The Best Beer Gardens in NYC
A grown-ups' guide to drinking outside
At first thought, it’s hard for us not to get a little queasy when we think about beer gardens. We all had those supposedly chill afternoons in our ’20s that ended up, well, not so chill.
But over the last few years, a new crop of grown-up beer gardens have opened around the city that remind us exactly why we loved them so much in the first place. Turns out, sipping a cold pint with friends on a perfect summer day is still pretty great--and doing so without a gaggle of drunk college kids at the next table is even better.
So we rounded up a few of our favorites to upgrade your Saturdays.
Best for bringing the kids: DSK Brooklyn
The most brilliant idea of all time: beer-garden playdates. This Fort Greene spot not only has a kids’ menu and a private room for hosting birthday parties; it actually holds a regular Tuesday-afternoon playgroup called Babies and Biers. Even if you don’t have little ones, it’s an excellent way to coerce your reproductively active friends to actually come out.
DSK Brooklyn, 710 Fulton St. (at S. Oxford St.), Brooklyn; 347-841-4495 or dsk-brooklyn.com
Best food: Berg'n
We can’t think of a food better suited for a night of drinking than barbecue. Apparently the folks who founded the Brooklyn Flea and Smorgasburg agreed. They created this indoor-outdoor Crown Heights complex to bring in some of the best street vendors in the city. You can nosh on the likes of Mighty Quinn’s and Asiadog there.
Berg’n, 899 Bergen St. (at Franklin St.), Brooklyn; 718-857-2337 or bergn.com
Best German food: Zum Schneider
While we love the diverse offerings at Berg’n, sometimes the beer-garden experience isn’t quite complete without a sausage and a pretzel the size of your head. Zum Schneider, in the East Village, has perfected these and more. (Oh hellooo, apple fritters.)
Zum Schneider, 107 Ave. C (at E. Seventh St.); 212-598-1098 or zumschneider.com
Best view: La Birreria
Sipping your cider in the shadow of the Empire State Building? Cool. This Italian microbrewery on the roof of Eataly is perfect for a post-work meet-up. Pro tip: Get there early to claim a seat.
La Birreria, 200 Fifth Ave. (at 23rd St.); 212-937-8910 or eataly.com
Best for a crowd: Bohemian Hall and Beer Garden
OK, there’s actually nothing new about this legendary Astoria spot--it’s literally been around for 100 years. But finding a good bar for a big group in New York City is always a challenge. This football-field-sized garden does the trick; plus, it still oozes old-world charm.
Bohemian Hall and Beer Garden, 2919 24th Ave. (at 29th St.), Astoria; 718-274-4925 or bohemianhall.com
Best for all weather: Radegast
There’s no reason that sunny days should have all the fun. The geniuses at Williamsburg’s Radegast added a retractable roof, making this a foolproof plan even in the iffiest weather.
Radegast, 113 N. Third St. (at Berry St.), Brooklyn; 718-963-3973 or radegasthall.com