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Hop Devil Grill & Belgian Room
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
129 St. Marks Place
phone: (212) 533-4467
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vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I remember Hop Devil under construction, as we did some early gatherings here for another project, before the taps, before the tables, before the bar was a bar. Seems like a lifetime ago, especially when you see what this space has become. Good location, further east than I normally play, but still easily workable...
The main room holds an "L" shaped bar seating 10 off to the left, a center bar counter, and about 8 booths and tables. To the rear, a few steps take you up to an elevated area holding a half dozen tables. Blackboards angled overhead above the bar and adjacent seating listing the bottle selection and food specials. The bar back is a unit with bottles and glassware, and other pieces. 2 dozen taps on a diamond back plating, and a hand pump, not yet in use.
Beer signs and placards throughout, spot lighting overhead, and the front of the room done in polished steel with a hundred thousand "dings" in it (I saw Billy up there on the ladder beating the hell out of it with a hammer).
2 dozen taps. 6 are imports, including Erdinger Hefe, De Ranke XX Bitter, Kulmbacher Pils and the other 3/4 of them are American micros. Good representation of local (Brooklyn Porter, Blue Point, Southampton Secret Ale, Cricket Hill), regional (DogFishHead Indian Brown, Geary's, Victory Hop Devil, Magic Hat, Sam Adams Summer), and stuff from afar (a pair of Avery's, Bear Republiuc, 3 Mendicino's, Rogue Charlie 1981, Flying Dog, Anderson Valley IPA, and a cider). 5 dozen + bottles listed, also a nice mix.
Either out the front door, past the curbside tables and back in the door next door, or up through the back way from the rear perch, you're poured into the next room, to the Belgian bar side.
A smaller "L" shaped bar seating about 8 is found here. 5 taps (Leffe, Delirium Tremons, Maredsous 10, Stella, Hoegaarden) and a boatload of Belgian bottles in the cooler behind the bar. It's a corner bar, with glass shelves holding booze on a mirrored back unit. Brown sponge painted walls, tile floors, red drop lighting, ceiling fans, and a half dozen booths and tables here and there. An elevated area to the rear holds another 5 tables and a video game (Big Buck Master).
Food is pub grub and more. I've done apps here a few times and I see they're now doing Pomme Frites with a choice of 12 sauces on the Belgian side. Service is good, no problems there. It's a good East Village destination. I'm just waiting for that hand pump to get a-goin'.
07-31-2005 22:17:10 |
More by slander
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Belgian Room review:
Went on a weekend, around 10pm, and it was easy to get a table toward the back. We had a group of six, and the waitress accommodated us well. When we left, it was a bit more crowded.
Ordered a round of the tap Brooklyn Cuvée D'Achouffe ($8), which went over well. Their taps were labeled with paper signs, maybe they change often? Next we tried the Southampton Grand Cru ($20+), and split a Bourbon Co. Stout for dessert. It was nice to see the GI Reserve line on the menu in NYC. The beer list is well rounded and extensive, not as focused on the rare and unusual as Spuyten Duyvil, or Hopleaf in Chicago.
The music was great, it wasn't loud or crowded, and the smoke-free air lended to a better atmosphere. Tried the frites with curry mayo, which was tasty. It was easy to rack up a large tab here...
12-06-2006 18:33:02 |
More by emerge077
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
This east side spot is another fine addition to the NYC beer scene. Less then a block from Tompkins square park this place is sure to move mega gallons of suds to thirsty lower east siders all year round. 24 on tap, mostly domestic micros and a limited selection of so so imports drafts. (Stella, Bass, Ho) U.S. selections and bottles were strong, with several fine and intriguing choices. Draft- Victory old HO, Perkunos hammer, Bklyn Sustainable Porter etc. Nice Belgian bottled selections, with a few that strayed far afield. (Flemish Primitive, Cantillon, Abbey des Rocs and a host of Trappists) nice! Bottles of Stone's Verticle Epic ($12) are not something you see at many bars. Friendly owner and Bar staff. Nice comfortable front room, medium sized and comfortable bar, with a smaller elevated room with tables in the rear. They will be adding an adjoining Belgian room and opening a rear garden sometime hopefully soon. Well worth a visit and will only be getting better.
05-07-2005 12:58:41 |
More by Billolick
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | $$$
The Friday of my first visit to NYC in 2005 was spent having a walk over the awesome Brooklyn Bridge followed by a 16 Pizza lunch with the lovely RokotGirl at the infamous Grimaldis, and then a quick beer in this new addition before we headed to the Blind Tiger to meet the rest of the NYC BAs who had to work the afternoon.
Outside impressions are of a rather trendy spot, the British Post Office red painted exterior and gaudy paintwork fit in well with the surrounding sex shops, tattoo parlors and the Bohemian masses that throng the streets here. It seems that the front opens out but these doors were half ajar during my visit so we parted the steel laden doors to get in.
The wooden topped bar is to your left, curving at the front left to allow those sat at the end of the Bar a decent view of the counter workings and the hip young chicks passing by on the street outside. I counted over twenty taps set against the back wall before I was asked what I wanted, so I guess the quoted figure of 24 taps is probably right. A lone Beer Engine sat on the front bar counter and looked a little sad and unloved. Lots of funky memorabilia, brewery posters, beery adverts and even a broken model of a 747 Airliner behind the bar. The back of the room rises to a decked seating area with small fences between the wide wooden steps to stop the inebriated falling off the edge. To the right, booths cling to the wall and no doubt offer some respite to the thronging masses when this place gets full, which Im told it does. The middle had a small waist high partition and some more tables and chairs
The beer list is chalked above the bar, but be warned; it was not up to date on my visit. I ordered a Southampton Saison, only to be served a dark looking brew that most definitely was not the Saison. The woman behind the bar never even realized this until I questioned her, somewhat reluctantly, as she seemed engrossed in some other conversations with passing friends. During my visit, Sabrina and I were the only ones drinking it seemed. Once questioned though, she seemed unsure as to the true identity and said that it could be the Secret Ale because its on at the other place .maybe. Not a big problem, I didnt really mind, but not a good start or impression for my first visit here, and a clear indication that some of the staff are not that up on their beer which always stuns me when an establishment wants to promote a Beer Bar image. The service was reasonable, though the woman that served us seemed busy doing tasks associated with readying & cleaning the bar, stuff I would do *before* opening, but it was quiet I guess.
Prices are steep, at least I thought so, I ended paying $9 for a Southampton Saison-cum-Secret Ale and some kind of Soda drink for Sabrina, I checked, it was right. Maybe a return during Happy Hour is on the cards perhaps. The printed beer list that we were handed also reflects the high prices, especially for the Belgium offerings. A great bottled selection but it is pricey and would only be a once in a while tasting for me at the prices listed.
A fleeting visit of sorts, and granted I had limited first impressions, but they all count. Nice enough, but there is still a lot of work to be done here I feel. It does have potential to be a great addition to the ever burgeoning NYC Beer Bar scene, but at the moment it fails to live up to them it seems, that may be tad harsh but I say it as I see it. Being here gave me the same feeling I get when witnessing the commissioning of a new power station, it seems like it should work, all the ingredients are there, but it definitely needs to sort out a few opening glitches and train its staff a little more about the beer it sells first.
Worth popping in for sure, Ill certainly head back here in 5 months time during my November trip and see how it has progressed.
Last Visit: Friday 24th June
07-02-2005 22:14:17 |
More by TheLongBeachBum
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$$
The Hop Devil appears to have been a diner in its former life. The stainless steel door entryway gives it away, as does the floor. Hmmm, now that I think about it, I guess the curves along the ceiling imply that too. And, it works! It's a comfortable place (unless it get really crowded). The draft selection is great, and there are quite a few gems in the bottled form too.
Service has always been good for me. Not great, but OK.
The food is OK. Pricey - even for NY in the far east Village. Big pretzel $5, chicken fingers $9, fried zucchini $8, bacon cheeseburger $14, brats w/ cabbage $16. ... ... ... bacon cheeseburger $14??? WTF?
Beer prices are OK... as expected at least.
Worth trying? I'm not sure. There are so many other places that I'm not sure I'd give this the nod right upfront. Probably. Probably worth trying.
08-06-2008 01:46:03 |
More by NeroFiddled
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$$
A comfortable oasis on the lower half of Manhatten. Quiet at the end of a Monday night, the managers broke open a few bottles of extras to share around, including a Speedway Stout bomber, a World Wide stout, and others, just to try them around the room. The Belgian Room next door is smaller and more intimate and does a good job for being a Belgian specialist place, with 5 taps. The taps in the Hop Devil,about 15 with mostly the regular stuff, but a few unusual ones to try, like the Rogue Juniper (astringent) and the Appalachian barleywine. The managers are from out-of-town and people people, like Matt the bartender and Mike and Betty managers. Prices were better than average for Manhatten.
05-01-2007 15:06:19 |
More by northyorksammy
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $
I've been to Hop Devil a couple of times but only now have I come around to review it.
This joint sure is dark! A little overwhelming, total cave. Cheap looking but not in a bad way, like a ratty sports bar in, say, Scranton, PA. They do have lots of cool breweriana around.
Noisy at 4:30 pm when I visited, even though place was pretty empty (only the bar was filled up, with what seemed to be regulars). I guess they have poor noise-proofing, hence the loudness? Music was real loud too, but hey, maybe I'm a bit too old for this kind of youth-oriented sports tavern of sorts...
Gotta love the homely feel, though, so different from the corporate vibe of many bars in Manhattan. It really feels like a small town in here, what with the friendly drunken regulars perched at the bar since opening time. A bit of an East Village feel indeed!
Nice friendly bartender was quick, super polite and not missing a beat. But the real draw here is the prices! Regular prices are not bad, but during happy hour... everything is HALF OFF!! Wow. Believe it. I thought no place in New York City had a real happy hour like that. Reminds me of Ohio...
So I got a Stone Belgo Old Guardian snifter for only four dollars. Sweet!
Didn't try food this time so I won't rate it, but I have in the past. Nothing exciting, they serve a competent mixture of Mexican fare (tacos, burritos) and American pub grub (wings, salads burgers) at good prices. I'm not here for the food, though, so no worries.
Selection is alright, not great but serviceable. This is the kind of place that does not amaze you on a daily basis but will shock you from time to time with rare shit like Dogfish World Wide Stout or Founders KBS. On my last visit, they had 20 American taps, 1 cider, 2 Germans and Guinness. Hop Rod Rye, Brooklyn Lager, Harpoon IPA, Ithaca Apricot, Kona Porter, Sam Noble Pils, Rogue Chocolate Stout, Smuttynose Porter... plus that Stone Belgo Old Guardian that was the only rarity, really. Maybe Stevens Point Belgian Wit too, since I have never since this brewery around NYC.
But I feel like at Rattle N' Hum: not exactly excited.
One thing that bothered me a bit was that I saw no sign of "credit card minimum", and when I went to tab out, the friendly bartender told me they had a $10 so I would have to have another beer. I was in a hurry and didn't want another brew, but hey, I *had* too. Not a huge deal, but I wish they had some signs advertising their credit minimum (I could have asked too, it is true).
(I have not been to The Belgian Room, but the taps didn't exactly give me a hard-on either: Delirium, Ommegang, Sly Fox...).
All in all, this is a fine spot for the East Village nation. It might not stand out tremendously in Manhattan, but there is a lot of competition anyway. Too many good bars, with better beer lists and (in some cases) food.
If you live nearby, though, or are visiting or strolling around the Village... heck yeah, check it out!
04-03-2011 06:47:16 |
More by DoubleSimcoe
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
I stopped here on a Saturday night I spent in the East Village in July 2007. This was an essential stop in Manhattan, based on my beerfly research. The hop Devil Grill was loud and popular (crowded), but there were still some empty seats left. I opted to go for the Belgian Room instead, and found the place almost entirely empty and quiet (much better). As a result this review is based on the Belgian room. There were 6 beers on tap (Delirium Tremens, Southampton Double Wit, Victory Abbey 6, and 2 others I forgot). There were also about 100 bottles, all Belgians and maybe some from the Netherlands. Very nice, and most were served in appropriate glassware if not the actual brewery glasses. The prices were a little high in my Ohioan opinion, but I guess not crazy high (about the same as similar beer bars in large American cities, such as HopLeaf in Chicago). Actually this place is worth the extra cost in that you can drink in relative peace, and hold a conversation or just watch a NY game (the Yankees were playing a night game which was nice). Completely recommended.
07-22-2007 04:16:57 |
More by TurdFurgison
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
After dinner at Resto then beers at Vertigo and Pete's Tavern, my friend and I made it into here for last call this past Tuesday night. When we walked into the Hop Devil side, the bartender was cleaning up and there was no one at the bar. He didn't seem to mind if he served a few last pints to us. Cool looking place, but hard to judge when the lights were off and the place was empty. Great selection of American craft beers. I went with the Lake Placid Honey Rye, which was crisp. Bartender was nice, as he jumped in and told us the cross street for a restaurant my friend and I were trying to remember. It was too late to head into the Belgian Room by that point, but this seemed like a cool place. American brews on one side and Belgian on the other. Enough to satisfy me at least.
07-16-2010 17:35:44 |
More by morebeergood
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$
The weekend of July 12 14 2007, my wife and I visited The Ginger Man, Rebar @ The Retreat, Blind Tiger Ale House, and Hop Devil Grill (not the Belgian side). Ive listed them in our overall ranking. Were in our early and mid 30s, I travel frequently and always incorporate good beer into my journeys be it work or pleasure.
Arrived around 11:00 on a Friday evening and were able to grab a table up front by the open front. Pretty good beer selection. By the time midnight rolled around, the place turned into a bud-light schwiling crowd had taken over. Just not our scene in the east village. If I returned, it would be earlier or on a weeknight and more likely to the Belgian side.
07-17-2007 00:04:10 |
More by Yetiman420
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Hop Devil Grill & Belgian Room in New York, NY