Food and Beer at Fifth Hammer in Long Island City
Beer is a beverage, a mix of water, malted barley grains and hops. Some beers taste sharp or bitter; others are sweet and fruity, or even smoky or oaky. Some are sour or cloudy thanks to a natural profusion of lactic acid or brettanomyces (a “wild yeast” that’s recently enjoyed fringe popularity); others are robustly hoppy and crisp. There are endless styles and characteristics, but most beers have a certain effervescence due to their brewing process.
Restaurants are increasingly adding beers to their beverage menus, and beer enthusiasts are seeking more ways to pair their favorites with food. Beer has much more room for experimentation than wine, as it can be flavored with hops, herbs, spices, fruits and chocolate. And just like wine, a great pairing can turn a simple meal into a memorable experience.
Aiming to create approachable lagers, hop-forward IPAs and floral pilsners, Fifth Hammer joined Long Island City’s vibrant brewery scene in 2017. The menu is broken down into fun, easy-to-decode categories — the “bright bunch,” the fruited sours and the hop zone, among others — making it easy for guests to navigate the 16 beers on tap. The brewery is also known for its friendly atmosphere, and patrons can bring in their own food to eat alongside the beers (we recommend the Taiwanese dumpling spot Yumpling, a block away). Or they can order the bar’s signature dish, the “kick-ass brown barbecue ribs,” which are slathered in a beer-based barbecue sauce.