2015-02-18 / Restaurant of the Week

THE BREWERY BAR & KITCHEN

The Brewery Bar & Kitchen is a sleek, new addition to Astoria’s vibrant restaurant and bar scene. The masculine, chic interior is decidedly modern without being cold, owing to warm wood, earth tone banquettes and soft lighting, which sets a peaceful scene. The glass door façade lets the outside in and the popular music does not intrude on your conversation. The Brewery Bar & Kitchen has been brought to us by the amiable owner Padraic “Patrick” Sheridan, who has had years of success at the Manhattan restaurant he owned. Sheridan graciously brings “gastro pub,” upscale dining to the quiet end of 30th Avenue thanks to the culinary skills of Chef Declan (formerly of Stove). Best of all, the prices are very affordable, with their signature burger offered at just $8. Finally, this eastern end of Astoria, just at the Woodside border, has its own hip, go-to spot for great food and a casual scene with sports viewing too, if you like.

A relaxed, mature Happy Hour occurs at The Brewery Bar & Kitchen Monday to Friday from 3pm to 7pm, where you can partake of beers from just $3.50, $5 well drinks and $2 off glasses of wine. Indeed the bar list is quite impressive, featuring many craft beers, including Astoria’s own Singlecut. My Manhattan was perfectly mixed and elegantly served by Michael, the very friendly server. While all your favorite sports are on view, the screens are muted so as not to dominate the scene. Still you might want to sit at the bar and nibble on their fantastic appetizers while you watch and mingle. Small plates include creamy, house made garlic hummus served with grilled pita triangles. The Brewery sticky hot wings are made with a zesty, sweet and hot sauce you can’t resist. Crispy baked, stuffed clams are topped with bacon and paprika, and are ideal for sharing. Nestled in our comfy banquette, we tried Chef Declan’s famous spicy calamari. Sure every restaurant in town has calamari on the menu, but not like this: sweet and hot chili sauce covers the crispy calamari, along with diced red and green peppers and onions for a unique starter that I’ll go back for ($9). Pots of steamed mussels are prepared with either tomato sauce or garlic and white wine sauce and go down easily with a cold beer or glass of wine. Barbecued St. Louis ribs are slowcooked for hours so that the meat falls away from the juicy bones, served with house made slaw for just $10. These succulent ribs can also be ordered in a full dinner portion. Ask about the soup of the day or go with their tried-and-true French onion, just perfect for chasing the chill away.

Large plates and specials at The Brewery Bar & Kitchen rival those of any snooty restaurant. Grilled New York strip steak is cooked to sizzling perfection and served with a cognac peppercorn cream sauce for just $21. Atlantic salmon is a healthy dish baked in foil with a blend of white wine, lemon and herbs. The special chicken breast was sautéed with sherry mushroom sauce, while Gaelic chicken is always on the menu with its flavorful whiskey cream sauce. The evening’s crab cakes were tender, flaky and sweet served with smoky Chipotle dipping sauce.

The Brewery Bar & Kitchen elevates classic Irish pub food as well. The classic shepherd’s pie is a rich and savory affair, made with minced beef, peas and carrots in a heavenly sauce, below a cloud of mashed potatoes. Beer battered fish and chips are just as you’d expect…light, crispy coating around fresh, flaky cod, served with lemon tartar sauce and a mound of chips with malt vinegar on the side.

Bangers and mash are juicy, Irish sausages served with creamy mashed potatoes and onion gravy ($13). Try these for lunch, dinner, or weekend brunch, served Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 4pm. Other brunch items include omelet of the day, steak and eggs, Texas toast grilled cheese with ham and tomato, or the classic eggs Benedict. Finally I can tell you about the Brewery Burger, eight ounces of juicy Angus beef on a flaky brioche bun. Add your choice of cheese, sautéed onions or mushrooms and you’re ready to go. Brunch Bloody Mary’s, Mimosas, or screwdrivers are only $3.

For dessert, try Mom Sheridan’s no-bake cheese cake with its light, fluffy, mousse-like texture. Other house made confections include warm apple pie, straight up or a la mode, and decadent chocolate lava cake. For casual, urbane dining, mingling, sports watching or socializing in a comfortable, local setting, visit The Brewery Bar & Kitchen. They can accommodate groups for private parties and business functions so set something up with Patrick and leave it to the experts. The Brewery Bar & Kitchen is open seven days a week for lunch, dinner, late night, and weekend brunch. Slainte!

49-18 30th Avenue
Astoria/Woodside  718.777.8007

www.thebrewery.nyc

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