Ratings: 26 | Reviews: 20 | Display Reviews Only:
4.94/5 rDev +31%
This location is outstanding and extraordinary, with recipes by Dogfish Head. Every cask beer I had was grand and glorious. If anyone is rating it as some average spot for craft beer in nyc, I'd strongly disagree.
The cask beers were subtle, flavorful, unique and interesting in the good way, like peanuts and chocolate. These beers seem to be geared for pairings with the outstanding meats, cheeses, salads and sea food available there.
03-28-2013 20:52:01 | More by Ethanol4one
4.7/5 rDev +24.7%
Slander, who pushed through the market of crazy and came out clean the other side. Elevator, operator, me to the 14th and then a flight of stairs to the 15th floor; I feel like there should be clues along the way or I should be gobbling up fruit for bonus points or something. The reception desk and the brewings behind glass, and out, but in; the rooftop enclosed...
A white marble topped bar runs a length off to the left with seating for 18ish on non-backed Randy stools. Cask box of 3 on the bar and a 10 tap tower a few feet down. 8 short barrels on their sides holding wine selections tapped on the barback split 4 & 4, with slight tiered boozings in between. Glassware tucked in there, too, and shelved below and tucked barside, with stemmed stuff hanging above. Awning piece over the bar with mounted spots, and through the slight windows atop the barback, you can see the top of the Empire State Building in all her awesomeness.
Out on the floor, there are about 5 dozen 2 seat paper placematted tables in rows, many solo and pushed together in pairs and pairs of pairs, and ½ a dozen or so larger round tables here or there. Shared benchings along the perimeter, and I see a sea of red metal chairs. Large sign letter BIRRERIA on the building side, with their 3 collaborator (Baladin, Del Borgo and DogFishHead) logos below. Lino wood looking floorings, and glass walls and roof top; some of which retract somewhat. The rear windows slide open and the rooftop, too; starting with the center panel pushed with a long pole. Hot air for a cool breeze, traded.
Phil’s BBQ at 2, I am afforded some time for a few beers and am underway sampling before Sunday sales noon. 3 house cask beers on at a time. I’ve had at all of ‘em. ‘Gina’ (Thyme Pale Ale, fantastic, amazingly quaffable, a good thyme beer), ‘Ruby’ (American Wheat with dried fig & mustard seed, very nice), and a beer called ‘Wanda’ (Chestnut Mild, good roasted nuttiness). On return visits, I’ve also had ‘Nigella’ (a highly drinkable session IPA, excellent), ‘Barista’ (Robust Porter with Guatemalan coffee, tasty), and ‘Pina’ (Brown Ale with pine nuts and honey, does not suck). Their beers are really quite good. I don’t know about $10 a pint good, but they are well done. ABV’s ranging as low as 3.5% (Nigella) and as high as 7% (Barista).
In addition to the house cask beers, they’ve got 10 drafts; a good mix of regional American craft and import fun with offerings from all 3 collaborators. Across my visits, I’ve drank the Baladin Isaac (holy fucking coriander!), and the Grado Plato Strada San Felice (roasted chestnut lager, excellent), and have sampled the Del Borgo Genziana (a saison with Gentian root, really nice), the L’Olmaia Karkade (spring Ale with hibiscus, sour but not unpleasantly so), and the Loverbeer Madamin (Italian Flanders style sour brown seemingly more full on sour than an Oud Bruin). And nearly 30 bottled selection; 1/3 of them from the house collaborators, and the remaining 2/3 a mix of 2 to 1 American craft to import ratio, plus nearly a dozen wines.
We split the meat plate for 2 ($21), the winners being Cacciatorini (spicy), and Sopressata (garlic & black peppercorn goodness), and we ordered up 3 cheeses ($11), Asiago Fresco (winner), Robiola Bosina (solid), & Provolone Madarone (did not suck); all cow with a little sheep. It came served with a hazelnut & honey accompaniment of awesome. And lest we not forget the broccoli rabe ($5), which was goddamn stellar, just amazing garlic love there.
My subsequent revisits have been all about the pork shoulder (beer & apricot braised, served with a celery, cucumber, and persimmon slaw of sorts, and a mustard vinaigrette) for a mere $19. One of the most amazing foodings of my life. This pork shoulder literally melts; I could eat it with a spoon. I had to sit back and ‘holy shit’ for a moment there. Just stellar. Was dealt 3 slices of homemade spent grain bread with a small plate of olive oil. Menu absent is the broccoli rabe; as such I am forced to slum it with the carrots (baby ones, all honeyed up). They were solid, but I feel robbed of the rabe this day.
Brucetender again; he let me try a few things, has good opinions on what’s what, and just knows his game. Great food and drink here. Pricey, but just don’t care and then don’t. It’s Sunday, and I’ve got a warm happiness rolling over me, a pretty good day this be. The drink is a sizable contributor to be sure and I’m still trippin’ from that pork shoulder. Nice breeze and good tunes rooftop today, Lots of tourists, of course, but I do like. Just 2 hours in, the place is 2/3 full, tablewise. So know that the game here is to be on their doorstep at Sunday opening, get your snack and drink on, and get out before it fills in around you, which it will.
04-10-2012 17:31:12 | More by slander
4.29/5 rDev +13.8%
I really enjoyed this place - it was a great place to go for dinner and beer even on a very cold evening in April. The glass roof was closed but there was still a great view of the night sky and some of the close by building through it. There is also a great view of the top of the Empire State Building through the windows by the restrooms. The decor is quite pleasant and there is a slightly exciting buzz about the place.
Beers were well poured, served at proper temperature, and in proper glassware. Beers seemed very fresh and I definitely think they were high quality.
Both the service at the bar and once we had a table for very professional and courteous. Food and drinks were delivered quickly. I would recommend making reservations if you want to eat here on a weekend or are impatient (especially when the weather is really nice).
This place actually had a very nice beer listing including casks, taps, and bottles featuring a lot of very nice Italian beers as well as some NY locals and other American craft beers. Probably about 35 beers to choose from but they are not the same beers you find at most of the other places in the city.
The food was really enjoyable - I highly recommend the beer and apricot braised pork shoulder as it was very crispy on the outside and melt in your mouth (like a pork belly) on the inside.
Prices are a little high at this place but the food and beers are top notch and you are somewhat paying for the experience.
04-05-2013 15:00:01 | More by dbrauneis
4.25/5 rDev +12.7%
Here it is in the middle of January and I'm on a Manhattan roof top drinking brown cask ales with juicy lamb sandwiches. Covered by frosted glass awnings and heated by propane fired lamps, I normally would have not believed it was possible to put a brewery on a roof top. I could see this being great place for a date and/or a few beers with friends in the late Spring and Summer.
La Birreria captures the spirit of doing something different with imagination in NYC and deserves the attention of every beer geek to see this venue. It's not a temple to beer, nor does it have every bourbon barrel aged nuanced ale made by the latest brewers who Tweet every turn in the mash tun. Paired with exceptional kitchens below it, this outdoor place has broader appeal that needs to be experienced and not just reviewed.
For the beer, I saw a very tall bottle list with plenty of Dogfish Head things on it, but I wasn't drawn to it like I was with the casks that stood out on the edge of the bar. Having sampled the delightful brown ale and the funky thyme spiced wheat ale, I was convinced this place has the capacity to make great beers into the future.
01-11-2012 14:28:26 | More by bonbright7
4.15/5 rDev +10.1%
The idea of a rooftop brewery, a pub run by Mario Batali, and a collaboration between Dogfish Head, Birrifico Le Baladin and Birra del Borgo, are all amazing concepts in and of themselves. Combine them into one establishment, and it's sure to impress. Such is the nature of Eataly's Birreria, and it did not disappoint.
The actual brewery opened months ago, but I heard some bad things about service and wait times due to the seemingly infinite swarms of patrons (which, having been to Eataly's market around the holidays, doesn't shock me), so I waited until mid-August to finally give it a whirl. Plus, it took them a few weeks to get their own house-brewed beers on tap and it seemed silly to go to a brewery and not drink their own beer. Anyway, I was surprised to find that on a random Tuesday, the earliest reservation I could place was for 9:15PM, even when we placed it a week in advanced. However, upon arrival we were brought right upstairs and seated immediately, despite showing up 15 minutes early.
There is a small bottle shop outside the elevator where you could purchase Dogfish Head and Italian craft beer, including the elusive Baladin Xyauyu. Bottles were pricey, but no more than other high-end craft stores. It's the nature of Italian craft beer right now. Entrance upstairs leads you past a gorgeous copper-clad brewing system and into a crowded but calm bar. It was an atypically cool evening with a perfect 70 degree breeze blowing through the roofless establishment. Loved the decor and atmosphere, though I'd imagine during primetime bar hours, this place would be too crowded for my liking.
The beer list is extensive and exciting, but pricey. You’re looking at $7-10 per pour, with some more specialized beers going up from there. They only offered one house brewed beer (which was good but not great) at the moment, along with a selection of local, Dogfish Head (including 120-Minute IPA) and Italian craft. It was a nice list and more reasonably priced, though these beers were more readily available in the area. Their bottle list was substantially more expensive, but featured tons of beers I’ve sought after and been unable to find anywhere else in New York (Baladin Nora, Troll Shangrila, Grado Plato Strada San Felice). They also featured about a dozen different wines served directly from the barrel, which I’ve never seen before.
We tried a selection of food from the kitchen, including some cheeses and a variety of entrees including homemade sausage and quail. Everything was fantastically prepared and displayed a more authentic country style of Italian fare that is usually lost amidst a sea of Americanized pasta and sauce type dishes. Prices were also on the high side and portions were reasonable, though it wasn’t any more expensive than other NYC establishments of this caliber. Total for four people who ordered a single round of drinks, 3 cheese and four entrees, including tip, was $176.
All in all, visiting Eataly’s Birreria was a great experience. The atmosphere was perfect for a cool summer evening, though without much shade, I bet this gets uncomfortably hot in the daytime. The crowd was manageable for a Tuesday night, but is probably still too much during peak hours. Make reservations in advanced and make them for off times. Food and beer selections were excellent but expensive, though the house-brewed beer didn’t blow me away. Service was good and waiter was pleasant, though nothing to write home about. I know some of the early reviews were poor, but it seems like Eataly has smoothened out some of the bumps in the road since they opened. I recommend any beer enthusiast in the NY area to give it a try.
08-17-2011 16:01:24 | More by PangaeaBeerFood
4.13/5 rDev +9.5%
La Birreria, ask the servers how to pronounce La Birreria.
This place may have a limited selection on tap, but when it's fresh you won't be disappointed with the cask brews available. Your best bet is to gander over the bottle list, which can be pricey, but you are sure to find something nice to split between a few friends.
The food is excellent, I love eating here but the only issue is the price. If I'm a little low on funds, this place is definitely out of my price range if I want a few beers and a nice dinner.
The atmosphere is amazing, imagine having a near 360 degree view of the manhattan skyline that surrounds he rooftop. You can see the empire state building as well as many other structures that are nice on the eye.
My favorite part about this place is that Sam Calagione visits from time to time to host a beer dinner or a beer and food pairing event. It just so happens, the last one I was at he was seated next to me for the dinner. I can tell you this about Sam, he's a cool guy who loves to talk beer and he really wants to know who he is serving beer to.
Overall, one of my favorite midtown places to visit.
10-28-2013 16:03:58 | More by Buller38
4.11/5 rDev +9%
The place is on the roof at Eataly.
We had reservation and were seated promptly.
Great table with a fan above us on a sunny hot day.
Beer selection is outstanding but very pricey. Allagash 750ml bottles were $28 but outstanding.
They have many Italian beers and some of the Dogfish lineup.
It was too bad that the food was average at best. We were four and I would say one of us had an entrée that was very good while the other 3 had ok. I'm sure they could put a Kobe burger on the menu for $20 and sell tons of them as the menu is otherwise lacking.
But I really enjoyed the place for the upbeat atmosphere and the extensive selection of excellent beer. I drove into NYC that day from Jersey so took it easy and sipped a fine beer and it was a perfect afternoon.
Would definitely go back.
06-12-2013 02:45:34 | More by jjchristiano
4.1/5 rDev +8.8%
Good cask beer and bottle selection. If you are coming for a specific beer, call first.
A collaboration between Dogfish Head founder Sam Calagione and the Bastianich family. The rooftop restaurant/bar is awesome in the summer.
I had the Ruby and Gina cask beers and some of the unique DFH taps.
10-28-2013 23:09:07 | More by Porter
4.1/5 rDev +8.8%
I’ve been to La Birreria several times now for both lunch and after work drinks and can state that I like the place, but would be hesitant to go if it were not being covered by an expense account; this place is crazy expensive, and while the food and beer are all of excellent quality, I don’t think that the proprietors are justified to over charge patrons that much for beer. The food, while excellent, is also very steep in price to me and I have been working in NYC for over 15 years, but this is NYC so anything goes and people will pay for it.
The atmosphere is a mix of a tourist trap, a cool rooftop concept brewpub, European gathering space and a mob scene. It has everything that I love and hate about NYC rolled into one establishment: it can be crowded with long lines, people taking pictures, expensive food and drinks, tight bar space at night, it’s very loud when it’s packed and it can be an overwhelming scene; on the flip side, navigating through Eataly is a cool NYC experience with tons of people, tons of noise, tons of smells and a feel like you’re in the middle of the greatest city on Earth – and that’s all before you go up the elevator to La Birreria when you walk up the stairs after exiting the elevator and see the mini brewery, which is sparkling clean and impressive to look at. Day or night there are very cool NYC views and the vibe has always seemed hip and cool, like being on this rooftop is the place to be; overall I like the atmosphere, which is why I keep going back. Also, the retractable roof is a very cool aspect of this place and should make for enjoyable winter drinking.
The quality of the food is excellent, and most of the beers have been of very high quality as well. I have tried 4 cask ales and some were hits and others misses, but I could tell they were made with quality ingredients and were good experiments. The bread, cheese platters, olives and sausages have all been extremely tasty, with an emphasis on the sausages which are outstanding; the Cotechino and the Probusto are excellent dishes to share and wash down with beer.
The service has gotten much better since it opened, and each time I go back it seems to improve. The waiters know enough about beer to be helpful, and even the confused looking busboy types seem helpful as they clean up and fetch more bread and olive oil whenever eating there. There are two bartenders who seem to be beer experts, and once you cut through their BS attitudes and let them know that you are serious about beer then that’s when they offer great advice and samples. They are pretty quick even during peak after work hours, so they know how to earn a tip.
The selection of beer, wine and food are excellent; the bar selection is OK, but who the hell comes to this place not to have beer or wine? The beer selection is always impressive and they have just enough on tap to balance out the house brews and bottle selection. Last week they had some Troegs, Victory and Sierra Nevada on tap in addition to the standard Dogfish Head offerings, and Italian beer and some local NY brewery offerings. The bottle list has a lot of quality beers from Baladin, DogFish Head and other hard to find Italian beers, so I think it’s a very cool variety.
Overall the value was OK for NYC, but still a bit pricy to me. Some of the bottled beer is very overpriced, like the DogFish Head My Antonia for $18 per bottle. I completely understand that the rent must be insane, but the bottled beer prices are a tad over the top for anyone who knows craft beer pricing. The house brews (cask ales) are expensive at $10 per glass, but since they make the beer right there then to me that is justified and the essence of the place and experience. I really like the place and look forward to going there on day when it snows to have a beer in the crisp air looking at the Empire State Building. Definitely check this place out. Unless you’re looking to go broke this would not be a regular spot to be a barfly, but it is a cool NYC experience right across from the landmark Flatiron Building.
10-28-2011 03:42:48 | More by CHickman
4.08/5 rDev +8.2%
La Birreria! The newest beer spot New Yorkers love to hate... :-)
I decided to check it out on a sunny hot August day. At around 2:30pm there was no wait. It is a bit difficult to get to, what with the elevator, stairs, hallways and general maze.
Loved the music, but the place looks like a cheap patio at a dive bar in Florida. Crowd was mostly European tourists, and some well-dressed locals, pretty girls and guys in suits. No beer nerds in sight.
WAY HOT! And no views whatsoever except for a tiny slice of the Empire State from the bar. The marble bar was so hot you could warm up your coffee on it. Even the servers were sweating. Enough said!
Selection: ONE house brew (Sofia, with peppercorns), one Dogfish cask (Eataly pale ale) and ten drafts, including Dogfish 120 and Raison d'Etre, Southern Tier Hop Sun, Moretti and Life&Limb. They also have wine on tap, FYI.
My Eataly Pale Ale was fine, drinkable, a hint of spice, tad boring but good for the weather. Not too casky. Had a "teku" (12 ounces) of Life&Limb, 20 cl of beer and the rest was head (bartender said that is the way they do it because it is high gravity).
Didn't try the food but would like to next time. Service was fine at the bar. Overall, I had mixed feelings about the place. Love the selection and service and music, didn't like the settings and the silly heat and the prices and the hassle to get up there.
Had the chance to chat with one of the owners and that was a nice touch. He explained how the costs of brewing on a rooftop adds up, hence the $10 tag for a pint, and also said that they are not a beer garden but a brewery on a rooftop, which makes sense to me.
Not a destination (avoid at peak times), but sure worth a visit or two, and definitely much better than the poor reviews here might have you think. I'm looking forward to the new house-brewed ales.
Note: On my most recent visit (Summer 2012) had a great Birreria Giuseppina, a "Golden IPA" brewed with decocted rigatoni and Belgian yeast strains.
09-14-2011 23:32:42 | More by DoubleSimcoe
La Birreria in New York, NY
87 out of 100 based on 26 ratings.