485 Amsterdam Ave (83rd & 84th Sts)
New York, NY
Keels covers many of the necessary criteria for a great pub. To begin with, the beer selection is excellent with about 25 taps that rotate consistently. A few stalwarts provide a foundation, but there is always an eclectic mix of brews.
The bartenders know the beer and can make suggestions, often offering tastes for the patron facing an impossible decision. Likewise, the bartenders are friendly and patient.
A few TVs show a variety of events and it is worth mentioning that Keels supports Norwich City, which happens to be the oft-relegated squad my brothers and I support. Go Canaries. Also, I play for Keels’ darts team, so I’m doubly biased.
Wood paneling abounds and beneath a banquette which runs the length of the north wall, a line of shining plaques stretches from door to dartboard. The plaques indicate the name of each patron who has officially joined Keels’ Beer Club, as well as the date started and finished.
Keels hosts a brewery at least one Wednesday per month. They bring in a few kegs, often some interesting or rare ones, and even a cask. The cask is always a nice touch and while the single barrel may not entice the real beer enthusiast, it is a good option and is well-tended.