It's Beer Week once again; time to celebrate all of the delicious craft beers lovingly made within the five boroughs. With all the beer-related festivities happening at local bars and restaurants, we're talking a look at some of our favorite breweries currently making us tipsy with their handcrafted suds.
(NY Loves Beer/Eric Torribio)
Gun Hill Brewing Co.: Longtime baseball teammates Dave Lopez and Kieran Farrell aren't brewers, but their backgrounds in finance and consulting gave them the idea to start a business, and the duo saw potential in the beer market. They hired former Chelsea Brewing Company head brewer Chris Sheehan and started making beer. The team is intent on making a very approachable lineup, with beers like the light, sessionable Gun Hill Gold appealing to even the most novice drinker. Don't mistake approachable for pedestrian, though—their Void of Light stout took home a gold medal at the 2014 Great American Beer Festival.
Gun Hill is located at 3227 Laconia Avenue between Burke Avenue and Duncan Street in Olinville, The Bronx (718-881-0010, gunhillbrewing.com).
(courtesy Finback Brewery)
Finback Brewery: Homebrewers have the flexibility to try a lot of styles, but once they go pro they often settle on a constant collection of beers to produce commercially. When Basil Lee and Kevin Stafford started Finback Brewery, they didn't want to stop experimenting. The brewers put out an ever-changing collection of beers, with an emphasis on dark styles. Check out their BQE imperial stout, made with local chocolate and coffee from Mast Brothers and Native Coffee Roasters, or their woodsy Smoke Detection.
Finback is located at 78-01 77th Avenue at the corner of 78th Street in Glendale (718-628-8600, finbackbrewery.com).
(courtesy Jeff Rodgers)
Transmitter Brewing: In their 6-barrel nanobrewery under the Pulaski Bridge, Anthony Accardi and Rob Kolb are putting out some of the city's most interesting beers. They think of themselves as a "yeast-forward" brewery. Whereas a typical brewery might work with a couple strains of yeast, Transmitter has collected a library of a couple dozen, which they're using to make funky farmhouse styles. The available lineup is constantly changing, but past successes have included Bx2, an imperial stout soured with brettanomyces yeast, and HG2, a golden ale sweetened with honey.
Transmitter is located at 53-02 11th Street under the Pulaski Bridge in Long Island City (646-378-8529, transmitterbrewing.com).
SingleCut Beersmiths: The craft beer movement has meant a move away from the simple lagers of the macrobrewery era in favor of hoppy IPAs, robust porters, and more complex farmhouse styles. Astoria brewery SingleCut is working to reclaim the lager as a craft style, with variations ranging from a flowery white version, to a hoppy India Pale, to sour lagers flavored with hibiscus and cherry. Want something a little more seasonally appropriate? Try the creamy More Cowbell! milk stout.
SingleCut is located at 19-33 37th Street between 19th and 20th Avenues in Astoria (718-606-0788, singlecutbeer.com).
Other Half Brewing: Since emerging in late 2013, Other Half Brewing has quickly shot to the top of the city's beer scene. Greenpoint Beer Works veteran Sam Richardson and his partner Matt Monahan have been brewing a variety of styles in their space at the southern edge of Carroll Gardens, but it's their IPAs that have put them at the top of lists of new breweries. Their citrusy Other Half IPA, full of Cascade, Centennial, Chinook, and Simcoe hops, is delicious, but that's just the beginning. Stop by the tap room to see what else is on on draft or take home a pack of the freshly canned Superfun! APA or Green Diamonds double IPA.
Other Half is located at 195 Centre Street between Smith and Court Streets in Carroll Gardens (347-987-3527, otherhalfbrewing.com).
Threes Brewing: One of the most difficult parts of opening a brewery in New York City is finding enough room. You wouldn't know it, though, looking at Threes Brewing. The sprawling 8,000 square foot space in the heart of Gowanus contains not just a 15-barrel brewery, but a full kitchen, an event space, and even an outpost of coffee chain Ninth Street Espresso. Former Greenport Harbor brewer Greg Doroski is putting out a small lineup of beers that's currently heavy on saisons. Come warmer months (we can dream, right?) the light, wheaty Table Beer is exactly what I'll want to be drinking.
Threes is located at 333 Douglass Street between Third and Fourth Avenues in Gowanus (718-522-2110, threesbrewing.com).
(courtesy MIKE SHANE PHOTOGRAPHY)
Flagship Brewing Company: Staten Island has a history of brewing, but the industry has been dormant in the borough since the 1960s. Childhood friends and Staten Island natives John Gordon and James Sykes started homebrewing in college, and last year opened Flagship Brewing Company with fellow local Matthew McGinley in an attempt to bring beer back to the forgotten borough. Check out their light, coffee-forward Dark American Mild or their winter seasonal, a caramelly Wee Heavy.
Flagship is located at 40 Minthorne Street on Staten Island (718-448-5284, theflagshipbrewery.com).
Birreria: Up on the roof of Mario Batali's Italian megastore Eataly you'll find Birreria, a collaboration between American brewery Dogfish Head and Italian breweries Birra Baladin and Birra del Borgo. The tiny brewery is the only one on the city producing only cask ales—unfiltered, unpasteurized, and naturally fermented beers. The team, led by head brewer Fred Avila, is making beers that combine Italian influences and Dogfish Head's famously experimental style, such as a "Panna Cotta Porter" flavored with allspice, coffee, and molasses.
Birreria is located at 200 Fifth Avenue between West 23rd and West 24th Streets in the Flatiron (212-937-8910, eataly.com/nyc-birreria)