WHO: Beast, which opened in October 2022, is a joint effort from chef Kevin Viteri and Biercafe co-owners Nick and Jessica Forlano. Viteri, also the head chef, honed his barbecue skills at Blue Smoke in Manhattan and New Jersey’s SmoKING and Kimchi Smoke. His interest in exploring the boundaries of barbecue beyond its classic Southern flavors began in his native Jackson Heights, Queens—a melting pot of international cuisine.
WHAT: Viteri prepares all the meat in what he calls “New York style,” meaning it’s smoked Texas style (with hickory and cherrywood) and rubbed in a medley of spices that pay homage to his multicultural roots. The best way to taste his signature flavors is by ordering the Beast Platter—a sampler of smoked brisket, pulled pork, Peruvian chicken, a rack of gochujang-glazed ribs, and two large sides. According to Nick, Southerners tend to pair their barbecue with lager, so the Beast bar is stocked with Czech and German beers. Another must-try: the wings. They’re cherrywood-smoked and tossed in a dry or wet rub served with “boujee” blue cheese (the black truffle oil makes it fancy) or green goddess ranch. The brisket—smoked low and slow—is special, too, says Viteri.
WHY: The Forlanos, who are Fishkill residents, wanted to attract more visitors to the village and additional restaurant options is always appealing. Plus, who doesn’t love great barbecue?
WHEN: Beast is open on Fridays for lunch and dinner; Saturdays for brunch, lunch, and dinner; and Sundays for brunch. Brunch is a treat with options like Beast BBQ omelets (three eggs, smoked brisket, caramelized onion, and cheddar cheese, served with hashbrowns), sausage gravy and biscuits, fluffy buttermilk pancakes, and bananas foster waffles. The killer bloody Mary is garnished with a chicken wing and slice of pork belly. Since the restaurant has limited indoor seating and they don’t take reservations, considering visiting this spring when the patio’s open.
WHERE: The restaurant is housed in the former National Bank of Fishkill at 1064 Main Street. The building, erected in 1857, was also the town hall for a time. “Customers have told us they got their marriage licenses here,” says Nick. “It’s got good connections and good history.”
Related: Fishkill Is a Must for Foodies and Families in Dutchess County