Syracuse and Cazenovia-based Empire Brewing is now in the finals for a Best Brews of New York title.
The competition lets visitors to Manhattan's Winter Garden, in Brookfield Place, taste 15 craft beers. Empire was in the first week of tasting, up against 4 other breweries, and came out on top in the voting.
Competitors last Thursday included Southern Tier Brewing, from Lakewood, Captain Lawrence Brewing from Elmsford, Peekskill Brewery and Catskill Brewery.
Next Thursday, all five competitors are from Long Island: Barrier Brewing, Oceanside; Blue Point Brewery, Patchogue; Greenpoint Harbor Brewing, Greenpoint; Oyster Bay Brewing, Oyster Bay; and Montauk Brewing in Montauk.
The final preliminary round includes New York City area craft breweries on March 7th: Coney Island Brewery, Brooklyn; Harlem Brewing, Harlem; Mikkeller, Queens; and The Bronx Brewery , the Bronx.
The final round will be on March 14th, and the pre-publicity says the 'People's Choice winner will be decided by attendees and a 'notable' beer connoisseur. All beer sales in the competition benefit Habitat for Humanity. This is the second year for the Brookfield Place competition.