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The Brooklyn Brewery Best of 2018 List

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Living through 2018 was like laying down under a stampede of angry ducks. Amidst the hard-beaked nips of the news cycle and the eye-watering feathers of each freshly bizarre meme, we kept asking one another, “surely, this can’t last much longer?” But we were wrong, so very strangely wrong. At this point, wave upon wave of ducks have trampled us for so long that major events like the Olympics or your own birthday feel like a long-ago memory.

But among the slapping feet of the year that was, there were some bright points. We polled our staff for their top drinks, food, cultural moments and cult hits of 2018, and more than 25 responded. A few of them skipped some of the instructions, but we still assembled a considerable list of the best of the best. Read on and find out what you missed, remember what you loved, and get ready for the year to come.

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Tim Rozmus
Digital Marketing Manager/Compiled this list, so he gets to go first
Best Album: Zeal & Ardor, “Stranger Fruit” 
Best Movie: Lords of Chaos. A humorous and horrifying look at the birth of trve Norwegian black metal, myths and all.
Best TV Show: Stan Against Evil
Best Book: I’ll Be Gone In The Dark, by Michelle McNamara. It had me checking the locks on my windows, and I live on the top floor.
Best Song: Sleep, “Sonic Titan
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Gritty. All sports mascots should be Muppet-esque fever creations.
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Standing in the way of subway doors. G train riders, I’m calling you out here.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Threes Brewing People Power
Best Cocktail: Coffee Thing at Rocka Rolla. It keeps you on your feet.
Best Meal: Lamb and chicken mix over rice, hot and white sauce, at Jasim’s #1 Gourmet Deli on the corner of 4th Ave. and 11th Street, Gowanus. That’s my place, that’s my guy, and that’s the order. It’ll fix what ails you.

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Paige Snider
Social Media Coordinator
Best Album: Lucy Dacus, “Night Shift
Best Movie: Eighth Grade
Best TV Show: Can I say season 5 of Bojack Horseman? Because it’s season 5 of Bojack Horseman.
Best Book: I’ll Be Gone In The Dark by Michelle McNamara
Best Song: The Ruen Brothers, “All My Shades Of Blue
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Mr. Bubz, the crazy-eyed rat terrier
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Stunt food made exclusively to be Instagrammed (looking at you, rainbow bagels and Dragon’s Breath)
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Kings County Brewers Collective Bride of Beach Zombie
Best Cocktail: The Charles Grey from The Distillery. Bourbon, Earl Grey, & pear liqueur with blackberry and rosemary daaaaaang.
Best Meal: Crif Dogs’ sour cheese dog wrapped in bacon, preferably eaten at 2 AM.

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Ollie DuBose (above, left)
Sales & Marketing Rep, North Texas
Best Album: Chvrches, “Love Is Dead
Best Movie: Avengers: Infinity War
Best TV Show: Haunting of Hill House
Best Song: Childish Gambino, “This Is America
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: #metoo
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Founders Curmudgeon’s Better Half

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Eric Ottaway
CEO/Shirt Judge
Best Movie: Alpha (serious) or Tag (comedy)
Best TV Show: The Deuce, season 2
Best Book: Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari
Best Song: You know, the one that goes…yeah, that one.
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Social media!
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Are there any?
Best Cocktail: Bel Air Spritz (yes, I am biased)
Best Meal: Ethiopian with a Brooklyn Special Effects. Perfect match.

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Rick Piccirilli
Area Sales Manager, Sacramento Valley
Best Album: Sleep, “The Sciences
Best Movie: Bohemian Rhapsody
Best TV Show: It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Urban Roots Brewing Tastes Like 1995
Best Cocktail: “Cookie Hopster”. 21st Amendment Blood Orange Brew Free! Or Die IPA, Faretti Biscotti, Tempus Fugit Créme de Cacao, Lemon, Honey, and served on a goblet with an orange Milano cookie. Sacramento, CA.
Best Meal: Those brisket burnt ends I made that one time.

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Miles Moser (above, left)
Business Development Manager
Best Album: Vulfpeck, “Hill Climber
Best Movie: Black Panther
Best TV Show: Haunting at Hill House
Best Book: Leonardo Da Vinci by Walter Isaacson (published October 2017, but we’ll allow it)
Best Song: The Punch Brothers, “Jungle Bird
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Black Panther (again)
Best Trend to Leave Behind: That dance move “the floss
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Weyerbacher Dallas Sucks
Best Cocktail: The Negroni
Best Meal: Vernick in Philadelphia

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Philip Shelton (above, left)
Logistics Manager
Best Album: Black Panther Soundtrack
Best Movie: Sorry to Bother You
Best TV Show: Killing Eve
Best Song: Lil Yachty feat. Donny Osmond, “Start the Par-dee
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: My new nephew Owen, who is my best friend.
Best Meal: Guisados- tinga de pollo tacos

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Haben Berhe (above, in a picture he asked us to use. Selfies are art, we guess.)
Field Marketing Director, Europe
Best Album: Olafur Arnalds, “re:member
Best Movie: Black Panther
Best TV Show: The Handmaid’s Tale, season 2
Best Book: Jonas Hassen Khemiri – ”Pappaklausulen
Best Song: Octavian, ”Party Here
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: This year I discovered K-pop. (Editor’s note: we didn’t recognize any of the emojis accompanying this one.)
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Everything Carhartt
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Dugges Tropic Thunder
Best Cocktail: Tommy’s margarita
Best Meal: Kebab from Kebabistan in Copenhagen

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Robin Ottaway
President 
Best Movie: Whatever is playing on United flights. I’ve got a lotta time to kill going to Asia. Of the Oscar candidates, I thought “Darkest Hour” was best. I didn’t realize how controversial Churchill was. 
Best TV Show: English Premier League games on weekend mornings
Best Book: Long Black Veil, by Jennifer Finney Boylan, who was a college professor of mine. An airport pick-up. 
Best Song: In my household, the kids (12 &10) have played a lot of Drake’s In My Feelings (“Kiki, do you love me…”) and God’s Plan. 
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: I only get my pop culture from my kids, so Fortnite. My son’s a boss.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: I will always give it up for Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.
Best Cocktail: As always, a Rye Manhattan on rocks.
Best Meal: Anything I’ve had at Kings County Imperial. I just discovered they deliver…

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James Forman
Sales & Marketing Rep, Nevada
Best Album: Apathy, “The Widow’s Son
Best Movie: Deadpool 2
Best Song: Eminem, “Killshot
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Face tats on rappers. I can’t wait to see what they look like in 20 years.
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Fidget spinners.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Sam Adams ’76
Best Cocktail: Moscow Mule
Best Meal: Taco Bell $5 Box

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Mike “Sunshine” Steinschneider
Packaging Manager
Best Album: Joe Bonamassa, “Redemption
Best Movie: Super Troopers 2
Best TV Show: The new season of South Park, back to its original show structure and funny level.
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Trading beer cans.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Firestone Walker Lager
Best Meal: Katz’s Deli catered lunch

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Jennifer Cross
Western Division Marketing Manager
Best Movie: Crazy Rich Asians
Best Book: Yes We (Still) Can by Dan Pfeiffer
Best Song: Carly Rae Jepson, “Party For One
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Ampersands in restaurant names
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Jessup Farm Barrel House Fancy Pants Brett IPA
Best Cocktail: Mezcal negroni at The Up and Up
Best Meal: Nam Prik Noom at Lotus of Siam

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Jordan Huber
Sales & Marketing Rep, IL & IN
Best Album: St. Paul & The Broken Bones, “Young Sick Camellia
Best Movie: Avengers: Infinity War
Best TV Show: Big Mouth
Best Song: Greta Van Fleet, “Lover, Leaver
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: What The Fluff Challenge
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Tide Pod Challenge
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Funkwerks Sauvin Reserve
Best Cocktail: Afternoon Delight at the Mothers Ruin pop up at The Violet Hour Chicago
Best Meal: Al pastor mission burrito at La Taqueria in San Francisco

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Pedro Escobar
Maintenance Manager
Best Album: Nicki Minaj, “Queen
Best Movie: Blindspotting
Best TV Show: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
Best Book: The Adventure Zone: Here There Be Gerblins by Carey Pietsch, Clint McElroy, Griffin McElroy, Justin McElroy, and Travis McElroy
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Flossing, the cringiest thing going
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Flossing (the dance)
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Brix City Table Beer
Best Cocktail: Bel Air Spritz
Best Meal: Falafel plate at King of Falafel

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Tim Twiddy
Regional Manager, West
Best Movie: Bohemian Rhapsody
Best TV Show: 90 Day Fiance
Best Song: Weezer, “Africa
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Eating Tide Pods
Best Cocktail: Bel Air Spritz

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Jon Reyes (above, right)
Staff Accountant
Best Album: Mac Miller, “Swimming
Best Movie: Isle of Dogs. Who couldn’t possibly love a movie about dogs made by Wes Anderson?
Best TV Show: Yellowstone
Best Song: Hobo Johnson, “Peach Scone
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Fortnite dances. Hopefully Dom (staff accountant, below) can work on some new moves this year.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Kills Boro Brewing Co. Birthday Munchies
Best Cocktail: Mezcal Old Fashioned
Best Meal: Fried chicken and bacon sauteed kale at Sidecar

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Stu Walker
Sales & Marketing Rep, Tennessee
Best Album: Nils Frahm, “All Melody”
Best Movie: Tie: Mandy, Black Panther, Sorry to Bother You
Best TV Show: Tie: Off The Air, The Good Place, Hamilton’s Pharmacopeia, Barry
Best Song: Tie (again): The Moondoggies, “Easy Coming,” King Tuff, “Neverending Sunshine” (pairs well with Summer Ale)
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Black Panther dominating the box office, and Banksy’s “Balloon Girl” self-destructing after being bought at auction
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Milkshake IPAs, wildfires, fake outrage, sexual predators being on the SCOTUS
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Every year for me: Schlenkerla Helles Lagerbier
Best Cocktail: WhistlePig neat, or a Mai Tai at Trader Vic’s
Best Meal: Braunschweiger, Smoked Whitefish, Würzfleisch and Beef Goulash at Kuchnia & Keller (RIP)

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Evan MacCarthy (above, center)
Lab Technician
Best Album: RF Shannon, “Trickster Blues
Best Movie: Isle of Dogs
Best Song: SadGirl, “Breakfast is Over
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Russian River Blind Pig
Best Cocktail: Pain Killer
Best Meal: Los Hernandez Tamales, right outside Yakima, WA

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Jennifer Breckner
Lead Events Ambassador, Chicago
Best Album: Neko Case, “Hell-On” (Neko always + forever)
Best Movie: Black Panther
Best TV Show: Insecure with Issa Rae on HBO
Best Book: To Throw Away Unopened, a memoir by former Slits member Viv Albertine
Best Song: The Carters, “Apes**t.” I have an art history background and this video, filmed in the the Louvre, worked on so many levels that I wish I had been back in art school to discuss it.
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez using social media to deconstruct political power and entrenchment.
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Alt-right nationalism.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Funk Factory Geuzeria’s Cevino-Sangiovese (Madison, WI.) God, their beers are good.
Best Meal: At Slow Food’s international food conference, Terra Madre Salone del Gusto, in Turin, Italy, I attended a Zen Buddhist formal monastic meal called Baru Gongyang with Korean nun and chef, Jeong Kwan. She was featured last year on the Netflix series Chef’s Table. It was hands down one of the best meals of my life and so moving that someone actually cried after it was done.

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Hector Jimenez
Warehouse Staff
Best Movie: Sucker Punch
Best TV Show: Grey’s Anatomy
Best Book: Beer School by Steve Hindy and Tom Potter
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: The RAW after SummerSlam
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Miller High Life
Best Cocktail: Evan Williams, rocks
Best Meal: Sancocho, “soup with everything, to fix everything”

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Lauren Ford (above, left)
Tasting Room Programming Manager
Best Album: Janelle Monae, “Dirty Computer
Best Movie: Sorry to Bother You or Private Life
Best TV Show: The Americans, The Good Place, or The Bodyguard
Best Book: I tend to never read books when they’re released so I’m going to cheat and say my favorite book I read this year was “The Signature of All Things” by Elizabeth Gilbert
Best Song: Janelle Monae, “Make Me Feel,” or Jade Bird, “Lottery
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: CBD being available everywhere, but Williamsburg really took it to an extreme
Best Trend to Leave Behind: “Unicorn food,” i.e anything edible dyed to be as colorful as possible
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Long Live Beerworks The Ghost of Phil Hartman
Best Cocktail: My mom’s campground fresh squeezed margaritas at sunset
Best Meal: Breakfast at Biscuit Head in Asheville while visiting my folks

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Sam Itzkovitz
Brand Marketing Director
Best Album: The Greatest Showman Reimagined
Best Movie: To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before.” They just don’t make movies like this anymore.
Best TV Show: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Best Book: “Crazy Rich Asians,” the whole series, by Kevin Kwan. But I’m currently reading “Becoming” by Michelle Obama, so ask me again in a few weeks.
Best Song: Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper, “Shallow,” from A Star Is Born
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: See all of the above.
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Flossing.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Furphy
Best Cocktail: This was the year of the margarita for me.
Best Meal: Brooklyn Fare

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Dom Cassone
Staff Accountant
Best Album: Kanye West, “Ye
Best Movie: Avengers: Infinity War
Best TV Show: Outlander (I know it’s on Starz but it’s worth it, I promise)
Best Song: Migos ft. Drake, “Walk It Talk It
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: The continuation of the “shaka” into mainstream culture
Best Trend to Leave Behind: 90s fashion
Best Cocktail: Pink lemonade and vodka
Best Meal: Cacio e pepe and ‘nduja arancini from Via Carota

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Chris Peña (above, center, smizing)
Programming & Partnerships Manager
Best Album: Sadiva, “Minutes
Best Movie: A Bad Mom’s Christmas
Best TV Show: Big Mouth (you know him!)
Best Book: The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy by Douglas Adams (always) (Editor’s note: this book was first published 39 years ago, but we’ll allow it.)
Best Song: Omni, “Equestrian
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Cardi B
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Cardi B
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Wild Heaven Emergency Beer
Best Cocktail: Broken Parachute from Bon Ton (Atlanta, GA)
Best Meal: Crabstravaganza from Bon Ton (Atlanta, GA)

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Ashley Swope
Graphic Designer
Best Album: Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats, “Tearing at the Seams
Best Movie: I’d have to say “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom,” and no, that is not because of my family Halloween costume. (Editor’s note: it probably is.)
Best TV Show: Haunting of Hill House. Saw it twice, and I’m still looking for hidden ghosts.
Best Song: Whelp, I discovered The Growlers pretty late in the game. Pretty much just listened to Humdrum Blues on repeat, but it’s definitely not a 2018 song.
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Bowls- like poke bowls, grain bowls, salad bowls, smoothie bowls. It’s really amazing what you can throw in a bowl and charge us $20 for, and I fell for it EVERY TIME.
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Can we maybe not eat Tide Pods?
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Any IPA KCBC has on. I’m never disappointed.
Best Cocktail: Seawolf‘s Pain Killer! Ask my Swole Sister, Paige (above), she can confirm.
Best Meal: Anything my boyfriend’s mom makes (insert praise hands emoji here.)

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Joe Mollura
Regional Manager, NY
Best Album: Both Sides of the Sky by Jimi Hendrix, 48 years gone and still the master! (Editor’s note: This album is a collection of recordings from 1968-1970, but it was released in March 2018, so it’s technically from this year.)
Best Movie: Avengers: Infinity War
Best TV Show: Daredevil season 3 (yes, I’m a Marvel geek) and Narcos Mexico
Best Trend to Leave Behind: School shootings, E. coli and Salmonella outbreaks, and Americans drinking less beer
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: 21st Amendment Tasty IPA
Best Cocktail: Hendricks and tonic with cucumber. Don’t let them stick a lime in there!
Best Meal: A burrito at my local Mexican joint, Vallarta, with a bottle of Defender IPA never lets me down.

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Ebony Creech (above, left)
Sales & Marketing Rep, TX/LA
Best Album: YOB, “Our Raw Heart
Best Movie: Bohemian Rhapsody
Best TV Show: Dark on Netflix
Best Trend to Leave Behind: All of them
Best Cocktail: Bel Air Spritz

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Ben Mang (above, left, wearing your dad’s suit)
Field Marketing Manager
Best Album: Chillhop Essentials Fall 2018 cozy beats & chill hiphop (YouTube channel)
Best Movie: Black Panther
Best TV Show: Bob’s Burgers
Best Book: U Line’s winter catalog
Best Song: Hayes Peebles, “I’ll Be Fine
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: @kisscameo
Best Trend to Leave Behind: The Internet
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Interboro Approved Stout
Best Cocktail: Negroni. Try to prove me wrong, I’ll fight you. (Editor’s note: it was a long day.)
Best Meal: Anything off the grill at Bonnaroo.

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Miro Bellini (above, right)
Australian Brand Ambassador
Best Album: Sadiva, “Minutes”
Best Movie: Solo
Best TV Show: Broadchurch season 3
Best Book: Codex Orks
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Bandcamp app
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Feral Brewing Biggie Juice
Best Cocktail: Mocktail No.16 at Mr. Wong (Seedlip Garden, fresh basil, lime juice, szechuan pepper & tonic.) It’s like an alcohol free gimlet with szechuan.
Best Meal: Pho

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Taylor Onda
Director of Brewing
Best Album: Taylor Swift, “Reputation
Best Movie: Incredibles 2
Best TV Show: Seinfeld (Editor’s note: Jerry Seinfeld cancelled his namesake show 21 years ago.)
Best Trend to Leave Behind: The use of the word “bae.”
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Columbus Brewing Company Bodhi
Best Meal: Freddie and Peppers buffalo chicken pizza slice

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Elisa Walsh
Division Marketing Manager, Central
Best Movie: Tie between Suspiria (2018) and The Meg
Best TV Show: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
Best Book: Strange Weather by Joe Hill
Best Song: Watsky, “Welcome to the Family
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: AntsCanada
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Blaming everything on Mercury in retrograde.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Original Sin Dry Rose Cider

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Will Arvidson
Tasting Room Manager
Best Album: John Mulaney: Kid Gorgeous at Radio City
Best TV Show: Barry
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Little Big’s “Skibidi” video
Best Trend to Leave Behind: That thing where guys roll up their pant legs and don’t wear socks with shoes.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Wolf’s Ridge Brewing Rye Whiskey Barrel Defcon Red
Best Meal: Peter Luger steak, thick-cut bacon, and creamed spinach with Brooklyn Lager

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Matt Fournier
Missouri Sales Rep
Best Album: Anderson .Paak, “Oxnard
Best Movie: Whose Streets?
Best TV Show: Bojack Horseman
Best Book: My Own Devices by Dessa
Best Song: Damon Davis ft. Tonina, “Light Years” (watch this video!)
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Being woke af
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Caring about Kanye West, and only having local beers on draft.
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Everything I’ve tried from Ebb and Flow Fermentations out of Cape Girardeau, MO. They are a brand new mixed fermentation brewery– incredible.
Best Cocktail: Bourbon, rocks.
Best Meal: New York Strip from DeStefano’s in Brooklyn.

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Anna Rodriguez
Operations Coordinator
Best Album: Cardi B, “Invasion of Privacy” and Teyana Taylor, “KTSE
Best Movie: The Avengers: Infinity War ending pissed me off.
Best TV Show: La Casa de Papel (or Money Heist) season two was an epic ending to the series. On Netflix– go watch it.
Best Book: Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O’Neill
Best Song: Any song with Bad Bunny on it was a hit.
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: I’m torn between the Cardi B vs. Nicki Minaj beef or Will Smith’s Instagram.
Best Trend to Leave Behind: The dance where you kick one foot forward and swing one arm forward like you’re banging on someone’s door. (Editor’s note: More Fortnite dancing.)
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Bronx Brewery Rye Pale Ale
Best Cocktail: Whiskey
Best Meal: Fried fish on the beach in the Dominican Republic.

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Miss Gabe Barry (above, gold)
Beer Education & Community Ambassador
Best Album: First Aid Kit, “Ruins
Best Song: Ariana Grande, “thank u, next
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: thank u, next
Best Trend to Leave Behind: thank u, next
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Gun Hill Brewing Cava Guava Brut IPA
Best Cocktail: A Negroni with NY Distillery Dorothy Parker Gin
Best Meal: And longest: 13 course beer dinner battle in Trondheim at Bula Bistro, E.C. Dahl’s vs. Brooklyn Brewery.
Best Pancake:
Cornmeal Pancake from Fatty’s Cafe in Astoria

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Kyle Gonzales
NYC Marketing Coordinator
Best Album: Mac Miller, Swimming
Best Movie: Avengers: Infinity War
Best TV Show: Big Mouth
Best Book: One More Thing by B.J. Novak (released in 2014)
Best Song: Ariana Grande, “thank u, next”
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Kanye West being Kanye West
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Juuls
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Scratch Brewing Strawberry Rhubarb
Best Cocktail: White Lady
Best Meal: Pig & Khao

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Pat Hood (above, rocking it)
Digital & Social Intern
Best Album: 27: The Most Perfect Album by the More Perfect Podcast
Best Movie: The Death of Stalin
Best TV Show: The Good Place
Best Book:
If a webcomic can count, The Perry Bible Fellowship is delightful (Editor’s Note: it can, and it is.)
Best Song: John Mayer (sigh), “New Light
Best Pop Culture Phenomenon: Gritty, Gritty, a thousand times Gritty.
Best Trend to Leave Behind: Moviepass, RIP
Best Non-Brooklyn Beer: Hudson Valley Brewery Star Chamber
Best Cocktail: Whatever the nice bartender at Black Swan Saloon (Dallas, TX) made me.
Best Meal: Chicha in Bushwick.

SOURCE: Blog : Brooklyn Brewery – Read entire story here.