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Bronx Brewery Opens Outdoor Beer Garden With Hot Pepper Beer and Cornhole

By Eddie Small | May 12, 2015 4:16pm | Updated on May 12, 2015 8:37pm
 Bronxites who want a chance to drink outside this summer can now do so at The Bronx Brewery in Port Morris.
Bronx Brewery Beer Garden
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PORT MORRIS — Bronx Brewery fans will be able to enjoy its suds outdoors this summer.

The brewery officially opened its outdoor beer garden, called "the Backyard," on May 2, and New Yorkers from in and out of the borough are already taking advantage of the new space.

"It's like a gem in the middle of what people think is the burnt out South Bronx," said Sharon Gross, a school counselor in Marble Hill who was at the beer garden, at 856 East 136th St., on Saturday.

Brewery co-founder Chris Gallant estimated that about 300 people came to the garden for its opening, and the festivities continued this past weekend, when the business celebrated Bronx Week by offering patrons live music and Hot Pepper Cask Beer, made in collaboration with Bronx Hot Sauce.

Selphilip Ramon, a 32-year-old Bronx percussionist who performed at the brewery on Saturday, said he was thrilled with the venue, as it gave customers a chance to see where their drinks came from.

"This is amazing to me," he said. "You don't find a place like this in The Bronx. You don't find this."

The garden has wooden picnic tables and barrels for patrons to sit while sipping local brews, and it also offers them the chance to play a game of cornhole, complete with Bronx Brewery-themed boards.

Beer fans said they appreciated the garden's rustic feel, and Abraham Chuang, 45, singled out the railroad tracks running just to the side of the outdoor space as a particularly cool feature.

"I live in Queens, so kind of far from here," he said, "but I think it's worth the trip."

For now, the brewery's backyard will only be open during warmer months, but staffers are considering trying to use the space for something during the winter as well, according to Gallant.

The Bronx Brewery moved into Port Morris in March of 2013, and although it took more than two years for the beer garden to open, co-founder Damian Brown said that the potential for installing one was a huge part of the building's appeal, as it would help make the brewery more of a destination for people as opposed to just a place that produces beer.

“One of our primary interests in looking at this space that we ended up moving into is the fact that it has this massive, 6,000-square-foot backyard,” he said. “We just saw so much potential there.”

Gallant maintained that the opening of a beer garden serving locally made beverages did not mean The Bronx was transforming into Brooklyn. Rather, it was just a sign that the borough is home to several companies that are invested in their communities.

"I don’t think we’re the next Williamsburg, but I think there are a lot of good businesses here that are just putting their heads down, working and trying to create a great neighborhood," he said.