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Sebago Brewing Company
Active Beers: 19
Beer Ratings: 1,068
Beer Avg: 3.77
Taps: 8 / Bottles: -
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
211 Fore St
phone: (207) 775-2337
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vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | $$
Still Portland, and old port play today for a while longer anyway; this excursion up north once a year or other. A single allowable record store, check, smokes and double espressos, check and check, crazy chicken sandwich, not yet but coming soon. So Sebago now, a well lit, open place just up the road a bit from where it was we was. I'm not really sure how we're never stumbled across this place before. We've been up on Middle Street and it's not like there ain't a giant blue neon light in the window welcoming...
A long straight wood bar with a copper foot rail seats 14 or so. Lotsa light from the gigantic windows over Middle Street; a fat wood barback counter below, with some wines & booze displayed atop, and coolers & wine 'fridge action under lots of glassware stacked & sunken within. Large 2 man crew boat suspended above the windows, and tap list & merchandise boards above that. Drop spots suspended over the bar from a giant beam suspended from other beams. TV's in the corners and brewing equipment visible behind glass as you enter. 3 rows of raised tables adjacent to the bar and a few booths. Apparently, downstairs, a larger dining room, more quiet, fewer windows, but I didn't get there, and there are tables outside which I'm sure don't suck during the warmer weather.
They had their 4 full time and 3 seasonals on, as well as a handful of guest taps from other Maine breweries (Sunday River, Atlantic Brewing Company, Carabasett) and 2 macros on the end just in case you feel the need to come to a brewpub and drink Bud. The Lake Trout Stout was solid, but I wasn't so hot on the Slick Nick Winter Ale and Jed said "It's a brown ale" of the Boathouse Brown Ale. Didn't try the food as there's a crazy chicken sandwich in my future Gritty's bound, but I suspect we'll get back here.
*** Some 6 years later, up north once a year or other and revisiting haunts ago. I'm blinded this hour sitting at the bar looking into the sunset over Middle & Market Streets, the windows shaded over Middle Street but done poorly over Market. Big windows up front, "overhang to something above the tables eating". I wrote that in my notes, I'm not sure what I meant by it.
They no longer brew here, surprise, the brewing equipment is gone gone gone. I guess it's all done at a central location that feeds this and other Sebago locations. 6 beers on the sampler, the samples themselves being a buck a piece except for the Double IPA, which is $2, so whatever, send 'em, send 'em all. 5 house regulars (Northern Light Ale, light is light; the Boathouse Brown Ale, weak, and not, you know, good; the Frye's Leap IPA, pleasant hoppiness, good bitterness; the Lake Trout Stout, roasty, tasty; the Runabout Red Ale, a bit malty, okay), and a seasonal (Single Barrel Full Throttle Double IPA, crazy hazy & super sweet, way past the point of being hoppy). Frye's Leap IPA & Lake Trout Stout being the best of the lot. And that was that 'cause they wouldn't let me sample the Whiskey Porter; they only deal a 10 oz glass for $5.35 (who came up with that dollar figure?) I am going to forego it, as I don't need a 10 ounce glass of anything here, especially so close to Novare's opening, but I am not happy with their rigidness around letting me get a sample of it. Do I need to actually show you my red pen? It will not bode well for you, I promise. But you get what you get; they're just pouring here, no clue to the beer at hand. And the macro bottles displayed above for all to see. Just not loving it.
03-02-2003 17:52:38 |
More by slander
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
Situated right on the corner of Middle & Market Streets, the bar overlooks Middle Street. Where was I? The BAR!, of course. Traffic drifted by, the trees swayed in the wind, and I ate lunch and drank beer. I have to cop to having been on Wi-Fi at the bar, which I consider poor form, but I was desperate to try and contact a high school classmate, to no avail.
A couple of TVs flanked the bar, plus there was a corner booth to my left. Behind me was the restaurant area with a few booths, but mainly tables and chairs. Again to my left, along Market Street, was a patio with metal chairs and tables with umbrellas attached to them. Sadly, the concept of al fresco dining continues to elude me as a possibility. There was a unisex washroom behind me, to the right, and another set of washrooms downstairs and to the left.
My waitperson told me that they no longer brew on premises, but that the new facility is located in the Gorham Industrial Park. It meant that there was less to look at here, but it has freed up space to allow the brewer to experiment. His latest was a small-batch beer called Proper Pale. They routinely offer five (5) standards: Light; Brown; IPA; Red; and Stout as well as three (3) rotating offerings. There was not a clinker in the lot, plus the Proper Pale really did it for me.
Despite the move to Gorham, as you descend the stairs to the downstairs restaurant area, the Fermentation Vessels and Serving Vessels sit like Miss Havishams house - reminders of a past. In retrospect, however, it could be that they are using those tanks. I failed to ask and should follow up.
Finally, BlitheringIdiots Mom Test: Hell, yeah! Even my mom. The place is clean, friendly, and welcoming. No problem.
08-19-2006 17:31:01 |
More by woodychandler
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
Modern location away from the smell of seafish, and close to the public parking garage. A little noisy and buzy at suppertime, it wasn't too bad. A large bar, a comfortable spot (fortunately) and a moderate sized patio if you want it. Their product line is average, but there is usually something interesting on, this night a cask dry hopped citra IPA. People were happy with the food, and beer was ordered by all but a secondary consideration. Some bombers available if you wanted it, I should have checked for a barleywine - never know.
08-16-2012 23:09:53 |
More by northyorksammy
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
Short walk from the Portland Regency hotel among plenty of little shops. Walking in there is plenty of glass and more of an upscale decor that looks worn. Nice size bar with several stools. The restaurant high top tables were all filled with patrons. There was a downstairs which I did not venture to so nothing to report there. Crowd was younger and slightly toward the yuppie side.
Several beers were available, the IPA, Brown, Wheat, Lite, Stout, and a Red. After waiting for about 10 minutes while sitting at the bar while the waitress was yapping to a another patron, I finally flagged her down for a pint of the brown ale. Beer was decent, but when my glass was empty it took several arms waives to get attention of her again. Not good service in my book for a bar of that size. I also had the IPA which was decent and the special wheat brew which was awful - flat and entirely unbalanced flavors made this an "anti-refreshing" brew.
Food looked all right, but I didn't sample any. This is an OK place, but I prefer Gritty's if I had to choose between the two.
06-23-2005 00:27:04 |
More by Gavage
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
Stopped here for lunch on Saturday while in Portland for the day. It was pleasant weather, so we opted to sit outside. There are a few tables that ring the outside walkway. While the view of the street is nothing great, at least you can enjoy the nice breeze. Ordered some beers and lunch. My wife had a pint of the Hefe and and I had a tulip glass of the Milestone Ale. Both were great. I liked my burger, while my wife was not overly impressed with her chicken sandwich. Our waitress was friendly and the food & drink arrived in decent time. Prices were average, with pints at $4 and specialty beers at $6. This is our second visit to this Sebago location over the years, and we have enjoyed both meals here.
05-24-2010 18:25:17 |
More by morebeergood
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
I've been to around 200 brewpubs in North America on business and personal travel. As part of a Portsmouth>Portland brewpub tour in September of '07, my beer buddy and I visited Shipyard Kennebunkport, Gritty's Freeport, and Sebago. If it wasn't for Sebago, the trip to Portland would have been a bust. Shipyard beers were ok and Gritty's beers were awful.
Sebago is in the heart of Portland's downtown shopping and tourist area. We arrived around 5pm on a Saturday and left around 7. We had the delicious IPA, seasonal porter, stout, and single batch IPA. These were far and away the best brewpub beers we had in
Maine. I'm not sure how Sebago has such a low rating compared to Gritty's - It's not even close in my book. The serice was very good. In fact, the manager on duty spent 20 minutes at our table chatting about good beer in New England. It's a very well managed operation and by the time we left it was really hopping.
09-23-2007 02:50:36 |
More by Yetiman420
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4
A great brewpub in downtown Portland. As others have mentioned it is quite near a mall, but don't let that fool you. This place is legit. The atmosphere is nice, light wood, with a long bar and another room with many tables. Nice daytime natural lighting in here as well, as others have also mentioned. The quality of the brews is good, and I love the ringwood-fest on an IPA they have on tap here. All of the 6 beers were good, but the winter ale was not my favorite. Service was good, pretty fast and attentive as well. No complaints. Selection was OK, but just 5 or so taps is lame compared to some other brewpubs. Not bad, but not the best. Food was cheap and very good. My seafood chowder was chunky as all hell and loaded with the good stuff. A superb spot in downtown Portland. I'd like to visit again.
03-16-2005 20:22:21 |
More by francisweizen
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
* President's Day Weekend 2007 *
Nestled in the Old Port on the corner of Middle & Market Street is Sebago Brewing Company. It's hard to miss the neon blue sign on the front of the brewpub. Grab a seat at the bar where it's an ideal location to watch the foot traffic and drink some craft brews. The main area is divided into a dining area and bar with additional seating on a second level. An open atmosphere, but not the most comfortable.
Selections included their staple line-up of Boathouse Brown, Frye's Leap IPA, Lake Trout Stout, Northern Light Ale & Runabout Red Ale. The seasonal was Slick Nick Winter Ale. While rarities like the Midnight Porter & Smoked Ale (Brewer's Choice) were also on tap. I was able to try all of their beers with the 5 oz sampler that comes on a circular wooden table. I found most of the staple beers to be average overall and quite unimpressive. My favorites were the Slick Nick & Smoked Ale which were pretty good. Beers are served in 16 oz or 22 oz. Prices are reasonable at $3.70 a pint.
As for food, I tried a couple of appetizers. Don't waste your time on the Maine Lobster Quesadilla at $10.99. Taste was bland and the lobster meat was disappointing. On the other hand, the Ale-House Mussels were delicious.
The quality was decent. The glasses were soaking wet from the dishwasher and still warm. Nasty. Service was amicable and fairly attentive, but there were some errors on the bill.
Probably won't return, there are way too many other Portland beer destinations.
02-18-2007 22:05:43 |
More by Hibernator
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 5
A brewpub trio that started with just a single location next to a mall. Didn't bode well, I thought. Come to find out, the Sebago owners' take on "brewpub" is precisely what some people in Maine and tourists were looking for.
The food is really well thought out. Menu features a generous appetizers section that gets half-pricing during happy hours. Not just wings either, bruschetta, mussels, potato nachoes, shrimp all at about $4 at 5 p.m. Sandwiches, dinners all uniformly of good quality. The fact that all this food is served until after midnight is also a big bonus to people in Maine who thought Denny's was the only place for late night eats.
Beer: Nothing outstanding, but all good, and made with an eye on consistency. They never have a bad batch. Their IPA is a good choice, and unlike some places, the stout is actually stronger than the other choices. Only five on tap at any one time, with a couple of guest taps.
Overall: the kind of place you could take mom and dad, a date or a business contact. And don't let the mallside location fool you.
03-03-2003 11:08:34 |
More by ecoboy
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5
Visited Portland in March 2005. This city has always been underated in terms of great beer. Understandable, giving the beer mecca that the other Portland (Oregon) has become. I did'nt see a "mall" but SBC is located in an historical building, the original purpose of which, was never made clear. It is located about 2-3 blocks uphill from the Old Port (and the tourists) and gives one the impression of some past association with the sea (Duh). Visited on a Friday night - not crowded at all, though the barstaffer, though perky and cute, was not overly-attentive. The good part: SBC had about every style available; I had and enjoyed: Frye's Leap IPA, an American style IPA; Runabout Red Ale, a rather malty amber ale; Boathouse Brown Ale; Lake Trout Stout, an excellent dry stout with great body and finish; and last yet not least, their seasonal, Slick Nick Winter Ale. Is is me or could Maine beers use more hops?
04-03-2005 19:55:21 |
More by jjboesen
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Sebago Brewing Company in Portland, ME