New York has many great distilleries and breweries. Spending a day touring and tasting will get you some unique small batch beers and spirits while taking you to some off the beaten path neighborhoods you would have otherwise probably not seen.

In order from South to North, pick a few or visit them all. It will be one of the best days you’ll spend in New York!

Widow Jane. Redhook, Brooklyn

Widow Jane Distillery (Photo Credit: Widowjane.com)

Widow Jane is not only one of my favorite whiskey’s distilled in New York, it’s also one of my favorite whiskey’s in general . You can visit and taste at the Cacao Prieto Distillery (which also makes single origin chocolate and distills cacao-laced liqueurs and rums).  Widow Jane released a limited-edition series of heirloom grain bourbons. They are made with organic New York state grown Bloody Butcher corn, Wapsie Valley corn, and organic barley and rye, the whiskeys produced with the limestone-rich water of the Widow Jane Mine in Rosendale, New York (limestone is what makes Kentucky Bourbons what they are, Widow Jane says the limestone-rich water from Rosendale has an even higher concentration). They are open for tours on Saturdays and Sundays. You can book on their website.

218 Conover St., Brooklyn, NY 11231; 347-225-0130; www.widowjane.com 

While you’re in Redhook go to shop and eat on Van Brunt Street

Six Point Brewery. Redhook, Brooklyn

(photo credit sixpoint.com)

Six Point makes one my of favorite go-to beers, Six Point Sweet Action. Though founded in 2004, they claim that it really all started at dawn of civilization when the earliest societies began cultivating cereal grains to make fermented beverages, and the desire for excellence in the craft of brewing was forged. They are very serious about what they do and it shows in their beers. Since 2004, Sixpoint has made hundreds of different beers, with no plan to stop. Their core brews are available year-round, but they also have rotating and seasonal varieties. In addition, they have several unique ongoing series of beers and super rare brews that are made one time only.

Sixpoint Brewery, 40 Van Dyke Street www.sixpoint.com

While you’re in Redhook drop by Sunny’s for a beer or cocktail. It’s been a bar since 1890!

Van Brunt Stillhouse. Red Hook, Brooklyn

Van Brunt Stillhouse (Photo credit vanbruntstillhouse.com)

Van Brunt Stillhouse takes a time honored traditional approach to distilling.  Sourcing wheat, rye and corn directly from upstate New York farmers.  Making every spirit from scratch in the waterfront neighborhood of Red Hook in Brooklyn.  Their family of whiskeys give a nod to classic styles while remaining innovative, creating bold and flavorful spirits. They are open Thrusday-Sunday. Book for tours or drop by for tasting.

6 Bay Street – 1st Floor, Brooklyn, NY www.vanbruntstillhouse.com

While you’re in Redhook go to Louis J. Valentino Park (Coffey St at Ferris St; nycgovparks.org), where you can marvel at the sweeping view of the Statue of Liberty.

Other Half Brewing, Gowanus, Brooklyn

Other Half Brewing (Photo credit otherhalfbrewing.com)

Other Half makes some of my favorite beers. If I see them on the list I usually go for it and ignore the rest. They are hoppy and refreshing.  Located in Gowanus,  the operation still feels small. The brewery and tasting room have an industrial, grungy feel. It’s unmarked so you feel like you’re the only one who knows about it. New York’s beer scene is electrified at the moment, and Other Half is a big reason why. They use locally grown hops and malts to achieve their wide variety of brews from pale ales to stouts. The tasting room is open Tuesday – Sunday. In my opinion, this should be the first brewery on your list!

195 Centre Street, Brooklyn NY. www.otherhalfbrewing.com

While you’re in Gowanus (if it’s warm) grab some BBQ at Pig Beach

Threes Brewing. Gowanus, Brooklyn

Threes Brewing

Threes Brewing creates craft beer that balances complexity and simplicity. They focus on classic German lagers, traditional Belgian farmhouse ales and hop-forward American ales. Founded in 2014 they have made 60 styles of beers that are poured straight from shiny steel tanks revealed with a slide of the bar shelves. Instead of having their own kitchen and menu, Threes has kitchen space that hosts restaurants from all over the city in two week stints. They also host concerts, art shows, and community meetings in the cozy space. They are open daily, check the website for times.

333 Douglass street, Brooklyn, NY  718.522.2110 www.threesbrewing.com

While you’re in Gowanus catch a concert or a dance party at the Bell House.

Kings County Distillery, Brooklyn Navy Yard.

Kings County Distillery

Kings County Distillery is New York City’s oldest operating whiskey distillery, the first since prohibition. Founded in 2010, they are known for thier moonshine (un-aged whiskey) and bourbon, an award-winning 90-proof spirit with notes of molasses and baking spices.  They also have a rich and decadent chocolate whiskey made with ground cacao-bean husks from They are located in the 117-year-old Paymaster Building in the Brooklyn Navy Yard.  They use New York grain and traditional distilling equipment to make distinctive spirits.  Their whiskeys have won numerous awards from the American Distilling Institute, the American Craft Spirits Association, and the prestigious San Francisco World Spirits Competition, and have been praised by the New York Times, Wine & Spirits Magazine, GQ, The New Yorker and other sources.  The tasting room in the Navy Yard gatehouse, which was built in the medieval revival style in 1896.  They have tasty whiskey drinks made with only their spirits served in saloon like space with the original distressed walls, a handsome bar, and a number of cozy tables. It’s open daily, but check the website for times. They also conduct tours of the distillery Tuesday through Sunday at 3pm and 5pm and on Saturday every half hour from 1:00 to 4:00 with the last tour leaving at 4pm.

 299 Sands St., Bldg. 121, Brooklyn, NY 11205; 347-689-4211; kingscountydistillery.com

While you’re in Dumbo, take a stroll down the Brooklyn Bridge Park.

Brooklyn Brewery. Williamsburg

Brooklyn Brewery

Brooklyn Brewery is one of the largest and most well-known breweries in New York. It can be found in most New York bars and in hip bars cashing in on the Brooklyn (the borough in general) brand all over the world. Located in the hipster epicenter of the world, Williamsburg Brookyn, it’s housed in an iconic former warehouse.  Brooklyn Brewery can be credited as single-handedly creating a renaissance of both micro brewing and industry on Brooklyn’s North Side. The queues for its tastings room’s free tours (every half-hour from 1-5 PM on weekends) stretch around the block. Their brews are reliably bold and refreshing. The very familiar and easy-to-drink perennial offerings like the pilsner and lager are complemented throughout the year by seasonal beers. The tasting room is open Friday-Sunday (Get there early!) They also offer small batch tours for $15 Monday-Thursday and should be booked online.

79 North 11th Street in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718) 486-7422 www.brooklynbrewery.com

While you’re in Williamsburg see a concert at the Music Hall of Williamsburg.

New York Distilling Company. Williamsburg, Brooklyn

The Shanty (Photo credit nydistilling.com)

New York Distilling Company is commitment to using sustainably produced and local ingredients for their spirits. Currently producing two great gins: Perry’s Tot Navy Strength gin an original Navy Strength Gin – at 57% ABV – is the historical proof at which gunpowder might still be fired should it unfortunately be soaked by spilled spirit.  ‘Tot’, a British measurement for alcohol, gives nod to Navy Strengths roots.  It’s aromatic and smooth.  The Dorothy Parker American gin is a blend of traditional and contemporary botanicals including juniper and elderberries, citrus, cinnamon, and hibiscus.  The Shanty, their bar that is connected to the distillery, offers their signature spirits (and many other things) daily. Tours are conducted on Saturdays and dogs are allowed sunday afternoons.

79 Richardson Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211    (718) 412-0874 www.nydistilling.com
While you’re in Williamsburg take a coffee break at Blue Bottle Coffee

Greenhook Ginsmiths

Greenhook Ginsmiths (Photo credit greenhookgin.com)

Steven and Philip DeAngelo are behind this artisanal gin distillery in Greenpoint. They craft their gin on a custom-made copper pot still that works with a vacuum. It allows them to remove air pressure so that the gin can be distilled at very low temperatures. This prevents the delicate aromas of the botanicals from becoming stewed during the process. It creates a beautifully fragrant gin with vibrant flavors unlike any other. With its base of organic locally sourced wheat, Greenhook American Dry Gin is infused with floral aromatics like chamomile, elderflower and orris root, and spiced with bold Thai blue ginger and Ceylon cinnamon. Tours are on Saturdays and can be booked on their website.

208 Dupont St., Brooklyn, NY 11222, 646-339-3719; www.greenhookgin.com

While you’re in Greenpoint (if it’s warm) soak in the views at the Brooklyn Barge. 

Gun Hill Brewing. Bronx, New York

Gun HIll Brewery

Gun Hill is housed in a building with soaring ceilings.  They make fresh, unfiltered, handcrafted brews. They use only the best, fresh, local ingredients to create brews that are not only unique, but have a quality equal to their passion for making it. It’s a welcoming place to be introduced to craft beer. The brewery and tasting room are only partially separated by the bar, and if the brewing schedule coincides with tasting room hours, you can grab a pint and watch the action. They are open daily for tasting and tours.

3227 Laconia Ave, Bronx, New York. www.gunhillbrewing.com

While you’re in the Bronx get some Arthur Ave, the Little Italy of the Bronx. 

If you’re still standing, give yourself a pat on the back for taking full advantage of New York’s distillery and brewery scene!

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-Explorist