After winning a recent blind taste test in Brooklyn, featuring 12 breweries from Louisiana to California to, you guessed it — Long Island — Greenport Harbor Brewing is taking its Otherside IPA and adding it to its roster of year-round batches.
Over the past couple of years, the brewery's Project Hoppiness has consisted of a rotating cast of India Pale Ale variations, from a Black IPA, to a red-style IPA (Chinook'red), to a Belgian IPA, with several more in between.
Following the blind taste test at Mug's Ale House, GHBC co-owner Rich Vandenburgh said it only seemed fitting to pick the Otherside IPA, a west-coast style IPA which featured five different malts, offering a slightly maltier backbone than normal for an IPA.
"We knew we wanted a full-time IPA and after some discussion about prior Project Hoppiness alumni, we ultimately settled on Otherside (with a strong lobbying effort on my part) as our full time IPA," he said.
Other breweries at the taste test included Blue Point Brewing Company, Sixpoint Brewery, Lagunitas Brewing Company, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Victory Brewing Company, Abita Brewing Company, Troegs Brewing Company, Empire Brewing Company, Full Sail Brewing Company, Peak Organic Brewing Company, and Great Divide Brewing Company.
Vandenburg's business partner John Liegey attended the event to represent Greenport.
"When he called me I could immediately tell his head was bouncing off the ceiling with excitement about the fact that we had won out of the 12 highly respected other breweries," Vandenburgh said. "That is really humbling and a huge confidence builder for us to know that the beers we love to drink are also really appreciated in an unbiased way."
IPA's are known for their hop-forward taste and aroma, though malt and hop variety can offer a spectrum of variety that the brewery's Project Hoppiness has continued to explore. Greenport Harbor is not the only local brewery to start offering a year-round IPA, as Riverhead's Long Ireland Beer Company started brewing their own last fall.
Otherside IPA joins Greenport's flagship Harbor Ale, as well as its Black Duck Porter, as the brewery's other full-time offerings.