Plenty of things in New York City are overrated. NY local brews are not among them -- rather, they hardly get their due. Not fair, considering the city has been brewing since 1632, when North America’s first commercial brewery was built on what’s now Manhattan’s Stone Street. (Eat hops, Portland.)
It’s been a topsy-turvy journey since then. The city hit a brewing peak in the late 19th century -- Brooklyn alone supported 48 breweries, and that was only half the city’s total. Then beer hit a steady decline thanks to bad crops, decreased demand, the growing popularity of national companies like Anheuser-Busch and, ya know, Prohibition. By the 1970s, NY stopped brewing all together, and it took more than 10 years for them to get their mojo back and slowly start up again.
Today, the NY brewskis are better than ever. “The brewers in the city are not only making great beer, but they are transforming neighborhoods and bringing back the brewing scene to what it once was before Prohibition,” says Paul Leon of the NYS Brewers Association.
In a sudsy landscape, what should you drink? Thanks to the storied NYC water, practically any of them -- but here are TapRm's personal faves to get you started. Cheers!