New Park Brewery

485 New Park Ave, West Hartford, CT 06110
https://www.newparkbrewing.com/
Hours Thurs 5 – 9pm Fri 4 – 10pm Sat 12 – 10pm Sun 12 – 5pm

The doorway is not particularly distinguishable as being the brewery.

I went on a Thursday in the early evening in March. The weather was nice. They had a Jamaican food truck outside. It looks like the coordinate with a rotating food truck offerings. My friend got some food from the Jamaican food truck. It was decent food.

They clearly have filled their “bearded men at bar” quota for craft brewery.

Atmosphere/vibe: Their website says that they will occasionally have live music. There was none when we went. There is a long room. On one half there are long tables, the other side are high, large, round tables with high chairs. I don’t like this large square table set up. For some reason it seems more awkward to join a round table or a square that has only 2 people sitting at it, but it is not awkward to sit at a long table with only 2 people at it. The rounds all had like groups of 2 or 3 people at it and were ¾ empty otherwise. It felt like a large waste of space. The decor was fine, but to be honest forgettable. There were some strings of lightbulbs festively festooned back and forth across the ceiling. They had some plants. They had a nice outside seating area, but it wasn’t quite warm enough to sit outside yet. They had generic modern art. They seem to have a loyal following. They have some cans and they also fill growlers.

Service was fine, but also kinda forgettable. Usually I will at least talk to the bartender enough to find out their name and chat about stuff. They were pretty busy and there wasn’t much interaction outside of “order beer- deliver beer”.

Beer… so, their beer selection is excessively IPA heavy. They had 1 stout which was coffee and I didn’t bother to try. I usually get a flight, but they literally only had 3 beers that weren’t IPA. I am not interested in coffee stout. I will sometimes try them if I’m with someone else who also wants to try it. So that left  was their witbier and saison.

My glass of the witbier

Powder (Wit Bier): I really liked this beer. It was crisp . They advertised coconut and banana flavors which I didn’t get at all. Overall it was a solid wheat beer. Not particularly german style as they advertised flavors of coriander and banana. I enjoyed my beer.

Market (Saison): I was disappointed in the Saison. It was sadly forgettable. It was also inoffensive, but just kinda forgettable. Saison beers generally highlight local in season ingredients. They often can have a bit of a spice flavor or fruit flavor. This one had a  mild citrus flavor, but not much else. It was fine… just nothing to write home about.

Bathrooms were clean, but kinda boring. I think they share the bathroom with the other businesses in the building.

The area is very close to a fast track bus station and to a city bus stop. There is a decent sized parking lot, but it is also near a Home depot parking lot that is very walkable if you needed parking. It is a fine area to be in, but there are a lot of panhandlers around especially around the bus stops. They aren’t going to bother you, except to ask for money.

Overall I feel that the high tables are too big. You could easily sit 8 people at one of the high square tables, but if you have a small group it is too big, yet the table feels too intimate for multiple groups to sit together. Maybe 2 couples could share, but then you still have a lot of unused seats. I feel this brewery is not for me. They offer mostly only IPA.

Why you should go: It is very convenient to get to if you are in the Hartford area. If you like IPA, they have a large selection. If you don’t own a car and need a bus to get around this location is ideal as they are close to 2 different bus routes. They had an interesting rotation of food trucks and a nice outside space for the summer. Sometimes they offer live music.

What could be improved: I wish they had more interesting beer offerings that weren’t IPA or Coffee based. I don’t like the large square tables. It doesn’t feel inviting if you are looking for a seat. You feel bad if you are 2 people taking this whole table, but it feels weird to sit with others at a square table. It is just odd…


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