By Julia Burke, Beer Editor
Responding to increased demand for their beer thanks to a growing local following and massive critical acclaim, Captain Lawrence Brewing Company has announced a move and an expansion. The Pleasantville, NY brewery is moving five miles away to a bigger and better home at 444 Saw Mill River Road in Elmsford.
After over five years in business, Captain Lawrence has built a booming base of tasting room visitors and achieved cult status across New York State and beyond for its innovative and delicious brews, which include a popular IPA and the Smoked From the Oak Series of porters aged in apple brandy, rum and wine barrels; the apple brandy porter was a 2010 NYCR Beer of the Year finalist.
The new 18,250-square foot facility will feature a 40 bbl automated brewhouse, representing a fivefold expansion from the brewery’s current capacity.
Three exciting developments in particular will result from this expansion. First, Captain Lawrence will begin offering 12 oz. bottles of many beers in their lineup including their pale ale, kolsch and smoked porter. “It’s the packaging of choice for the consumer,” brewmaster Scott Vaccaro explained.
Second, an additional 7 bbl brewhouse will allow Vaccaro and his team to experiment with more unique one-off brews, stretching their innovative muscles even more than in the past. Vaccaro says this extra brewhouse will give the team the chance to practice with smaller batches of special beers. “I foresee an IPA, more sours, more barrel-aged beers,” he says. “It gives us the ability to have more fun.”
Finally, Captain Lawrence’s expansion means a serious tasting room upgrade. The brewery routinely fills its current tasting room, and the opportunity to open a space with more room — and more beer capacity — is welcome. “Basically our tasting room now is tiny, non-air-conditioned,” says Vaccaro. “The new place will be larger, will have AC, and we’ll have twelve beers on tap” instead of the current five. Visitors will be able to enjoy Captain Lawrence’s beers this more comfortable, relaxed environment as early as this fall if all goes to plan.