The beer-cocktail trend has been simmering for years, but lately, we've spotted a surge of boundary-pushing quaffs that integrate hopped ingredients in innovative ways. The Tippler(425 W 15th St between Ninth and Tenth Aves, 212-206-0000) offers the boldest application in its Gin and Chronic (pictured, $11). Riffing on the classic two-ingredient highball, bartenders combine herbaceous Plymouth gin, pimento-dram--spiced lime juice, and a house-made tincture crafted from grain alcohol and a mixture of pelletized hops. A splash of tonic water and a whole-leaf hops garnish—an in-your-face touch—reinforce the nip's earthy profile. Barkeep Michael Klein, a fixture at PDT(113 St. Marks Pl between First Ave and Ave A, 212-614-0386), has also been dabbling in the bitter buds. For his Ace in the Hole ($15), he revises the classic Vesper cocktail: Employing an iSi canister (the same type of metal charger used for whipping cream), Klein forces the lemony flavor of Japanese Sorachi Ace hops into Purity Vodka, in a speedy process known as a nitrogen infusion. To the resulting elixir, he adds citrusy Lillet Blanc and Hitachino beer schnapps to give it a malty backbone. A more subtle deployment of hops can be found in the tiki-leaning R.M. Grog ($16) from Eben Freeman and Michael Longshore at Ai Fiori(400 Fifth Ave between 36th and 37th Sts, 212-613-8660). The barmen speckle their mix of rich Ron Zacapa Solera rum, raisiny Cocchi Vermouth di Torino, orgeat, ginger syrup and Meyer lemon juice with a constellation of fragrant grapefruit bitters—spiked with Bavarian hops—from the Bitter Truth. With other local watering holes, including Williamsburg bar-distillery hybrid the Shanty, also tinkering with suds-inspired potions, the next-wave beer-cocktail seems to be hitting its stride. Hops heads and spirits geeks never shared so much common ground.
The Kings Beer Hall
Suds lovers will want to swing by this international beer hall in Park Slope. Whether you live in the neighborhood or stop by after a Brooklyn Nets game at the nearby Barclay Center, you’ll surely find something you like on the menu of nearly 30 different beers. Old standbys like Krombacher Pilsner are listed alongside more unusual, seasonal finds like Harpoon Camp Wannamango. You can order several small beers to create your own tasting, or go all in with a larger size ($5 for 0.2 liter, $8 for a 0.5 liter, $15 for one liter, $20 for a boot and $65 for a five-liter stein). Some snacks might be nice—the jalapeno hush puppies ($7) or a beer-braised bratwurst ($6) ought to do the trick. If you need a full meal, order up some buffalo wings ($8) or a grass-fed burger ($12). Beer, bar snacks, jenga, pool tables—what more do you need?
Venue says: “CINCO DE MAYO AT THE KBH IN BROOKLYN! Tacos, Tequila & Beer Deals. Kick off your Fiesta with our Live Bands & a “Cerveza!"”