New York City’s Brewers Guild is producing NYC Beer Week starting tomorrow, February 20, and we can’t wait for this year’s SMaSH (single malt and single hop) brews. We’re also psyched for a roundtable discussion at DBGB, a sort of state of union on New York beer culture. Panelists include Kelly Taylor of KelSo, Chris Gallant and Damian Brown of Bronx Brewery, Matt Levy of Peekskill Brewery and DBGB’s own Rory Douthit.
The discussion, moderated by Brooklyn Magazine’s editor-in-chief Mike Conklin, will touch on the changing relationship between brewers and restaurant industry professionals, New York’s emphatic acceptance of craft brewers and “elevating the conversation about beer in NYC.”
We caught up with Kelly Taylor, brewmaster at KelSo, to talk about the panel. He was excited about the explosion of craft breweries in the city — “there’s a brewery starting every day”— and explained that having a diverse group of brewers in the city helps conversations like the Beer Week panel get started.
In terms of restaurant and brewery collaborations, restaurants interested in commissioning custom beers generally reach out to him and they schedule a meeting. He asks chefs to bring a few beers they like, and they taste the brews together and sometimes even blend them. Oftentimes restaurants end up purchasing one of his preexisting beers, but sometimes the collaboration extends further. For example, he recently worked with Momofuku to make a unique beer using sea salt and smoked malt. That process involved crafting several ten-gallon test batches, making small adjustments alongside the team at Momofuku until the flavor was just right.
The panel on Sunday (February 22) at 4:00 p.m., which is the first event of its kind at DBGB, will further explore relationships like this one and expand upon the current climate for New York microbreweries. Stop by on Sunday afternoon to hear their insights and sample beers from the breweries and snacks by DBGB. You can buy your tickets here.