The Bronx is known for its food in Little Italy, but beer and spirits? As borough reporter Erin Clarke tells us, a new tour highlighting the Bronx's breweries and distilleries starts next month.
There's something brewing in the Bronx.
And soon New Yorkers and visitors alike will get a chance to sample the Bronx's best on the Savor the Bronx Brewery and Distillery Tour.
"The trolley tour is really a celebration of all of the breweries and distilleries that we have here in the Bronx," said Bronx Tourism Council Executive Director Olga Luz Tirado.
There's no need to worry who'll be the designated driver.
The Bronx Tourism Council's trolley transports passengers to three breweries — The Gun Hill Brewery, Chelsea Craft Brewing Company and the Bronx Brewery, as well as Port Morris and Tirado Distilleries.
"It's great to actually see how the process is done," said Bronx Brewery Marketing Coordinator Andrew Steigbigel. Our Brewers work very hard every day so it's actually great to see how the process is actually done"
It's a chance to increase tourism while also getting the word out about this growing industry in the Bronx.
"I think it's great," said Gun Hill Brewery co-owner Dave Lopez. "I think it's necessary because people need to know that there's this booming business and sector of business coming up in the borough."
And on the tour you get these passports. When they're stamped at each of the five locations, you can take them to four participating bars or restaurants and you get your first pint free there.
Along the way, there's also a history lesson of Bronx brewing dating back to the borough's forefather.
"Jonas Bronck was a brewer," said Bronx Historical Society Education Director Angel Hernandez. "The Van Cortlandts were brewers. But it was in the 1870s in the south Bronx you had almost 15 breweries operating at once and this all came with the German immigrants."
That brewing history is continuing strong today with the businesses on the tour all opening up within the last five years.
Officials hope to highlight the breweries and distilleries as part of a trend of the Bronx getting better every day.
"It is a big impact of economic development," said Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation President Marlene Cintron. "it gives us an opportunity to invite people from other boroughs and of course tourist to come to the Bronx and see what the new Bronx is all about."
For more information about the tour, visit the Tourism Council's web site.