If The Culinary Institute of America was a “cool” school before, it just got cooler, sudsier, and craftier with the opening of a brand new, on-campus brewery, located in the college’s dining area and Student Commons, AKA, The Egg. The brewery, built in partnership with the Brooklyn Brewery, will serve many purposes in addition to brewing at the CIA; education, experimentation, and drinking.
The Brewery at the CIA is run by Hutch Kugeman, a celebrated brewer and well known on the New York craft beer scene because of his stints as a founding brewer at Crossroads Brewing Company, and as a head brewer at Ithaca Beer Company and Great Adirondack Brewing. Kugeman now acts as not only a brewer, but as an assistant teacher alongside Professors and former CIA alums, Douglass Miller and John Fischer, for the school’s new Art & Science of Brewing elective.
The course itself will teach students about the brewing process, recipe development, and to generally expand their knowledge on something other than just food, but it will also educate them on the business side of things so they’re equipped to work in a brewery or brewpub and even possibly own one someday. “This class opens up possibilities (for students) in the ever expanding craft beer industry,” Kugeman said. “It will prepare them to break into the brewing industry and even obtain jobs that maybe no one has even heard of.”
From left: Brooklyn Brewery’s Brewmaster Garrett Oliver, CIA’s Senior Director of Food and Beverage Operations Waldy Malouf, Professor of Hospitality and Service Management John Fischer, Head Brewer Hutch Kugeman, Professor of Hospitality and Service Management Douglass Miller.
On hand to celebrate the brewery’s opening was Brooklyn Brewery’s Brewmaster, Garrett Oliver, who echoed some of Kugeman’s sentiments, and knows that there has always been an active student interest in beer. “The point we want to make with this brewery is that beer is the ultimate culinary drink,” he said. “Beer has a wide reach, it belongs at Eleven Madison Park, it belongs at a barbecue. It’s everywhere and if you don’t know beer, you’re ill-equipped to deal in the restaurant industry.”
If you’re sitting there wondering, “Can I get a beer here?” well, the brewery can produce up to 500 barrels per year, so yes, you can, and you don’t have to be a CIA student either. You do however have to go to Hyde Park because you can only get it on campus in the Student Commons and very soon the brews will be available in all the CIA’s public restaurants. And yes, growler fills are doable here too.
Currently there are two staple beers (with CIA appropriate names) called Cleaver IPA and Mis en Place Wit. There will be a rotating lineup of seasonal brews designed by students enrolled in the course whose creation will act as a class project (as of now it’s an oatmeal stout called Cast Iron Stout).
This is proof that craft beer is ever expanding, and now it’s officially being brewed on a college campus with the help of students. Go and learn about it, and if not, at least bring your growler.
For more information about The Culinary Institute of America and The Brewery at the CIA, visit www.ciachef.edu.