The Station House, located at 106-11 71st Ave., is what many of the neighborhood's newer residents have been waiting for: a bar/eatery that serves as a hip hangout.
Featuring handmade furniture and locally inspired décor (the beer-on-tap menu is designed to look like the Long Island Railroad arrival-departure boards), The Station House offers customers more than 40 different types of craft beer and a whiskey selection that would rival most liquor stores.
They are also one of the few bars in the city that offers a cask ale, which is described as the truest form of beer but, be warned, it is an acquired taste.
"We want to turn people on to things they haven't tried before," said co-owner Drew Dvorkin, who has been in the bar/restaurant business for 23 years. "The beer experience is so different than it was five years ago. There was almost a stigma associated with drinking beer before. It was considered unsophisticated, whereas now people are stepping out of their comfort zone and are willing to try new and different things."
Dvorkin says that he considers the place a bar first, and a restaurant second.
"I never wanted to be in the restaurant business," said Dvorkin. "We look at the beer and whiskey the same way a restaurateur would look at their food list."
That said, the food served at The Station House would rival some of the city's most creative restaurants, including dishes like chicken-and-apple sausage, fried chicken livers with lemon zest, short rib-and-kimchi empanadas, and truffle pecorino fries, to name a few.
The most expensive item is the $14 decadent burger, a bestseller according to Chef James Moran.
"The food menu is a fusion between comfort food and bar usuals," Dvorkin said. “The menu is crafted to complement the beer experience. Our food is not food you would expect at a regular bar.”
On a recent weeknight, The Station House was packed.
"They love us," said bartender and manager Vince. "The neighborhood really needed something like this."
"Business has been problematic because the response has been better than expected," says Dvorkin. "We didn't expect it to be this good so soon.”
The Station House is attracting young professionals in their 20's and 30's.
"When we scouted the neighborhood, we saw that something was missing," said Dvorkin. "When one of the other co-owners showed us the neighborhood and you see a sign for yoga and pilates, you know something is changing."
The feedback has also been very strong, and Dvorkin said one patron told him "you guys are going to save Austin Street."
“I like that the food isn't your ordinary bar food,” said local resident Ben Famiglietti. “You can tell a lot of effort has been put into it. This is a place I would bring friends from other boroughs to."