German Bar Bierleichen Heading to Ridgewood
Photo courtesy Adam Collison
Ridgewood is about to get a new haunt. Co-owned by Adam Collison of Williamsburg's The Drink and The Bounty in Greenpoint, Bierleichen (582 Seneca Avenue, Queens) will be bringing metal, beer, and all things German to the neighborhood.
The bar and eatery's goal is to incorporate as many Deutsche elements as possible. The menu offers a standard array of pub fare like sausages (including either vegetarian or vegan selections), house-made pretzels, and Sauerbraten (a traditional marinated pot roast). It will be starting off with lunch and dinner, and eventually expanding into brunch.
The beverage selection will be more extensive. Seven out of the ten draft lines will be dedicated to German brews, including a few standard and some lesser-known offerings. The other taps will feature a standard American beer, an IPA, and a cider. Greenpoint Cider will usually fill the latter; the soon-to-be released brand has been co-developed by Collison's wife, Nika Carlson. The bottled beer collection will be even more comprehensive. Again, it's mostly German, but the menu features a lineup of rare options, including small-batch brews and apple wines. "We found a great cider importer," says Collison. "We have access to really unusual apple wines and other things like that, but we have to test the market."
Look, too, for a carefully curated list of Eurocentric wines. And Bierleichen will forgo the ubiquitous cocktail list; schnapps and eaux de vie will take its place. And no, that doesn't mean the saccharine sweet peach mixer used in Sex on the Beach cocktails. These diverse and delicate spirits will range from cherry eau de vie to caraway and beer schnapps. If a straight shot sounds too intense, each one can be paired with sparkling lemonade. "They're all amazing in lemonade," says Collison. "And Germans love sparkling lemonade. It's a cultural phenomenon."
Bierleichen is not specifically a music venue, but there will be a strong entertainment element to the place. Expect to see games (they already have a foosball table), music, and special celebrations. "What's driving me to open places is I like pursuing tradition and delving into cultural phenomena," says Collison. "We look forward to festivals and those sorts of things."
Collison had been toying with the idea of opening a beer hall for quite some time, but wasn't set on the idea. However, after falling in love with Ridgewood, which has a strong German heritage, he decided it was time.
Originally hoping to kick off operations for Oktoberfest, Collison, managing partner Olga Haines, and the rest of the team have seen months of delays. They've faced zoning and permitting issues that have taken time to remedy. Currently, the team is hoping to open in about three weeks.
Follow Sara Ventiera on Twitter, @saraventiera.
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