Brooklyn Brewery Partnership: The Future is Beer
Beer sales have been increasing since the early 1980s. In 1984, Steve Hindy was taking the first steps in creating what is now The Brooklyn Brewery. His goal was this: “To bring good beer back to New York City.” At first, there were few resources available, so the original Brooklyn Lager was brewed in Utica, NY. In 1994, Brooklyn Brewery hired Garret Oliver to oversee production. Chef Waldy Malouf, Senior Director of CIA Food and Beverage Operations, says “Oliver is one of the best and best known brewmasters in the world.” Brooklyn Brewery, in partnership with the CIA, will be opening a small brewery on campus, available to the public in the summer of 2015. President Tim Ryan has been planning on bringing a brewery to campus for many years now. This program represents the forward thinking mentality of our school, and sets graduates yet another level above the rest.
All over the country food and beer is growing. It is on its way to becoming a regional staple. Since 2011, there has been a 200% increase in restaurant brewers in New York State. Malouf says it’s because, “American taste in food grew: there is dark beer, fruit beer, Lambic, pilsner, chocolate stout, and all other different types. With interest in food increasing, people wanted to know how beer was made, in combination with the local food movement, it started to grow.” Regional food and local beer have begun to be paired in new ways. An example would be the combination of a microbrewery and restaurant, which, in many ways, is the most accurate expression of a region’s food culture or terroir. CIA graduates are encouraged to join the best restaurants and push themselves to the edge of culinary innovation, which could be a reason why, “The CIA, currently, has about 1,400 graduates involved in microbreweries across the country.” Here at school, each year there are at least two special beer and food pairings dinners. Malouf says the dinners, “instantly sell out, immediately, faster than most of the wine dinners.”
Beer growth can be partially contributed to the positive effects it has on the region and vice versa. New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo says, “By enabling this internationally renowned educational institution to combine forces with one of New York’s most iconic breweries, we will be able to further strengthen the mid-Hudson Valley’s tourism industry to new heights by training the brewers of tomorrow.” It will bring more tourism to the Hudson Valley which will help local communities. As a way to encourage breweries to stay local, in coming years, 90% or more of the hops used must be from NYS by 2024. This will help maintain the Hudson Valley’s regional identity.
The partnership between the CIA and The Brooklyn Brewery will help each student in their career. The program will only be available to bachelor’s students, but each student will be able to taste, watch, and learn about the process. Garret Oliver will be using our brewery as a “pilot brewery.” When a class is not using it, Oliver will experiment, demo for students, and do product testing. When the program is in session, there will be four beers available on tap. The Egg, within the new StudentCommons, will be the perfect way to enjoy a wide variety of made-to-order food, an espresso bar, and, of course, the products of the brewing students. Malouf says, “A lager and pilsner should always be available, but the others will be more experimental. There may be one or two times where it’s not so great, but that’s the idea. It’s a school. This opportunity to experiment and learn by doing is something they truly cannot find anywhere else.” The beer produced in the brewery will be also available in each of the school’s public restaurants. This will teach students about the necessity and benefits of having a beer program in a restaurant. Malouf says, “Beer is no longer an afterthought.” Having a beer program can make your restaurant more profitable, and supporting local breweries can help the economy. Chef Malouf says, “Any high-end restaurant today—Per Se, Jean George, Aureole, high-end bistros, or steakhouses—they all need to have a beer program.” Graduates will be able to sue this knowledge in any aspect of the food service that they go into.