Whether it’s the light golden tone of a lager or the deeper amber look of a pale ale, most pints of beer pour in some variation of the colour brown. But sour beers introduce a whole spectrum of more inspiring hues into the mix — with mango brews taking on a tropical tint, passionfruit sours boasting a sunset-like glow, and strawberry blends even rivalling fruit punch in their ruby red vibrancy. 

The exterior of Talea Bryant Park taproom, showing three wide grey columns framing large windows that look into a green space with curved wall niches.
A curved wall niche at Talea Bryant Park, framed in green and featuring a soft mauve partway up and a cream paint for the top half of the arch. Four wooden stools sit around a pink bar table.

New York City’s Talea brewing company understands this segment of the beer market especially well. Since launching in 2019, the beermaker (which is NYC’s first exclusively female-owned production brewery) has become well-regarded for its supersaturated sours. (Recent releases include Watermelon Splash and Tart Deco Banana Split.) In keeping with that same spirit, the beermaker’s fourth taproom, near Manhattan’s Bryant Park, is splashed in a bright, energetic palette that departs from the dark, industrial feel of many brewery taprooms. Credit for the airy, charismatic interior goes to NYC architecture and interior design firm ALA Studio, working with Aerial Design & Build. (Both had also previously partnered with Talea for one of its earlier locations in the West Village.)

The front bar area at Talea Bryant Park, featuring bar stools seated around a curved bar. The bottom is clad in mauve pink tiles. A curved wall niche frames the taps.

Inspired by this new outpost’s proximity to Midtown’s main green space, ALA Studio devised Talea Bryant Park as a kind of indoor beer garden — albeit, a beer garden that reflects the brand’s cheerful identity. “Because of the brand’s personality and the neighborhood context, we knew TALEA’s version of a beer garden had to feel more like a beautiful courtyard where you could sip a refreshing drink, rather than the typical backyard with kegs, corn hole, and big pretzels (although TALEA does have those and they’re delicious…),” says ALA Studio’s Marissa Feddema in the project’s press release.

The main drinking area at Talea Bryant Park, with the bar to the left and bar table seating to the right. Large curved niches divide both walls into three arches, while metal arches also span the ceiling. Orb chandeliers light the room.

The end result feels appropriately stately, yet far from stiff. Powder-coated steel sweeps from one side of the space to the other in curved bands, nodding to the idea of an arcade while still maintaining the space’s incredible height. Arched niches (each padded with acoustic PET felt) add to the grand-but-relaxed ambiance, framing the taps behind the bar at the front and breaking up the large seating area into a series of intimate zones each anchored by its own high-top table. In another homage to local architecture, the Artecraft light fixtures  a a tribute to the chandeliers hanging in the NYC Public Library across the street.

A seating area area at Talea Bryant Park, featuring bar stools seated around a pink table framed by a large wall niche. The bottom of the niche is painted pink, the top is painted cream, and the surrounding area is painted green.

As for colour, the taproom stays true to its outdoorsy inspiration by adopting a rich forest green as its dominant hue. From there, a lively mix of complementary hues help to divide the main area into a series of different horizontal planes. The lower portion of the space — including the curved bar area, clad in Mosa tiles, as well as the four-seater tables that extend out from the opposite wall — is splashed in a soft mauve, which gives way to a creamy tone partway up. (Bold black lines accentuate the transition from one colour to another, while also drawing attention to helpful coat hooks.)

The private dining area at the back of Talea Bryant Park, featuring wooden banquette seating and orangey-red lime wash paint on the walls. Planters hang from the ceiling.

The private dining area in the back, meanwhile, features a reddish-orange limewash paint up top and oak veneer wood banquettes down below. As throughout the rest of the space, hanging planters add to the taproom’s verdant appeal.

The main drinking area at Talea Bryant Park looking out toward the front window, with the bar to the right and bar table seating to the left. Large curved niches divide both walls into three arches, while metal arches also span the ceiling. Orb chandeliers light the room.

And yes, you can still order a standard IPA or pilsner at Talea Bryant Park. And while these brews might not be as colourful as their sour counterparts, they’ll still arrive in a pint glass decked in a bold, graphic design. In an environment like this, even standard brown beers glow a little bit brighter.

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