Hudson Valley Breweries in 6 Easy Steps
By Eric Sturniolo
We live in the golden age of New York City beer, but don’t forget there’s lot of great stuff being brewed just north of us in the Hudson Valley. Here are 6 easy steps to help you on your Hudson Valley beer adventure:
Step 1: Leave NYC.
Step 2: Drive about two hours to your first stop… Sloop Brewing Company in Elizaville, NY. Located on Vosburgh Orchards, the tasting room and brewing equipment is housed in a restored 19th century farmhouse. We’d recommend doing a flight of their “Bomb” series of IPAs, featuring single-hopped varieties including Simcoe, Amarillo, and Mosaic. But our favorite IPA was Juice Bomb, a multi-hop brew that’s incredibly… juicy. They’re also brewing some great sours like Sauer Peach, Confliction and All Day Rose, a berliner weisse with wine grape juice. It’s light, sour, tannic and super refreshing. The farm stand has locally made cheeses, pretzel rolls, jams, and produce, some straight from the farm.
Step 3: Take a quick five minute trip to Suarez Family Brewery. They take the ‘family’ part seriously, as it’s owned by husband and wife team Dan and Tay Suarez, along with new brew-baby addition Enzo and brewery-dog Vanah. They take the ‘brewery’ part seriously, too. Dan has an impressive pedigree, brewing for Greenpoint Beer Works, Sixpoint, and Hill Farmstead. With an initial focus on lagers, pale ales, and wheats, the beer speaks for itself. Everything we tried was refreshing and crisp, with simple ingredients but complex flavor profiles. We even thoroughly enjoyed Bones Shirt, an unfiltered black lager, a style we usually really hate. The best of the bunch was Believe You Me, a dry-hopped pale ale at 5%. For the low ABV, and for the style, it’s a flavor explosion of juice, dank and pine. If you’re lucky, the Suarez’s German neighbor will stop by with freshly baked pretzels, aka the best pretzels you’ll ever eat. In the future, look out for their first bottles and barrel-aged beers coming soon-ish!
Step 3.5: As we head down south again, this would be a good time to stop at Plan Bee Farm Brewery (http://www.planbeefarmbrewery.com/) to pick up some bottles. It’s open every Saturday from noon-5pm. Unfortunately, we spent a little too much time at Sloop and Suarez and didn’t make it before they closed.
Step 4: Drive 90 minutes back down south to Industrial Arts Brewing Company, in Rockland county. Located in a super cool industrial complex dating to before the Civil War, it’s a massive, soaring space, complete with a smokestack. Jeff O’Neil (previously of Ithaca Brewery and Peekskill Brewery) is making great beer here. Their flagship, Tools of the Trade, is a refreshing extra pale ale, and State of the Art is an IPA series using a constantly rotating mix of hops (we had versions 32 and 40). But the standout is Pilot, a 7.5% IPA that is full bodied and incredibly juicy. Brewery Bonus: 32oz crowlers are available to go!
Step 5: Eat dinner at The Burger Loft in New City, a 15 minute drive from Industrial Arts, because a great burger and an awesome tap list is hard to beat. They hand-grind the beef daily, hand-cut the fries, and have 12 rotating taps. On our trip, they had beer from every brewery mentioned above, as well as Grimm and Hill Farmstead. The Burger Loft is expanding into the space next door to build their own small brewery/gastropub, and we can’t wait!
Step 6: Sleep. Goodnight sweet prince.
(note: Don’t drink and drive! For the trips designated driver, each brewery offers growler fills for enjoying at home.)
On the Earth/on the web:
Sloop Brewing Co (http://www.sloopbrewing.com/)
1065 County Route 19
Elizaville, NY 12523
Suarez Family Brewery (http://suarezfamilybrewery.com/)
2278 U.S. 9
Hudson, NY 12534
Industrial Arts Brewing Co (http://www.industrialartsbrewing.com/)
55 W Railroad Ave #25
Garnerville, NY 10923
The Burger Loft (http://theburgerloft.com/)
395 South Main Street
New City, NY 10956