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What’s Happening

Building Beer – Week 11



While the guys from DG Masonry formed and poured out the basement walls, Mike and his crew from Homer Iron Works and a crew from Complete Construction Concepts spent most of the day unloading 13 tractor loads of metal building components. Once the concrete floors are poured, these metal components will be bolted together to form the frame of the building.


Here is a video of the building being unloaded through the all the encompassing view of our trusty Go Pro…



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Forms are constructed for the basement walls….


a pump truck pumps concrete into the basement wall forms…


 Back filling and compaction around the piers…


The basement walls are poured and the concrete guys are out of here for a few weeks while Halco MEP’s, the company installing all of our plumbing and electrical utilities, begins work on the plumbing and electrical being installed underneath the concrete floors.

We are getting into the heat now and continue to hope for dry weather as things move forward!

Building Beer – Week 7



 Concrete has arrived!

The team on site has grown to include DG Masonry who poured footers from the piers last week, and weather permitting will continue to pour piers and footers for the basement walls.

But first, enjoy a ride from the view of our dozer cam! The guys from Burrell’s Excavation were cool enough to take the Go Pro along as they finished the grading at the front of the property.


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Excavation is complete on the cellar and this week they will put in footers and walls.



Meet Larry, the construction dog! Larry tags along with David Gillis, owner of DG Masonry, and keeps everyone on site in line.

Building Beer – Week 5



More of the same this past week, the guys did what they could in between rain storms, making good progress building up the road by bringing in loads of gravel from a local quarry.

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Check out our time-lapse video of a days excavating work!

Building Beer – Week 3



Despite the rain early last week, the crew was able to start working on Wednesday to install the drivewat entrance off Route 13!



Installation of the driveway entry.



Excavation on the basement and back patio area has started.


Fill from the basement area was dumped and spread to continue building the roadway.


Friday morning they dropped off another bulldozer and began using some of the fill from the basement for grading out the building pad.



Building Beer – Week 2

Week 2


Construction Continues

Another week of beautiful weather is behind us and this kept the earth moving on site at the Empire Farm Brewery. Unfortunately the rain that was much needed for our gardens put construction on hold for a few days…

Last week the guys continued to strip and pile top soil, pull stumps, prep the pad and work on the road. The road presented a problem with a low wet spot they couldn’t compact, but after a dozen loads of cobble stones they finally got it filled in and the road in place.


A Week of pumping water out of the wet area yielded little progress.


The road is in place for construction vehicles to access the building pad.













Heavy rain over the weekend presented it’s fair share of challenges.


A dozen loads of cobbles were delivered to fill in the wet area and give the sub base some substance.

















Empire Farm Brewery Groundbreaking – Cazenovia, New York

Empire Farm Brewery Groundbreaking

May 8, 2015


The Empire Farm Brewery broke ground today, in Cazenovia, New York where the 60 BBl brewing/ tasting room facility will soon begin construction. Slated to open in the 4th Quarter of 2015, the Empire Farm Brewery is poised to be the largest Farm Brewery in New York State.  The site will be developed for both educational and beer production purposes.  The property will also grow hops, lavender, vegetables, herbs, and fruits for use in the brewing process and to support the needs of Empire Brewing Company.  An apiary is being developed on the west end of the property to produce hop and lavender honey, which will be used in the brewing process.


The objective of the Empire Farm Brewery is to expand the existing brewing facility and agricultural component of Empire Brewing Company to a stand-alone manufacturing and agritourism facility located on Route 13 in Cazenovia, NY.  Beer manufactured here will be packaged in kegs, bottles and cans for regional and international distribution.  There is also a gift shop and restaurant component that will be open Wednesday through Sunday.  Brewery and beer garden tours will also be available during weekends.  The project will capture the interest of the brewing community, farmers, educators, hop historians, beer geeks, and industries interested in learning from our green business practices.firkinladies

The new brewery is being manufactured by Feldmeier Equipment, Inc.  The system will utilize locally grown feedstock (hops, grains, and other locally sourced products), providing a direct benefit to farmers in Central New York while simultaneously decreasing the company’s carbon footprint.  We will buy NYS manufactured and grown products whenever feasible.  The project construction and manufacturing process will also be designed as “green”.  The company proposes to construct an environmentally friendly facility using green building materials and introduce energy efficient technologies.  The company’s attention to “green” manufacturing will only further serve to differentiate our products and make them uniquely New York.


We are approved for Start-Up NY. Start-Up NY is Governor Cuomo’s groundbreaking initiative, is creating tax-free zones across the state for new and expanding businesses.  In partnership with Morrisville State College, Empire Brewing Company will expand into Empire Farm Brewery which will operate tax-free for 10-years. The College has implemented a new Brewing Studies program and will work directly with Empire’s team to develop, implement and manage the program while educating the students of Morrisville State College with first hand practical business experience with a large scale production brewery.


The design of the Empire Farm Brewery incorporates the historical significance of Madison County’s rich hop growing past while architecturally complimenting the natural elements of the area.  The design is understated and reminiscent of a classic Upstate New York farm while paying homage to local hop barn architecture.  With clarity the aim and renewable material and ambient lighting the accent, it is our goal to create a warm and inviting environment that blend with our landscape and our community.  Kurt Ofer, of Altonview Architects, has designed the facility. Mr. Ofer is credited for the architectural design of Brewery Ommegang in Cooperstown, NY, and is working directly with Empire, SUNY ESF, and other consultants to produce a world-class brewery. The tasting room, retail space, restaurant, cellar and office are being designed by Ashley Freund Interiors. An early 19th century barns have been decommissioned for reuse in the tasting room. And bricks for Syracuse’s original Haberle Brewery will be incorporated throughout the facility.

Earth Day 2015 with OCRRA

Team Empire

In 2014, 5,500 OCRRA earth day volunteers collected more than 99,000 pounds of litter. In the two decades since OCRRA started the earth day clean up program, over 2,008,880 pounds of trash have been collected from our neighborhood communities! This year, Empire put out the call for earth day volunteers. Staff, friends and family responded with enthusiasm, and our own Empire team of all ages spent a sunny Saturday cleaning up the inner harbor in downtown Syracuse.









Sweet Fire Returns




Some of you may remember Sweet Fire from NYC Beer Week 2014, an imperial chocolate chili stout, brewed in collaboration with a handful of NYC Bars that included The Blind Tiger, Spring Lounge, Taproom 307, and The Gingerman, and the women than ran them!

The beer came out so delicious and the collaboration was so much fun that we couldn’t resist doing it again!  THIS YEAR, we switched things up a little bit. The participating bars in the 2015 version of Sweet Fire included some veterans and some new faces! We invited The Blind Tiger, Spring Lounge, and Taproom 307 back, and we also included The Pony Bar and George Keeleys to jump in the mix!

Katherine, Hayley, Jen, Anne, Lindsey, Cherisse, and Britt joined Empire Brewing Company Brand Manager Olivia Cerio and brewmaster Tim Butler in Syracuse this January and got in the brewery to recreate this recipe and delicious beer. Just like last year this imperial stout is brewed and fermented with cocoa nibs and a special chili blend, giving it a tantalizing chocolate aroma and flavor and a heat that creeps onto the palate and builds into a beautiful balance of sweetness and hotness.

The release party for this beer will be at The Blind Tiger on Thursday February 19th and the beer will be on tap at the other 4 bars throughout NYC Beer Week 2015 (Feb 20th-Mar1st)

Listen to the some of the girls chat about the collaboration on Beer Sessions Radio!


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Empire gets even greener with new composting initiative

Executive Chef Matt Riddett dutifully composting in the Empire kitchen.

Executive Chef Matt Riddett dutifully composting in the Empire kitchen.

As odd as it sounds, composting is an activity I have always enjoyed. I remember lugging a five-gallon bucket piled high with eggshells, orange peels, veggie skins, and coffee grinds out to our compost pile every day during my childhood. I was fascinated by the process of organic matter breaking down slowly until it returned to the soil it came from. I loved checking on scraps from weeks before to see their state of deterioration. I continued to practice composting throughout my teens and twenties, and still take daily trips to my own compost pit on my property.
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Celebrate American Craft Beer Week with Empire

American Craft Beer WeekEmpire Brewing Company is pleased to announce its schedule for American Craft Beer Week, May 12-18, 2014, with daily specials and beer pairing events in our Syracuse brewpub, as well as offsite events throughout the Syracuse area. American Craft Beer Week is an annual celebration of American craft beer and breweries initiated by the Brewers Association, a Colorado-based national nonprofit which promotes and protects America’s craft brewers. Read more