BIG news, folks… The Hops Honey has been published!!!!
I recently wrote an article for a kick ass new magazine – Philly Beer Scene - on the beer scene here in NYC. The idea was to highlight great bars for beer in the city for Philly connoisseurs who might be inclined to take a day or weekend trip up to NY.
So, without further ado, I present to you… the first article published by yours truly!
Exploring the Beer Bars of New York City
While craft beer may not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of NYC, the city’s craft beer presence is growing and makes for a quick and easy weekend trip out of Philly. Whether you choose to hit the road or ride the rails, an hour and a half north you’ll find a city full of great beer bars waiting. If you’re arriving by train into Penn Station, your first stop is just a few blocks east where you’ll find two fabulous craft beer bars located just three blocks apart. The Ginger Man, on East 36th St. is an upscale bar with an old school feel that features an incredible 70 beers on tap as well as 160 bottles! With high ceilings, dark wood, old bank-style lamps on the bar and a cozy nook in the back with couches, sitting down to a beer here is truly a pleasure. Stroll three blocks south to East 33rd and you’ll find the phenomenon that is Rattle’n'Hum Bar. With 40 craft beers on tap, a separate cask bar in the back, an extensive bottle list spanning the country and globe and regular brewery nights, Rattle’n'Hum is a pint of beer heaven. The impressive tap list, recently featured The Bruery‘s Two Turtle Doves, Pretty Things’ Babayaga, 21st Amendment‘s Monk’s Blood and the Stone-BrewDog collaborative beer, Bashah!
The other wonderland neighborhood for the craft beer scene in Manhattan is the West Village. Hop a train down to West 4th St. and get ready for a mini pub-crawl. Start out at Amity Hall, the neighborhood’s newest addition to the scene. This gorgeous two-story beer hall has 20 fixed taps (featuring 7 local brews), 20 rotating taps, a full food menu and plenty of room to spread out and catch a game while sampling some great beer. From Amity Hall, head west on West 3rd and hang a left on McDougal. Just about half a block down on your left, if you don’t slip right past it, you’ll find a black door for the 124 Rabbit Club, a speakeasy style, subterranean, candle-lit bar with an impressive list and a sometimes romantic, sometimes clandestine vibe. At this bar the focus is on bottles, with only a small selection on tap, but the staff is well informed and able to offer suggestions on navigating the bottle list. When you again emerge into the sunlight and are in need of some sustenance, look across the street and just to the right for the telltale brown awning of Mamoun’s, and the best $2.50 falafel in the city! Just NW on West 4th between McDougal & 6th Ave, through a big red door you’ll find Vol de Nuit. This cozy Belgian beer hall has a wonderful enclosed courtyard and serves up, in addition to their 8 taps and 30+ bottles, spectacular mussels and fries with a variety of delicious dipping sauces.
For your last stop, wander over to the corner of Bleecker and Jones where you’ll find the legendary Blind Tiger Ale House: 28 beers on tap, 2 casks, 1 gravity, 50+ bottled beers, vintage beers, a fireplace in the winter or windows open to the street in the summer and a food menu that brings in even the non-beer-drinkers, all combine to make the Blind Tiger one of New York’s favorite craft beer destinations. As if all that wasn’t enough, on most Wednesdays they have events featuring breweries from near and far. In the past year they’ve hosted nights for Elysian, Kuhnehnn, Blue Point, Ommegang, Troegs, Dogfish Head, Sierra Nevada, Allagash, BrewDog and Speakeasy! No matter the day or time, walking into the Blind Tiger is like waking up Christmas morning… you never know exactly what you’re going to find under the tree (or on the board), but you know you’re going to be excited about it!
These are only some of the worthy craft beer bars in Manhattan, so be sure to do a search for other pubs such as The Pony Bar, Valhalla, D.B.A. and Manchester Pub, depending on which other parts of the city you plan to visit on your weekend beer getaway!