“Make real beer for good people.”
That’s the motto and reason behind this great island brewery. It all started with two beer enthusiasts who were also longtime friends and home brewers. The fates of Mark and Pete were intertwined not only by chance but also their dreams of starting Blue Point Brewing Company, something that was not an easy task.
The facility sits on the waterfront property of the former Penguin Ice Factory in downtown Patchogue. Most of the equipment is from the auctions of defunct breweries all over the U.S. It truly has been a brewing of collaboration since opening in 1997.
This Long Island located brewery is not a “west coast” style beer. These beers are all about balance, says their director of branding and communications Curt Potter. But the beers can still pack the bitterness of a nice double IPA he says, promising drinkers will always taste a nice, enjoyable beer.
Today the brewery distributes in 16 states, with plans to expand further, he says.
“We have our eyes on a couple more states – possibly not too far from you,” Curt hinted.
The brewery has a lot in the works. Curt says the White IPA is “picking up steam.” So is the Black IPA, which originally debuted with proceeds going to oil cleanup in the ocean. The gulf may be cleaned up but the beer remains as dark and tasty as ever, with new packaging.
“The cans are really cool,” Curt said. “They look like little barrels.”
Blue Point is all about lending a helping hand. Right now the brewery and a handful of others are in the works of creating a collaboration beer with proceeds helping Hurricane Sandy victims. The revenue from the beers will also help rebuild the damage done to Barrier Brewing Company, located in Oceanside, NY.
Last month, the brewery also participated in No-Shave November for prostate cancer awareness, raising over 15,000 dollars. Also they hold a cask fest each spring and a ten-mile run to the brewery in January, a favorite of Mark, who is a former runner. This brewery loves keeping the community involved in more than just drinking!
One exciting bottle release is the Sour Cherry Imperial Stout – a beer that’s more sweet than sour. It’s a classic Russian-style beer with smooth notes of coffee, sherry and real sour red cherries. The breweries doing a limited send-out, so grab it off shelves while you can.
A few of Curt’s favorite crafts are the Hoptical Illusion and No Apologies IPA, which is his top pick. The IPA isn’t around much so he relishes it when he can. He encourages beer lovers to try all of the Blue Points; they’re all great craft beers.
“Try something new, always,” Curt said. “You’re not gonna go wrong trying a Blue Point.”
It’s not a fancy brewery with shiny, copper kegs and hands-off machinery, but that is part of the beauty of seeing Blue Point in action. It’s not uncommon to find owners Mark or Pete hanging around.
“People coming in on a Saturday are like, ‘There’s the owner!’” Curt says about the experience the average visitor can expect.
Visitors travel from upstate New York to places outside the country like Spain to visit Blue Point. There’s also a solid local crowd, Curt said, that hangs around the tasting room. Curt says visitors can expect not just great beer but a great experience, too.
“You’re going to be able to taste things here in the tasting room you can’t get in a package,” he said.
As a rare experience for drinkers, the brewery has a cask of brew open in the tasting room so they can see the difference from drinking out of a keg.
The Blue Point tasting room is open Thursday through Saturday, with tours given only on Saturdays. Checkout the website to see what’s on tap and don’t forget to “like” Blue Point on Facebook.
“Toasted” is an understatement for this flagship craft. Copper in color, the craft uses six different malts for its toastiness. Balance is a key flavor in this blend of light malt, honey and crisp taste. It has a 5.5 percent alcohol content.
A craft that comes with a brief history lesson: Egyptians used to stuff their pillows with hops thinking they brought vivid dreams. Now, you may not see things after drinking this beer, but drinkers will be “hop-happy.” It has citrus bursts balanced by a malty background. A great beer for hop lovers. It has a higher alcohol level of 6.8 percent.
Fruity to the max, this craft lives up to its blueberry name. There are 732 pounds of fresh, plump and juicy handpicked blueberries squished into every batch. The aroma reeks of sweet fruit and the taste follows suit while still having the balance of a good beer. It has a low 4.6 percent alcohol, so feel free to throw back a few.
This is a chill beer with a conscience – every bottle directly benefits underprivileged children and orphans living in the Caribbean and beyond. Not only will drinking this beer make you feel good, it’ll make you feel real good. The taste is that of a fine copper ale with a twist of spice and floral from the hops. It’s balanced with a rye malt and uses West Coast hops. It has a 7.5 percent alcohol content.
Traditional, lovable and classic are three words to describe this beer. It’s the beer sitting next to you at the game. The beer is hopped at four-different stages, and although light-golden in color, it is packed with flavor. Its English malts create the perfect floral-citrus taste of a great ale. It’s a hop-lover’s heaven. The craft holds a 5 percent alcohol.