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New Fifth Hammer Brewery and Taproom Opening in LIC, Owner Says

By Jeanmarie Evelly | August 6, 2016 11:36am | Updated on August 8, 2016 8:22am
 The future site of Fifth Hammer Brewing Co. in Long Island City.
The future site of Fifth Hammer Brewing Co. in Long Island City.
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Courtesy Chris Cuzme

HUNTERS POINT — Another brewery is on its way to Long Island City, a neighborhood already known for being a hops hotspot.

Chris Cuzme and his business partner David Scharfstein got the keys this week for the 5,000-square-foot, formerly-industrial space on 46th Avenue near Vernon Boulevard, which they plan to renovate and reopen sometime next year as a brewery and taproom called Fifth Hammer Brewing Co., Cuzme said.

Cuzme, a musician who's active in the city's brewing scene and who formerly worked as a brewer at Manhattan's now-closed 508 GastroBrewery, says Fifth Hammer won't focus on making any specific type of beer, but will offer a variety.

"There are two kinds of beer: Good beer and other kinds," Cuzme said. "We're going to make good beer."

The brewery will use a 15-barrel system, with one half of their location devoted to production and the other half to a taproom where patrons can sample Fifth Hammer's beers as well as those from other New York breweries, and enjoy live music.

Cuzme said they may serve simple foods like cheese and charcuterie to go alongside the brews, and is toying with the idea of offering a "pincho" a morsel of food served on a toothpick, popular in Spain — with each beer they serve.

They are shooting to open the space by early 2017, and Cuzme said it may take a year or so depending on how construction goes.

Once open, Fifth Hammer will be the fifth brewery with a taproom operating in Long Island City, joining neighbors Rockaway Brewing Co., Big Alice Brewing, LIC Beer Project and Transmitter Brewing.

"I'm really excited to be part of that LIC beer trail," Cuzme said.