In recent months, a fourth brewery, the LIC Beer Project, has opened north of Queens Plaza in recent months. Now that there’s a fourth, the beer-making outfits are collectively launching a late-summer beer crawl starting today, August 14, and running through next Sunday, August 23.
Hyperlocal news website The LIC Post reports that the three nanobreweries in Long Island City are hosting a brewery crawl, complete with passports that visitors get stamped and submit for a raffle.
Rockaway Brewing Company (46-01 5th Street), Big Alice Brewing (8-08 43rd Road) and Transmitter Brewing (53-02 11th Street) are coming together to offer a brewery crawl during beer week, which runs from Feb. 20 to March 1.
It’s great to see these breweries, the “LIC Three” as I once called them, band together to make the neighborhood a more lively destination. Also, can I take credit for this idea?
A few years ago, when Instagram was becoming a thing and people started taking photos of the elegantly plated meals they had at restaurants, I remember reading a screed somewhere that criticized the practice. The author took issue with people using their smartphone cameras to snap blurry, heavily filtered, square photos of “blobs of food.” His rationale was that the image of the food alone didn’t communicate the excitement of the experience.
That spoke to me.
During a visit to Cooperstown in 2012, we stumbled into the dining room of the Council Rock Brewing. It was early October, and the brewery was commemorating Oktoberfest like any good beer supplier would do. Overwhelmed by the choices of beers available, I resorted to ordering a flight. At first, I was tempted to snap a photo of my flight which looked like an artist’s easel covered with several tawny pigments. But I resisted because that photo would not have captured the excited anticipation of sampling each brew. Instead, I posed for a snapshot.
Since then, it’s become somewhat of a theme for each time I get a flight at a brewery tap room. (What can I say? I like structure.)
Last year, I ordered a flight after a very hot, sixty-mile ride on Bastille Day from Poughkeepsie to Beacon via New Paltz. Although I look a little bit exhausted in the blurry photo, I was really excited to cap off a great ride with some delicious beer and kick off a great day in Beacon.
This year, I started to make a conscious effort to make these kinds of photos, as part of a series, especially when I buy a flight at the end of a bike ride.
I was in slightly higher spirits carrying these beers in Patchogue at the Blue Point Brewery after riding there from Jamaica over Labor Day weekend.
And the following week, I posed with one glass from my flight at Greenport Harbor Brewing after riding to Orient on one of the greatest days of the year.
Last month, I had a fellow rider shoot a photo of me posing with a flight at Two Roads Brewing in Stratford, Connecticut, as part of our ride to New Haven.
Another fellow rider more or less recreated the October 2012 photo with this shot of me at the Green Growler in Croton-on-Hudson.
Even on occasions where I didn’t ride a bike to a brewery, I still posed with the flight. I did so at last week’s holiday party at Rockaway Brewing.
Speaking of the holidays, I am now in California for almost three weeks and this first week, I am spending it with my parents. We ventured to do some grocery shopping, and almost immediately, as if I were a computer programmed to do so, I found the tap room for Bravery Brewing, in Lancaster, California.
Twenty years ago, it seemed unthinkable to have a pretty solid brewery in the Antelope Valley. But I think, like an Irish pub and Chinese restaurant, any town worth a damn will also have a local brewery tap room.
And, of course, I’ll be there to order flight and get a photo of me excitedly waiting to try it.
Three breweries in Long Island City: Big Alice, Rockaway, and Transmitter are all within a manageable walk from each other.
It still amazes me how a decade ago since I moved to New York, there were almost no noteworthy breweries in New York State, save for Brooklyn Brewery and one or two more. Today, however, there many more than I comfortably count, such as Sixpoint, Singlecut, Captain Lawrence, Keegan, and Greenport Harbor. In Long Island City, we appear to be following that trend. We now have three breweries whereas a couple of years ago we had none.
All three are within a long but manageable walk from each other. You could also visit all three by biking to each one, as I would almost invariably do.
Big Alice Brewing
8–08 43rd Rd
Friday, 5:00 – 8:00 PM. Their Facebook page lists their hours as 5:00 – 7:30 PM.
46–01 5th St
Thursday and Friday, 3:00 – 8:00 PM; Saturday and Sunday, 12:00 – 8:00 PM
53–02 11th St
Friday, 5:00 – 8:00 PM; Saturday and Sunday, 12:00 – 5:00 PM. Their website lists their Saturday and Sunday hours as 12:00 – 6:00 PM.
You can visit each brewery, one at a time, or take a Friday evening and hop to them all, as their taprooms are all open on Friday evenings. If I get around to visiting all three on a single day, I’ll post a report here.
Update, July 15, 2015: There’s a fourth brewery within striking distance. LIC Beer Project is located on 39-28 23rd Street, which is a few blocks north of Queens Plaza, and open on Fridays, 4:00 – 9:00 PM, and on Saturdays, 1:00 – 9:00 PM.
Almost everyday I ride my bike over some sort of bridge, I don’t really understand how so many bottles get broken, but I see a broken bottle I think I should stop and clean it up… well today I finally did.