Last week, Clinton Hill Blog founder Robin Lester posted her findings of a trip taken to the Greenpoint Beer Works, a large brick industrial tucked away on Brooklyn’s Waverly Avenue between Fulton and Atlantic. She and another blog reader met up with operations director and brewer Kelly Taylor, who revealed that in addition to filling Greenpoint’s regular daily work order for Heartland Brewery, he has also been developing his own small batch beer, Kelso of Brooklyn. Currently, Kelso is only available by the keg, in three lager varieties: Nut Brown, Chocolate, and Kelso Hop. Taylor’s web site features a list of local restaurants and pubs that serve Kelso; his ale was also served at last week’s unveiling of the world’s eighth wonder, the new Whole Foods on the Bowery.

Apparently during some part of Clinton Hill Blog’s tour of brewery, Taylor mentioned one idea for Kelso’s future would be to open up part of the Greenpoint Beer Works space as a beer garden, but mentioned that he was “unsure if people would come.” To that end, Lester formed a very ad hoc online exploratory committee in the comments section of her blog, in order to gauge response to the possibility of a beer garden in Brooklyn. Judging by the exclamation point laden comments section of the Clinton Hill Blog, the response has been overwhelmingly positive. “I think it would be a tremendous success,” Lester told Gothamist. “Brooklynites are tremendously loyal to the borough and the products made here. Plus, who doesn't love drinking beer outside on a summer evening? It would bring customers in from all of the surrounding neighborhoods - Fort Greene, Bed-Stuy, Park Slope, Williamsburg and beyond." And of course, as Victor Hugo wrote, there is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come.

For New York in general, a beer garden opening in Brooklyn would actually be the return of an idea that once was. Astoria has the Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden, which will turn 100 years old in 2010. As their website reminds us, there were once more than 800 beer gardens throughout the five boroughs.

photo: Clinton Hill Blog