All Reader Reviews of...
200 Fifth Ave., New York, NY, 10010
at 23rd St.
Not a Beer Garden, Not good for groups, Disappointing Experience
By bondstfoodie on 8/19/2011
We went to La Bierreria a couple weekends ago to celebrate my friend's going away party and were very disappointed with the experience. We were surprised to find out that it's a restaurant, not a beer garden, and it was really pretentious. There was very little bar space, you could only sit at a table if eating, and, if you wanted a table, you needed to make a reservation far in advance. We decided to squeeze in by the bar area and put our name down for a table. But as we waited, we got calls from our friends saying they couldn't come up. The hosts downstairs would only let them up with a reservation as it was at capacity (lie). We had to talk to the host to get them to let our friends come up to the bar. Our party was medium size in total, only 8 people. Overall, we were really disappointed with the experience. We were looking to relax, enjoy some beer, and get some sun. What we got were flippant attitudes by the staff, no places to sit and enjoy the beer, and an obnoxiously tough time to have friends get together. You would have thought we were at a velvet rope club instead of a restaurant on top of a grocery store. If you want a nice Beer Garden in the city, I would suggest Lorely in the LES.
Rooftop Beer Garden should be avoided
By samgiest on 9/11/2011
We visited the rooftop and couple of things stood out. 1. They will not seat you till everyone gets there. We had a party of six with a reservation and five of us had to wait till the sixth person showed up. 2. The waiters will try to turn tables by rushing the checks. Once food is served they will say that the table is for diners only and will ask you to move to the bar. VERY rude. Ours even said his shift was over and needed the check but he was severing other tables afterwords. After talking to other patrons it turns out they use this as a standard line to turn tables. 3. The food on the rooftop is substandard. For example the waiter said the fish was fresh but it was clearly frozen. We understand the restaurant must turn tables quickly to make money but being rude and offering sub-standard service is not the way to go about it. I suppose since there are so many tourists here that they don't care about return customers. All in all, not worth the wait or the price. There are several other option in a city like New York.
By rusty_spoon on 8/20/2011
A group of us went because we thought it was a beer garden. No. It's a restaurant that serves beer, has a bar area, and advertises itself as a beer garden. But it's not a beer garden. We were told we had to order food to sit down. No problem, let's get a table. 45 minutes later, we were able to get a table. We sat down and ordered some food, and some more beer. After an hour, a few of our friends had to leave, and a couple new friends joined. When they sat down, the manager came by twice to tell us that we could not order any more food, because they need the table. This was around 4pm in the afternoon, and there were more than FIFTEEN open tables! Our only option, if we wanted to order food, was to pay for our bill, get up, go back downstairs and ask for a new table. WHAT?! Sorry, but there are too many good beer gardens in NYC to waste your time on this one.
Cool Venue, Little Bar Space
By cnicole90 on 8/1/2011
I went to La Birreria last week with my boyfriend to get a couple of drinks around happy hour time, and should have guessed it would be packed with people newly free from their work duties for the day. There was no bar space, so we asked the host if we could get a table to drink (there were a bunch open), but he told us no. So, we had to awkwardly hover around the bar area for a little while until two seats opened up. Once we sat, we stayed for a while and tried a few different beers- the selection was interesting and enjoyable. The bartender knew when to come over and ask us if we wanted another drink- which was pleasantly surprising. The scene was a little older than I expected- I'm 21 and I felt like we were definitely the youngest ones there (out of about 80 ppl on the rooftop.) I wouldn't go back just to scavenge a seat at the bar, but I would try it another time and order some food- the people sitting seemed to really be enjoying themselves. Note: I gave the food rating a neutral "5" because we didn't eat; it was required to fill out all fields in order to post.
Kudos to the Staff!
By XOXOKimbo on 8/26/2011
Last week I made a reservation at La Birreria for Friday night at 7:30. The weather called for rain so I asked if they had a back-up plan and the woman who I confirmed with assured me that it would not be cancelled as they have a retractable roof. Fast forward to Friday night: shortly after checking in we heard exclamations from inside and saw that parts of the retractable roof had opened up and rain was pouring in like a reverse of the dance floor scene in "It's a Wonderful Life." The staff sprang into action and handled it as quickly as possible, closing the panels of the roof and mopping up the mess. Figuring it might be awhile, we gave the hostess a cell # and asked if she could text us when she knew whether or not we'd even be able to eat there (the group before us asked to have their reservation switched to the following night and the hostess quickly obliged.) We milled around in the over-crowded downstairs (apparently Eataly is the place to go if you can't find a babysitter) and just as my patience was wearing thin we got the call to come back up. The bar staff was friendly, but our waitress was a bit absentee. The food was delicious (get the pork chop - perfectly seasoned, deliciously moist), but the beer was average (the signature Sofia is a little flat, like an amateur home brew). The other reviews are right in that it is not your typical beer garden and they do rush you a bit, but any staff that handles a disaster like that is OK in my book. I'd go back.
You owe it to yourself!
By meravNY on 7/15/2012
After I 'died' and went to Italian Heaven (my review of Eataly few years ago), I had to try the new HOT version of Mario's greatness. He delivered, yet again. This one is an excellent place to chill on a hot summer day. The menu is well suited for that. And even though the temperature today was 84 and humid, it was nice and cosy and even slightly breezy (thanks to the ceiling fans). The view...well, it's NYC, so looking at some of the City's beautiful building "at the eyes" never fails. The food was great.The Salumi cart for 2 brought the best flavors of different cured pork. The service was wonderful. Don't let the summer pass by without a visit.
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