Day Trip to the Captain Lawrence Brewing Company

BY JEN RINI

In November of 1995, 17-year-old Scott Vaccaro not only brewed his first homemade batch of Cranberry Celebration Ale, but also his passion for the brewing arts.

“It’s a tangible delicious beverage and you can be very creative,” Vaccaro said.
Vaccaro, now 34, and of legal drinking age, is the owner and head brewer of Captain Lawrence Brewing Company located in Elmsford, N.Y.

The brewery has expanded tremendously from its start in Pleasantville, N.Y. The tasting room alone has grown from 300 to 15,000 square feet. Vaccaro says they can brew five times as much beer in the brew house as they could in the Pleasantville location.

That experimental brewhouse is where the magic happens. As Vaccaro says it’s an ongoing experimentation. For instance, the Captain’s brewers will age beer in apple brandy barrels and voila – Golden Delicious: Am. Style Trippel Ale-Oak Aged specialty beer. How do you like them apples?

The Captain Lawrence Brewing Company has been nothing short of a family affair. Vaccaro’s mother helped to design the tasting room, his father handles the finances, while his wife is the office manager. That familial atmosphere adds to the relaxed vibe of the brewery.

“It’s just a fun place, the main attraction is the beer,” Vaccaro said.

Get a history lesson during a free tour of the tasting room every Saturday on the hour from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. or check out the bocce court on the porch and sip on a perennial favorite, the Imperial IPA.

“Very hoppy, very robust citrusy, piney, an all around good beer,” Vaccaro said.

Interested in crafting your own beer? On the fourth Monday of every month the Westchester Homebrew Association hosts a meeting from 7 to 9 p.m. to showcase different homebrew styles and general information. Best part about it? You can pick the brain of talented brew masters for free!

If you can’t make it to the brewery, check out their brews at the Eighth Annual Pleasantville Music Festival on Saturday July 14 or grab a Pale Ale on the Fourth of July at The Pirates on the Hudson at the Philipsburg Mansion. Your hoppy taste buds will be satisfied.