Yes, there are great beer bars Midtown Manhattan like Pony Bar, the Ginger Man and the Cannibal. But the strange pocket that is upper-middle-Chelsea-near-Penn Station, laden with overpriced Irish pubs, sub-par barbecue and the double-whammy of commuter and tourist crowds, is not exactly an area I recommend venturing to. That is, until now.
Haymaker Bar and Kitchen is a gastropub that recently opened on W 29th Street (by 8th Avenue). At first glance, it’s nothing out of the ordinary: hard wood floors; bar stools; booths; a few anybodies scattered at the bar (in other words, no identifiable hipsters or business men). Sleek, simple, and calm. But feast your eyes on the beer menu and that perception starts to change.
Tristan Colegrove, bar manager and fresh beer aficionado, excitedly curates a list of hard-to-find, hard-to-pass up American craft brews, with a focus on IPAs, dry-hopped sours and saisons—largely the fetishized, though not to a fault—the menu is varied and accessible (and the atmosphere unpretentious) enough to please any beer nerd and convince any newbie. Some approachable options geared toward normal people and happy hour include Southern Tier pilsner and Finback, but in general, Colegrove said, “I want to sell awesome beer. I want to sell the best beer ever.” Continue reading