Farming and fermenting at Orange County’s smallest nanobrewery


Make text smaller Make text larger



Photos



  • Long Lot Brewery in Chester is the newest local farm brewery to open in the region.




  • Long Lot Brewery owner Curtis Johnson.




CHESTER — Just three months ago, Long Lot Brewery hit the booming local craft beer scene in Orange County. Capable of producing a mere 31 gallons at a time, this local farm brewery is the smallest in the region—and the newest.

But don’t let their size fool you, big brews come out of this one-barrel operation.

Owner Curtis Johnson, 30, grew up on his father’s dairy farm, but a stint working at Brotherhood Winery in high school opened his eyes to the art of fermentation. He became a home brewer with a dream of opening his own microbrewery one day, but “the cost was crazy,” says Johnson.

Everything changed in 2013 when Gov. Andrew Cuomo created the farm brewery license, making it cheaper and easier for farmers to open their own breweries, as long as they used local ingredients.

Curtis talked to his father about it ... and talked about it ... and talked about it. “I think he got tired of listening to me,” laughs Johnson. “He was like, ‘you gotta do it!’”

They set up shop on the family farm’s open field — the “long lot,” they always called it — and built everything from the ground up. Curtis bought and planted the hops. He unloaded heavy brewing equipment. His father built the tasting room’s bar.

Now, Long Lot Brewery is churning out exciting craft beers, such as the “Glacier Juice IPA.” He's always incorporating unique local ingredients, such as habanero, pumpkin and squash from his cousin’s neighboring farm, Peace and Carrots.

While he’s achieved his dream of becoming a master brewer, Johnson is still a farmer at heart. Working in the hop yard is the best part of his day. “Gets hot on the farm in summer,” he says “but honestly it’s just a peaceful spot to get wrapped up in my own world.”

EssentialsGet the full nanobrewery experience during Dirt’s Brew Hop: www.dirtsbrewhop.com



Make text smaller Make text larger

Comments

Pool Rules



MUST READ NEWS

WMHS students spearhead local ‘Wreaths Across America’ effort
BY PATRICIA KELLER
WEST MILFORD – The national nonprofit “Wreaths Across America” organization welcomed the Township as an official location in its 2018...

Read more »
Image

Township announces holiday trash collection schedule
WEST MILFORD - The Township announced its trash and recycling collection schedule for the Thanksgiving holiday.
According to the township, if your garbage or recycling...

Read more »

Township proclaims first Small Business Saturday in community
WEST MILFORD – Acting Mayor Tim Wagner proclaimed Saturday, Nov. 24, as the first official Small Business Saturday in West Milford.
“The governing body of the...

Read more »

Camp Hope joins county freeholders to honor vets with free lunch
WEST MILFORD - A group of veterans was treated to a free lunch at Camp Hope on Nov. 9.
The Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the Camp Hope Commission invited...

Read more »
Image

VIDEOS



Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required
Community Newspapers



MOST COMMENTED



West Milford, NJ