by Alice DuCharme
posted on January 17, 2019
Craft breweries exist on the periphery of Manhattan: Bronx Brewery and Harlem Brewing Company to the north, Big aLICe Brewing and LIC Beer Project to the east. But the borough far-and-away most associated with the craft brewing scene is Brooklyn — one company has even turned that association into its entire brand.
Most of Brooklyn’s breweries are less than a mile from the G train, making it easy to traverse the borough in search of your favorite local beer. Occupying repurposed warehouses with sleek wooden decor, industrial-chic is the name of the game in craft brewery Brooklyn. Many have argued that craft breweries breed gentrification and vice versa, leaving a question for you on your journey on the G: which came first, the craft brewery or the Whole Foods?
Photo Courtesy: hollaatyourbrew
A block from the Gowanus canal, hoppy IPAs shine at Other Half. Don’t shy away from double IPAs or the lactose that features prominently in some of its best brews. There’s usually a pilsner or wheat on tap if IPAs aren’t your thing; let the bartenders know what you usually go for and they’ll help you find something you’ll like. Be sure to grab a few beautifully-designed cans of your favorites to go.
Mmm...Fruit Dream, We've Been Out There in Orbit, Trip Mosaic Dream
Photo Courtesy: TB
The flagship Threes Brewing is on the Gowanus-Park Slope border, but they have a satellite bar in Greenpoint if that’s more your speed. The Gowanus location has a backyard seating space which is great during warmer weather. Threes is a community brewery, best evidenced by its weekly Teacher Appreciation happy hour. If you’re looking for a place where Pilsners and Lagers aren’t an afterthought, Threes Brewing is always a solid choice. Additionally, they’ve got a full bar and food from the Meat Hook, so it’s a nice option if you’re with the less-beer-inclined.
SFY, Here Ya Go, Voluntary Exile, Eternal Return: Apricot, Unreliable Narrator
Photo Courtesy: @kcbcbeer
You’ll have to hop on the L for this one, but it’s worth the trip. At just two years old, KCBC is bringing brewing back to its pre-Prohibition home of Bushwick. Try anything from its Zombie series, or one of its many collaborations with other local breweries. In addition to high-quality brews, KCBC reigns supreme as far as memorable names and can design go.
Ridiculously Dangerous Precedent, Superhero Sidekicks, Creature From the Deep, Into the Machine
Photo Courtesy: Craft + Carry
While not actually a brewery, Craft and Carry, in the DeKalb market, is still a must-stop for beer lovers. Here you'll find a solid selection of cans as well as eight rotating taps. Market rules permit walking around with drinks in hand, so grab a pint — try something from Red Hook’s Sixpoint; its highly-anticipated taproom has yet to open — and find a meal to match. From Bread & Spread sandwiches to Pierogi Boys, there’s something for everyone in the Downtown Brooklyn food hall.
LIC Beer Project Ardent Core, Boulevard Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale, Grimm Magnetic Compass, Fair State Roselle Hibiscus Sour Ale
Photo Courtesy: BB
Just because this is the largest, and arguably, best known of these breweries doesn’t mean you should discount it. Brooklyn Brewery manages to exude neighborhood taproom more than international corporation, which is an impressive feat given the company’s scale and its product’s popularity. Save for the gift shop at the entrance, its Williamsburg facility succeeds in giving off the hyper-local aesthetic, with long, communal tables, free video games, and a good vibe. Come here with a large party or for a post-dinner winddown for familiar choices and limited releases. Prices are a steal compared to the cost of a Brooklyn Lager pint at bars down the block.
Brooklyn Winter Lager, Brooklyn Pilsner, cellar bottle pours, Kinda Dry Hard Cider, Black Chocolate Stout
Photo Courtesy: circabrewingco
If you are looking for a place that functions as both a craft brewery and a cozy dinner spot, Circa is the move. Here pints can be paired with pizza, Iberico ham, rosemary fries, or a cauliflower steak. They’ve got a wide range of beer options as well as a suggested liquor pairing for each one (e.g. Brooklyn Gin with Saison). Circa is also a good destination if you’ve got beer-shy friends in tow; in addition to sour beers and stouts, Circa offers up cider and a decent wine list.
Spruce Ale, Rotator IPA, Transmitter F3, Nitro Bitter
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