My life is crazy and thus my brewery visits are few and far between, so I’ve decided to get more strategic, find ways to squeeze in quick stops as parts of errands or family events. For example, my car needed an oil change this weekend so I took a trip to the Valvoline in Marlborough on Saturday, was in and out in 10 minutes, and then slipped over to Lost Shoe Brewing and Roasting Company for a flight of beers and some cans to go. This was actually my first trip to Lost Shoe, so I thought I would share some thoughts on the space and my visit, and I will plan to follow up with some beer reviews next week.
Lost Shoe is located on 19 Weed Street in downtown Marlborough. There is a ton of parking in the area, a garage across the street and a public lot out back, which is a boon for a suburban brewery without mass transit options. The taproom is spacious, with a big metal bar and a variety of other seating options from big communal tables to small high-tops perfect for pairs. Lost Shoe is named in honor of the legacy of shoe production in Marlborough, and much of the decor, and some of the beer names, reference this. There are a few big screen TVs behind the bar, and a variety of board games available. When I stopped in they had the Bruins game on TV (without the volume on) and there were some groups watching the game while others were playing games or just hanging out and socializing. There was music on that was at a low enough volume to provide atmosphere but not affect people’s conversations. Everything was clean and well maintained, including the glassware, which is always a sticking point for me. The staff was friendly and knowledgeable, attentive without being overbearing, and clearly knew the beer menu inside and out.
In addition to brewing craft beer Lost Shoe is a roastery, making their own artisanal coffee. I am not a coffee drinker (outside of coffee beers), so I can’t comment on their java, but I have heard good things. Lost Shoe also makes their own hard seltzer in a variety of flavors if that is your thing. Lost Shoe doesn’t have a full food menu, but they offer baked goods as part of the coffee shop and some bar snacks. With the combination of brewery and roastery, they are open for long hours 7 days a week.
The first thing that you notice when you glance at the Lost Shoe beer list is the amazing variety of styles. When I visited on Saturday there was only 1 IPA on tap, a rarity in these hop-soaked times. Instead of a bunch of hoppy beers Lost Shoe features a whole range of styles, with a focus on lagers, Belgian styles and stouts brewed with their own coffee. I grabbed a flight and then grabbed some cans to go. My flight featured a Dunkel, a triple, a coffee stout, and a NEIPA, really showcasing the variety, and I enjoyed all of the beers. My favorite was probably the Size 8 tripel, which was very smooth for a big beer and had a nice balance of malt flavor, expressive abbey-style yeast character and a touch of hops. They had most of the available draft styles also available to-go in cans (although they were out of the tripel), and everything could be purchased as 4-packs or singles. I grabbed some of everything, look for some in-depth reviews of a couple of the beers next week!
Overall, with a welcoming atmosphere, lots of quality options and a comfortable space Lost Shoe is just what you want in a neighborhood brewery. I highly recommend stopping by if you are in the area, especially if you are looking for a wide variety of interesting beer styles. I know that the next time I need an oil change I’ll try to pull the same trick, I might even volunteer to take my wife’s car in for her next service!