Another New York City Beer Week is on tap, and this one promises to be bigger than ever. The annual event showcases the city's growing number of craft breweries. NY1's Roger Clark has a preview.
If you are a fan of beer, you can't help but be a bit envious of brewmaster Kelly Taylor taste-testing his creations at Greenpoint Beer Works, which makes beer for the Heartland Breweries and his own KelSo brand of suds, among others.
"We're doing 22,000 barrels of beer a year — that's our total capacity out of here," Taylor, who owns KelSo Beer Company, said at his brewery. "Right now we're around 20,000, which is 40,000 kegs worth of beer."
The brewery, the city's second-largest, is one of those featured in the 8th Annual New York City Beer Week, which runs through Feb. 28.
There will be hundreds of events in bars, restaurants, and retailers around town, celebrating the city's bustling craft beer business, which has expanded from four breweries when Beer Week started to 24.
It's all curated by the New York City Brewers Guild, of which Taylor is president.
"Seems like there is a beer bar, beer restaurant every block," Taylor said. "It used to be you'd have to search out and travel and go to them. Now they are in your neighborhood."
And the owners of watering holes and eateries say customers drink up when they have locally made beers on tap.
Todd Feldman of Speedy Romeo in Clinton Hill serves KelSo, which is made just a hop, skip, and a jump away.
"Since we opened four years ago we've always had a local beer menu," said Todd Feldman, the owner of Speedy Romeo. "Now it's just getting easier because there is more variety."
And there will be plenty of variety during Beer Week, including 14 local beer makers brewing up special recipes using three malts and three hops grown exclusively in New York State.
It's enough to make craft beer lovers say, "Where do I sign up?"
Chris Kuzme is on the brew crew at KelSo and makes his own called Cuzett Libations.
"Our job is to just make it with the best quality that we can, with an informed opinion, and not let anything slip out there that we are dissatisfied with," Kuzme said.
To find out about all of the Beer Week events, there's an app for iPhones and android phones, or just head to NYCBeerWeek.com.