Recently, I spoke with Erica and Stephen, the insanely nice brain children behind Brooklyn Brew Shop - a do-it-yourself beer brewing operation. They are spreading the gospel of the home brew from right down the street in Prospect Heights, and I implore them to preach on. They're putting the craft back into craft beer, and the inspiration for their booze based endeavor is multi-faceted; Erica's family tradition, a 7 week jaunt in Europe and a New Yorker article about Dog Fish Head helped them take the plunge towards experimentation with hops.
Their philosophy caters directly towards the modern day Brooklynite, or any other borough dweller for that matter. BBS offers attractive 1 or 5 gallon kits that will enhance the decor of any corner in your apartment, and it will fit no matter the size of your domicile. They provide detailed instructions with every kit that allow even first time brewers to approach the task with confidence. Currently, they have a lineup of two beers to create: Grapefruit Honey Ale and Chocolate Maple Porter. I was lucky enough to sample their Blueberry Red Ale, which is still in experimental stages of development, and I must say that if anyone could convert me to fruity beers it is this talented twosome. For those who are more experienced with the art of libation making, BBS offers a plethora of special yeasts, grains and fermentables and hops to keep the creative process alive and well.
In terms of taste, they favor beers of the Belgium persuasion. Ommegang, brewed in Cooperstown, NY, is a favorite of theirs. Their current flavor offerings are a little off the beaten path, but Erica and Stephen have high hopes for much more unorthodox brews. This includes a Lobster Beer, brewed with Lobster shells and inspried by an Irish Oyster Stout, and a Bourbon Dubbel that will be brewed in a bourbon barrel. The excitement with which they told me about their beer hopes and dreams was contagoius and a real pleasure.
You will see this power couple at the Brooklyn Flea on both Saturdays and Sundays selling their goods; I suggest giving them a visit. You can also place orders on their website for pick up at the Flea.
The Brooklyn Brew Shop deserves your attention. They offer you an experience that others in the city do not and it is an experience that you can be proud of. Also, lest we forget, good beer ain't too shabby.