WARWICK, NEW YORK
Filled with Old World charm and nestled in the hilly rural refuge of Warwick 30 miles northwest of New York City, EDDIE’S ROADHOUSE TAVERN & GRILLE may be a hike for city slickers, but it’s definitely worth the trip. Between town fairs, open-air concerts, cool fishing spots, blueberry fields and the annual Applefest, Warwick’s a busy countryside community with a four-screen drive-in theatre to boot. And when the quaint brown and tan-fronted Roadhouse opened in November, 2010, the diminutive Main Street gastropub quickly became a travel destination.
A rustic hardwood-floored saloon with exposed ceiling ducts and framed black and white portraits (of Willie Nelson, Steven Tyler and Jack Nicholson), its fabulous upscale pub fare (appetizers, burgers, steaks, chicken and ribs) suits the swiftly rotating draught selections. At the red brick-walled left side bar are twenty stools, sixteen tap handles and choice spirits. Two windowed and three right side corian-topped tables comfortably seat lunch and dinner patrons.
During my initial August 2015 jaunt, Eddie’s gets packed by 5:30 on a sunshiny Saturday evening. Along with two newfound brews, my wife and I share the big, beefy Roadhouse Burger (with mushrooms) and On The Flat (a rewarding flat-breaded app with eggplant, hummus and olive tapenade dips).
Owner Eddie Cullari stops by before the crowd rushes in to offer some background.
“I grew up on Ballantine IPA in the ’60s. So i got used to the richer, heavier beers and when that IPA alcohol bite went away, I really got into serious beers,” he shares before adding, “Drinking craft was a no-brainer. Friends would buy a 6-pack for $4 in the past and they couldn’t understand why I’d pay $4 for one swing-topped import.”
Though previously untried Lost Nation Mosaic IPA, Against The Grain Jacque Trappe and Clown Shoes Crasher In The Rye Imperial Stout were gone by my arrival, two fruitful summertime brews got quaffed instead. Soft grapefruit rind-embittered passionfruit-derived Avery Liliko’i Kepolo and briskly citric-hopped Other Half Forever Ever IPA were damn near perfect stylistic representatives (check Beer Index for full reviews).
Just down the street from Eddie’s Roadhouse, CRAFT BEER CELLAR opened October 15, 2014. Its earth-toned stone front, brick red interior, exposed pipes, high ceiling, clean shelves and Brooklyn Brewery banner give the place a certain lucidity. Twenty tap handles fill growlers to go and a serious-minded bottle and can selection (of rarities and well-selected American and international fare) will please any beer enthusiast.