I took a day off from work to get my hair done and to bottle beer. This is my very Hamptons lifestyle. Off to hair stylist-to-the-stars Marc Zowine at Sag Harbor’s chichi Salon Xavier, then back home to get covered in my own beer. It worked well. In fact the combo seemed to please my husband immensely.
When all was bottled we thought: “we’ve got the whole afternoon…let’s make more beer!”
Beer, like love, bread and pie is best when made at home. It’s so good that our every batch is “taxed” by our friend winemaker Roman Roth and our neighbor Graham Campbell. They appreciate its crisp freshness. At 50 bottles a go, we can’t make too much of the stuff.
So we were off to the Back Alley Brew Shop, located behind Hoptron Brewtique’s sizeable tasting room in Patchogue. This little gem is well stocked with beer-making supplies.
Patchogue is well established as the Beer Imbibing Capitol of Long Island. In addition to Hoptron and the brew shop, there’s the Blue Point Brewing Company, the BrickHouse Brewery & Restaurant, The Tap Room, The Village Idiot Pub, Two Morrow’s Pub and Public House 49. And now, lo and behold, another “beery wonderland” has been added to the rich, hoppy mix—an outpost of the Hofbräuhaus franchise that started in Munich, Germany, “Bierhaus Patchogue,” is right next to Hoptron. We walked straight in for a meal. It looks just like the real thing inside, with steins and carved chairs and a painting of a schloss! They get an “A” for atmosphere and the servers were very friendly and helpful.
But you want to know what we had and if it was authentic. Here goes: Of course we tried a draft beer, but Husband was performing with Nancy Atlas that night so we shared just a half liter of Hofbrau Dunkel. That’s Munich’s dark lager, which is surprisingly easy to drink. Served cooler than you’d get it in the old country—just right for American consumers.
I ordered a “Bierhaus Sandwich” from the lunch menu, a Bratwurst Reuben on marble rye. Grilled, tender bratwurst, a good, mild sauerkraut and Swiss cheese with Thousand Island dressing, served with fabu German potato salad and a fine half-sour pickle. This is a culture that embraces and knows how to properly deploy mustard and salt and bacon. My lunch was delish and satisfying. Husband foolishly ordered the Bratwurst Sandwich with fries rather than the superb potato salad. The fries were perfectly fine but the “sandwich” was swimming in what Husband dubbed “a weird cheese goop.”
We’re planning our next moves—the Professor’s Wurst Platter for him, which consists of bratwurst, chickenapplewurst, knockwurst, haus spicy wurst, wieners, kielbasa and weisswurst and, of course, mustard; Kartoffelpuffer (potato pancakes) and Beer-Fa-Lo Wings for moi.
Did I mention that the prices are unbelievably low right now? That’s “so Patchogue,” and so worth the trip! See you there soon, “with beer on.”
Hoptron Brewtique, 22 West Main Street, Patchogue; 631-438-0296, hoptronbrewtique.com
Back Alley Brew Shop, 22 West Main Street, Patchogue; 631-569-5075, backalleybrewshop.com
Bierhaus Patchogue, 32 West Main Street, Patchogue; 631-475-9200, bierhauspatchogue.com