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The Great Lost Bear
Taps: 69 / Bottles: -
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
540 Forest Ave
phone: (207) 772-0300
(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Ratings & Reviews
| Reviews: 100 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
I can't believe I've lived in the state of Maine for almost close to 3 years and just tonight I tried this place for the first time.
A: I was thoroughly impressed by the selection of beers they had on tap (69 at all times). I enjoyed the interior that was speckled with yearbook class photos, the high school and college pennants hung on the wall.
S/F: The selection of food was impressive with a wide enough selection that it took me at least a half an hour to decide what I wanted.
S: The service was great I was surprised on a Friday night.
Q/V: The quality was pretty good too, and the value was reasonable. I would go back here in a heart beat. My only issue is the parking lot for as popular as this place is, I would think they would have a larger lot. Its also really tight.
11-19-2011 03:22:14 |
More by kangarooAdam59
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
This is another must-visit gem for those in Portland, Maine!
The interior is somewhat dim-lit, with stuff like old yearbook class photos from area high schools, along with breweriana on the walls. The selection is pretty huge- lots of locals and quality imports, and themed sampler flights are offered. You can also design your own flight to try several things you haven't had before.
For food they have pretty solid comfort fried foods, with lots of unique(for this area) items.
They have a lot of promos and theme nights.
On a recent visit, they had 5 good to awesome offerings from Allagash(and since they occupied their own draft system, it looked liked a dedicated set of taps), as well as Ommegang Aphrodite and some good stuff on cask!
It's also next door to a homebrew store, so I see no excuse not to hit this place up while getting some supplies.
09-16-2011 12:28:25 |
More by SevaTse
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
My first stop in Portland, and what a way to start!
Family restaurant it seems to me (is it next to a brewing store??) with several rooms and a bar. Older looking place--confirmed by my friend who had come here when she was child (like 30 years ago or so). Wood dominates, a bit dark. We got a table in the corner to catch up and chat....and for me to drink.
Yes, the beer selection is the best in the area--for local offerings. Not a huge Belgian, or strong ale, or whatever specialty. It has beer, and plenty of it. I went with a flight of custom selections: all locals!
I got a tuna melt and shared some nachos. Food will fill you up, for sure. Watch it, cuz you'll have to drink more and you better have room. Perhaps my favorite place in Portland. While not the best "beer bar", it's easy to find, easy to get comfy and a good place to chill out
08-18-2011 04:57:58 |
More by Mebuzzard
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
Okay, the best thing about the GLB is the beer selection of course. Huge selection of Maine brews and others from around the world make this place a must stop. Not on the waterfront but still in Portland, one of the best cities in New England.
The second best thing about this place is the bar itself. This place is like a museum inside. You can easily spend hours looking at the walls. GLB has a true pub look and feel inside, with millions of things (stickers from around the world, old beer ads, porcelain advertisement signs, vintage posters & photographs, police badges, foreign currency, neon, vintage beer cans, etc., etc., etc...) on the walls and behind the bar to look at. It really sets the right vibe. Well done. If you have ever been to the Dark Horse in Boulder, CO, this has a similar feel. A knick-knack lover's dream bar. Check it out.
07-21-2011 16:15:25 |
More by dugmar
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Was planning to spend the day in Portland drinking in several places, but due to unforeseen circumstances (fog in Bar Harbor postponing our tour boat a day), we didn't get to Portland until 9 pm instead of noon. Oops. With enough energy for one place, we took a cab to The Great Lost Bear. Hard to compare without hitting other places, but we were very happy with the Bear as our only stop in Portland (and Becky's Diner for breakfast on the way out of town).
Well served and in the proper glasses, our waiter brought us each of the Allagash beers on the extensive draft menu. Ended the night with Clown Shoes Hoppy Feet, which was a great Black IPA. For food, the waiter steered us toward a house made veggie dinner, the Fresh Grizzly Burritto with rice, beans, cheese and veggie chili. We had started with cup of veggie chili (something we found in several NE bars, which I would love to see in the midwest more). Both were really great and topped off the night after a long day being tourists and not having really stopped to eat.
GLB clearly lives up to their reputation as a great beer bar. Our waiter was knowledgeable and helpful choosing the beers, and also got us to meal we enjoyed. After a week of travelling and eating out, we really appreciated a very honest, straight forward waiter who gave us a clear, informed opinion of beer and food when ask. Not shying away from making a statement instead of being a cheerleader for whatever a patron picks is a really great quality that is appreciated.
We liked Portland and plan to return to it and The Great Lost Bear.
07-09-2011 19:11:47 |
More by FightingEntropy
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
We almost drove right by this location, but once it was spotted we knew we had to stop by for a pint.
This place reminds me of a well diversified beer garden fused with a college town diner. It was approximately 2pm on a Saturday, but the place was fairly packed, especially the bar. However, we still grabbed two bar seats with ease.
Looking around I wondered where they managed to squeeze in 69 taps. However, browsing through the available draughts I realized they provided an incredibly comprehensive selection with both local and classic beer choices. It was no longer my concern where they were hiding all of these taps, more pressing issues concerning my tap and food selection we at hand.
My favorite part about their tap listing was the option for sampling; you could sample one 5oz sample or as many as five 5oz samples on a panel. Because we were literally just coming from the Allagash tasting and tour, I opted to share three 5oz samples instead of completing an entire panel. During the Allagash tour I wanted to try the Grand cru, Black, and confluence and now I would finally get the chance.
The food selection was well priced and included traditional pub fare. I went for the buffalo chicken mac and cheese, while my pub-crawling partner ordered their "famous chili." It was a rainy day, so comfort food was deemed appropriate. My mac and cheese was decent and the chili was delicious.
We spent about one hour at the great lost bear and thoroughly enjoyed our time. I would have liked to check out their night life, but time would not permit. I shall venture back next time I'm in Portland.
06-19-2011 19:44:56 |
More by ThePorterSorter
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
First stop in Portland, after a too long drive from the home base. Multiple rooms, ample room at the u shaped bar to belly up and scan the extensive draft menu...plenty of local micros, highlighted by 6 from neighbor Allagash, further focus on Belgians and Belgian style. I tried the Sebago Full Throttle DIPA, mighty fresh and flavorful. We got a table as things began to thin out....service all around was low key and on the mark, food was a bit sloppy, fish was overcooked and marginally flavorful. So to recap, def. go for the major league beer choices, the relaxed and low key athmosphere...maybe consider having dinner somewhere else
04-13-2011 01:16:57 |
More by Billolick
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
I finally just made time and headed straight to the Great Lost Bear for a beer. Most of my visits to Portland wind up with a visit to Novare and/or Gritty's. I keep hearing about this joint, but have never made it... Until now.
The atmosphere is great. Very warm, inviting and with the feel of a local joint. A couple guys told me that they still sell about 20-25% of their beer in PBR and other brands like that. The clientele seems to be a very interesting mix of local hearty souls and beer geeks. The walls are covered with beer memorabilia and other items. Even noticed a Reagan Movie poster from way back. Bonus points.
The beer selection certainly focused on Maine beers, but had plenty of Belgium and other American craft choices. Service was VERY friendly and samples flowed very freely.
I didn't try any food, but the food I saw sure looked great.
Novare is still my favorite in town, but I'd much rather head back here vs. Gritty's
I wish I had time to hang out longer and I know I'll be back. This is a must stop when visiting Portland.
04-05-2011 11:33:31 |
More by Reagan1984
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
I have had the great opportunity to live within a mile of this place. For those ever considering a visit to Maine this is a must stop. They currently have 69 beers on tap, over half are Maine made, including a great section of Allagash brews. They also brewery showcases, having on tap 4 to 5 beer from a brewery with sometimes the brewer serving them up. Perhaps the best is the opportunity to try cask selections that are only available here, Geary's HSA comes to mind. The staff are always friendly and will help you with your sampler selection or choose from the huge menu, might I suggest the buffalo wings and the chili, don't forget the special board.
12-08-2010 19:22:20 |
More by bishopdc0
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Went on Friday mid-afternoon on the way from Allagash Brewing Company tour (also highly recommended). The fairly large bar combines a homey dimly lit pub-feel with 69 taps. You have a choice of sitting at the bar, or if feeling more family-oriented, in their restaurant seating.
I Ordered Geary's London Style Porter, Unibroue Noire de Chambly, and a sampling of local brews. Good services, reasonable prices, and excellent food (the buffalo chicken sandwich was glorious). Service was quick and to the point - the only drawback was that they were out of the Rogue JJ Hazelnut Brown; fortunately,, I had 68 other delights to choose from. Menu is well organized by beer style; I would've loved to spend more time here. Actually, I would have loved to live here; I spent most of my time calculating how I could suspend a hammock conveniently above the taps.
Come for the beer, stay for the food, stay longer for more beer. Further note: $1.25/each for 5 ounce samples if you want to make your own flight from the selection.
11-01-2010 12:48:23 |
More by rsgcwhite
The Great Lost Bear in Portland, ME
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