Brooklyn Brewery was just the beginning. Thanks to the rise of local microbreweries with on-site taprooms, it’s possible to embark on the hops-and-malt-driven equivalent of a wine-tasting weekend in Napa without ever leaving town.
In their first year, Big Alice’s founders have released more than 100 ten-gallon batches of their nanobrews, each time using a different recipe—these beers are known for eccentricity and adventurousness.
“Astoria’s very proud of us,” says taproom manager Amanda Mayer. It shows: On weekends, crowds pack the room, where it’s possible to order food like pretzels, cheese plates, and a BLT alongside a beer.
Tour the immaculate brewing space or just hang out with fellow local-beer fanatics in the white-walled, soon-to-be-art-bedecked taproom. Try the Coasted Toconut milk stout, which is heavy on the chocolate, with a light note of coconut.
Stop by for an informal brewery tour; order a flight ($8) or a pint ($5) in the wooden-walled tasting area to try beers like the seasonal Schuyler’s American Wheat. Also available: snacks like popcorn and, on weekends, substantial food offerings.
Don’t expect wacky, out-there beers: Other Half’s owners say they’re focusing on Belgian farmhouse beers and West Coast-style IPAs like the super-hoppy All Green Everything, a triple IPA that clocks in at 10.5 percent ABV.
The brand-new taproom—just a short walk from the ferry—is already so populated by everyone-knows-everyone neighbors that you might be tricked into feeling like you’re at a (albeit brightly lit, spacious) locals’ watering hole.
Drop by the weeks-old, ten-by-ten-foot tasting space to try the fruity G3 Golden Ale or sign up for the CSB—that’s Community Supported Brewery; for half a year it supplies you with two large-format bottles a month, plus beer discounts ($175).