|Baker Street Brewery's founder and head brewer Art Hannemann takes you
on a journey to find the ales. Catch the train for Arty's ride to the New Jersey
suburbs and beyond in search of, what else, great beer!
It's going to be a fun trip as Arty reviews and rates a new stop each month
as he takes the rails to the ales.....and more!
|Take The Rails to The Ales to...
Nanuet and Pearl River, NY
Ambulance Brew House
202 Main Street,
Nanuet, New York 10954
I ventured out of New Jersey thanks to a recommendation from one of my readers. All I can say is that
this place is probably the best spot I've visited in quite a while. The modest exterior belies the inside
decor that features beautiful stone work and warm wood nicely highlighted with gentle lighting. There
were no stools at the 10 ft. or so long bar but that was fine since it made reading the 17 beers listed on
their chalkboard much easier. My group picked a table across from the bar and began to enjoy. The
bartender knew his beer an explained some of the ones we were unfamiliar with which for such an
experienced group is a rare occurrence. That alone should tell you about the quality of the offerings. It
wasn't necessary however as we eventually ordered enough flights to sample every one of the available
beers. Here were my three favorites of the day: Logsdon Szech n'Brett, Other Half Super Pun, and
Sloop The Sour. No crap on tap. Prices were moderate to high but fair for the quality. I had a flat
bread pizza and nachos for lunch and both were solid, a big step above standard bar food. The
bartender said the beers turn over quickly which means I'll be back. Often. This place is a treasure!
If I was allowed to give more than 5 engines I would.
I rate Ambulance Brew House 5 out of 5 engines
Defiant Brewing Company
6 E Dexter Plz
Pearl River, NY 10965
After leaving the Ambulance Brew House I noticed that my GPS listed a brewery/brewpub less than 5
minutes away. It was an easy decision to make - next stop Defiant. I was familiar with Defiant beers
and hoped to find some new ones at the brewery. That was not the case. The long, somewhat narrow
bar stands in front of rows of tanks. The bar stools looked like leftovers from a mid-20th century
kitchen, with the wear and tear to prove it. After a short wait while our bartender finished cleaning one
of the tanks (the place could use a cleaning too) he ambled over and took our order. He didn't seemed
inclined to talk about the beer or much of anything else. Glasses seemed to be 10 ounces. I had a
Black Dirt Stout which was thin and average at best followed by an O'Defiant Stout was solid if
undistinguished. I also tasted a bland Muddy Creek Amber. Food is available but our bartender didn't
even ask if we wanted any. Needless to say we did not stay long.
I rate Defiant Brewing 2 engines.
Hope you get a chance to stop in at my new location
The Northside Lounge
100 Brooks Blvd, Manville, NJ 08835
A great menu and some of the finest craft beer anywhere!
Stop in if you are in the area and look for me in the kitchen or behind the taps
and please mention you read my column!
Here's some good info on planning your own Rails To Ales trip. First step go to
www.njtransit.com web site. Then click on train schedules. Next click on "use our map
to plan your trip." Now select your train station on the map. And next select your destination
on the map. A new page appears and you want to select weekday, holiday or weekend
accordingly. A new page appears with your schedule of departing times and length of travel
time. Print this up and then go to the bottom of the schedule and it will say click here for
return schedule--click away. Now print this page up as well and you have all the info you
need to plan your trip. Remember to allow walking and drinking time. And of course if you
go off the rails like I often do but sure to have a designated driver!
Gotta catch my train back-- see you at my next stop!
Remember to leave the car at home and......Take The Rails To The Ales !!!!
Five engines= the very best
Four engines= excellent
Two engines= fair
One engine= bad news
Zero engines=stay away
For the complete listing of all
Rails to Ales