The Two Forks are bursting with microbreweries—and why not? What’s better than a beer in-hand, chair in the sand, and waves lapping gently at the shore? We tracked down some of the best beers to drink in the sunshine or enjoy on the deck while the stars come out. Whatever you fancy, you’re sure to find a brew that’ll make you say, “Heck yeah, this tastes like summer!”
The largest craft brewery on Long Island, Blue Point Brewing Company, is a big local favorite. Their seasonal Summer Ale (4.5% ABV) has a tartness not common to light ales. This makes it the perfect pairing for summer picnics and barbeques. And don’t forget Blue Point’s award-winning Toasted Lager (which pairs great with local seafood, no matter the season), or their aromatic and mild Blueberry Ale (available year-round, but screaming with summertime flavor). Visit the brewery at 161 River Avenue in Patchogue. Tours are available on Saturdays at 1 and 4 p.m. Check out bluepointbrewing.com for tasting room hours.
Crooked Ladder Brewing Company, with its crooked little brewery/taproom at 70 West Main Street in Riverhead, has some crisp brews to combat the heat. Summeritis is a light-bodied golden ale brewed with just the right amount of hops to give it a nice citrus finish. Brewing partner Duffy Griffiths says it’s a very drinkable beer, at 4.6% ABV and 21 IBUs. Belgian Wit, another seasonal favorite, is a heavier style beer with a sweet fruity flavor from orange peel and coriander. Visit crookedladderbrewing.com for hours and special events.
Founded just one year ago, Eastern Front Brewing Company is inching its way toward brewing success. A lot of local love is being shown for this new brand. Their Love Lane Lager is on tap at Ammiratis of Love Lane (how’s that for local?). Their beer can also be found at Founders Tavern in Southold, Billy’s by the Bay in Greenport, Sophie’s Rest in Southold and at the Old Mill Inn in Mattituck. Visit Eastern Front on Facebook to find out more, or call 631-905-1535.
Long Beard Brewing Company will soon be opening its doors in the old Second Street firehouse in Riverhead, so you’ll want to keep watch on this fledgling company. Currently they’ve got two brews, Old Scruff Pale Ale (light and refreshing, 5% ABV) and an IPA (hoppy and bitter with notes of citrus and pine). Once they’ve settled in their new location they hope to branch out to bourbon barrel ales, milk stouts, oatmeal stouts and sours. Find them at 24 East 2nd Street in Riverhead, or at longbeardbrewing.com.
Summer Ale (5% ABV), from Long Ireland Beer Company, is a citrus-toned golden ale brewed with English pale malt, pilsner malt, wheat, Cascade and Columbus hops, and lemon peel. It’s available in six packs and on draft. The brewery/tasting room, which is in its sixth year, is located at 817 Pulaski Street in Riverhead. Visit longirelandbeer.com for hours.
Greenport Harbor Brewing Company released its first bottles last year, after years of being available on tap exclusively. Now, this local brewery has expanded to New York City and beyond. The honey-infused Summer Ale (5.3% ABV), features the artwork of East Hamptonite Scott Bluedorn. This golden ale is slightly sweet with a floral finish. Greenport Harbor Brewing has taprooms both at 234 Carpenter Street in Greenport and 42155 Main Road in Peconic. Get a growler filled at either location or find aGreenport on tap at a number of East End bars and restaurants—and don’t forget to look for their bottles in stores. Visit greenportharborbrewing.com.
Many exciting things are happening for Montauk Brewing Company. Montauk Session India Pale Ale is now available by the can at Citi Field. Making its triumphant return is the Montauk Summer Ale, a caramel malt blend with a refreshing finish and 5.6% ABV. This season, there are two new brews on tap: a Watermelon Ale and a Limited Whalebone Cream Ale. The taproom is a showpiece, with floor to ceiling white subway tiles and stainless steel equipment. Visit the them at 62 South Erie Ave in Montauk. Call 631-668-8471 or go to montaukbrewingco.com for hours.
Moustache Brewing Company is one of several great breweries in Riverhead, and a great first stop on an afternoon beer tour. Their latest seasonal beer, Proton, is the first in their new Atomic series. It’s a Double IPA with Azacca, Simcoe and Lemon Drop hops. A great drink in the heat of the summer, it ends on tropical fruity notes (8.9% ABV). Or, try their NoFoRoCo Coffee Porter (4.1% ABV), Moustache’s signature Everyman’s porter infused with Cold Brew Coffee from North Fork Roasting Co. Moustache loves to play around with flavor combinations, but they’ve got one favorite always on tap: Milk & Honey Brown Ale is a sweet, dry beer with a clean finish. Find Moustache beer on draft at local watering holes or visit Moustache Brewing Company at 400 Hallett Avenue, Suite A, Riverhead, for a pint or a growler fill. For tasting room hours, go to moustachebrewing.com.
Port Jeff Brewing Company is having a banner summer. They’ve teamed up with Brooklyn’s Humboldt & Jackson to produce a North American Pale Ale using locally grown hops. It’s a very limited supply, so grab it while you can. If you’re in the taproom, go for the tasting menu. Unlike other breweries where you’ll try just 4–6 brews, Port Jeff Brewing Company lets you sample every beer they have on tap. But, if you’re just looking for one glass to cool yourself down this summer, try their award winning Schooner Pale Ale, or grab a can of their Beach Beer, a summer Witbier (4.8% ABV). Stop by 22 Mill Creek Road in Port Jefferson, or portjeffbrewing.com to find out more.
You probably won’t be seeing six packs of Rocky Point Artisan Brewers beer at your local 7-Eleven anytime soon, but that’s just the way the brewery likes it. The artisan nanobrewery is proud of the freedom that small batches, and a small devoted following, offer them. This season they’ve got fresh casks of their Amadeus Hefeweizen (hints of apricot and clove, 4.8% ABV), North Star Pilsner, Main-Bock (deep gold, light malt flavor, 8.0% ABV) and Circe Belgian Blond. You can grab your own growler at the Rocky Point Farmers Market (Old Depot Park, 115 Prince Road in Rocky Point). Find out more at rockypointartisanbeer.com, or find them on Facebook for more nanobrew updates.
Shelter Island Craft Brewery joins the craft beer frenzy, offering up a selection of brews with locally-inspired names and flavors: 114 IPA and Dune Cottage, to name a couple. No fewer than 20% of the ingredients used in the brewing process are be locally sourced, including honey, lemon verbena, beach plums, and hops. Located at 55 North Ferry Road on Shelter Island, the brewery also offers small bites like flat bread pizza, arancini, and Mediterranean crostini. For more info call 631-749-5977 or visit home.shelterislandcraftbrewery.com.
There were rumors that Southampton Publick House would be closing this year, and we’re happy to say that is not the case. Now, at a fresh location (62 Jobs Lane in the village of Southampton), they’ve got their new North Fork Fresh Hop on tap. Made with two kinds of local hops, it has a smooth citrus finish. Year-round, find Keller Pills, Double White and Burton IPA—each of which lends itself to summer drinking. Find their Summer Blonde out in the wild at your local beer distributor. Visit the Publick House at their new home for dinner and drinks. Learn more at publick.com.
The phantom of the craft beer scene here is Twin Fork Beer Company. The company, founded by identical twin brothers Dan Chekijian of Hampton Bays, and Peter Chekijian of Aquebogue, lacks a brewery location, but that hasn’t stopped their beer from manifesting in bars across Long Island. Their flagship beer, Chromatic Ale (an American Pale Ale, 6.6% ABV), is under a contract brewing agreement with a Long Island brewery. “It’s actually a very easy drinking, but malt-forward ale—not too hoppy,” Dan Chekijian explains. “It pairs well with a lot of foods.” The brew is currently available on draft at nearly 100 locations throughout Long Island and New York City. Look for Twin Fork’s tuning fork tap handle, a tribute to the Chekijian family’s musical background. Learn more at twinforkbeer.com.