Greg Engert
Greg Engert Credit: Stephanie Breijo

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Neighborhood Restaurant Group is opening its first concept outside of the D.C. area, on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. The Grand Delancey will debut in the fall inside Market Linea 120,000-square-foot food hall located below Delancey Street boasting 30 food vendors. “We are targeting opening in October,” says beer director and partner Greg Engert

Engert began building a name for himself with NRG when Rustico Slaters Lane and ChurchKey opened in 2006 and 2009, respectively. Since then he’s developed beer lists for all of the company’s restaurants and bars including The Sovereign and Owen’s Ordinary. The company added a brewery into the mix when Bluejacket opened in 2013. Engert also spearheads the annual Snallygaster beer festival.

Save for the fast casual sector, it’s not often that a homegrown D.C. restaurant group makes a foray north. It’s far more common for New York restaurateurs to test the market in the District. NRG Founder Michael Babin says his company took its time finding the right opportunity outside of D.C. 

When it opens, The Grand Delancey will boast 50 draft lines, two British-style beers on cask, as well as 40 to 50 bottles and cans. Engert says of the bottles and cans on the list, 10 to 12 beers will be classics that should be on every list “no matter how mundane they seem to people nowadays.”

Belgian bottles like Saison Dupont and Orval will complete the list as well as an extensive cellar selection of some of the hottest beer styles today, like hazy IPA, fruited sour ales, and adjunct stouts. He hopes to showcase some Mid-Atlantic beers from both NRG’s own Bluejacket along with the red-hot Richmond brewery The Veil.

In addition to 45 draft lines, five lines will feature side pull faucets traditionally found in the Czech Republic. Classic Belgian beers from the likes of De La Senne, De Ranke, Blaugies, and Cantillon that are available at ChurchKey will also be available at The Grand Delancey. Building on the classics are New York breweries: Brooklyn’s Folksbier, Threes Brewing, Grimm Artisanal Ales, Other Half, and the upstate brewers Suarez Family and Hudson Valley.

Because drafts and cask-poured beers are required to stay in the bar, The Grand Delancey will have four and six packs of cans for purchase to be consumed in the food hall. Customers can also choose to bring food from the food hall into the bar such as dumplings from Nom Wah, sausage from Schaller & Weber, or a hamburger from Veselka.

“I still believe there’s an upper echelon of brewers in the world that need to be poured at all costs at all times,” Engert says. “De La Senne, Mahrs, and Moor Beer Company, people like Hill Farmstead. These are breweries where if you can get their beer you must pour it. That goes for ChurchKey, that goes for The Sovereign, and that goes for The Grand Delancey. In that way, things are not going to change.”

The Grand Delancey inside Market Line, 115 Delancey Street, New York;