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Westhampton Beach Brewing to take off at Gabreski Airport

New craft brewer Westhampton Beach Brewing Co. plans

New craft brewer Westhampton Beach Brewing Co. plans to open later this year at the Hampton Business District at Francis S. Gabreski Airport, Westhampton Beach. Credit: Rechler Equity Partners

Two former East End vineyard investors and another partner plan to launch a brewery later this year at the Hampton Business District at Francis S. Gabreski Airport in Westhampton Beach.

Brian Sckipp and John Salvaggio, two childhood friends and former partners at Sherwood House Vineyards in Jamesport, and partner Kathleen Tedesco have secured 4,800 square feet of space at the industrial complex where they plan to brew, bottle and distribute their own beer as the Westhampton Beach Brewing Co.

Though the startup has yet to begin operations, it has has hired Dave DeTurris, former brewer of John Harvard’s Brewery in Smithtown, to craft the beers.

“We’re not getting someone who is experimenting in the garage,” Salvaggio said. “We have someone who’s been doing it commercially for years.”

Sckipp said the decision to find commericial space prior to brewing was to avoid the struggle of getting a commercial product out in a timely manner. “We felt we had the team together so we could move forward quickly.”

There are at least 28 breweries and brew pubs on Long Island, according to data from the New York State Brewers Association.

Breweries recently got a shot in the arm under the Republican tax overhaul. Brewers will have the federal excise tax cut in half to $3.50 a barrel on the first 60,000 barrels they produce.

The company, which recently received construction permits to begin a buildout of its space, signed a 10-year lease with Rechler Equity Partners last year. The startup plans to have a tasting room on site.

“This long-term lease provides the company with the space needed to begin their journey,” Mitchell Rechler, managing partner at Plainview-based Rechler Equity, said in a statement.

Southampton-based cookie maker Tate’s Bake Shop, AC Lighting & Electrical Supplies of Smithtown and national HVAC equipment distributor Carrier Enterprise are tenants of the building, located at 220 Roger’s Way.

Westhampton Beach Brewing plans to begin brewing in February, with a grand opening coinciding with the Westhampton Beach St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

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