Thursday, May 2, 2024

Brewery Review - New York Beer Project

The brick building that holds New York Beer Project with a Gastropub sign on the outside.
New York Beer Project

Let’s be honest! The food within the Magic Kingdom isn’t the greatest in the world. It’s no Epcot or Animal Kingdom. Options are often stereotypical amusement park fare (yeah I said amusement not theme)! They can also be pricey.

I had heard cast members talking about the New York Beer Project as somewhere they enjoyed getting a pint and being social. But when I looked at the beers listed on the website, they didn’t seem like they were for me. But recently on a Sunday Funday to the Kingdom, we decided to visit, and I think friends we have a hidden gem!

First, we have location! New York Beer Project Orlando is about 15 minutes from the Magic Kingdom parking lot. Much of that drive consists of driving near Magic Kingdom area resorts, getting a super exciting backstage view of the main cast member parking, and neighborhoods close enough to the magic to dream about relocation. The brewery itself is located in a small shopping area, where it anchors the area. It is big, inviting stone, with plenty of parking. It feels like it’s from an earlier era, but it’s also clearly a new build. 

The open dining room at New York Beer Project including a full bar.
Wood and Open Decor

Second, we have the atmosphere! The inside is warm, full of wood, open, and so much seating and room for activities. It reminded me in a good way of being in a polished chain family restaurant where everyone feels invited into the super clean space. And there was lots of seating. We were in one large room, and I could see another one that I never entered. Next to me was a mix of customers from the retired couple enjoying an alcohol-free brunch to the three-generational family holding a celebration and playing board games. If you have someone in your group saying, I don’t like breweries, great because you don’t have to feel like you are at one at New York Beer Project. Still, some vibes remind me of other breweries like garage doors that open to the inside from the patio and trees inside which trick my mind into thinking I’m having pint outside! 

A plate of Smoked Brisket Hash & Eggs with a runny fried egg on top of a plate of brisket and hashbrowns.
Smoked Brisket Hash & Eggs

Third, we have the food. I will 100% return because of the food. I ordered a brisket and hash bowl that was delicious and filling. My companion grabbed a breakfast sandwich as suggested by the waiter that combined a nice sourdough bread with all the tastes of morning. There was a pretzel, mozzarella sticks as big as my hands (or at least they seemed that way), and more options that I want to try and didn’t have room for. And this was just the brunch menu served on Sunday. I will come back, I will come back when it’'s not brunch. The prices were also very reasonable, with me comparing the cost to Disney's quick service options. So yes, I would absolutely when hungry take the drive to the brewery to eat better food than a okay Disney burger. 

A flight of three different colored cocktails in a metal stand for the Jamaican Me Crazy Flight
Jamaican Me Crazy Cocktail Flight

They also have plenty of non-beer options. My companion was pulled to this location for the Jamaican Me Crazy cocktail flight with a Rum Punch, Painkiller, and Fishbowl. The Painkiller was the winner. This was just one fun addition offered in April. But with a full bar, your non-beer fans can find something to drink.

Oh yeah, we should likely mention the beer, right? I got a flight and grabbed some things I thought might be flagships. In choosing the flight I was excited, there were around 20 taps to choose from, not the 8 to 10 I expected from the website. I do love some choices and the fact there will be plenty of options when I return. 


a flight of four different colored beers in a wooden frame.
The Flight!

  • “Orlando Lager”: It’s the flagship commercial lager of the brewery. You need it on tap for your Coors Light fans. And while it was brewed to style, I won’t order it again due to style preferences.
  • “Destination IPA”: Every brewery needs a flagship IPA that helps set expectations. With a name and logo like this, I know it has to be the flag, yet it was surprising. It was bitter, I could taste all the 77 IBUs, which most flagships tend to lower those IBUs to be drinker-friendly. It reminded me of some double IPAs and I applaud the swagger to be bitter.
  • “Coconut IPA”: This was another surprising beer to me. It was bitter with 69 IBUs. But the coconut, which I am fan of, was not hints or reminders of coconut but full-on flavor giving you a bitter tropical vibe. My companion who does not like IPAs however did not enjoy their sip. So it’s more for the IPA fan than the coconut fan.
  • “Salted Caramel Macadamia Stout”: This was a nice English-style stout with some sweet and nutty undertones. The sweetness does hide the 8% ABV, so don’t have too many because it will sneak up on you.

Overall, it was a successful flight with really only one beer I would not consider in the future due to personal taste. But you can also get beer to go with me grabbing a crowler of the New England IPA “The One v6” and I thought this was a good bet for being a nice easy-at-home drinker. I will say with the take-home options there were not any unicorn beers. But not every brewery has constant big beer options for guys like me.

New York Beer Project, is a very small chain. There are locations in Orlando and three in New York state. The original was built in Lockport New York, built new to look old. I get those vibes from the Orlando location also. But it does look like there are more possibilities for future growth!

Who Drinks Here?: The Magic Kingdom is busy today. You are hungry, and you don’t want to pay Disney prices for your hungry party who have a lot of different food interests. New York Beer Project will take care of your group, give you a small respite from crowds, and share their AC with you. Oh…and they have solid beer!


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