Made in the Hudson Valley: Captain Lawrence Brewing Company is the largest craft brewery in the region

It's been nearly 20 years since Captain Lawrence Brewing Company opened its doors to the Hudson Valley, but owner Scott Vaccaro has been on the beer-making track for the majority of his life.

Katerina Belales

Jul 9, 2024, 11:01 AM

Updated 15 days ago

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It's been nearly 20 years since Captain Lawrence Brewing Company opened its doors to the Hudson Valley, but owner Scott Vaccaro has been on the beer-making track for the majority of his life.
"When I first got into home brewing, I was kind of enthralled with the idea that you could make your own beer at home," he said. "I started as a home brewer way back when, and I ended up going to college and getting my degree in fermentation science from UC Davis."
As a Westchester native, Vaccaro knew the county was the only area where he wanted to make his dream happen.
"I grew up on Captain Lawrence Drive," he said. "That's where the name of the brewery comes from. So, it just made sense to open something in my home area."
The business officially opened in 2006 at its original location in Pleasantville before moving to its current Elmsford location in 2011. Throughout the years, the spot has become the largest craft brewery in Westchester and the Hudson Valley, offering visitors a chance to taste a wide variety of beers and food. That includes their famous beer, the "Hop Commander."
"A brewer's kind of like a chef or a cook," Vaccaro explained. "It's really how we put those things together...We use a lot of American hops from the Pacific Northwest. We like to take more traditional beers and kind of throw a new spin on them…We try to do a wide variety of things, something for everybody."
The brewery also offers other options for those who may not be too close to Elmsford. That includes a Barrel House in Mount Kisco with a beer hall and restaurant, as well as a food and beer truck that can be found at multiple summer events throughout Westchester County.
For those who are not the biggest beer fans, the brewery's sister company, Current Spirits, is located right next door.
"If you [want to] buy something to go or do a sampler, you can pop right into the little speakeasy tasting room we have on the corner of the building and try the stuff direct from the source," Vaccaro said.
After nearly 20 years, Vaccaro is thankful to serve a growing number of families from all across the region.
"I think people come here because we're family-friendly," he said. "We've got a huge beer garden where you could hang out, relax and enjoy some beers. It's been great feedback so far. I mean, people keep coming back."
Captain Lawrence Brewing Company is located at 444 Saw Mill River Road in Elmsford, and its Barrel House is located at 369 Lexington Ave. in Mount Kisco.


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