Times Square Brewery
The three-floored bar and restaurant has large windows facing out to 42nd Street and in on the brewery’s tanks. Among the five brews on tap, the light and mild Pale Ale ($5.50) is the most popular, but the bolder choice is the Dunkel, a dark lager that’s smoother than Guinness ($5.50).
• 210 W. 42nd St., between Seventh and Eighth Aves., 212-398-1234.
Chelsea Brewing Company
Located in Chelsea Piers, this microbrewery is the largest in Manhattan and serves up seven locally brewed beers. With an impressive view of the Hudson and outdoor seating, the bar is more than just a pit stop for a post-workout drink. To get the full experience, ask for a sampler of the six year-round beers ($8) then chat with the talkative brewers who are on hand Monday through Friday until about 4 p.m. Although the brewery is most famous for its light Checker Cab Blond Ale ($5), the mildly bitter Chelsea Standard Ale ($5) is its most unique.
• Chelsea Piers, Pier 59, at W. 18th St. and Twelfth Ave., 212-336-6440.
Greenwich Brewing Company
With its gargantuan tanks off premise, this sports bar is the smallest brewpub on the list. The eight house beers (we recommend the $6 Roaring Red Ale with hints of caramel and a soft bitterness) are made offsite by the Chelsea Brewing Company exclusively for the Greenwich Brewing Company.
• 418 Sixth Ave., at 9th St., 212-477-8744.
Heartland Brewery at Union Square
Don’t be fooled by the large brew tanks on display; since opening five other locations around the city (including one in Times Square and another in the Empire State Building), this mini-chain for microbrews now creates its seven beers in Fort Greene. The two-storied, Union Square location, however, is the original outpost. Farmer Jon’s Oatmeal Stout ($6), a bitter beer with hints of java and chocolate, is the darkest beer on the menu and a Great American Beer Festival winner as well.
• 35 Union Square West, at 17th St. 212-645-3400.
The West End
In case the weekly Saturday night beer pong doesn’t tip visitors off to the relationship between the bar and its neighboring Ivy League school, old Columbia University report cards and yearbook photos decorate the walls. The famed watering hole of Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg added brewery to its resume under a year ago, and offers two beers, brewed on premise, at a time. Award-winning brewmaster Neill Acer brews the 10’er Kero Whack ($4), which, with twice the alcoholic content of regular beer, lets the college crowd get a bang for its buck.
• 2911 Broadway, between 113th and 114th Sts., 212-662-8830.
Although not a bar, visitors to the Brooklyn Brewery can drink $3 pints during the 6pm to 11pm happy hour. On Saturdays the Brewery holds free tours between 1pm and 4pm.
• 79 N. 11th Street, between Berry St. and Wythe Ave., Williamsburg, Brooklyn, 718-486-7422.