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As spring slowly but steadily announces its presence across the city, beer drinkers in New York ready themselves for one of the best times to knock back pints of craft brew. Spring sees the return of baseball, a sport that may as well have been designed as an excuse to publicly enjoy beer in a crowded setting. But perhaps your desire to hit up Citi Field or Yankee Stadium to purchase Bud and its flavorless, Beechwood-aged offshoots, at $10+ a pop, is somewhat tempered. That’s OK. The fact that our thoroughly mediocre ball clubs are back signifies the re-emergence of a far more meaningful public drinking space: the beer garden. As a toast to the times, get your hands on Other Half Brewing’s Hop Showers IPA. It’s fresher than mowed Bronx outfield. And far more sanitary, too.
The 7.4 percent ABV, highly hopped ale merges all manner of citrus, including grapefruit zest, juicy orange, and even a late push of mango into the finish. Until recently, the beer was available only on draft, but Brooklyn’s fastest-growing microbrewery has recently launched a limited canning line, bringing Hop Showers to the streets in psychedelically designed sixteen-ounce aluminum tubes. They went quickly.
As you await the return of the can, you can still enjoy Hop Showers on tap all across the five boroughs. Head over to Jimmy’s No. 43 for a pint, as the East Village bar and eatery directly adjacent to last month’s tragic blast should finally reopen its doors to business this weekend.
And with temperatures slated to reach the upper sixties by the middle of next week, properly prepared drinkers will seek the refuge of outdoor patios and roofdecks. This year, the city welcomes a spate of newcomers ready to serve the thirsty throngs al fresco. Threes Brewing is among them — by the end of the month, the massive Gowanus brewpub plans to open its backyard garden to the public. It even launched its own Kickstarter campaign to crowdsource funds for the ambitious outdoor transformation. In addition to its own beers, Threes almost always has Other Half’s popular line of IPAs available on tap.
In Manhattan, craft cognoscenti can head to Eataly’s sun-soaked rooftop to enjoy Hop Showers ten floors above Madison Square Park. Birreria partnered with Other Half last month as part of a series of collaborative beer dinners highlighting local(ish) breweries of the Northeast. This Sunday, Birreria hosts New Hampshire’s Smuttynose for a five-course pairing starting at 7 p.m.