78 LONGISLANDPRESS.COM • OCTOBER 2018
BLUE POINT BREWING:20TH ANNIVERSARY REBIRTH
By BERNIE KILKELLY
One year after breaking ground on its
new West Main Street brewery in Patchogue,
Blue Point Brewing Company
will hold a party on October 13 celebrating
its 20th anniversary and its move.
The party will be at the new brewery
a half mile from the original River
Avenue brewery, which is scheduled to
close at the end of the year. Blue Point,
bought by Anheuser-Busch InBev in
2014, was founded by Long Island natives
Mark Burford and Pete Cotter in
1998. At the time, it was the first brewery
to open on LI in 40 years, since the
closing of Linden Brewery in 1949.
“We thought the time was right
because there were people out there
who wanted fresh, high-quality beer,”
says Burford, who is now Blue Point’s
brewmaster emeritus. “Other parts
of the country had local microbreweries
and we saw an opportunity
to meet the demand in the market
between Montauk and Manhattan.”
After perfecting its flagship
Toasted Lager beer, Blue Point began
contract brewing it at a Maryland
brewery and distributing six-packs
to retailers in 2000. Popular beers
soon followed, including Winter Ale,
Summer Ale, Hoptical Illusion double
IPA and Blueberry Ale.
The beers gained widespread
recognition, including medals at the
prestigious Great American Beer
Festival and a gold medal at the World
Beer Cup. Distribution steadily expanded
from New England to Florida.
The new 54,000-square-foot brewery
cost $35 million and was built on
the site of the now-closed Briarcliffe
College. Its annual brewing capacity
is 60,000 barrels with room to grow to
reach 150,000, Burford says. Production
began in May and according to
Burford, the facility now produces all
of Blue Point’s seasonal beers, which
had formerly been contract brewed.
Construction begins soon on a second
floor tasting room overlooking
the Patchogue River and an indoor
beer hall/restaurant overlooking the
production facility. Plans include an
outdoor beer garden and public tours
of the brewery.
In addition to great beers, Blue Point
became known for its deep involvement
in the Patchogue community
through its support of the Alive After
Five downtown summer festival and
events at the brewery, including the
annual Cask Ale Festival.
“One of the best things about the
new brewery and the growth that it
will bring is that we were able to do
it in Patchogue,” Burford says.
For more info on Blue Point Brewing
Co., visit bluepointbrewing.com.
Bernie Kilkelly is the editor and
publisher of LIBeerGuide.com.
Blue Point Brewing Co.’s new digs debut this month.
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