“No Sleep Till Brooklyn” proclaim a bevy of postcards plastered across Slope storefront windows. But this time, it’s not being chanted by The Beastie Boys.
Instead, the rally call comes from small-scale beer makers located at the tip of Long Island’s North Fork—Greenport Harbor Brewing Co.
The 2-year-old brewery will be the star of ’s Thursday Tap Takeover series tomorrow, featuring 14 kegs and 2 casks of their whale-emblazoned wares.
“Basically, each month we invite a brewery to bring as many beers as they can and tap them from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.,” explained Matt Barclay, one of Bierkraft’s über-knowledgeable beer mavens. “Especially specialty beers, one-offs and rarities.”
In fact, many of of the suds poured tomorrow night will be exclusively available at Bierkraft, such as a new Citrus-Infused IPA.“Theirs will be the only keg in the city,” said DJ Swanson, head brewer for Greenport Harbor. “It’s a nice, summery, American IPA infused with real citrus fruit from oranges, grapefruit and tangelo. So it’s a little bit different.”
Other featured brews will include their Belgian IPA, Ahtamatic IPA (made with Ahtanum hops), Anti-freeze (“a malty, English old ale, not typically available during this season”), Triton (“a bold barleywine”) and Kitchen Sink, among other wild-card cask ales.
“We like to experiment,” said Swanson, mischievously.
But interested beer lovers should consider themselves warned, it gets very crowded.
“Now that Bierkraft has its outdoor garden in the back, everyone arrives early, vying for a seat under the stars,” observed one patron.
The crowds are attracted not only by the breezy atmosphere and obscure offerings, but by the opportunity to interact with the beer makers themselves. In the past, some brewers have even traveled from out of state in order to answer questions, proving that the events have become as popular among brewers as with with customers.
“We're pretty much going to have the whole crew there,” Swanson told me over the phone. “I'm excited because some of these beers I haven't been able to taste in over six months, myself. We only ever have 8 beers on tap at the brewery. So it will be a surprise for us too!”
"It will be the biggest tapping event we’ve ever done," he added.
So if you can’t get to this particular Thursday Tap Takeover, don’t get yourself in a froth. There are more to come: “Sometimes we do one on a style of beer, not a particular brewery,” Barclay says. “For instance, we recently did an IPA Takeover featuring nine IPAs on draft and it was nuts!"
"So many people came," he said, "and the guys from Kelso had to run over and change a keg halfway through the evening." Barclay said they plan on another IPA Takeover the last Thursday of this month.
Other themes have been as randomly inspired as "Nautical beers."
The best way to keep track of upcoming events is to follow Bierkraft on Facebook or Twitter, as Barclay admitted that there is no longterm calendar in place just yet.
Thursday Tap Takeovers never require a cover or entrance fee. Just show up and pay by the pint.
And if you really want to do it right, make a meal of things by pairing your pour with one of the great bites offered by the kitchen: a frosty Porter would be the perfect summer foil for one of the Shameless Ice Cream Sandwiches chilling inside the freezer case.