It has probably stayed in business purely from tired and weary shoppers looking for a decent bite to eat and a cold pint of beer.
When did it open?
The Framingham John Harvard's opened some time in the late '90s. Apparently it was the only gig in town until the recent craft beer revival. John Harvard's flies under the radar as a brewery in Framingham's, especially when you consider Jack's Abby, Springdale, and Exhibit A.
John Harvard's has two other locations, one at Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort in Hancock, MA, and the other at the Holiday Valley Resort in Ellicottville, NY. They used to be tied to Providence's Union Station Brewery, but that got sold off.
Breweries near John Harvard's in Framingham, MA
- Beer Works (Framingham)
- Exhibit A
- Jack's Abby
- Lookout Farm Taproom
- Night Shift Brewing @Level 99
- Start Line Brewing
- The Kells Beer Company
Do they offer a tour?
There isn't much to tour, you can see the barrels from the bar. The bartenders are friendly and will discuss the beer(s) with you if you ask.
Is the brewpub kid friendly?
By all means. In fact, it's more of a restaurant than a tap room anyway, especially when compared to Westborough's Cold Harbor and Hopkinton's Start Line Brewing.
What types of beer does John Harvard's brew?
All types. Saisons, Helles, IPAs, DIPAs, Blonde Ales, Blueberrys, Pale Ales and more.
They even had a beer named after Mr. Miyagi.
Their signature brew is Autumn's Harvest Spice. They offer a cinnamon and sugar rim with the Harvest Spice. And, if you close your eyes and drown out the bar chatter, you may just find yourself humming Blue Jean Committee's Massachusetts Afternoon.
Flights? Growlers? 4/6 packs to buy and take home?
John Harvard's is not in the business of canning or bottling their beers. But, you can enjoy a delicious Harvest Spice whilst watching the Pats tune up some poor AFC East team every Sunday in the fall.
They even give you a small cinnamon and sugar packet. How thoughtful.
Did someone say, "Golden Passion?"
Does they serve other types of alcohol?
Yes. Not doing so would really hurt the, "Do you have Bud Light?" crowd.
Do they have a mug club?
They should. Why don't they!?
How about merch?
Yeah, I think they sell t-shirts and other small swag. I could be wrong. Wouldn't be the first time.
Does John Harvard's serve food?
100%. John Harvard's Brewery and Ale House is a restaurant with brews-a-brewin'. Salads. Sandwiches. Entrees. Think full menu.
It's a great place to get lunch if you're into craft beer, but you also want to take your Mom, Girlfriend, Grandmother out shopping. (Hint - there is an AC Moore next door)
Oh, and they serve fantasticly soft bread with a killer oil and herb mix for dipping. Really, killer.
Do they offer entertainment?
Apart from a bunch of TV screens in the bar, no, I don't believe so.
Can I buy John Harvard's beers in stores around Natick and Framingham?
No. At least not from the Framingham brewpub.
Final Thoughts on John Harvard's Brewery & Ale House
A great selection of delicious food at reasonable prices with equally good craft beer. What are you waiting for? Get yourself to John Harvard's.