Finding a gastrobrewery in New York City can be tricky, especially since they are few and far between. 508 Gastrobrewery, located in SoHo, fits the bill and with such a savvy chef and entrepreneur at the helm, it's no wonder it's been such a success for the past six years. Jennifer Hill opened the restaurant back in 2008 after having worked under prestigious chefs like Mario Batali and running a restaurant in the British Virgin Islands. She studied at the Institute of Culinary Education, as well as New York University, and her skills and prowess are on full display at 508.
Her dedication to her craft is undeniable — just ask her about how 508 Gastrobrewery was able to survive Hurricane Sandy. With no power, Hill hauled bags of ice and armfuls of candles to the restaurant so that they could stay open, whipping up what she could in the kitchen for people who needed to eat. All of this with six feet of water in their basement and brewery!
Shortly after the disasterous hurricane, Jennifer brought on Chris Cuzme as the brewer for the restaurant and now he is a co-owner with Jennifer. While Chris works on a constantly changing menu of beers, Jennifer keeps busy experimenting in the kitchen, always changing up dishes and adding new options to the menu. The pair work together exceptionally well, as evidenced by their beer pairing menu offered on Mondays. From 5:30 - 7:30 pm, diners can choose three dishes along with any number of beers for just $39. In fact, Hill occassionally even uses beer in her recipes to shake things up.
The food at 508 doesn't disappoint, with a hefty menu of options, from tapas and pastas to burgers and flatbreads. “In many ways, cooking and blending the right ingredients to make delicious food is symbolic of Manhattan," she told us. "All the flavors are here; in one gigantic city that breathes amazing and diverse food, it’s hard to find a taste this city doesn't have or can’t get." With craft brewing being such a male-dominated activity, it's a breath of fresh air to see what Jennifer has done for the industry at 508 Gastrobrewery.