BeerMenus.com, where have you been all my life?
A new Web site indexes what bars in New York have on tap so that you can search for your favorite varieties.
BeerMenus.com, I've been dreaming about you at night. And now you've jumped into my world. We're a match made in heaven.
Here's how it works. Much like a boozier version of Menupages, BeerMenus aggregates bars' beer lineups so that you can search for a particular establishment or for a particular beer to find out where it's on tap (or bottled) and for how much. For those of us who prefer their beer to be a bit more esoteric than Bud Lite or even Stella Artois, this is a godsend. I searched for my favorite variety, Allagash White (a delightful Belgian-style white ale brewed in Portland, Maine), and BeerMenus gave me a list of ten establishments where I could find it along with a Google Maps mashup.
For even more hops-and-barley fun, BeerMenus indexes special events at bars as well. That's something that Going, Upcoming, Yelp, and their socially prolific brethren already handle, but it's still a nice feature.
The nifty little site, which just launched Thursday, currently only extends to New York's prolific bar scene, and within that, it still only has about 150 Manhattan bars' menus available. And unfortunately, at the moment I'm across the country in San Francisco so I can't actually do a field test. I'm guessing it's generally accurate, but beer menus do tend to shift around more frequently than food menus do--that's an area where social-networking features like comments and reviews could help.
But really. Think about what could happen if this expanded: frequent travelers could learn where to find their favorite brews in unfamiliar cities, or learn where they can try out a nice pint of a regional favorite. The site also has plenty of room for recommendations, discovery features, and reviews--like a Snooth for beer.
You'd never have to drink a crappy beer again.