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The Best Breweries to Visit This Fall in New York City

By: Sarah Saxty

Beer has a new identity. Its cans and bottles now look more like a cool piece of art you might see in a buzzy cafe. Its golden liquid is often made from organic and locally grown ingredients, and it tastes nothing like the Pabst or Bud Light you might have come to love, or hate.

The craft brewery movement is a global phenomenon, and with these crafty newly designed, sustainably-made beers, come a slew of makers opening their doors as tasting rooms and creating a new kind of bar experience. This is no stinky, loud, cheap-beer-spilling-over-the-floor kind of bar guide—this is the “craft beer” “cool design” “hipster crew” “beer garden” brewery guide where you’ll find big, bright, open industrial spaces and delicious foods, new friends, and, of course, great beer.

The Best Breweries to Visit on a Date

Brooklyn Brewery
79 N 11th Street, Brooklyn

A pioneer in the craft movement here in New York, Brooklyn Brewery is even a stop on the Williamsburg tourist route these days. That doesn’t make it any less cool – just a bit busier – so make sure you plan your visit in advance and mentally prepare for tourists and a bit of a wait. At BB, you can get a full tour of the brewery and learn more about how they make their beer. After the tour, grab a stool in the large open space and enjoy an ice cold, freshly brewed lager.

Credit: Brooklyn Brewery, Facebook
Other Half Brewing
195 Centre Street, Brooklyn

Other Half Brewing was launched in 2014 by Sam Richardson, Matt Monahan, and Andrew Burman to “create beers that they wanted to drink from a company that they wanted to be a part of.” Their taproom in Brooklyn features a rotating taplist, merch, growlers and a calendar of special events to celebrate their new can releases. Their designs are some of the best, and have subsequently built quite the fanbase – think Supreme-style hype for their new and limited releases. Not kidding.

Credit: Other Half Brewing
Grimm Artisanal Ale
990 Metropolitan Avenue, Brooklyn

The most modern and minimalist brewery you’ll ever see, Grimm Artisanal Ales looks more like the latest restaurant you just read about on Eater than a brewery. For five years, Joe and Lauren Grimm operated as a nomadic brewery out of the kitchen of their Gowanus apartment, finally opening their Williamsburg location in 2018. Filled with natural light and adorned with tropical plants, the taproom overlooks the small, but full brewing operation. To drink, there are draft beer lines, specialty sour beers, plus a selection of New York State wine and cider. The custom snack bar food menu is prepared by Samesa, offering tasty treats like chicken schwarma, pulled pork quesadillas and loads of salty bites just made for eating with beers.

Credit: Grimm Artisanal Ales
Rockaway Brewing Company
46-01 5th Street, Queens

Despite the name, this brewery is actually in Long Island City. But before that, the founders, Ethan and Marcus, were homebrewing beers in their own backyards in Far Rockaway (“mainly so they’d have something to sip on after a day of surfing”). That chilled environment came with them to LIC, and they welcome visitors with reggae music, and cold beverages all year long. The corner warehouse space is hard to miss covered in various street art, inside you’ll find a friendly casual space, with a simple bar, tastings, growlers and salty beer snacks.

Credit: Rockaway Brewing Company
Fifth Hammer Brewing
10-28 46th Avenue, Queens

At Fifth Hammer, you’ll find a bar and tasting room literally IN the brewery, surrounded by the working kegs and other beer-making apparatus. Offering a rotating tap list of the creative beers made on site, they also play host to a rotating selection of food trucks serving up all types of cuisines. Check the calendar online to see what culinary delights they have locked in – we have our eyes on the fried chicken by Yankee Doodle Dandy’s, and the Chinese dumplings by the Dumpling Wagon. On Wednesday nights, chill with the locals and a rotating crew of musicians, improvised grooves inspired entirely by the beers on draught and the people in the room.

Credit: Fifth Hammer Brewing Company

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Five Boroughs Brewing Co.
215 47th Street, Brooklyn

The Five Boroughs Brewing Co. team makes all of its beer in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, just a few steps from the subway stop. From Thursday to Sunday, you’re invited to join in on the fun at their taproom. Their beers are inspired by New York City, and are made for the people that live here – like their Instagram famous “Insufficient Fare,” a MetroCard-inspired Northeast Pale Ale. A big, bright, modern (and dog friendly) taproom with plenty of seating, board games, and special access to seasonal brews and limited batches. They don’t have a food menu, but they do offer a variety of menus to Seamless (or you can bring in your own meal). Now you have no reason to leave.

Credit: Five Boroughs Brewing Co.
The Bronx Brewery
856 E 136th Street, The Bronx

No Nonsense Ales. That’s what you’ll get at this Bronx-based microbrewery. The taproom is small and intimate, located in an industrial neighborhood with a taste of old New York, and its got plenty of no-nonsense character. Serving up a heavy rotation of solid beer choices, you’re invited to take a tour of the brewery just behind the bar, and in the warmer months, the backyard is open for drinking, cornhole and various events and live music.

Credit: The Bronx Brewery
Threes Brewing
333 Douglass Street, Brooklyn

Threes Brewing is a beautiful, open space including an inviting haven of a backyard with lots of seating and picnic style tables – plus a robust event calendar including things like music, pop quizzes, communal dinners and more. Although they’re best known for crafting approachable beers that “balance simplicity and complexity,” with a focus on lagers, hop-forward American ales, and mixed culture beers, it’s also not just beer that’s on offer; the bar menu includes wines and cocktails to reflect the breadth of their many drinking interests. Food and coffee are available thanks to their friends at The Meat Hook and Ninth Street Espresso.

Credit: Matt Furman for Threes Brewing
Kings County Brewers Collective
381 Troutman Street, Brooklyn

Located in Bushwick, KCBC is a newcomer to the NYC craft brew scene, but the trio behind the storefront is making fast tracks in the industry with their award-winning beers. At the taproom, you’ll find special brews not available anywhere else and casual pub-style food. The taproom and brewery are inside an old warehouse, with huge factory-style windows and high ceilings, plus plenty of seating and tables. Kings County was the first new brick-and-mortar brewery in Bushwick in over 40 years back when it was quite the beer-producing neighborhood known as Brewer’s Row.

Credit: Kings County Brewing Collective, Twitter
SingleCut Beersmiths
19-33 37th Street, Queens

SingleCut Beersmiths was founded by Queens Rich Buceta, whose “life-long passions led to a place where hops and vinyl could shine side by side.” The taproom is cozy, in traditional beer hall-style with wood-paneled walls, board games, kegs, guitars adorning the walls, and loads of vinyl, (spinning old-school classics, of course). There’s a great little snack menu with various pretzels and salty treats, and brunch on the weekends. Other events to look out for include game nights, comedy shows and live music.

Credit: SingleCut Beersmiths, Facebook

Tip for all of the Brooklyn-phobes out there: Manhattan’s first craft brewery, Torch and Crown Brewing Company, is set to open this fall!

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