After a brief crossing of New York Harbor aboard the Ikea ferry, we first hit up Rocky Sullivan's for two pitchers of Six Point Craft Ales' Righteous Rye and Apollo Wheat. Then, it was back to the rain for a walk down to Steve's Authentic Key Lime Pie. There, we added a new word to our vocabulary, one that we will be using often - swingle. A swingle is a mini key lime pie (made with fresh limes), dipped in chocolate, frozen, and served on a stick. It is the most fabulous popsicle ever invented. An added bonus of a visit to Steve's is at the plant nursery next door, you can view the Statue of Liberty from the only spot in New York City where she is facing completely forward (as she is meant to be oriented in the direction of France.)
Then the real drinking started. Ian had arranged a private tour of the Six Point Craft Ales brewery, which happens to be next door to Rocky Sullivan's. After being treated to their kegerator and a small-batch brew specially made for one brewer's wedding (Hops of Love - if you're lucky, you can still find it at Pacific Standard, Swift, and soon at Huckleberry Bar), brewery owner Jeff Gorlechen took us on a tour of the whole operation. We got to taste malts, hear tales of inadequate forklifts, learn about the subtle alchemy of brewing (don't add any "bullshit" to beer), listen to the rumbling belly of the brew kettle, and drink right out of the fermentation vats (some ice cold Bengali Tiger). Many of the veteran drinkers on the tour hailed it as the "best brewery tour ever," "better than Guinness," and "I'm so wasted." So we all owe our thanks to Jeff and the brewmaster, Shane Welch, for all the unfiltered goodness of Six Point.
Somehow, Ian managed to drag us to two more bars after that - Hope & Anchor, where we recharged with some food and drank a few cans of Dale's Pale Ale (word up, Colorado - they're having an event for Craft Beer Week this Thursday), and Bait & Tackle, where we admired the taxidermy and forgot what we were drinking. We also shot some deer (the electronic kind).
In the end, what we expected to be a two-hour leisurely walk along the historic waterfront of Red Hook instead turned into a nine-hour pub crawl so far unmatched in our experience. Keep up the good work, Ian, and we hope to see you all enjoying the awesome events of Craft Beer Week.