintage style tile on the floor.
I tried the cask Leather Lips IPA ... amazing! Mahr's Weiss on tap and Ridgeway IPA where both pouring beautifully. The tap (20+ taps) and bottle (scores of bottles) lineup is within the top five selection within the Boston area. Miller High Life was the only macro on tap ... which is good cause if I hit the scotch I'll need a beer to back it up.
I'll be hitting them up for a full on night of beer and food soon. Great first impression. Check this place out now ...
01-25-2007 01:45:50 |
More by Jason
More User Reviews:
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.5 | $$
Pros: Outstanding taps, particularly locals. Very good food.
Cons: Loud, hard to find parking, small
With so much to choose from in the Greater Boston area how do the best places survive? Start with a small, but navigable tap selection, add enticing menu choices, and put this in a comfortable setting. Deep Ellum has all this. While the number of choices won't blow you away, the quality should. The Thursday night I was there, about half the selections were superb choices from Clown Shoes, Cambridge Brewing, Pretty Things, and Notch. The other half were split between US and non-US breweries. Nothing was standard (there were at least two smoked beers on the menu). Service was average to good, hard to tell as I arrived at the front end of a very busy night. Regardless, I greatly appreciate the staff's flexibility in providing me with a half pour, something not on the menu. If there's anything negative to be said about Deep Ellum, it's that it is a victim of its success. It is small and fills very fast. Like many places, the seating leads to a very loud experiences. In this case, louder than most. Yes I am old and my hearing is not what it was. But asking my drinking partner to repeat nearly everything said tells me that this place is louder than most. In a similar situation, parking can be a challenge. Fortunately, I arrived close to 6 PM, when on the street parking was still reasonably close. I can imagine what it would be like later in the evening or on a Friday or Saturday night.
How does this stack up against the other Boston establishments I've visited? Despite the parking and noise, I enjoyed my visit enough to return, assuming there is some variation in the beer selection and menu. If I do return, I'll try to make it early in the week, though, as this might ameliorate some of the parking and noise issues.
05-05-2013 22:40:17 |
More by LittleDon
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Was here once before, oddly it was just after the last time I lost my job, 3 ½ years ago. Woke up and drove to Portsmouth, NH for a beer release on a whim and then turned around and drove home afterwards, stopping here along the way to catch Dan at the release party for ‘Saint Botolph’s Town’ (where he most generously ponied up the display bottle, and thank you). And here I am again, having just been laid off again. I guess this is the place I go when that happens...
So, sweet slander spot front row center on the strip navigated. I will venture in while Phil, yes, you guessed it, gets his smoke on. Narrow place, none too deep. Brick outer wall, the other walls done in a pale green or gray or something, in this light, hard to say. Front framed vestibule and narrow vertical windows opening in to both sides, each with a shorty wide horizontal window above. Framed ceiling with a center skylight, lightly colored trim & crown molding, pulley pairs of spinny fans, sunken spots & tracks over the adjacent seating, and drop bullet tortoise shell glass lamps along the bar. Black & white floor tilings of the itty-bitty bathroom variety. Large street scene mural piece on the back wall, and a kitchen peek-a-boo to the left of it (where kitchenings happen). A flatscreen above there and another one angled in the front corner.
‘L’ shaped wood bar with a slight slight lip, panel base, & piping foot rail, seating 18 on stools. The barback unit is a large sprawling wood piece, with a skeleton steer atop, a pillared archway over mirrored center, and narrower arches to each side. 2 rows of 11 on a solid bar end to end fronting pitchers & glassware countered on center, and a glassware rack a-dangling above. Tiered booze fronting the outer arches, countered, and slight shelving in between, with jarred Ican’ttellwhatthefuck. Bottled selections coolered below the bar. In addition to the 22 taps on the barback, there are a pair of 3 tap arms extending from different points along the bar, plus a single handpump on center making for 28 taps in all.
Adjacent seating is shared bench action the far wall from front window to the rear of the room, with nearly a dozen 2-seat tables pushed together for 4 or more as needed, and a single raised roundy hightop in the other front window. And through and out to the back yard; a dozen and a half 2-seat tables with benches running 3 sides around.
28 taps, roughly 1/3 of them from MA (Notch Polotmavy Lezak, High & Mighty Fumata Bianca & Beer of the Gods, Tap Beerstand Berlinerweiss, Brash The Bollocks Double IPA, Pretty things Jack D’or, Mystic Vinland One, Clown Shoes Clementine, Idle Hands Dubbel Dimples), and the remainder a mix of American craft, left (21st Amendment Bitter American, Stone IPA & 16th Anniversary, Green Flash West Coast IPA), right (Ommegang Rare Vos), and something in between (Goose Island Matilda), and imports, Belgian (de la Senne Taras Boulba, Rodenbach Grand Cru, Slaapmutske Dry Hopped Lager, Sainte-Helene Simcoe Lager, Dilewyns Vicaris Tripel Gueuze blend, Van Honsebrouck St. Louis Gueuze Fond Tradition), German (Arcobrau Zwickl Lager, Brauerei Spezial Rauchbier Lager, Ayinger Brau Weisse), and elsewhere (Omnipollo Mazarin, Ca L’Arenys Guineu Riner, O’Hara’s Irish Stout), plus the Blacksmiths winery Fatty Bumpkins hard cider.
And a bottle list of 3 dozen + entries by stylings. Okay, grouping ‘lambic, sour, & cider’ means Panil Barrique, BFM Abbaye De Saint Bon Chien, JK Scrumpy, & Original Sin all hang together, which I know for a fact they do not. And Trappists representing, yo; Orval, Westmalle, Rochefort, & Achel, but not your everyday Chimay, interesting. My pricing benchmark Orval runs the midway $10.
Beerwise, I’m drinking MA, today. Started with the Tap Beerstand Berlinerweiss (pleasantly quaffable), and then had a High & Mighty Beer of the Gods (a nice Pale Ale that calls itself a Blonde). Sampled both the Idle Hands Dubbel (oxidized, pass), and the Mystic Brewing Vinland One (a farmhouse with local yeast, seemed more like a weizenbock to me, having had lovely Aventinus just last night. You get the deep fruit. Not what I’m looking for in a farmhouse, pass), and opted instead for the Notch Polotmavy Lezak (an amber Czech Pils, very nice), and wound down with a Pretty Things Jack D’or (a solid Saison you can always count on).
They were equipped this night with drunk loud drunk barely legal drunk Steelers chicks who wouldn’t shut the fuck up (Please shut the fuck up!) Oddly enough, the tunes got louder somewhere along the way, perhaps to offset the aforementioned drunk loud drunk, well, you know. An anomaly, I’m sure; they’ve got a crowd otherwise. Would have liked some food this night but it was not to be. Servers know their game and can speak to it. Great beer thing here, solid selection, and the beer in good shape. Glad I lost my job...
12-06-2012 22:49:01 |
More by slander
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
What can I say about my favorite beer bar in Boston, except, I live in Natick and it's too far to go to on a regular basis and then drive home. You'll need a DD when you go because you'll want to sample all of the tasty brews. I won't talk about the selection except to say that it changes regularly.
The crowd is eclectic, suits, tattoos, college age kids, but none of the 'MASSHOLES" that frequent the BMC bars.
The size of the place is perfect and they even have a little deck out back. Great pretzel and a really nice Rubin. Burger and Dog is also worthy.
Just go, say hi to Dave the manager, and enjoy.
09-29-2012 22:10:00 |
More by pomeroy41144
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Deep Ellum is the most worthy place in the Boston area to find and enjoy an interesting and perfectly served brew with a light accompanying meal. It also stands far apart from the recent trend of large, noisy pubs with outrageous tap counts.
The 20+ taps are highly curated and meticulously maintained, with a nicely rotated mix of domestic left and right-coast offerings, and beers from elsewhere. The bottle selection is equal to the taps, not overwhelming, just right.
The bartenders are extremely knowledgable and patiently supportative of palate journeys. Don't let their edgy appearance fool you, they are among the nicest hipsters in town. Table waiters will not deliver the same level of knowledge, but are pleasant and professional.
Food menu is limited, savory and highly beer-friendly. The charcuterie and cheese plates are suberb (which is mostly what I care about), and most cooked dishes and sides (the seasoned fries!) are very fine as well.
The only problem with DE is that it has been "discovered" and it get's crowded earlier on weekend nights, so you must time your visit with some care to get the best attention from those excellent bartenders.
Ambience is compact and very comfortable, but the backside outdoor seating is a relief. Public transportation access is a little limited compared to other spots in town, but street parking is not bad.
07-29-2012 11:43:09 |
More by Brewhaha
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
one of my favorite local bars. where it's trumped by sunset in terms of sheer selection, it makes up for in ambiance: a more inviting, chill vibe IMO. and where sunset is just prolific, deep ellum's offerings are thoughtfully chosen. great range of crafts on tap - a nice mix of locals, nationals, and overseas imports (esp belgians) - backed up by an extensive bottle assortment. the taps rotate, so the selection never gets old. just to toss out a few off the top of my head, i've had st bernardus abt 12, old rasputin, maharaja, hercules, and a few stone and pretty things offerings on tap.
bartenders are knowledgeable and attentive, unless you catch them on a particularly busy night. it can get crowded quickly, but with the patio now open in back there is more room during summer months. sort of a cross between a neighborhood bar and a beer haven... interesting selection of mixed drinks too, though it's usually my wife who orders those, but we're working on that. :) haven't eaten here a whole lot but have never been disappointed. typical bar fare with a flare, i guess you could say...glassware was spot-on. definitely recommend.
originally reviewed on: 06-13-2010
05-09-2012 15:49:08 |
More by BostonHops
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Been trying to make it out to Deep Ellum ever since it opened. Years of excuses later, we finally made it. Nice atmosphere, dimly lit with beautifully exposed brick. We got there just before six on a Saturday, and made the last table without having to wait. Waitstaff was very attentive, continually filling our glasses up with water. Sad that the cask kicked right before we came, but alternatives and selection were aplenty, beers poured in appropriate glassware, and dinner was delicious. A nice alternative to the Sunset experience.
02-19-2012 22:36:17 |
More by jaymirage
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$$
I am constantly searching for the perfect bars that achieve 'the trifecta' of good times - atmosphere, beer selection, and crowd. This place was a clear win. It strikes the right balance between dive-y charm and a touch of class. The music was great - indie rock and post punk selections, and the crowd was 20s/30s - all clearly beer connoisseurs. The service was good - proper glassware, not a long wait. The selection was decent - several local beers, imports, American microbrews. I personally appreciated Kostritzer and that they had a cask beer. Had some great conversations here with friends - I felt right at home. Really my kind of place!
11-15-2011 04:04:32 |
More by Neorebel
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
I owe Deep Ellum an update since the first several years ago. I have recently moved from Boston, and since my original review, I've visited Deep Ellum more than 40-50 times and I am confident that it is one of the best bars/beer bars in not just all of Boston, but in the Northeast.
The service is exceptional at the bar - attentive, friendly, welcoming. Sometimes slow at the tables, but always pleasant.
The quality of the pours - temperature, glassware, amount of pour is always the best. These beers are served the way beers should be served, must have the cleanest taplines around.
The selection is always thoughtful, usually one or two "regulars" that I can expect - a Green Flash West Coast IPA or Jack D'or, then a bunch of selections from around the area and beyond. A much more varied selection of German and English brews than you can expect elsewhere in the area.
Food is always great, reasonably priced, but they absolutely kill it at brunch. Great value for the quality and amount of food - I prefer the breakfast burrito, homefries inside just the right amount of spicy.
Oh and the cocktails? Forget the beer. Best in the city and it's not even close.
A caveat: I would honestly almost always avoid Deep Ellum on a Friday or Saturday night. It's a small space, and it can get packed. A weekday afternoon for lunch or brunch (brunch served EVERYDAY) or even weekday evening for dinner is what I would recommend.
--- Old review below ---
Atmosphere: A small but decent space. A long bar and ~12 tables opposite the bar food. The crowd was the most pleasurable part of the evening. Everyone was extremely friendly and it wasn't the obnoxious crowd you sometimes have to deal with at TPH on a Friday night. The music was way way way too loud. I even heard quite a few people complaining about it at the bar. It was difficult to even have a conversation with the person next to me.
Quality: I don't know if they were having dishwashing issues but found some major issues here. All four glasses were wet and still smelled of soap, but left my hands really sticky from holding them. Took away from the quality of the beer as I couldn't get a good smell out of any of the glasses.
Service: Quick and friendly service, except the bartender seemed a little confused about some of the beers. Didn't give me much information at all about the Middle Ages IPA they had on cask, and told me that Avery Collaboration was a Porter (actually a rather strong Belgian style ale).
Selection: Pretty decent selection. Major focus on American brews on tap. I had the Hop Rod Rye, Avery Collaboration and Middle Ages IPA. They were also offering the DFH 120 min IPA which was nice to see. Very pleased with a cask offering.
09-21-2011 02:19:23 |
More by RedMedicine
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Deep Ellum in Allston, MA