North-Forks would like to introduce our readers to Patrick Alfred, the Brewmaster at Greenport Harbor Brewing Company. For those not in the know, Greenport Harbor has two locations: the original tasting room in Greenport on 234 Carpenter Street, right behind Main Road, and next to the tiny Jail, and the larger facility in Peconic on 42155 Main Road. The Peconic location has much more space and one can regularly find live music, food trucks, and lively events happening here.
1. Please tell us a little about yourself: Your name, the brewery where you make beer, how long you’ve been making beer.
Patrick Alfred, I brew at Greenport Harbor Brewing Company, I’ve been making since the summer of 2011.
2. What was your first experience with beer that made you see it as something more than just a beverage?
Honestly, when I wanted some of my parents’ at dinner as a kid as was told no. Later in life, as an early craft beer drinker, and encountering flavors I was completely unbeknownst to be in beer.
3. What made you first want to brew your own beer, and what about that experience made you want to brew beer for others? What inspires you to do it, keep doing it, and do it on this level?
I convinced myself that home brewing would make my beer enthusiasm more economical. I was terribly wrong in the sense that it became an obsession with exploring everything brewing related. Once I caught the brewing bug, my ultimate goal was to get my foot in the door my any means and eventually start contributing my ideas and recipes. The inspiration to keep brewing and on such a big level is simple. I’ve yet to keep up with as many ideas I have for brewing, blending, etc. That in itself is a huge drive for me personally.
4. What is your favorite part of being a brewer, both from a personal and from a procedural standpoint?
Personally my favorite part of being a brewer is to think of a group of flavors, aromas, overall sensations and try my hardest to bring that to life. From a procedural point of view it’s the theory, discipline, work ethic, attention to detail and the fulfillment of hitting specific targets throughout the beers life spent in the brewery.
5. What is the biggest challenge you face as a brewer, personal and procedural?
The biggest challenge personally as a brewer not getting too caught up in whats happening in the industry. I think its honestly great, but at the same time I think its lacking in education and individuality. Procedurally, it’s dealing with all the factors of running a production brewery. There’s a lot going on between our two breweries and managing that is no easy task.
6. When people come to taste your beer, what would you like for them to know, look for, understand, before they walk through the door?
Before someone comes into one of our tasting rooms, or one of our accounts, I’d love for them to know that the beer they’re about to consume is of high standards. Look for new beers and styles to challenge what you like in beer or what you thought beer could even be. Understand that even though you may like/love our beers, we will never stop the pursuit of higher quality, knowledge and the yearning for our customer base to love us more and more.
7. What should we be looking from you in the coming year?
In the coming year you can expect to see a lot more canning from us, barrel aged sour beer in bottles will start to release, also a lot more really cool on premise events.
8. When you’re not brewing, what do you do to have fun on the North Fork?
I love going to the vineyards, hanging out at the beach, also the village of Greenport, I love being outdoors with my girlfriend and our dogs.
9. If you weren’t a brewmaster, what would be your non-beer dream job?
10. What do you want to see happen to the North Fork beer industry in the coming years?
I’d like to see more use of the land, there’s what seems like an infinite amount of agriculture out here that could easily tie into our brewing industry.
11. Anything else you’d like to say or add?
Thank you so much for this opportunity. I seriously encourage anyone who’s reading this article to come out to the North Fork and visit both our locations for an ever changing list of beers and good times. As well as the other brewers out here, there really is something for everyone.