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Mugs Alehouse

Not Rated.
Mugs AlehouseMugs Alehouse

127 Ratings
Ratings: 127
Reviews: 112
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: n/a
Taps: 31
Bottles: --
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

125 Bedford Ave
Brooklyn, New York, 11211-2277
United States
phone: (718) 486-8232

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Place added by: BeerAdvocate

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Ratings: 127 | Reviews: 112 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of MojoPin
4.58/5  rDev +8.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Just around the corner from the Brooklyn Brewery, Mugs is a must-visit if you're in the neighborhood. The crowd on Friday at 6:00 consisted mainly of roudy, granted, young business types, but I didn't feel out-of-place in my usual jeans, tee shirt and five-day shadow. The jukebox is well stocked with good music and the bar with great, well-priced beer. My only regrets are indulging in a draft Rogue Imperial Stout (too quickly) before eating; and not getting the bartender's name.

As for the quality of service, the bartender was knowledgeable and caring, and glad to help me along in my selections. He didn't even act irritated when I spilled my Blue Point Oatmeal Stout along the bar and wouldn't accept payment for a refill either. And the servers were all cute Brooklynite girls, which is always nice.

Mugs Alehouse exemplifies what a bar should be and its service, selection and price are what most bars lack. It will be my pleasure to return to Mugs, and the sooner, the better.

Photo of Loki
4.65/5  rDev +9.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Went with five other family and friends after the happy hour at Brooklyn Brewery on our way back to Manhatten.

Atmosphere: Undeniably beer. Breweriana cover nearly every inch of walls. Chalkboards with the draft selection are promently displayed in the front and back. The crowd was lively and seemed friendly. I got a few strange looks, but I did walk into the bar carring a case of Brooklyn Monster, so it was understandable and quite funny.

Quality: First rate. The fact that they have vintage beer and very, very reasonable prices was incredible. First rate draft beers as well, with the majority being imports.

Service: The service was good, prompt, and we came in when they were busy and found a table that was clearing out for us to eat and drink at. Didn't have any service issues or any fantastic efforts. Very solid, with no complaints.

Selection: The selection was incredible as well. They might not have the most beers you've ever seen, but I've never seen so many vintage beers on a menu.

Food: Quite good, if not exceptional for a bar. The calamari was excellent. We had rounds of appetizers and all had meals. Everything was great without any complaints. I would go there just for the food, but you don't have too.

Great place, one of the best bars I've ever been to and I would frequent again and again.

Photo of Imbiber
4.08/5  rDev -3.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Mugs is one of the best in New York City for range and value. About 30 taps dispense all sorts of good brews, mainly domestic for some reason (presumably so prices can be kept low), and the bottle selection is very impressive. There are also two beer engines which saw little use a couple of years ago, but now at least one of them usually has a cask connected to it. 20oz imperial pints, which are standard there, cost the same or even less than their 16oz counterparts in other bars locally.

Located on a corner, there are two sizeable rooms - the front bar with lots of breweriana hanging up, and the back room for dining. There's also a back yard with various giant beer brand logos painted on the wall - very professionally painted but at least two of them have glaring spelling mistakes!

Service is generally good, but one bartender lets the show down badly by not having the slightest clue how to pull a cask beer properly; recently my pint was about 60% liquid and 40% head (no exaggeration) and I was compelled to ask for a top-up - which he begrudgingly did only up to about the 75% liquid level; the beer tasted battered and bruised anyway as it had lost too much natural conditioning on its rough and tumble journey from the cask to the glass. Frantically yanking the handle of the beer engine back and forth with the spout immersed in the beer (which rapidly turns to foam by the suction and agitation) is not quite the way to do it!

Anyway, on the plus side, this is a favourite bar for beer lovers in the City; the second Wednesday of each month sees the Malted Barley Appreciation Society assemble there in the evening.

Photo of Quaffer
4.9/5  rDev +15.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Last visited in September of 2005.

Mug's Ale House is my kind of bar. A great, traditional beer bar that I could see myself wasting large portions of my life in.

Mug's is a classic, beer bar with a wonderful old pub feel. The more, old dark wood, the better in my book. I love this kind of old place, many of which seem to be sprikled liberally throughout the NYC area. Wichita is chock full of newly built bars (with crappy beer selections, I might add) that attempt to be trendy and hip. God, it's awful. They don't have a clue. Anyway, stay focused . . .

The beer slection is simply wonderful. I would have to make many, many trips to Mug's to even put a dent in the selection that they seemed to offer. And it wasn't just the numbers, the quality of brews that they carried was just as amazing. Lots of little gems tucked away, including a good number of vintage beers. Just wonderful.

The service was solid and the bartender spoke to us a lot about the beers, his opinions and favorites, etc. We really enjoyed talking with him and the samples that he gave us.

Overall, one of my favorites in NYC.

Photo of Todd
4.6/5  rDev +8.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I'll start by saying that the selection of beer at Mug's is great, carrying more than enough draft and bottle beers to seduce even the pickiest of beer geeks. From locals, to domestic and foreign imports, to specials, to vintage beers. And, to boot, the beers are insanely cheap! Most of the bigger, special beers were only $3.75 for a 20oz pint! Others even dipped under $3 ... that's crazy ass insane, of course, in a good way. Every beer that I had was poured well and fresh.

Now pair this with a dark wood traditional pub look, full of nooks and crannies (front bar room, with a rear dining area), a pretty decent jukebox, a solid menu of reasonably priced pub grub, friendly staff and a bartender with beer knowledge? C'mon ... this place has got to be one of the best deals in the NYC/Brooklyn area!

Mug's. I loved Mug's Ale House. What's not to love? If I lived in the area this would no doubt be my local drinking hole.

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.78/5  rDev +13%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

First stop on Saturday 11/15/03 for the BA NYC Rally was the Brooklyn Brewery. Afterwards, we took a short wonder through the industrial architecture of the nearby side streets and headed for Mug’s Ale House.

A brick built corner street boozer, just stop to take a look at the outside before you step in, the second floor has some particularly interesting features. Inside it gets better, a veritable treasure chest of Victoriana inter-mixed with selective Breweriana. The inside roof of the front room Bar is quite exceptional, make sure to have a look. The Bar runs down your left, dark woods shine with the many taps that are always being flipped when serving the draft beers, whilst fridges behind keep the excellent range of bottled beers at bay. There were around 30 Taps sporting an excellent selection of styles, myself and Gentleman BA yen157 opted for Pints of the Brooklyn Saison. I spied at least one Handpump, but the bottled range is awesome and all listed in a colorful printed menu (artwork by BA SaltyDog!!) – this does mean that the availability of beers on this list can alter though – but that’s life! Lots of aged English and Belgium Bottled Classics, but my eyes were drawn a 75cl bottle of Drie Fonteinen Geuze that BA SaltyDog was drooling over. A superb range, probably unparallel for a long time, but maybe only challenged now by the recently opened Spuyten Duyvil.

I actually had some food here, but I retired to the L-shaped back room to get one of the booth tables set around the edges of the back room. It looked liked there was a back door that opened into a small outdoor area but it was November and f**king cold so I never checked. I opted for the Potato Skins, and although they were clearly busy with serving the hoards of BA’s, the food was pretty quick and the Waitress very courteous. The Skins were well cooked and accompanied by plenty of flavorsome dips.

But the real charm of Mug’s, for me, was the front room bar. It reminded me of many working class Pubs that I frequented in the industrial areas of Manchester and Liverpool in the UK, which are dear favorites. A real ‘Down to Earth’ feel and very welcoming with a warm cozy feel that relaxes you as soon as you walk in. The beer range takes this one step further and gives you very little excuses to leave. The BA NYC Rally was a machine that had to maintain a schedule though, so we left after a couple of hours.

I will surely be back here, maybe for the whole afternoon next time!!!!

*Highly* Recommended

Photo of PopeJonPaul
4.53/5  rDev +7.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

I started going to Mugs when I first moved to Brooklyn 2 years ago (walked in at random after a stop off at the Brooklyn Brewery.) I now meet my friends there at least twice a month, it's the regular stop after an early evening at the Brewery.

Their beer selection is fantastic, and the prices are sometimes so low I can't believe it - I think I paid less than $5 for a tall Aventinus on tap last time I was there. Yes, Aventinus on tap! The bottle selection is great, they have about 30 taps of quality beer and they rotate a few of them with some regularity. They have a great pub atmosphere, even a pinball machine in the corner. The food is better-than-average pub food, I've primarily stuck to the hamburgers and appettizers (wings, nachos, etc.) though they do have entrees, but nothing special. Great bar service (though you better know what you want when you're at the bar), good table service. I'd be going there even more frequently if my subway ride home to Prospect Heights wasn't so awful. Don't miss this place if you're visiting Brooklyn!

Photo of wbthink
4.78/5  rDev +13%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I've been going to Mugs for over nine years now. Mugs has evolved into a more beer mature place since its inception. It is so easy to get to from most anywhere in NYC, even for those Manhattanite's afraid to go to Brooklyn. They have great beer memorabilia, wood decor, big front bar area, nice dining area, and a beer garden. Mugs has lot going for it. The staff is curteous, beer selection and price terrific, and the food selections are numerous.
I like the great beer list with old those vintage beers! Mugs hosts the Malted Barley Appreciation Society's homebrew club meetings every second Wednesday on each month, with guest speakers and sample beers. Mugs also hosts the annual Split Thy Brooklyn Skull barleywine fest, usually in February or March. A fun place to drink many a beer!

Photo of saltydog
4.72/5  rDev +11.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Mugs has a very good draft selection, with great prices, and the probably the best bottle selection in NYC, including some great vintage beers. They've been doing a great job in Brooklyn for over 10 years, long before Williamsburg became a meca of beer bars. They also serve as the home base for a homebrew club, the Malted Barley Appreciation Society, which meets there every second Wednesday of the month. They also have a barleywine festival every winter. It has become a real beer geek institution.

Photo of ManekiNeko
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I went to Mug's for dinner and a beer or two on a nice lazy Sunday night while visiting NYC on business. This is a nice little bar/restaurant. The place is chock full of breweriana, mostly for local stuff. The beer list is quite extensive, although they were out of all the vintage ales (and I was hoping to have a Thomas Hardy... grr..). The list is pretty heavy on the barleywines, and I see on their website that they hold a Barleywine fest every year.

The service was pretty good. When I ordered a Thomas Hardy and was then told about the lack of vintage beers, I then ordered a Hercule stout. I think they were out of that, too, as the waitress came back with a bottle of Le Coq's Imperial Double Extra Stout, saying it was similar to the first one I ordered.

The atmosphere is nice and relaxed. I give them bonus points for the music selection I heard during my stay. I think I heard Wilco and I definitely heard some Lyle Lovett (something from Joshua Judges Ruth). The other songs were nice non-top 40 music.

The food I had (mussels appetizer, portabello sandwich) was quite nice. The fries were pretty tasty. The menu is standard pub fare, and they make a good nod to the vegetarians.

Photo of bostonstoutman
4.78/5  rDev +13%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

OH Yeah! got off a long miserable day of work in miserable hot Manhattan. I met my buddy in Union Square, took a 7 minute train ride to Bedford Ave in Brooklyn. Man, Brooklyn is so much nicer than Manhattan. This Bar is fantastic, so much beer I couldnt stop smiling. I began my evening with a beautiful and delicious 20 oz Aventinus on draught, 4 bucks, such a steal. We sat in the back room and ordered some mussels, They were delicious but a few were full of sand, chewing on sand not the most pleasant sensation, better wash it down with more beer. Our waitress was great, she got extra points from me cause she went to my school. We were walking out to leave, but then two things happened. Stevie Wonder's "Boogie on Reggae Woman" came on the jukebox, and I simultaneously looked over to the bar and reconsidered the vast quantity of beer at this place. I couldnt leave just yet. I ordered up a pint of Arrogant Bastard, wow I just love that beer. My buddy went all out though, he ordered a 1997 vintage Sierra Bigfoot for 8 bucks. I got all excited but that punk only gave me 2 sips, I can't blame him though, I must admit I probably wouldnt want to share too much of that. Overall, my favorite bar in New York. It being in Brooklyn is an advantage in my opinion. It is so close to manhattan, and so much more pleasant, that I'd much rather spend an evening of Inebriation in this fair borough than in any other. Definitely make Mug's a priority when pub crawling New York.

Photo of Running4beer
4.72/5  rDev +11.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

This was one of the stops for the 4/5 BA gathering, which was a great time. It looked like a hole in the wall pub from far, but make no mistake this is no hole in the wall. When we got in we took the back half of the place put a couple tables together and sat back to relax and enjoy good beer.

The atmosphere there was cool, its a relaxing place the staff was polite and friendly and the people that go there go to enjoy quality beer. To my luck they had Arrogant Bastard and it was what I had expected. There was beer, more beer and more beer. 30 Taps, tons of bottled beer from all around and a good selection of vintage. The food was pretty good all I had was appetizers so I can't comment on main course meals. Service was good we had a waitress bringing our drinks for part of the night and when I did go to the bar to buy drinks I didn't have to wait long at all. Prices must have been good cause there was still a good amount of cash in my pocket when I left. This was a cool enviornment and a place I will definetly check out again. I recommend you to check it out if ever in Brooklyn. Oh and walking distance is the Brooklyn Brewery check that too.

Photo of nomad
4.78/5  rDev +13%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Great little neighborhood and right off the L stop at Bedford. Very conveniently located right next to the Brooklyn Brewery - which helps in that they get all their special casks and Brewmaster's Reserves. Great tap selection, all high quality, and their bottle selection is very cool. They specialize in aged bottles, like J.W. from '87, or aged Lambics and British brews. My lady friend, who spent half a year in Oxford, says this bar, out of all the ones she's seen in NYC, reminds her the most of a British pub. Great seating, includes a nice little outside area out back, with a back wall that has beer logos painted on it. Quite nice on a sunny day. Over all, a great place, especially because almost all 20 draught beers are 20 oz. for $3.75 - very hard to beat that anywhere in the city. So far my favorite bar in the five boroughs, over dba, blind tiger, copperfields, etc (though I love those as well in their own ways). Nice neighborhood creates a nice crowd, too.

Photo of slander
4.63/5  rDev +9.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

The first time I was there was when my company did my going away party when I transferred out of Brooklyn back in '99 (don't worry, I'm back). My DVP commented to me that only I could have found a place so diverse. It was a melting pot of the Brooklyn populas.
I now frequent Mug's as my after-brewery bar on Friday nights. The tap selection is always wonderful. Currently there are 4 Anchors and 6 Brooklyns (including the Triple) on. They've always got a Weisse, they've always got a Wit. And the floaters vary from the Liefman's Goudenband to the Dogfish Head Chicory Stout to the Storm King Imperial Stout. What's that?? Cask? Sure, they've got a cask or two running. Tonight, it was some very nice English porter. 20 ounce beers for under $4 a clip? Can't beat that with a stick. And be sure to have a looksie at the bottled beer list that includes some crazy vintage stuff at great prices (a 9 year old Sierra Nevada bigfoot anyone?)
And grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrreat food, too. Always a good bowl of soup and an excellent pasta to be had there or I could just as easily go for the bacon cheddar burger and fries. They've got a good jukebox and bartenders who know their beer. Can't wait for that Split Thy Skull event on the 23rd.

Photo of Denali
4.7/5  rDev +11.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Small, low key, laid back, casual, cozy bar. Dress code is not an issue. Doesn't look like much from the outside, but don't let that stop you from going inside. Once inside, I was immediately struck by the multitude of Anchor banners hanging from throughout the bar (it's like "Anchor East"). Extremely friendly and sociable crowd. Seems like a popular place. A lot of people migrated to this bar from Brooklyn Brewery once they were closed.

There are tables and seats at the bar. Good jukebox too. Since they serve food, there is waiter/waitress service at the tables. The bartenders were very friendly and I didn't have to wait long to be served. Beer was served in the appropriate glassware.

The selection included micros and imports (25+ drafts, many bottles). The draught selections mostly matched what they had listed on their website. On tap I had Storm King, Brooklyn Triple, and Southampton Toasted Lager. They also have a cask beer available (I didn't get a chance to try the cask Porter but others who had it enjoyed it a lot). Beers were served at good temperatures as well. They had a lot of Brooklyn Brewery beers, although Anchor seems to be their "home beer away from home", since their first four taps were all Anchor (Steam, Liberty, Porter, and Foghorn).

Getting there is also easy (3 blocks from Bedford Ave Station on L. train).

I had a really good time here and enjoyed some fine beer. I look forward to coming back again.

Photo of yen157
4.53/5  rDev +7.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Looks like it was a college bar in another life. It was smelly and sporty, but that just added to its charm. Incredible draft and bottle selection. There were about 30 beers on tap and who knows how many in the bottle. The bottled beer list features a good number of vintage ales, (barley wines, thomas hardey's, etc) and great representation from around the world. It's location is a bit out of the way (Brooklyn) but perfect if you're heading out to the Brooklyn Brewery for a tour and a pint.

Photo of jrancan
4.95/5  rDev +17%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

IMO this is the best bar in New York. Let's start with the selection. Around 30 on tap and another 50 or so in bottles (including vintage ales). Most beers are served in 20oz pints, and most of those are just $3.50 (Anchor Liberty, all Brooklyn's, Sierra Nevada Pale, etc.). Had Schneider Hefe which was $4.25 for 20oz!!! I haven't seen these prices anywhere, especially NY. My girlfriend had a few Lindeman's at $4.00 for 10oz. The bartender, Mike, gave us many free tastes and also bought us a round of Ayinger's........very nice gesture. Only had the nacho's, but even they were fantastic (maybe that's the Brooklyn Monster talking). I rank this number 1, slightly ahead of The Blind Tiger and d.b.a. Don't let the Brooklyn address fool you, it's only about 10 minutes from Union Square in Manhattan. I will be going back every chance I get.

Mugs Alehouse in Brooklyn, NY
94 out of 100 based on 127 ratings.