Reporting Rich Lamb
NEW YORK (WCBS 880) – Mayor Michael Bloomberg raised a few eyebrows at a ribbon cutting at the expanded Brooklyn Brewery Monday.
At issue is how Bloomberg likes to raise a glass.
Apparently, the mayor likes his beer on the rocks. He says he has always consumed it with ice.
While that may rankle some beer purists, Bloomberg was all-too-happy to toast Brooklyn Brewery’s expansion.
“This $8-million expansion increases the brewery’s current production of 12,000 barrels a year tenfold to 120,000 barrels a year,” Bloomberg said.
“More than a century ago, Brooklyn was one of the largest centers for brewing in the nation, and for more than 20 years, Brooklyn Brewery – one of the country’s most celebrated craft breweries – has revived and extended that tradition,” said Bloomberg.
“The expansion of our Brooklyn Brewery means that most of our growth in the next three years will be in Brooklyn,” said Brooklyn Brewery President Steve Hindy. “We expect to double our sales in the next three years.”
Right now, most of the Brooklyn Brewery Beer comes from Utica. When the expansion is finished, the bulk of the Brooklyn brew will be actually made in Brooklyn.
The Brooklyn Brewery is preserving the character of the 1870s wood-timbered building in which it operates, but adding capacity means knocking down walls and installing huge new stainless steel tanks.
With the expansion, the brewery has added ten jobs and now employs 49 full-time and 20 part-time employees. It expects to hire another 15 people in the next two years.
Last year, Brooklyn Brewery sold 108,000 barrels of beer.
“Congratulations to Steve Hindy and Brooklyn Brewery on their exciting new expansion,” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. “This growth will help create jobs and make this Williamsburg institution even more ‘stout’ by increasing its capacity ten-fold. So, let’s raise a mug and toast to Brooklyn Brewery’s bright future – and hope there are even more expansions ‘on tap.’”