Tucked away on Lauman Lane, just past Applebee’s on South Broadway, is a hidden Hicksville gem—Barnshed Brewing. A nondescript building has a simple sign stating its name, but step inside and the sights and smells of freshly brewed beers will greet you with open arms. With rustic decorations and furnishings, games to play and a bar to hunker down at, Barnshed is an ideal destination for unwinding at the end of a long week.
Bryan Murphy, who owns Barnshed Brewing, initially did not have visions of being a beer brewer.
“I actually started with wine. I did one batch of wine and I kind of ruined it,” he said. “My cousin at the time was brewing beer, so I started doing beer and I just fell in love with it. I just kept going with it and a hobby turned into a passion and a passion turned into a business.”
To help turn his business dreams into a reality, Murphy started a Kickstarter campaign. Backed by 125 people, the Barnshed Kickstarter raised $16,236 to help transform a backyard homebrewing venture into a fully-functional local brewery.
“It’s been unbelievable,” said Murphy about the outpouring of support he’s received since opening Barnshed in May of 2017. “Just with our Kickstarter alone, the support has been unbelievable.”
The brewery has seen plenty of Murphy’s family and friends during the four days a week it’s open, but it’s the locals that come in out of curiosity that Murphy said is one of the coolest parts of owning the business.
“Local people become like our friends as well,” he explained. “That’s the cool part of it that I never realized—the relationships that you’re building with people.”
Past the tasting area of Barnshed is the multitude of metal tubs, bags of grain and other devices needed to make the brewing magic possible—an art that Murphy said he is still learning through trial and error. At the top of his brewery’s menu is his 135 Pale Ale, the first beer he ever brewed and mastered after nearly 10 trials.
“I don’t know if I’ve ever perfected it. I just never stop learning,” he admitted. “There’s so much material that you can read and you’re always learning, so you find your way. You just keep dialing it in until you’re really where you want to be. It takes a little bit of time, but so far so good. People are drinking the beer, so I guess I’m doing something right.”
A self-proclaimed seasonal beer lover, Murphy has a handful of beers that he’s always brewing, but with the change of seasons comes the change of beer selection. In the spring he created a Belgian blonde, summer saw a Hefeweizan-style pineapple brew, the fall will boast pumpkin flavors followed by winter ales.
Murphy, a Bethpage resident, also works as a full-time firefighter in Queens. Between serving the community and brewing, he understands that people coming to his brewery are in search of the same thing he is—an escape.
“People are here to relax and want a place to be uplifting and fun, kind of like an escape, and that’s what it is for me,” he said. He added that seeing his customers come in and having a good time while enjoying his brews is the greatest reward of having his own business. “It’s just surreal to produce something that people enjoy.”
To experience Murphy’s brews, visit Barnshed Brewing Thursdays for trivia night from 7 to 10 p.m., Fridays from 6 to 10 p.m., Saturdays from 1 to 8 p.m. and Sundays from 1 to 6 p.m.
Among other locations, Murphy’s brews are also available at BK Sweeney’s in Bethpage and Kegs and Cases in Levittown.