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Tag: Review of Beer

Birreria - A New York City Beer Garden Review

 

BIRRERIA and the Gang Aft Agley

 
Beer Review Birreria

  • Fifth Avenue & 23rd Street, New York City
  • On top of Super Chef Mario Batali’s Eataly

 
Instead of reviewing just one beer, this week the Thirsty Thursday Beer Review will focus on a New York City beer garden. A must see hot spot for locals and tourists in my books.

BIRRERIA is a modern take on an old world Italian craft brewery and beer garden located atop a Manhattan office building. With a retractable roof this beauty of a place is ready for action year round; come rain or shine, winter or summer.

Although I prefer the summer months as BIRRERIA boasts beautiful views of both the Empire State Building and Madison Square Park. The winter months offer some beautiful indoor scenery if you catch my drift.

Aside from one of the best selections of beer in the city Birreria offers a wide variety of Italian food but I’ll refrain from comment as I have yet to sample any of the dishes. I’m guessing the food doesn’t stray far from Mario Batali’s Eataly which is located on the ground floor and offers some great varieties. Each section of the Italian style market restaurant offers a different taste- I might be mistaken but I think it goes Pizza and Pasta, Meat and Cheese, and Vegetables and Bakery.

Apparently the opening of the restaurant was delayed several months as they had trouble getting the large copper clad brewing system up 14 floors. A crane eventually came to the rescue and got the job done.

A relatively new addition to the NYC craft brew scene, Birreria and the Eataly were inspired by the best of Italy and America. Brewers Teo Musso of Baladin and Lurisia, Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head and Leornardo di Vicenzo of Del Borgo put their knowledge together along with Eataly’s very own brewmaster Brooks Carretta to create three exclusive cask ales only available at the beer garden.
 

What is Cask Ale?

 
Thirsty Thursday Beer Review BirreriaIt is my understanding that Cask Ale is much like someone would make as a home brew (if you didn’t use bottles that is). It is beer served from the same cask in which it was conditioned. The beer is naturally carbonated, unfiltered, and served at a traditional cellar room temperature of 50 – 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

According to the Eataly Website here are the details to the House Brewed Ales:

RUBY
An American Amber wheat brewed with dried fig and mustard seed.

WANDA
Chestnut mild ale. Chestnuts are a unique brewing ingredient in Italy. Eataly Birreria’s Wanda is a moderate dark traditional mild ale with hints of roasted chestnuts.

GINA
Thyme Pale Ale. A traditional American Pale Ale with fresh thyme from the hills of Borgorose, Italy. A twist on a classic.
 

Beer Prices

 
The house cask beers are reasonably priced for a New York pub at $10, and the draft choices range from $6-10. On the high end there are a few imported bottles that range from $6-40. Some of the bottles serve 2-3 people but I think I still might need to try a couple on my next visit.
 

Beer I had: Gang Aft Agley

 
This time around I couldn’t stay long (probably a good thing) as I was off to meet friends at another local hot spot and only had time to sample one beer. Seeing as how I recently wrote about Scottish Ales I decided to give another a try and went with the Gang Aft Agley from Sly Fox Brewing Company.

According to the Sly Fox website the beer is described as,

“A Scottish Wee Heavy brewed with roasted barley and pale malts. A full-bodied malt lover’s dream beer: mellow, rich and filled with flavor. Gang aft agley translates “go oft astray,” as in Robert Burn’s famous line about “the best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men…””

Birreria Beer ReviewMaybe it’s the lights… maybe the energy, but there is something about being in New York City that makes beer taste better. I really enjoyed this beer and as I alluded to in last weeks beer blog- I am growing fond of the malt brew.

If you have not yet visited the big city- do so. And while you’re here do not let the tall buildings and shiny lights distract you from giving Birreria a try.

I Look forward to trying other Micro Brews in and around the city but will surely keep this gem as one of my go to establishments. If you know of any other hot spots with local micro brews, by all means let me know!

Cheers,

Jon

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

Thirsty Thursdays: A Beer Review.

Bet I can guess what you are thinking- these guys are going to start writing beer reviews so that they can drink them. You know what? You’re right!

With the recent surge of craft beer and microbreweries across North America we want to share with you our passion and personal opinion on the many beers out there. The weekly review will encourage you to get out of your comfort zone and try something new. Hopefully you’ll be more adventurous when it comes to making beer choices. The “winos” can’t have all the fun.

Last night Sean and I hit up a local restaurant walking distance from his apartment. The resto of choice was made thanks to Sean’s Entertainment book which gave us $16 off the bill (highly recommend grabbing one of these booklets if you don’t have it already).

Before sitting down we were scoping out what beers they had on tap. As the waitress guided us through the list of the usual Canadian suspects she finished with the special of the night- “Keith’s Ambrosia Blonde”. It was a very reasonable $4.50 for a pint of beer. A steal of a deal in terms of Vancouver’s inflated beer prices. We had to give it a try.

Keith’s Ambrosia Blonde is brewed by Alexander Keith’s. The brewery was founded in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1820. It has been producing beer in Canada for over two centuries and only recently made the jump across the border into the United States. Operated by Labatt, a subsidiary of Anheuser Busch-Inbev, Keith’s brand is produced throughout Canada. It is best known for it’s India Pale Ale but also has dark, light, amber and premium white varieties.

The Keith’s Ambrosia Blonde is one of the their seasonal brews. The brew-master refers to the beer as a deep gold and medium body brew which delivers captivating aroma, a distinct flavorful taste, slightly hoppy and hint of caramel, aged longer for a crisp finish that is perfect for warmer days. The Ambrosia Blonde taps out at 5.2% alcohol by vol.

Our initial reaction of this all malt brew was that it was much darker than your typical blonde. The beer had a full head which tried to hang around for a little while but eventually ran out of steam and faded away. There was no visible carbonation, but as Sean postulated, it might have been because they were serving us the bottom of the keg and the very reason behind the beer being on special. As I stared at Sean’s ugly mug through the pint I noted the clarity and golden color with a slight reddish tinge, which can most likely be attributed to the hint of caramel.

The verdict:

The Ambrosia attempted to keep a microbrew feel and taste. I was reminded of the Scottish beer Tennant’s I used to drink while playing hockey over there, which wouldn’t be too far off as the company’s roots come from Scotland. Keeping with the Keith’s novelty the Ambrosia Blonde offered a hint of hops without any bitterness. It was a crisp and dry finish.

As a rookie beer connoisseur this beer was tasty but easily forgotten.

If you have access to this brew-masters special in your home town, don’t just take my word for it- give it a try and see for yourself.

Stay thirsty,

Jon

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

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