- Subway stop: Fulton Street
- Walk from subway: 3 minutes
- Neighborhood: Fort Greene
- Location: 710 Fulton St., on the corner of Hanson Pl.
Every once in awhile, you want to take a break from your average sports bar, cocktail bar, American bar, fusion bar (I just made that up…or did I?), dive bar, etc., and get a taste for that authentic German beer hall flavor. Well, then look no further than Fort Greene, more specifically Fulton St., where there are a couple of beer halls vying for the attention of local alcoholics. In today’s post, I’ll be covering just one, Die Stammkneipe/Der Schwarze Kölner, or as I will be calling it from here on out, DSK, because honestly, you try typing that name out more than once. It’s EXHAUSTING. When you first step into DSK, you’re immediately struck by it’s lack of pretension and a vibe that says, “This may have once been an Italian restaurant where mobsters would meet over plates of spaghetti and discuss their finances.” I say that last part because the black and white checkered floors seem somewhat out of place, but in an endearing, “There’s nothing wrong with these floors so why would we tear them up, now sit down and drink” kind of way. It’s not that uncommon to walk into an establishment in Brooklyn and feel like the ambiance is trying very hard to be hip and a little too on the nose. I could really go on and on about how the floors alone at DSK set the tone for this being a low key, welcoming environment that still understands what makes for good beer, but I will spare you an entire entry where I compare beer and sausages to floor tiles.
One of the main stays of any beer hall is having a large, comprehensive list of German beers flowing straight from the tap, into a liter glass, into your beer belly, and this place is no exception. In addition to your run of the mill wheat beers, pilsners, IPAs and lagers, they also have beer cocktails and you can get growlers if you’re just not feeling like hanging out. Or if you’re feeling like taking the party home with you. I don’t judge. If you’re trying to watch your figure, or if you’re not a glutton like me, you don’t have to get a liter of beer, either. You can be an upstanding member of society and order a third of a liter or a half liter. And for those of you who like to watch the world burn, you can order your beer in one of those enormous glass boots.
If you’re smart, you know that the best way to enjoy your beer, is to enjoy it with a hefty side of meat. In fact, you should have it with so much meat, that you no longer know who’s eating who, as your vision becomes blurred and you slowly enter into a meat coma. There are plenty of options for all meat eaters, and if you’re a non-meat eater, I BEG you to reconsider. Have you smelled someone barbecuing before? Imagine tasting it. It’s really that good. I’m completely unoriginal in that my go to meat of choice is bacon, but that’s simply because it’s so much more accessible in these modern times of ordering a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich at any bodega on any corner at any time. If all meat was as readily available as bacon, let me just tell you, lamb is my jam. And duck, oooh-weee! Don’t even get me started! Obviously a German beer hall is going to be the opposite of most places out there in that those lesser available meats are right there at your finger tips. Most recently at DSK I had the duck fennel sausage, made with garlic, port wine, and pomegranate. I also ordered the KaseKrainer, which is apparently a classic German sausage with pork, beef, and cheddar cheese. What did I even just write, I don’t know! I’m in a meat daze!
As stated above, this place is very approachable and welcoming, and that may have to do with more than just the floors (what can I say, I loved these floors!). A good playlist and a bartender who appreciates that I tend to dance with just my shoulders can go a long way in me really liking a place. And the later into the night it gets, the higher chance you are to meet someone who not only comes there often and has a good rapport with the bartender, but also teaches archery and invites you to come by their range and take knife throwing classes. It’s, like, how did you know? And if a late night crew of archery and knife throwing instructors isn’t your bag (I don’t relate), the place also caters to children earlier in the day, having bi-weekly playgroups on Tuesday and Thursday late afternoons, as well as a sing-along every Wednesday from January-April at 4pm. Because when I think fun for the whole family, I think that beer hall where I met that guy who throws knives for a living.
So, if you’re looking for one of those New York-type experiences that seems to be a bit of a mixed bag of things that just comes together in a way that somehow makes perfect sense (and is also a beer hall), look no further than DSK. It’s the best way to work through your DT’s. And always remember-
-Off The G