One of Long Island’s newest craft breweries, the nautical-themed Small Craft Brewing in Amityville, opened its tasting room for the first time to the public over the weekend.
Small Craft was founded in 2014 by brothers Gerald and Greg Sims, who grew up in Wantagh and started homebrewing 10 years ago. After deciding to turn their hobby into a business, they began searching for a location on the South Shore.
“We looked from Wantagh to as far east as Lindenhurst, but everything was very expensive and didn’t have what we needed,” said Greg.
But then Greg happened to work out at a CrossFit gym in Amityville that was outgrowing its space and planning to move. The brothers thought the space would be perfect for their brewery and they signed a lease at 66 Merrick Rd. in late 2016.
After installing a two-barrel brewing system at the end of last year, Small Craft obtained its New York State farm brewery license, which requires it to use a certain percentage of ingredients produced in New York. One of their beers, the crisp Wanser’s Cut wheat beer, is made with 100-percent ingredients from the state.
Gerald and Greg share the brewing duties and currently have nine beers on tap, covering a wide range of styles from German-style Ketcham Kolsch to Depth Charge IPA to dark beers such as Bay House Brown Ale and Dream Boat Stout.
Small Craft’s comfortable tasting room has a bar and seating area, as well as counters where patrons can enjoy flights and pints while overlooking the brewhouse. The tasting room will initially be open on weekends with plans to expand hours in the summer.
Once the brothers get a feel for how much beer is being consumed in the tasting room, they hope to begin distributing kegs to local bars and restaurants. But from a sample of their suds, it’s safe to say Small Craft will have smooth sailing ahead.
Small Craft Brewing is located at 66 Merrick Road in Amityville. They can be reached at 631-464-0186 or on Facebook at @SmallCraftBrew.
Bernie Kilkelly is the editor and publisher of LIBeerGuide.com.