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“Awesome bar; food is now (unfortunately) secondary” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Roasthouse Pub

Roasthouse Pub
5700 Urbana Pike, Frederick, MD 21704
301-418-6098
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Ranked #134 of 319 Restaurants in Frederick
Cuisines: American
Dining options: Late Night
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night
Frederick, MD
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Awesome bar; food is now (unfortunately) secondary”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2013

I've been a regular since the place first opened.

First let's get the "awesome" out of the way... AWESOME beer selection (craft brew drafts spaning the spectrum, craft and microbrew bottles/cans, and decent "mainstream" beer selection. If you like beer, it doesn't get much better than the depth and breadth of the selections here.

Second, and little talked about, is the availability of a good selection of specialty/craft distillery liquor at the bar. Always an interesting craft rye and availability of obscure small maker whiskey, etc. The beer is so good it's easy to not even notice the hard stuff... and they don't seem to make much effort to promote it, but the discerning taste evident in their beer selection is even more obvious here.

Sadly (and what keeps this from being a 5 star review) is that the food choices have been steadily declining. The original menu was as innovative as the alcohol selection with a lot of unique "small plate" offerings... exactly what you'd expect with such esoteric drink choices. But (as noted by other reviewers) the preparation was a bit haphazard (never really bad, but sometimes average and sometimes excellent... likely dependent on who was in the kitchen that day)

Unlike many small kitchens like this they didn't run a lot of specials (a disappointment because when they did, they were normally very good)... I always thought this was a major missed opportunity.

Over the past year the menu choices have gradually declined. Not necessarily a bad thing in concept, but when the choices eliminated are the more innovative aspects of the menu (the small plates like the wonderful wasabi beef), leaving basically wings, salads, and sandwiches (even if done very well) and still few menu specials detract from the business.

(Example: my wife doesn't really drink... so no attraction from the beer... but this was once one of her favorite restaurants in town. Now she routinely votes it down.)

This is still a great place... and if we hadn't seen how much better the food selection once was, we'd likely be less disappointed now.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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36 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    13
    14
    4
    2
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Denver, Colorado
Top Contributor
128 reviews 128 reviews
57 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 62 cities Reviews in 62 cities
120 helpful votes 120 helpful votes
“Great beer selection and great food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 24, 2013

The beer selection here was superb. The night I visited, they had a firkin and it seemed like this was a common occurrence. Also pretty cool was the beer rep was there to talk about the firkin.

The menu here was very brief. I think there were only 2 or 3 appetizer options. Despite their food selection not being as broad as their beer selection, the food was definitely good. Our table had the crab dip, the tempeh sandwich, the brie sandwich, and the prime rib sandwich. Everything that we had was excellent.

Our server was knowledgeable about the beer list and was helpful in recommending different options.

Apparently, they sometimes give super secret prizes to whomever kicks a firkin. Sadly, despite the beer being tasty, no one finished it the night that I was there.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maryland
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
84 helpful votes 84 helpful votes
“Amazing beer selection and very good food”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2013

I have been to Roast House many times and read the reviews before deciding to post my own review. If you love beer the amazing rotating beer selection makes RH a must visit. They post an updated beer list every few days on Facebook and Twitter. Last night alone I had 2 beers rated 99 by Beer Advocate. They do not have any mass market beers, but I have always found the bar tenders to be knowledgeable and helpful in picking a beer to match my pallet.
The prime rib french dip is a great sandwich. The prime rib is so tender they cut into small cubes instead of thin slices. I didn't think I liked brussel sprouts until I tried their version with bacon. The prime rib dinner on weekends is Fred Flintstone sized. 2 people can easily share it. The wings are my favorite in the Frederick area and are served with creative sauces that rotate daily. The bread pudding is terrific and also giant sized.
The small parking lot is an issue during peak times, but you can park at Lowes and walk..

  • Visited May 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Frederick, Maryland
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Beer Snob”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2013

If you have a beer snob in your life. This is the restaurant for you. The food is good but haphazard. Because it is a small restaurant, some night they run out of food on the menu. And the menu is limited. The dessert is not the best, also hit and miss. But the beer is phenomenal. 30 craft beers on tab. When a keg runs out that add a new one. The size of the place is smaller than a diner but the service is excellent and if you are looking for a really good, different beer. If quality is more important than quantity. This is THE place to have a beer in Frederick.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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POOLESVILLE
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Great beer, good food, slow service”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2013

I really like this place, especially for the rotating list of 20 beers (and sometimes ciders). The food is pretty good, too. I've been there twice and will go back - mainly for the beer selection. The service, however, is not very good. The waitstaff spend way too much time talking to each other and regular customers at the bar and don't pay enough attention to other customers. I sat at the bar last time and the waitress walked by many times without once asking how I was doing, did I want another beer, did I like the food - pretty easy waitress kind of action. I tipped accordingly. But, like I said, I would go back for the beer and have some food to accompany it - without expecting to food to be great; just good.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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