The Judge's Bench Pub

  • Veg-options Veg-options
    ( 12 reviews )

8385 Main St (at Ellicott Mills Dr), Ellicott City, Maryland, USA, 21043

Serves meat, vegan options available. Neighborhood pub that added vegan items to its menu: vegan lentil burger, organic spaghetti and marinara with vegan croquettes, Tofurkey beer brats, vegan rice and bean burrito, and other vegan specials. A few other menu items are vegetarian suitable. Variety of craft beer, wine, and drinks. Live music nightly. Open Mon-Sun until 2am.

Categories: Vegan-friendly, Lacto, Ovo, American, Beer/Wine, Non-veg

12 Reviews

First Review by EEJ

great brews - Edit

Have only had beers here but they have all been great with an immense vegan friendly variety, good prices, and good service.

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great vegan bar food - Edit

Have been going here for years. Huge beer selection with a number of Gardein-based food offerings including the garden beef less burger and crispy tenders. Is usually crowded with a mix of hipster-types and local regulars. Service can be slow at busy times since all food is ordered at the bar.

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Fun casual pub - Edit

Great local pub with a nice craft beer and whisky selection. One update to previous reviews: They no longer have the hazelnut crusted Field Roast sandwich, which was amazing. It looks like the menu may change frequently, but there were several vegan items in October 2017: vegan "jammies" (chicken fingers) with BBQ/buffalo sauce, a Gardein veggie burger, vegan chicken wrap sandwich, and a couple others. The vegan items are very clearly marked on the menu.

Pros: Beer and whisky selection, Vegan pub fare, Friendly staff

Cons: No more hazelnut crusted Field Roast sandwich

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unexpected choices if friends are looking for pub food/ beer - Edit

Cool local place has vegan apps, vegan burger wraps you have to order food at bar, no servers, but everyone raved about food , vegan and non

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  Contributions +185

Good stuff - Edit

The menu identifies multiple food options as vegan. I tried the Fieldroast cutlet sandwich and was impressed. The pot-stickers are good but nothing special. Their BBQ tortilla crisps are likewise good but nothing special.

They have several good beers on tap, and will let you sample a few flavors before buying.

They have fooseball and big screen TV upstairs, and the Saturday evening we went, upstairs was empty.

The one drawback: the restroom is cramped and smelly.

Pros: several vegan options, Waitress was friendly, free foozeball and TV

Cons: restroom cramped

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Nice - Edit

This place is great, they have some delicious vegan bar food. Spicy black bean burrito, tofu sandwich and beyond meat sandwich. Make sure to catch their live music acts, so much fun!
There is also a second floor with a large TV and couches, you can definitely have a party or birthday celebration!

08/27 - they have recently added the Gardein burger to their menu with several toppings to choose from. Very delicious! They have "burger" nights, so this is a nice option to have.

Updated from previous review on Tuesday April 23, 2013

Pros: Vegan options, live music

Cons: food may be dry during late hrs

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Nothing special - Edit

Read the reviews and it seemed a good place to eat vegan and watch the big game. Made a special trip to try it out, not worth the time. Had the hummus but it was nothing special and the crispy pita chips were stale. The hot "wing" bites seemed previously frozen. Not especially friendly place unless you were a friend of the bartender. We left before the game even started because we didn't feel like the rest of the vegan options were worth hanging around for.

Pros: unique interior, Lots of tv's, extensive beverage selection

Cons: no warmth from staff or heaters, below average bar food, played music instead of football

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Good vegan options - Edit

Food: 8. As mentioned in earlier reviews, there are a handful of good vegan options. I really like the dijon tofu sandwich!

Prices: 8. Decently priced.

Atmosphere: 8. Saturday nights can get really crowded, and sometimes the live music is too loud for my likings, but otherwise it is a very charming place with a lot of history. And for geeks like me, the legends about it being haunted add to the fun!

Staff: 8. Pretty friendly and pretty efficient.

Pros: Good vegan options, Charming atmosphere, Decent prices

Cons: Could be even more vegan options

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Surprisingly Vegan Friendly! - Edit

My partner and I were visiting his sister, and she recommended her favorite bar for dinner. We were initially hesitant - we'd been there a few years before with no luck, but as she told us, the owner's daughter is vegan, and after some prodding, he's begun to offer vegan options.

I had the burrito, and my partner had the beer brat. The brat was nothing special - just a Tofurky brat with some toppings, but it was tasty nevertheless. The burrito was pretty spicy, but DELICIOUS. It was too spicy for him, but I really enjoyed it. Along with a great selection of beers (easily checkable on Barnivore), we were very satisfied with our meal.

We will definitely go here again when we visit his sister.

Pros: friendly staff, good value, tasty food

Cons: noisy

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great vegan burrito!! - Edit

This is a small bar in Ellicott City with lots of regular customers and football on at most times. But they have VEGAN food marked on the menu! The beers are great and constantly changing. The vegan burrito is seriously good.

Pros: inexpensive, MARKED VEGAN, comfy

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Great beer selection, poor veg food selection - Edit

This is an awesome bar to go to for anyone who wants a great beer cheap.

This is not a place you want to go to eat a meal as a vegan. They had 2 things on the menu when I was there, a 'house-made lentil burger', and a bean burrito.

Pros: good beer

Cons: bad selection of food

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Vegan additions make this vegan drink more - Edit

The Judge's Bench Pub is known for having a wide variety of craft beers - it is a beer aficinoado's dream bar. As someone who enjoys drinking a few strong beers (7 - 9% alcohol content is not atypical of some of the Bench's selections), it's important to also be able to eat while I'm drinking. The Judge's Bench has always had a few vegetarian items - like fries and salads - but not a whole lot of "stick to your ribs" dishes. In the past year or so they have added a number of specifically VEGAN items making it really easy for me to stay for another beer! I've tried the following dishes at the Judge's Bench: bean and rice burrito, lentil burger, spaghetti and marinara with vegan croquettes, hummus appetizer, veggie pizza ordered without cheese (unfortunately they haven't started using vegan cheese). I've also tried some specials that have usually only lasted a few weeks: vegan "crab" cakes and vegan sausage and mushroom quiche. It's good bar food that really hits the spot when you're having a few beers at happy hour!

If you stay through Happy Hour until 9, then you can hear live music any night. They even have an open mic night on Tuesdays. If you're not into live music, the second floor has foosball, a jukebox, HD TV, and lounge chairs - it's like hanging out in someone's living room.

Pros: Vegan bar food, Great beer selection, Relaxed atmosphere

2 Responses
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williamwj 22 Feb 2013 - I didn't see your review when I was composing mine, but when I went there the other day(late August), there were only two vegan items on the menu. The bean burritos and the lentil burger.

1) Did I just miss a bunch of things, or are the other vegan items you mentioned all specials?

2) Is their lentil burger any good? I have been many places and have never gotten a decent veggie burger from a restaurant, so I stopped trying them a while ago.  

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EEJ 22 Feb 2013 - Hi,

Thanks for asking. As it turns out, the Spaghetti dish (which is technically a special) had just run out when you were there. I think they have it back now... And the Tofurkey Beer Brat is just being added to the menu. I guess as a vegan who eats a lot of french fries b/c she goes to non-veg-friendly restaurants with friends, I consider 3 - 5 VEGAN items a lot! Sorry if my review misled you.

As for the vegan lentil burger, I like it! It is homemade and so it's pretty delicate - it's not a pre-fab veggie burger from the frozen food section, which is what I typically get at restaurants. I think it might not be chewy enough for some people (it isn't made with soy or seitan or anything), but I really like that it's just lentils, onions, and some other organic ingredients. If you go back and try it some time, let me know what you think!  

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