With Foster's claiming they are "Australian for beer" and Ireland's Guinness obsession, beer culture has always seemed infused with regional pride. Brooklynites are not different in this trend, flocking to city staple Brooklyn Brewery to get their barley fix every weekend. The brewery hosts tours on Saturday and Sunday afternoons on the hour, where patrons can see the machinery behind the brew. The tour explains both the long and elaborate brewing process and the history of craft beer in New York City. Brooklyn Brewery is one of New York's foremost craft breweries and one of the top 20 breweries in the United States. But it started with two men and a dream to renew New York's brewing past. Owner Steve Hindy got the idea after years of living in Saudi Arabia, working as a foreign correspondent and brewing his own beer at home. He partnered with co-owner Tom Potter and the two launched the business in 1988. The brewery had only five customers during its first week in operation. "It's an inspirational story for any person who has a dream to start their own business," the tour guide of Saturday's tour said. Although 80 percent of its distributed beer is brewed in Utica, N.Y., because of city operation costs, the brewery considers itself to be a native institution of Brooklyn. "We're continuing to expand our operation. We're moving more to Brooklyn, so be on the lookout for us," the guide said. "Some exciting things are happening." After the tour, patrons can try different brews on tap, some exclusive to the brewery itself. "The Local 2 is a little darker, a little sexier in color and taste," the guide explained. "The Local 1 is more summery." The tasting room is industrial-chic, with exposed brick walls, high ceilings, and metal foundational bars. The brewery also has a collection of bottles from past New York microbreweries on display. Underage students can attend the tour, but the tasting room is strict with checking, so students should remember to bring their IDs.
Diana Wong / Senior staff photographer