Brewery Review of Jack’s Abby Craft Lagers in Framingham, MA.
For those of you not familiar with Jack’s Abby in Framingham, MA, they have had a rather meteoric rise in the world of craft beer. As someone who lives within 45 minutes of Framingham, I’ve been seeing their stuff on stores shelves for several years and I’ve been drinking their stuff for almost as long. I had a good feeling they would be successful after the very first beer I tried from them (Hoponious Union IPL), and I had always meant to pop into their brewery and check it out, but for some reason I never got around to it. Then I heard they were expanding and opening up a new larger facility with not only a tasting room but a full restaurant and finally decided it was time to see what all the fuss was about.
It didn’t take long to realize that this local small town brewer had become quite a massive operation. The new brewery restaurant is actually more of an enormous beer hall with cavernous ceilings, large open spaces and cafeteria style seating at long rows of tables. Clearly they were trying to emulate the experience of a German beer hall with its meeting place vibe and community interaction, and they did a pretty good job of it. There’s a designated area to fill your growers and get your beers to go (in bottles), and well as a gigantic central bar in the middle of the room, so even with a full house things don’t get too bogged down.
They have quite a few beers on draught, many of which you won’t find in stores, and of course tasting flights are available so you won’t miss out on trying anything that you want.
Jack’s Abby is a lager brewery, and they have found many creative ways to use the style from the Numb Swagger (Black Lager w/Szechuan Peppercorns) to the Blood Orange Hibiscus Leisure Time (Wheat Lager) to the Pumpkin Smoke & Dagger (Barrel-Aged Sour Smoked Porter), you won’t be bored. The beer is fresh, innovative, diverse and judging by the crowds on an average afternoon, very popular. You won’t get hungary while you’re there either, with a full menu and a copper fire oven turning out tasty dishes.
Jack’s Abby is a Brewery/Restaurant done right, because they were a brewery first and you can tell that was the priority when constructing this new destination. It was about having a great beer experience. Sometimes, food is a part of that because you can’t keep the beer flowing on an empty stomach. Much like how you can’t keep Shaq going without Icy Hot, Gold Bond, a roomy Buick, etc. (or so he tells us), and we can’t afford to have the big man off his game.