The Grill Next Door
Taps: 36 / Bottles: 15
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 16 | Reviews: 14 | Show All Ratings:
3.03/5 rDev -26.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 2 | $$$
**** Re-review 9/25/10 ****
I noticed in a recent visit that the prices are out of control. $7.50 for a short pour of Avery Stout? $6.50 for Bershire Coffee Porter? $9.50 for Ommegang Zuur? $6 for Wachusett Blueberry? Huh? Am I at the Publick House in Brookline??? Also noticed the bartender mis-informing customers about beers and up-selling to even more over-priced Belgians. Oh yeah, and the food still stinks.
Afraid I won't be back - if you're in the area head to the Tap in downtown Haverhill or continue up 495 to the Amesbury Ale House.
Original review 5/19/10
GND - I want to like you. I appreciate your concept of an unassuming beer bar and pub in the far suburbs. You are almost there, but an upgrade in the menu and/or chef needs to happen.
I've been 4 times now and have an appreciation for as coaching legend Bill Parcells says "You are what you are". In this case, an OK place run by decent people who want to do well but fall short in a few areas.
It's a comfortable place - horseshoe bar off to the side of a large dining room. Obviously new construction within the past few years.
Selection of beer is right up my alley - concentration of New England microbrews, but I've noticed they are reaching for overpriced "ticker" beers and Belgians (read: high margin) recently. Local beers are reasonably priced; Ticker beers and Belgians are priced like Boston bars (booo!)
Service is attentive, anxious and friendly. Good in my book.
Where this place falls down is the food....MEH. Having been to many Merrimack Valley haunts, this place fits in. Non-adventerous fare not made well. I've had fare varying from burgers to seafood to their "famous" french fry plates (Blech) and the food is sub-par. At some point soon the owners need to re-evaluate their menu and the execution...neither is working. The potential is there for simple food done well at a reasonable price!
All in all, I will come back. I want to see a beer bar in the far Boston suburbs succeed.
05-19-2010 01:16:18 | More by SunDevilBeer
3.58/5 rDev -12.9%
vibe: 1.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2 | $$
First the good:
The quality and selection of beers is exceptional. Quality might be a notch below The Alehouse in Amesbury, but there are generally some real gems on the tap list. With 36 taps, you can certainly find something great. Where the Alehouse seems to focus more on Belgians and European (as well as domestic) rarities, GND seems to be more into (relatively) mainstream American IPAs and Pale Ales. Not necessarily a bad thing. If you're a beer geek, you'll be happy but you're not likely to be blown away by something rare and wonderful here. Then again, Arrogant Bastard Ale is almost always on tap, which is a very, very good thing.
I found the (bar) staff to be friendly and reasonably knowledgable. All beers are served in appropriate glassware. Unlike other reviewers, I found the value to be quite good. Case in point: $7.50 for a full pint pour of Southern Tier Unearthly IPA. At 11% ABV, one may be all you need...
Now the bad:
The food is pedestrian, chain-quality, New England pub fare. I would hope they would try to match their beer selection with some more upscale and interesting food selections. How about a cheese plate? A Ploughman's lunch?
Here is the real issue I have - the Vibe/Atmosphere. Nearly every time I have gone into the place - usually between 5:30 and 7:00 on a weeknight - after struggling with the tiny parking lot, I find the bar area is completely packed to the point where there are no empty seats. And most of the patrons are drinking... what's that? Bud Light? Coors Light? White Zinfindel??? I understand there is no accounting for taste and its a free country and all, but to go into a place like this and order a Bud Light is like going into an authentic Italian trattoria and ordering a hot dog. Essentially, this is a beer-geek bar with a townie clientelle that doesn't actually realize they are in a beer-geek bar.
So maybe this is a call to arms: Fellow Beer Geeks, head to Haverhill and reclaim the Grill Next Door! (And demand better food while you're at it...)
01-17-2011 20:15:53 | More by BigStarFan
3.6/5 rDev -12.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 2 | $$
I have visited The Grill Next Door twice in the last month and I definitely plan on going back again on a regular basis. The tap list has broad ranging selections that seem to offer something for everyone's tastes. I have ordered a Brooklyn Double Black Chocolate Stout, Delirium Tremens, and a Troeg's Mad Elf. The beers were served in appropriate glassware and at appropriate temperatures. The prices are very reasonable.
The food has been decent so far. The pulled pork sandwich was flavorful, but it was SMOTHERED in barbecue sauce. I do plan on ordering it again, but the next time I will ask for light sauce. The chicken parm is pretty good. My wife ordered a chicken caesar wrap that was nothing special, but the second time we went, she ordered the grilled chicken panini which was much better.
Edit: 04/13/2011 - The beer selection is still above average for the area, but the food the last time my wife and I went was below average.
03-17-2010 19:48:48 | More by gameface23
3.7/5 rDev -10%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$
Decent restaraunt connected to a slick little craft beer store. I stopped by one day on the way home from work, and I was impressed by the 30+ tap list. They have a pretty decent and varied selection of breweries and styles on the tap list, and it appears that the taps rotate fairly regularly. The menus was pretty decent, as well, with a good variety of pub style food. Prices were very reasonable for both the brews and the grub. The bartender was not the most knowledgable of folks in terms of craft beer, but she was willing to ask if she didn't know an answer. Also, she said that the staff generally tries all the new beers as they come in, so they have a reference point for recommendations to customers. Great atmosphere in there, with a typical pub feel. Big, horseshoe shaped bar, with plenty of general open seating all around. I will absolutely make a return trip to this place.
12-19-2011 03:00:12 | More by GarthDanielson
3.85/5 rDev -6.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$
My first visit for dinner and a few beers was generally a happy one. Upon first view the place seems somewhat small and a bit on the divey side. Nothing too classy for sure. The bar is reasonably inviting but the tables and a few booths are fairly pedestrian and there is little or no character to the place, just bare walls and tables and chairs. But it appears to be reasonably clean, very open with a large television for general viewing and another smaller TV at the bar that allows for some constant sports viewing. Service is reasonably prompt and definitely friendly which forgives a lot of the visual shortcomings. However, the staff I saw at my table were all pretty devoid of any real beer knowledge. Clearly beer obsession was not a prerequisite for employment as it can be at some of the best beer bars. The attitude was pretty much standard bar & grill faire though they were generally aware that they sported a pretty cool beer selection. And they did that. The beer list was quite extensive with multiple European oddities along with some American crafts of various varieties. I tried four different brews and all seemed to be reasonably fresh and true to form. Portions and serving vessels were all more than appropriate and the accompanying pub grub was decent at the least. Not a food destination perhaps but a decent beer destination with very acceptable vittles. It appears to me that the beer list has not changed too much as the list on the table was pretty well worn and matched exactly what was posted on the website. But then the list was more than adequate in its variety and quality. A good assortment of stouts, porters and IPA's as well as Belgians of several types. Prices were not off the charts for the most part but it was not a bargain basement either. Nothing I wasn't willing to pay for the most part with the exception of a couple brews. I enjoyed my visit and will definitely drop in again. Hopefully they will rotate the stock eventually. There isn't too much to chose from in this vicinity so it is highly recommended when in this area. I'll be back.
10-08-2010 01:36:23 | More by Durge
3.99/5 rDev -2.9%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
Great selection and friendly, knowledgeable barkeeps; quite the family bar; Can't stay away from the La Merle on tap, much less the 35 others. The package store 'next door' also has a great selection (plus dart supplies and dusty, old-looking homebrew supplies)
04-18-2013 20:35:51 | More by MattyInMass
4/5 rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Was here a week or so back for a brew club meeting.
The atmosphere is good, there is nothing really outstanding about the place, but there is nothing bad about it, its clean and comfortable.
the quality is good, taps are constantly changing, nothing seemed to be old.
good service, they take your drink orders and get them to you fairly quickly.
the selection is excellent. they have 36 beers on tap, and they are all good.
the food is also exceptional. I had an amazing pulled pork sandwich.
although the food and single beers seem to be reasonably priced, the sampler is which is 4 4oz pours is a bit over priced. its like 10 dollars, every other place i have been to has it for 6-8
01-24-2011 20:47:23 | More by rowingbrewer
4.13/5 rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Went on a Wednesday night for dinner because I heard about it's great beer selection. I was pleasantly surprised when the service and food were also great. They have a selection of beers that would make you think you are in Cambridge. They allow you to do a sampler paddle of 4 5oz beers for $8-9 bucks. They are constantly rotating taps so the selection will probably vary each visit.
I got Southamton double Witt, Saison Dupont, Ommegang Abbey, and Yetti. Very nice!
I got a very good burger as well and some other people I was with a got a steak they were very happy with.
One of the cool things about this bar is they also own a liquor/convenience store right next to it. It looks like a Mobil on the run until you get in there and see a pretty good selection of beer.
Kudos to the Grill Next Door...I will be back.
09-23-2010 03:12:08 | More by chrisgn
4.13/5 rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $
I really like The Grill Next Door. A very good selection of beers and I am impressed with their efforts of bringing in new and hard to find brews. They have "tap takeover" events where a particular brewery's selection of beers are the focus. Great way to get introduced to different styles of beer, different breweries and their interpretation of a particular style. The food is pub fare but they do a good job with it. Great prices, very good portion sizes as well. They do have clasdic entrees as well. Love sitting at the bar but it is not a very big place so that is hit or miss. Usually busy but after 7 or so the families clear out and there isn't a problem getting a seat. Never had to wait there. Service is very good as well. One stop shop is next door and owned by the same family. Good selection of beers there as well.
01-14-2012 21:39:19 | More by Cord018
4.24/5 rDev +3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75 | food: 3 | $$
Great Neighborhood type pub. You see families having dinner here most nights. As other reviews have stated there are plenty of big TV screens showing all the games but doesn't really come off as a sports bar destination. I think people are there for the exceptional beer selection and atmosphere and to a lesser extent the food. Not a huge place but not super small either. Decent sized bar in a U shape. Plenty of dinner seating and a number of pub tables along the back window.
Food is more than serviceable for pub type fare. Comparable to chain type pubs, I guess, not great but good usually. I do like their burgers quite a bit.
Great selection of European Import beers and very good domestic craft beers with plenty of choices on tap. I find the bartenders and waitstaff very friendly and knowledgeable about the beers and have gotten good recommendations from them.
12-15-2013 20:01:19 | More by rmatos
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The Grill Next Door in Haverhill, MA
91 out of 100 based on 16 user ratings.