Friday, April 13, 2012

Breukelen Bier Merchants – Craft Beer Store or Bar or Both?

Brooklyn is a hot bed of craft beer activity.  Everyone has heard of the popular Brooklyn Brewery and the up and coming Six Point Brewery.  What many people are not aware of is that this borough has spawned several of the best beer stores and bars in the Tristate area.

Some of these establishments are actually both beer store AND bar.  They routinely get the highest ratings on beer web sites by beer geeks and novices alike.  Breukelen Bier Merchants in the Williamsburg section has created a craft beer lovers heaven.  I was there recently with a friend and we were able to experience, first hand, what all the buzz is about. 
When I walked into this beer “store” my first impression was: “this would be a cool place to hang out”.   The comfortable tables and furniture, along with the board games and picnic tables in the back, made me feel like staying for a while.   They boast a bottle inventory 500 beers strong; any of which can be opened right there and consumed in the store.  Heaven you say, wait there’s more.
I could also choose from 16 draught beers from all over the country.  I chose a hefe weisse from Uinta Brewing Company (pronounced "winta") in Salt Lake City, Utah.  It was light and lemony; perfect for a spring day.  If I was hungry, I could have indulged in a pressed sandwich or cheese plate, but I was there for the beer.

We spent some time talking to one of the owners who said that they will be celebrating their one year anniversary next week with three days of activities and events.  She said, “We have been really well received by the neighborhood and our second year should be even better as the craft beer movement grows”.
Before we left, I had to fill up a growler to go.  Boulder Buffalo Gold is brewed in Colorado and at 4.5% ABV is a fantastic session beer. No, I didn’t sit down and kill the whole 64 oz right there in the store; though I imagine I would have been allowed to.  I took it home and split it with my wife over dinner.  This beer has one of the sweetest finishes I’ve experienced.  It tastes like it’s made with honey though I haven’t confirmed that yet.

So if you find yourself in Brooklyn, or anywhere in the city for that matter, get your butt down to the Bier Merchants and experience a little slice of heaven in New York.


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