Brooklyn Beer Bar Guide: Hot Bird

Photo by Lizz Kuhel
Photo by Lizz Kuhel

Across the street from a McDonald’s on a weird strip of Atlantic Avenue that neatly bisects Clinton Hill from Prospect heights, Hot Bird is the kind of place you stumble upon by accident, and then never want to leave. Check out our take, after the jump…

Number of Taps:  They rotate out a nice variation of 12 beers on tap. I’ve seen 21st Amendment’s Watermelon Wheat on tap, which is a lovely summer option.

Vibes: Relaxed, even when it’s super, super crowded. The bartenders here have managed to exact a subtle mind control on the crowd, and serve everyone in due time, without anybody losing their mind or getting frustrated. It’s the only bar I’ve ever seen people form a line to get a drink, without complaining.

Music: Bartender’s choice, from what I can tell, but usually swings towards old R&B and Motown.

Price: Very reasonable, but beware — they are cash only, so either come prepared or hit up one of the ATMs in the bar.

Outdoor Space: There’s a spacious front yard with picnic tables and a fire pit in the winter, and if you’re sitting in just the right spot you can see McDonald’s golden arches peeking over the 10 foot high fence that shields you from Atlantic Ave. There are also signs that say “No Smoking” all over the patio, but I have seen people in flagrant disobedience of this rule, despite the clearly labelled smoking section set a little bit back from the main area.

Food: There’s no food at the bar itself, but Little Brother BBQ next door delivers to the bar, and is delicious. Their fries come dusted with what tastes like a dry rub, sweet and salty with brown sugar and magic, and they make a really solid corn salad, too.

Typical Crowd:  Mostly people from the surrounding neighborhoods of Clinton Hill and Prospect Heights, but there are some intrepid adventurers from Williamsburg and the like, as well. It gets a little crazy at night, and I’ve seen a line to get in every now and then, but for the most part, it’s manageable, and everyone seems nice. Also, they’ve banned children, so you know, no kids.


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