Going to dinner in L/A tends to be a Bates favorite, no matter where it is. Last Friday night, Gritty’s was calling my name. The cute and quaint bar and grill sits on the corner of Main Street and Court Street in Auburn, and it never fails to provide a lively atmosphere and an excellent dining experience with a group of friends.

As one of the most prominent and successful breweries originating in Portland’s Old Port, Gritty McDuff’s started brewing and serving its own beer and offering delicious food in 1988. However, they have been doing more than just serving first-class beer and delicious meals; they also give back to the community through sponsorships with The Dempsey Challenge (a Bates favorite), Trek Across Maine and Good Shepherd Food Bank. Plus, you can get your own Gritty’s merchandise! Who doesn’t want another t-shirt?

As a group of seven ravenous 19 and 20 year-olds, my friends and I headed to the restaurant Friday night and were certainly satisfied. While their menu was short and slightly limited, it offered the perfect variety of sandwiches, appetizers, salads, burgers and steak. It wasn’t overwhelming, which is always a plus because no one like having too many options, especially when it comes to money and food. I ended up with a steak and cheese panini, while other selections at the table included ale-battered chicken sandwiches and juicy burgers.

The wooden picnic tables and the old hardwood floors that creak at every two feet only add to its character and charm. It wouldn’t be complete without various paintings on the walls and sporting events on the TVs, making the atmosphere comfortable, casual and perfect for chill conversations and good times. The huge windows overlook the Androscoggin River on one side and the city-like street on the other.

Sarah Curtis ’18 truly enjoyed her visit to Gritty’s. “The service was quick, the food was great. It’s an excellent place to go if you’re just trying to have a nice off campus dinner with your friends. Ten out of ten would recommend this place. The staff was all really friendly and made the space lighthearted and enjoyable. The restaurant was definitely oriented towards younger people and was very comfortable for the college audience.”

Gritty’s has won countless awards for their ale in festivals across Maine and across the country, including “Maine’s Best Brew Pub,” “Best Maine Microbrew” and “Best Bar,” among others. However, you’ll have to experience the food and atmosphere for yourself in order to get an authentic and unforgettable Gritty’s experience.