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The Patchogue Beer Project is slated to open this fall. (Credit: BJ Gamboa)

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Patchogue has been making a name for itself as a go-to dining and drinking hub on Long Island. This fall, the village will add another reason for craft beer lovers to visit the vibrant downtown: The Patchogue Beer Project.

The Patchogue Beer Project, co-founded by Mike Philbrick of Port Jeff Brewing Company, is taking an old school approach by offering established local brewers a chance to collaborate on passion project brews — just like they did in the old days.

Many of Long Island’s brewers began at home with stainless steel pots boiling on kitchen stovetops or propane burners in the backyard. They brewed collaboratively on D.I.Y. systems, learning together as they swapped recipes and shared ingredients and techniques.

Philbrick hopes the Beer Project will be a destination for creative collaboration between two (or more) experienced, professional brewers to make beers not found on shelves at local distributors or on taps around the island.

“Right now many breweries are trying to balance what they need to brew [versus] what they want to brew,” said guest brewer Paul Komsic of neighboring BrickHouse Brewery. “[The Beer Project] will free up many brewers to do things that have been putting on the backburner… and to push themselves to new creative levels.”

The Beer Project boasts a five barrel system (meaning that it can brew ten kegs of beer at a time) and six, ten-barrel fermenters giving brewers the ability to create whatever they want without the obligation of producing their flagship beer or worries about tying up resources.

“I think the concept of having another brewery in Patchogue is amazing, especially one that is all about [making] small batch, innovative beer,” said guest brewer Jim Richards of Blue Point Brewery. “As far as I’m concerned, the more the better [and] it just gives me time to hang out with my brewing brothers.”

Operating under a farm brewery license, The Beer Project is able to serve New York State made whiskey, cider and wine — but don’t expect frozen margaritas or Jack and cokes. The non-beer focus will be mainly on whiskeys and a few signature house cocktails.  Small snacks will be available and an agreement with neighboring Local Burger allows guests to order more substantial fare while they’re enjoying a libation.

The tasting room features an open floor plan with biergarten-style communal tables and windows that afford a peek into the fermenting room and the cold room. Intentionally exposed piping and a row of stainless steel tanks act as functional decor.

“There’s something interestingly romantic about stainless steel,” Philbrick said. “It’s like a [piece of art] or a sculpture.”

The Patchogue Beer Project is aiming to open this fall at 76 West Main Street in Patchogue.

Off the Fork is a new feature on people, places and things that interest us outside of the North Fork. This week’s posts were made possible by Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center.