Summer is officially here, folks, and you know what that means: the hunt for the best breweries in New York City has commenced!
The prospect of finding the best breweries in New York City can seem overwhelming, even for the most devote local. But fret not, because that’s where I come in. I’ve done all the legwork in hopes of making it easier for you to spend the evening at a great NYC beer joint.
Oh, and before we get started allow me to share something most folks don’t realize. The majority of the best breweries in New York City are found in Brooklyn and Queens. The reason? Real estate is at a premium in New York City, so when it comes to finding ample space to brew some booze then you’ll find the best (and largest) spaces outside of Manhattan.
Visiting New York City? If you haven’t decided where to stay (yet) check out our helpful guide on Where to Stay in New York City (The best neighborhoods for first timers +2 to avoid). Don’t have time? Here’s our favorite hotel in NYC, hands down.
Best Breweries in New York City
#1. Torch & Crown
Let’s kick off our list of the best breweries in New York City with a crowd favorite — Torch & Crown. Founded in 2018, Torch & Crown started innocently enough: the (future) founders were busted at an East Village bar with fake IDs in hand.
Undeterred by rejection, they resolved to learn the craft of beer making themselves. The end product is a beautiful thing, their determination resulted in the founding of the best breweries in New York City.
Torch & Crowns serves the best beer in NYC in an inviting atmosphere best known for their knowledgeable team. The space has a modern feel with beautiful wood tables, tons of plants and industrial-sized steel tanks taking center stage.
As mentioned, this spot churns out some of the best beer in New York City so it’s hard to go wrong with anything on the menu. But the Tenement (refreshing pilsner that’s lagered for 100 days) deserves a shout-out, don’t miss a chance to try it for yourself.
Address: 12 Vandam St, New York, NY 10013
#2. Grimm Artisan Ales
Grimm Artisan Ales has won the New York State Brewers Association Brewery of the Year 2 years running (and they’ve only been open since 2018!). They brought home 6 awards total last year including silver in both the blonde ale and American IPA categories. Omitting them from this list of the best breweries in New York City is nothing short of a crime!
As soon as you enter you’ll quickly notice that the taproom doesn’t immediately look like a traditional brewery. The white walls and ample window light make it seem more like an upscale modern restaurant than one of the best breweries in New York City. The barrels in the back serve as assurance though, you’re in the right spot.
I try to make it out to Grimm Artisan Ales once every few months. I don’t expect them to stop being one of the breweries in New York City anytime soon and I’m always looking forward to trying one of their cold cups of foamy ale.
Address: 990 Metropolitan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211
Check out the breakdown of all the categories Grimm Artisanal Ales placed in on American Craft Beer‘s website.
#3. The Bronx Brewery
The Bronx Brewery can be used as the poster-child for the best breweries in New York City. The Brewery screams New York City, and it does so by design. In their mission statement you can find that they hope to utilize beer as a means to build community and creativity.
They have two locations, each one paired with a food partner. In their South Bronx location they have partnered with Empanology. A unique Bronx-born restaurant that aims to keep the fundamental flavors of a Puerto Rican kitchen while keeping up with the modern world and its palette.
At their East Village location you will find Bastard Burger. They have been serving “New York inspired burgers in Sweden” since 2016 but have only just recently opened their first U.S. location. A burger and a beer is a match made in heaven and now you can enjoy them together at one of the best breweries in New York City.
If you’re into IPAs you have to try the City Island Sour. Back by popular demand, this beer was supposed to be a seasonal option but grew such a following that it is now a part of their year round menu.
Address: 856 E 136th St, The Bronx, NY 10454 & 64 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003
#4. Talea Beer Co.
What happens when two women with MBA’s quit their corporate jobs and take on an industry predominantly run by men? They open one of the best breweries in New York City.
The beer world has largely had two stereotypical types of patrons — Dr. Marten strapped, flannel wearing hipster from Portland or muscle-tank behind the wheel of a Ford F-150. Well, where does that leave the rest of us?
This woman owned business has brought forth a more inclusive approach to brew making. By putting an emphasis on fruit inspired beers that aren’t overwhelmingly bitter they’ve opened their doors to people who would normally avoid a brewery in favor of a wine or cocktail bar. In doing so they’ve created one of the best breweries in New York City.
Talea Beer Co. opened their flagship location in March of 2021 and hasn’t looked back since. They’ve brought with them a fresh perspective and has helped make beer exactly what it should be.
Booze should be a way for us to come together, not an intimidating community that’s hard to break into. There’s no doubt that with their popularity on the rise this will be one of the best breweries in New York City for a long, long time.
Address: 87 Richardson St, Brooklyn, NY 11211
#5. Brooklyn Brewery
When first walking into The Brooklyn Brewery you’ll notice the massive tanks that are used to brew some their most popular hops. As you walk further into the taproom you’ll see a lounge area with couches where you can sit for a romantic chat.
Beyond that there is hall-style seating with long tables fit for your entire squad. It’s one of the most comfortable environments and best breweries in New York City I’ve been to.
Each table has a QR code that takes you to their menu. From that menu you can order drinks directly to your table all without ever having to get up or wait for a server. When delivering your brews the staff is friendly and welcoming.
I’ve ordered at least one Bel-Air sour on every visit. It’s a lively drink that sets the tone for a great evening. After the first drink though it’s all fair game. The best breweries in New York City offer more than one great beer and The Brooklyn Brewery is no exception so I suggest trying as many as you (responsibly) can!
Address: 79 N 11th St, Brooklyn, NY 11249
Locals tip: The neighborhood that the Brooklyn Brewery is in is also bustling with things to do. There’s a neighboring axe throwing bar called Hatchet and Hops, as well as a rooftop restaurant called Westlight. Locals and visitors alike can dedicate an evening to good drinks and making memories.
ICONYC started as a wholesale beer company out of a basement. After quickly growing in popularity they opted to open their own taproom and have become one of the best breweries in New York City.
They boast one of the largest outdoor areas of any brewery on the list which keeps me coming back in the summertime (maybe more often than I should). There’s just something romantic about drinking a brew on a warm evening as the sun is setting. The conversation flows easier and the hours seem to fly by.
ICONYC brews a Cucumber Saison that serves as my guilty pleasure. Whenever I visit I try to load up with one or two 4-packs that I can take back home and enjoy with company. Without fail I have to tell my friends about the best breweries in New York City and with this brew they get to try them.
Brewed with cucumber, lime, ginger and sea salt it’s reminiscent of fruit cups you’d buy from a vendor on the street. The only thing missing is the Tajin!
Address: 43-63 11th St, Queens, NY 11101
#7. Interboro Spirits and Ales
Self credited as the Brooklyn’s first brewery AND distillery Interboro is in a league of its own. It’s one thing to make your own beer, but making your own liquor sets you apart in this town. As both one of the best distilleries & breweries in New York City Interboro is a can’t miss spot.
At its core Interboro strives to use the beauty of drinks to bring people together. I’d say they’re doing that quite well. You’ll find it difficult to find a group of friends not smiling or laughing during your visit.
Since they distill their own liquor they have a rotating seasonal cocktail menu where creative concoctions find their home among brews. What’s that saying?, liquor before beer – you’re in the clear, beer before liquor… I think you’ll be fine.
There is also a small menu of appetizer like foods that you can order to accompany your brewski. The steak and ale empanada is my go-to. They menu says its “mad fat” and I couldn’t think of a better way to describe it.
But at its core its one of the best breweries in New York City so grab something on tap and enjoy the evening.
Address: 942 Grand St, Brooklyn, NY 11211
#8. McSorley’s Old Ale House
Although technically not a brewery, McSorley’s warrants a visit for a beer (or two). Opened sometime between 1854 and 1862 (the exact year is debated), McSorley’s Old Ale House is one of the most historic bars in New York City.
Indeed, it’s the oldest Irish Salon in New York City and has hosted notable patrons throughout the years. Famous names include Abraham Lincoln, Ulyssess S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, John Lennon, Houdini and E.E. Cummings.
The bar boasts two mottos: “We were here before you were born” and “Be Good or Be Gone.” However, before women were allowed in bars in the 1970’s, McSorely’s motto was: “Good Ale, Raw Onions and No Ladies.”
Located in the East Village, everything about this iconic bar in New York City oozes with old-world charm. In fact, not a single item has been removed from the walls since 1910. You can find Houdini’s handcuffs on a bar rail and wishbones hung by young men going off to World War I.
The menu at this famous Manhattan bar is limited to two options: dark and light ale. Some things never change, and (frankly) shouldn’t.
McSorley’s makes an appearance on our list of 10 Memorable Manhattan Bars Everyone Should Visit
Address: 15 E 7th St, New York, NY 10003
#9. Greenpoint Beer & Ale Co.
Greenpoint Beer & Ale Company is what I believe young folks refer to as a vibe. The German-styled brewpub comes equipped with ample hall-style seating as well as a roof deck featuring a lit-up green water tower. The ambience alone warrants it a spot amongst the best breweries in New York City.
It’s a great spot for meeting up with friends. The food menu has shareable options and there’s enough beer varieties for everyone to find something they’re sure to love.
Once a month they host a trivia night once a month that’s a blast. Although I never seem to know for sure whether the brews make me a better or worse player. Regardless, it’s one of the best breweries in New York City and great way to spend an evening.
Address: 1150 Manhattan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11222
#10. Kings County Brewers Collective
The Bushwick neighborhood in Brooklyn has had a long history with beer. At one point there was a section in it called “Brewer’s Row” because there were 14 breweries in 14 blocks. Rather than Brewer’s Row I think I would have called it… heaven.
However after prohibition the best breweries in New York City started dwindling away with the last one on brewers row disappearing in 1976.
The Kings County Brewers Collective (KCBC) opened its doors in in 2016, becoming the first brick and mortar brewery Bushwick had seen in 40 years. Thanks to 3 award winning home-brewers who decided to open up shop we now have one of the best breweries in New York City.
KCBC’s popularity has spread throughout the city attracting visitors from all five boroughs. I make the 45 trip from my Upper West Side apartment with glee, knowing I’m on my way to one of the best breweries in NYC.
Address: 381 Troutman St, Brooklyn, NY 11237
Best Breweries in New York City (Post Summary)
- Torch & Crown
- Grimm Artisan Ales
- The Bronx Brewery
- Talea Beer Co.
- Brooklyn Brewery
- ICONYC Brewery
- Interboro Spirits and Ales
- McSorley’s Ale House
- Greenpoint Beer & Ale Co.
- Kings County Brewers Collective
Map of the best breweries in New York City
And there you have it folks! My personal list of the 10 best breweries in New York City! Feel free to comment your favorite breweries and ones you believe should’ve made the list!