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Taps: 40 / Bottles: 32
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
$$$ - a bit pricey
[ Bar, Eatery ]
101 Rivington Street
phone: (212) 228-0027
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$$$
Small front corner among the clothing stores. Inside it's dark, brushed steel and wood, a "we're modern but not imposing" vibe like Belgo or Wagamama. Just the corner is open during the day with a back room for evening.
Beer list is impressive even for New York, with 40 drafts. Especially good is Californians on tap like Green Flash and Bear Republic which you don't often see in NY. Locals and all styles represented; Belgians too get their due.
Staff was not overbearing; strict about ID but seemed ready to talk beer. Crowd was a mix of cool kids and older professionals. Food menu was interesting and not cheap. I could see where it might get heaving late at night - signage seems to hint that the bathrooms are handy for sneaky liaisons.
Solid addition to the city, never mind the neighborhood.
12-01-2009 00:01:51 |
More by StJamesGate
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | $$$
A: Great place in the East Village to just relax, have a nice beer at a one of the three giant communal tables, at a bench on the side, or even up at the table against the window and pedestrian-watch. I hear the windows even open in the daytime.
No TV's present to distract you from the glory of one of the great beers you can try, so just come on a night that isn't the Super Bowl.
Q: Speaking of beer, it's a bit pricey, normally ranging from $7-9, and not for imperial pints. However, what they have is great. The strongest aspect of their selection is their Dubbels, Trippels and Quads selection. It's nice to find some St. Bernardus and Maredsous tucked away in the East Village. Not to imply they don't show respect to the locals, including Brooklyn and even Kelso.
They also keep a steady supply of pale ales, IPA's and imperials, so there's something for everyone. Off the top of my head, I don't remember stouts and porters, but I'm sure they were there.
Service: Only one guy behind the bar for the most part, with another guy floating around alone picking up orders, so not the promptest, but I was lucky that it wasn't the busiest hour.
All in all, a great selection of quality beer makes this a place to definitely return to in time, even though it's out of my way.
08-31-2009 02:03:02 |
More by dudecandle
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I really enjoy the feel of Spitzers, the wood and the earth tones, and the space. I like the communal tables, and watching the people on the street go by.
I also love the great beer selection. It may not be the best I've ever seen, but it's still pretty impressive. 40 beers on tap, and they're varied!
The food I can either take or leave. Not that it's not good, because it is really well prepared and presented, but I see it just as kind of upscale bar food, and not as a meal. I've enjoyed the asparagus and mussels though - a snack until heading elsewhere.
Finally, for the most part the service has been very good. I can't fault the entire operation for one or two servers and a bartender that just couldn't get it together.
If you're in the area I'd certainly recommend a visit! (Also note, although it is "a bit pricey", I think for NY standards it's actually quite reasonable).
04-27-2009 16:41:55 |
More by NeroFiddled
vibe: 2 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Checked this place out a few weeks ago as stop 3 on my annual birthday trip to NYC.
Its kind of a trendy young type place that doesnt look as big as it is from the outside. Due to the 20-something age of most of the patrons, we were all carded when we entered and I guess that makes you feel not quite as old when you're celebrating your 42nd birthday.
You enter via this long hall that kind of ends and then opens up to a giant room with the bar on the backside and large picnic like tables lined up throughout the room. Big glass floor to celing windows in fron that look out onto the street. It was really quite busy when we stopped here so getting a seat really wasnt an option.
The beer selection was great--they had tons of great draft selections inclusing many that I dont see around very often. They had some Captain Lawrence, some of the less common Sixpoint varieties, Troegs, Sly Fox, Legacy, Ommegang, Ithaca,etc. The beers were in fine shape and I think maybe a little less expensive than some other places in Manhattan.
The service was decent but nothing spectacular and I was kind of amazed that they were so adamant about seeing my handstamp to prove that I was 21 when I clearly look considerably older than a 20 -something. This place was decent and I would give it another try but Id try to hit it when it wasnt quite as busy. Maybe a Saturday afternoon would work better.
03-07-2009 11:53:39 |
More by rousee
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Spitzers is located in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, which is better known for dive bars and small venues like Arlene`s Grocery.
The set-up has one smallish bar and then a handful of wooden tables and some room to sit facing outward to Rivington street on small stools. The wooden tables seem to be the best bet. A good mix of patrons from different walks of life come here.
They have a good amount of taps, 30 or so I think. I recall seeing Southampton Double White, Delerium Tremens, Brooklyn, Bad Elf, in addition to other micros and smaller Euro brewers.
I liked the bottle selection which included selections from Chimay, Lindenman`s, Westmalle.
The food I have had the soft shell crab sandwich back in the summer, which was cooked well and more recently some chicken and french fries which were also tasty. A solid place to spend some time in NYC, drinking good beer and making new friends.
12-14-2008 19:39:20 |
More by mltobin
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$
Hard time on Orchard, the heat and the street packed with pecks of pickle people, we were wise to start early and get through it and out (I should have scored a tub of all sours at that place on Essex, I don't want to talk about it).
Well, that was an hour of crazy well spent, but now what? Did the quick peeps in on that beer store on Bowery and then lost nearly half our group to Sunday whatever. We can't afford any more casualties; we need a plan for drink and quickly! Backtracking east some...
On the corner of Ludlow & Rivington streets; nice and open breezy with large windows folding up over both streets creating awnings. People seated below them along the exterior of the room are sitting not on benches but the actual window sills. Randy has a word for that. It's "classy". I myself can only imagine how enjoyable it is sitting on them when it's raining out and you get an ass full of wet. Mostly long wooden communal tables in a row (Randy likes them, but wouldn't like sitting with, you know, people), and some tables running solo up against the windows.
Along the back wall, a cool slightly "V" shaped, zinc bar seating a dozen on backless stools. 40 taps sweating in a row on a stainless steel backed panel running the length of the bar back. Bottles in glass front coolers below and shelved glassware over mirrored backings above and to both sides, although no beer appropriate glassware that I can see except for the Delirium snifters.
The place is done up old wooden pickle barrel walls and bar overhead with a track lighting strip. Spots in open glass and drop lamps over the tables where the people seated there could smash their heads on if they were tall and not careful. Gee, I hope that doesn't happen. A single looong horizontal board on the far wall lists tap, bottle and wine selections, plus snacks, sides and plates, and a bench of pain below (the people sitting there look sad, is all). Plank wood floorings and dismal gray pillars in the center of the room matching the bar staff's bleak gray shirts. Down the hallway, another room not unlike the front room with a dozen or so tables and a smaller bar.
40 taps, the list broken out by style. 24 American micros, of which roughly 1/3 are NY state (Southampton, Six Point, Ommegang, Southern Tier, Blue Point), another 1/3 regionals (Smuttynose, Stoudts, Victory, Allagash, Legacy, Magic Hat), the last 1/3 other coastals (Bear Republic, Anchor, Rogue, Sierra Nevada, Stone, North Coast), and the remainder some 7 Belgians, 4 Germs, 3 English/Irish & a pair of dirty Canadians). I have to say the imports were pretty damn boring actually. I drank a Brownstone and a Hennepin, both tasty & fresh, and found that Em drinks the exact polar not-ness of what I would. I think it's 'cause she was born on an opposite continent. She opted first for the Victory Golden Monkey (which... no) and then the Legacy Euphoria when I recommended the Hedonism Red instead. Curious.
Also, some 54 bottles (over 2 dozen Belgian & Belgian style including most of the Trappists, about a dozen each American micros & English/Irish/Scottish combined, and the rest a mix of this and that whatever). Get this... a 375ml of Lindemans Framboise, Peche and disgusting Pomme cost $11, but lovely Orval only costs $9, and DeRanke XX $8, which is okay by me. Costliest bottles are the Chimay Grand Reserve, La Baladin Nora, and the Southampton Saison Deluxe, each priced at $18. Lots of stuff but nothing outlandish, it's a "safe selection".
On the "classic combos" board, there's a pairing of a "BLT & E with a Victory Prima Pils". What could the "E" stand for, I wonder? Edamame? Escarole? Apparently, it's an egg of the fried variety. Why fuck up a perfectly good BLT with an egg I just cannot fathom. Oh, and they've got an Eat Out 2008 award, for "Best gastropub with the least fortunate name". Really? That's a category now? And that there was a critics pick, thank you.
"This place is a wine bar that decided to do a beer thing. There's really not a lot to talk about in this joint; its stark and mundane", says Randy, a douchebag nice enough to remind me that I'm the oldest person here. Looking around, I offer "Yes, but maybe somebody's (like) here with their mom". Didn't take him long. "You're older than her, too". Double douchebag Randy, nobody likes him. For me, as far as just sitting at the bar and having a beer with friends ignoring the younger crowd, I can do that easily enough, although the backless bar stools do suck. I will say that the food menu is not a "me menu", and the beer menu while having some solid selections just doesn't excite me, and with over 90 beers between tap and bottle, it should. This is more a "get a beer 'cause I'm near here" than a destination place.
10-13-2008 23:37:10 |
More by slander
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$$
Went on Saturday afternoon with 3 others for lunch on a nice summer day. Frotn section has floor to ceiling windows, which were open to the air, making for nice people watching. Area is filled with long bench style tables running parallel to the street, backed by a bar with dozens of taps and a mirror rear wall making the space seem even larger.
The place was not very busy during my visit, so as expected, service was prompt and steady. The staff had big smiles and seemed to enjoy their jobs. Beer knowledge was decent, but I knew more (this often happens). Still, more knowledge than most places.
Beer selection was very good. Many American and Belgian craft beers, enough that anyone can find something great to drink. I had 3 different drafts; all good.
Food was excellent. Started with an hierloom tomatoe appetizer that was both beautiful looking and delicious. Finished with a high quality sandwich. Everyone in my party liked both their beer, and their food.
Not knowing NYC very well (I was a tourist), this has instantly shot up to the top of my (very short) list of beer bars for future visits. I loved the place. Even loved the woodwork walking down the back stairs to where the bathrooms are located. Very unique.
08-28-2008 12:19:32 |
More by BeTheBall
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Went here last night for dinner and drinks with a small group.
Atmosphere: This place was much bigger than you first think when walking in. Both the front hall and the back hall are wood based decor which is real rustic with communal tables and small tables. The extensive taps are right in the wall in a good looking bar set up. Diverse crowd and lots of Europeans lending to the overall European feel and vibe you get from this place- mainly because of the communal tables.
Quality: Food and beer were top notch. Plenty of options for food and they shined through with the appetizers mostly. The beer selection on tap was very good as were the quality of those that were in bottle. Beers I went with included Weinstephaner varieties, Southampton and was very excited to have a few in NY from the Goose Island line.
Service: Good, not great. Atttentive both at the bar and the waiter as well. The waiter knew a very good amount about the food, extremely impressive and was able to fill all requests. Didnt really get much from the beer knowledge at the bar but they seemed to know their stuff.
Selection: As noted, over 40 taps with a great variety of seasonal and standbys. Lots of local stuff as well as all the stuff that is getting newly distributed to the city. Was impressed much more than I had thought going in.
Food: A bit pricey but its downtown and worth it. The appetizers were incredible, including the duck fat fries, herbed popcorn, local pickles, and regular fries and mussels. As far as other food, very gastropub but a bit small in terms of portions. Still very good burgers, grilled cheese and salmon dish.
I am eager to get there again, nice surprise.
04-27-2008 17:19:54 |
More by marcpal
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
This was more laid back than I was expecting. Thought it would be over the top trendy but it really wasnt. The place had its windows open wide to the nice warm weather we we having in NYC so that was a plus. Seating for food is at communal benches like a beer hall which I personally like as you can strike up conversations with strangers. Mostly old looking wooden decor yet a bit more modern.
Beer wise there were about 40 or so beers on tap. A pretty good selection of Belgians, locals and American micros. I had a Sixpoint Gorilla Porter, Dogfish 60 and a Harviestoun Old Engine all on tap. Other beers I remember seeing on tap were Tripel Karmeliet, St Bernardus 8 and 12, Bear Republic Racer 5 and Hop Rod Rye and Stone IPA. Everything tasted reasonable. There was also a good bottle selection that I didn't delve too deeply into.
The food was not typical bar food, more of a gastropub. The appetizers we had were the spinach with shitakes and duck fat fried potatoes. Both were pretty good. Their sandwiches were both pretty good. I had a sweetbread po boy with tartar sauce which was really good. I for one love good beer and sweetbreads so I was pretty happy. My friend had the duck confit sandwich which he liked. I would like to go back and try the shortrib burger with maytag blue and a fried egg. We also had rosemary popcorn which was a bit too oily. They did have local favourite Gus' Pickles on the menu too.
Service was good considering how busy they were. Even though it was fairly busy we were seated quickly on a Thursday. For the LES it was pretty reasonable. I think the toal was about $90 or so for two people to eat a lot and 8 or so good beers. Pretty cool place, one I will return to.
04-18-2008 15:17:38 |
More by sleazo
District of Columbia
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
This is a find on the LES. A terrific selection at very reasonable prices. All the Belgians you could ask for and about 24 taps. The prices on Belgians are more than reasonable given its NYC. The only downer is the staff is not all that schooled in their beer knowledge, but you can get past that cuz they're generally easy on the eyes. Food is a notch above bar fare and again is reasonably priced. I have only been twice in the late afternoon, so I can not speak to the crowds during the evenings or weekends. I will be back.
01-27-2008 21:05:30 |
More by ChimayCC
Spitzer's Corner in New York, NY