Eat & Drink

Grand Junction Hotel

Deep-dish pizzas, live music, and functions at The Junkyard

When it comes to historic, lovingly-refurbished pubs, Maitland delivers in spades. One of these pubs is known by many names – a sign of locals’ love for the 108-year-old boozer.

But no matter which moniker you prefer for the Grand Junction Hotel – The Junkyard, The Grandy, The Junky – there’s a place for you at this family-owned and operated watering hole.

grand junction hotel maitland

The Junkyard (my preferred nickname) has been on Maitland’s Church Street since 1916, and for the last thirty-five years, the pub has been run by the same family.

Being family-run certainly helps give The Junkyard its welcoming feel – you’ll find people of all ages there of a weekend. Managers Courtney Peters and Georgia Pursehouse love the diversity of the crowd they get at the pub.

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“I think that’s why people love coming here, because we can cater for absolutely anyone. If you’re wanting to come for a couple of chill beers and listen to some live music, you can come on a Sunday. If you want to come here to party, you head in on a Friday or Saturday night,” Courtney said.

Courtney uses the recent Steamfest weekend as an example – on Saturday night, hundreds of people partied in the beer garden, while the following afternoon, an older crowd hung out in the same spot listening to live tunes and enjoying lunch.

The Junkyard has always been popular for this very reason, but Courtney says that Covid-19 actually gave the pub a boost.

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“We were always a pretty busy pub, but Covid limited people being able to go out to Newcastle. Everyone started coming out in Maitland, and we were just getting smashed, and it hasn’t stopped since.”

So what keeps people coming back? For starters, all of the gigs and DJs The Junkyard is host to every week (and has been for many years), as well as comedians, and drag bingo nights. The pub is committed to supporting local talent, while also hosting bigger names when they stop in Maitland – past names have included Boo Seeka, Kim Churchill, CW Stoneking, and Kinder. 

grand junction hotel maitland

Another worthy reason to become a regular at The Junkyard? The food coming out of the kitchen at Ray’s Pizza Joint.

The Junkyard has been home to a few food offerings over the years, but Ray’s has stuck as a favourite. Led by chef Clint Eslick, Ray’s specialises in Detroit-style deep dish pizza – something no other kitchen in Maitland or Newcastle is offering.

grand junction hotel maitland
Grand Junction Hotel manager Courtney Peters and chef Clint Eslick

Think thick, fluffy pizza crust, with some of the wildest toppings you could dream up. We’re talking butter chicken on the Get It India (have fun ordering that one aloud), meatballs and burger sauce on The Big Snacc, and roast chicken and potatoes on the Chicken Dinner.

The classics make an appearance too, like pepperoni (featuring pickled chilli and oregano) on the Motown, and smoked leg ham and charred pineapple on the Hawaii 5-0. If you’re craving a pub feed, choose from dishes like the 400g rump steak, the Grand Caesar salad, or the cheeseburger.

grand junction hotel maitland

There’s also plenty of starters and snacks that are perfect for grazing on as you watch a band and have a chat. Expect juicy chicken wings, cauliflower nuggets, and Courtney’s favourite – fried pickles. Pickles may be controversial, but we can attest – Ray’s take is bloody delicious.

grand junction hotel maitland

And, as if the menu didn’t already sound enticing enough, Ray’s puts on specials every week, so you’ll always have something new to try – just check the Grand Junction’s Instagram or Facebook for the latest special.

While The Junkyard might be your regular haunt, it’s also your spot for special occasions too. Whether it’s for a birthday, an engagement party, or anything in between, the function space is super spacious, has its own bar, and can be made private. 

grand junction hotel maitland

Looking for your new go-to spot for a fun night out or a chilled Sunday afternoon? Open seven days a week, it’s always a good time to head to the Grand Junction Hotel.