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The Great Lost Bear
Taps: 69 / Bottles: -
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
540 Forest Ave
phone: (207) 772-0300
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vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5
THE beer mecca of Portland. A wonderful atmosphere with a few cavernous dining room areas and a long L-shaped bar. Breweriana is all over the walls, lending a local flare to this place that simple can't be beat by ANY of the other local establishments. Wow, is this place cool looking inside. Damn! The quality of the beers is spot on and the prices are superb. I was here on short beer night, and what a deal that is! They also have a bunch of Bottled brews from Bar Harbor, so I opted for the awesome Cadillac mountain stout as my first brew of the night. I also tried their famous chili. Damn was that f'in good and filling or what!? Service was fast, friendly and knowledgable as well. I can't add much to what others have said. This is a true beer bar mecca, and anyone who has easy access to this place, or even better lives up the street, is truly truly lucky. One of many great beer establishments world-wide that I would love to have as "my local". It hurts having no good beer bars within thirty minutes of your home :-( Oh well, I have to get back to Portland sometime soon and quaff here again. The gem of my beery trip to RI, NH, and ME! Do not miss!
03-16-2005 20:41:23 |
More by francisweizen
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
What can you say about the Great Lost Bear that isn't wonderful? From the cool Greatful Dead bear bumper stickers "Support your right to arm bears", to the 50+ beers on tap, to those french fries that are to die for - this place rocks.
Only a miserable, cold, dreary environment like Portland, ME could create such a warm hospitable environment. It's by far my favorite place to grab a beer anywhere in the world. I recommend trying the 5 beer sampler as you'll most certainly want to try everything. Great Lost Bear does a good job of picking out the best beers out of the hundreds of micro brews in the New England area.
05-23-2006 15:18:43 |
More by maccroz
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
I was highly impressed with the Great Lost Bear. I headed up there from Salem, MA for the Dogfish Head Life & Limb party. Was a bit disappointed in that they'd run out of that and Limb & Life by the time the party was supposed to begin. That's where my disappointment ended though! I'd gotten very excited upon reading reviews by other BA members and this place lived up to my expectations. The beer selection was incredible and I was very happy to have the chance to try some brews that I'd not had before, especially on tap. The beer prices were very reasonable, especially compared to what's charged in the greater Boston area.
I was equally impressed with the food. There was a great selection to choose from. I went with the Almighty Cheesus (especially after reading what others had to say about it). That as well lived up to, if not exceeding my expectations! I certainly couldn't eat them too frequently, but the usage of grilled cheese sandwiches in place of a bun is genius! I wasn't disappointed by the service that some others seemed to be. There were a few times where we waited a bit for Shane to return, but given the crowd there, it wasn't unreasonable.
I wholeheartedly recommend you visit The Great Lost Bear. I certainly will be making return trips up there.
01-15-2010 05:41:30 |
More by CapnStuBing
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5
As far as Portland and local and regional beers (on tap to boot) are concerned, this is the place to be. More than 50 beers on tap, probably 75% from Maine, nothing else is even close.
As noted by JohnnyP, they offer specials on different nights, Mondays and Tuesdays are "short" beer nights with all on tap offerings being poured in 23 oz. glasses (JohnnyP mistakenly said 20 oz.) for the 16 oz. price.
Thursday night is Showcase beer night, usually featuring offerings from a single brewery for $2 a pint. Ocassionally, the Thursday showcase may feature a style of beer, such as the recent Oktoberfest night when all beers of a style are $2. No matter what the special is expect a crowded festive atmosphere and drawings for prizes such as glasses, t-shirts, hats and other brewery souvenirs on these nights. Tomorrow night, Thursday October 17th, will be a great one as we can expect David Geary himself to be pouring Geary's Hampshire for the "Hello Hampshire, goodbye Summer Ale" night. I just hope I can find a seat at the bar.
The food here is pretty good pub fare, with a good sized menu featuring something for everyone including vegetarians, and the service is very good and friendly.
If you are a BeerAdvocate visiting Portland and can only stop at one place, this is the one to hit.
10-16-2002 21:46:17 |
More by MaineBeerMan
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5 | $$
great dark cluttered environs with random objects d'art adorning the walls (even a wwII plane replica whose nose descends from the ceiling pointed at the floor, the spinning prop makes it a ceiling fan). ample seating, even on a chaotically busy night. despite the number of people, energy was pleasant and relaxed. phenomenol selection of beers on tap and service. prices were very fair, especially for beers - allagash pints were 1.99 for the night when i went. extremely fun spot; check out their thurs night brewery showcase deals. burger wasn't bad, but it wasn't a bag burger from sugarloaf's bag & kettle (although what is?). this is a bar that i will be revisiting, even though it's an hour away. highly recommended.
07-01-2005 17:14:11 |
More by villainchiwwin
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
The Great Lost Bear is awesome! This is my home away from home. If you are away from home you can sit in front of the "Bearcam" and it can be a poor man's version of "Skype". The beer selection is great. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable. The food is good and they have a huge menu. If I lived in Portland I would have to live in the neighborhood around the corner so this could be my regular watering hole. I am on their e-mail list so they send me the "Bear's Growl" every week which is a hoot. Can you tell I am a big fan of this place? The Great Lost Bear deserves all the praise I am giving it.
10-07-2010 21:50:37 |
More by adirondack88
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
The Great Lost Bear was recommended to me by a bar tender in Boothbay Harbor. It's a great bar/restaurant in Portland Maine. It's on a main street and very easy to find. I cannot say enough about the beer selection. It was stellar. Four beers on cask including Allagash Black, which was very tasty. Plenty of good quality Belgain's, American, and local beers to choose from on tap. It was more of a "quality over quantity" type of selection. The waitress seemed to know information about the beers. I had 3 different styles of beer and all were served in the proper glassware. We ordered the Jalapeno poppers and were pretty good as well. Highly recommended if you're in Portland, ME.
10-08-2010 21:11:50 |
More by StaveHooks
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5 | $$
We came here after drinking at Gritty Mcduffs and was surprised to see all the taps and the enormous selection that they had there. After drinking tons of Maine beers (beers with ringwood yeast) i was SOOO happy to see some hoppy beers i was familiar with such as Dogfish Head and Harpoon. There also was a great selection of Maine beers that I have never seen before and specialty local beers as well. The food was ok, I just bought something small for a respectable price. The one thing that I noticed was while talking to the bar tender and telling him that My friends and I were from out of state they gave us samples of whatever we asked for without cost. This place is just great!!! number 1 place to go in Maine Id say.
09-20-2006 01:01:37 |
More by simmons
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $
A truly great beer bar in an out of the way location. Most vistors to Portland will spend their time in Old Port with the brewpubs never realizing one of America's great beer bars is on the other side of town. Tons of microbrews on tap and a great selection of Maine beers in particular. The food is excellent pub food very well priced. I highly recommend the Chili Burger, and with fries only about $8. Staff is very knowledgable on the beer too which is quitea refreshing change from some beer bars.
12-22-2009 20:13:42 |
More by Katahdin
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | $$
This place is simply a great bar with a slew of taps and decent food to match. Walking in, they have some merchandise to the right of you and it opens up to be a pretty big place. The taps kind of wrap around the bar towards the back and it's pretty impressive to see them all lined up.
It was definitely nice to see all the Allagash offerings, I had the dubbel on cask and my wife went with an Allagash White. We followed it up with a Allagash Victory and Deux Brasseurs. They had a pretty big menu but we came just for the drinks. Service was on point and the staff seemed knowlegable about the brews. It's kind of a dark place inside but there was a pretty big crowd and an overal neighborhood bar feel to it. It's worth the trip alone for the 5-6 Allagash beers they will have on tap at any given time.
09-03-2009 17:41:23 |
More by bernardus
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The Great Lost Bear in Portland, ME