Astoria Brewery Puts Master Beer Classes On Tap

By Jeanmarie Evelly on January 14, 2014 3:29pm 

 SingleCut Beersmiths is Astoria is offering a series of beer classes beginning Jan. 29.
SingleCut Beersmiths is Astoria is offering a series of beer classes beginning Jan. 29.
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DNAinfo/Jeanmarie Evelly

ASTORIA — If you want to be the king of beers, this class is for you.

Astoria's SingleCut Beersmiths is offering a series of classes to teach the ins-and-outs of craft beer, covering everything from tasting to brewing.

The 10-week "Zymurgy Sessions," — named after the study of fermentation — will meet on Wednesdays starting Jan. 29 at 7 p.m. and will last for two-and-a-half hours. 

The course is designed to prep participants interested in taking the Certified Cicerone exam, the second level of certification in the Cicerone program, which certifies beer experts.

"[It's] essentially a sommelier exam, for beer people," said Amanda Mayer, SingleCut's taproom manager, who holds the title herself. She will be teaching the course alongside Brian Dwyer, SingleCut's assistant brewer.

In order to to take the Certified Cicerone exam, candidates must have already passed Cicerone's Certified Beer Server exam, the first level of certification, which can be obtained by taking a test online.

Mayer said there is no pre-requisite for taking the SingleCut course, though beginners might have to study a bit harder, as the classes are designed for those with existing beer knowledge — someone who is already familiar with different beer styles, for example.

"It's a pretty extensive class," she said. "General beer knowledge is definitely helpful."

Classes will teach students how to taste and evaluate beer, and will include several side-by-side tastings and lessons on different kinds of malts, hops and yeast strains. Attendees will be taught how to serve and pour a pint, and will learn about beer and food pairings, Mayer said.

Participants will also help develop a beer recipe, and will then brew their concoction on SingleCut's brewing system. And they'll learn how to maintain a draft system, including how to take it apart and put it back together.

The course costs $500 for all 10 sessions. Classes can also be taken individually, at the cost of $75 per session.

This is the first time the brewery is offering the master sessions. Last year, SingleCut held a series of beer classes specifically for women, which they will be offering again this year beginning Jan. 30.

SingleCut Beersmiths is located at 19-33 37th St. Anyone interested can sign up for the Zymurgy Sessions classes here.

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