With craft-beer bars proliferating these days, only a blockbuster like Eataly’s rooftop brewpub could stir you from your IPA-induced stupor. While other newcomers fostered loyal regulars, La Birreria has been a destination drinkery since Day One, practically demanding a pilgrimage to its lofty perch to worship at the altar of Italian brewing. Finally, Gotham’s brewhounds had a direct line to one of the world’s most exciting new beer regions: an unprecedented stash of beers from the Boot, as well as innovative house-made ales reflecting trends on both sides of the Atlantic. You guzzled them all with accomplished rustic eats (fat probusto sausages, fennel-laced quail, gorgeous salumi) that were as satisfying 15 stories high as they would be at a taverna in the Italian alps. 200 Fifth Ave at 23rd St (212-937-8910, eatalyny.com/eat/birreria)
Sons of Essex
Fans of boozy brunch will want to try outSons of Essex. It has a speakeasy vibe, thanks to the deli counter out front: skip the sandwich and walk right by to enter the bar and restaurant. The brunch menu offers comfort food mashups like Cap’n Crunch–crusted challah french toast ($15) and lobster benedict ($21) alongside carafes of mimosas, bellinis and bloody mary’s (all $25). Consider adding a side of the truffle mac and cheese ($16), a fan favorite from the dinner menu. Other evening entrees include a mushroom pizza ($18), braised short ribs ($30) and fried chicken brined in sweet tea ($29). To drink, there’s a wide variety of signature cocktails, plus wine and spirits by the glass or bottle. Whether you come for breakfast, dinner or drinks, you’ll notice the party atmosphere—a DJ always seems to be spinning hip-hop jams from the ‘90s and early ‘00s.
Venue says: “Thursday April 27th - 5 Years Strong. Join us for a night of music by Rick Wonder starting at 7pm!”