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The Brooklyn Brewery At The CIA

In 2014, we began working with the Culinary Institute of America on a program to bring beer back to its rightful place at the table. A flurry of ideas and the installation of a shiny new brewhouse later, the Brooklyn Brewery at the CIA was born. At the helm is Head Brewer Hutch Kugeman, who came to the CIA after a string of award-winning beers in breweries throughout the Hudson Valley. Brooklyn Brewmaster Garrett Oliver, author and CIA Professor John Fischer, and Hutch created a curriculum designed to give students a completely immersive beer education in the course The Art and Science of Brewing.

Hutch and John work with students in lecture and brewing hours each week. Students are exposed to every aspect of beer that could come up while working in the culinary world: food and beer pairing, maintaining a proper beer list, the business of the beer industry, the proper way to deal with wine snobs,  and beyond. For brewing hours, students join Hutch in the Brewhouse to help produce beer for the CIA’s on-campus restaurants and outlets. Outside of class, students are encouraged to continue to broaden their beer horizons-- not that college students have ever needed much encouragement in that arena. The first three beers produced were the Cleaver IPA, Mise-en-Place Wit, and Cast Iron Stout (brewed from a student-formulated recipe.) The Brewhouse steams away behind glass windows in the corner of The Egg Student Center, attracting many thirsty glances as the bewitching smell of brewing fills the air.

CIA graduates who have taken the class will enter the culinary world with an unmatched knowledge of beer and brewing. These new disciples of beer and food will continue to bring the two together throughout their careers, forever changing the gastronomic landscape. For the rest of us, we can look forward to enjoying their work at favorite restaurants and new locales to come. In the meantime, Brooklyn Brewery at the CIA beers can be enjoyed at on-campus dining locations at the CIA, and non-students of any stripe can follow along with the lectures with the “In Class at CIA” series on the Brooklyn Brewery blog. Extracurricular beer research is up to you and your glass.