Adobe Blues bar manager Ryan Barker knows a thing or two about good beer. He also knows he’s never going to compete with the East Village for good beer drinkers. But that’s okay, because Adobe Blues may be NYC’s best kept secret… to everyone who doesn’t live on Staten Island.
“People just can’t wrap their heads around the ferry,” Ryan admits, knowing that the schlep from Manhattan is a deterrent to checking out the borough’s very first Good Beer Seal bar (they were inducted this past July along with Killmeyer’s). For those who do want a great excuse to visit Staten Island, Adobe Blues has five interesting taps (a recent visit yielded both Farnum Hill Cider and Great Divide Titan IPA on draught) and more than 200 bottles.
The Tex-Mex bar has been open for over 20 years, and its owners were former theater set designers who chose every piece of the colorfully decorated restaurant from a long-ago trip to New Mexico. While the bar’s original menu focused on region (with many imports), today’s menu is broken down by beer style (they have 24 different styles, including “other”). In fact, the Adobe Blues Beer Club rewards drinkers who try every beer style on the menu (three down: a Rogue pale ale, the Tital IPA, and—what Ryan says is probably their most unusual beer—Baladin Xyuayu Copper from 2004, an Italian Barleywine).
This Sunday, November 25th, from 12-4 p.m., Adobe Blues will host its second annual Brewery Appreciation Day. It’s a chance for the bar to look back over the year and bring back favorite beers, along with some big rare beers (last year’s breweries included Mikkeller, Allagash, Oskar Blues, North Coast, and Nøgne Ø, among others). This year’s confirmed breweries/beers include:
- J.W. Lees Vintage Harvest Ale (2010);
- Yeastie Boys, from New Zealand, with their Rex Attitude, a golden ale using 100% smoked malts;
- De Struise, from Belgium, with their very rare and sought-after Rio Reserva, a Quadrupel brewed in 2008, barrel-aged for four years, and then bottle conditioned;
- Mahr’s Bräu Ungespundet;
- Harviestoun, from Scotland, with a cask of Old Engine Oil;
- Flying Dog, from Maryland, with a cask of their Belgian IPA, Raging Bitch, infused with habanero peppers;
- Other confirmed breweries include Green Flash, Great Divide, and Weyerbacher, with more TBA.
A $50 ticket price includes a 5oz tasting glass, unlimited tastes of delicious beer, plus an all-you-can-eat steak, chicken, and vegetable fajita bar.
Although Adobe Blues was largely unaffected by Hurricane Sandy, the bar is very aware of all the destruction that has taken place on their island. In many ways, Staten Island is like one big family. For those that can wrap their heads around the idea of a water commute (“They serve beer on the ferry,” Ryan coaxes.), the reward of Adobe Blues is totally worth the trip. Or make an afternoon of it (the bar is a 20 minute walk or take the S40 bus from the ferry terminal) and explore nearby Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden. See what you’ve been missing on Staten Island at Adobe Blues!