--Farmstead breweries: enacted in 2012, this law offers incentives to build a brewery that uses at least 20% hops and 20% barley grown in the state (these percentages rise to 90% over the next decade). Several of these operations that were opening this year came to the festival pouring adventurous brews. Over a hundred farmstead brewers have now been licensed--they do not have to be actual farms or growing their own ingredients.
Over the past few years of visiting family in this area, I have seen several of the established brewers in the capital region: Brown Brewing in Troy, C.H. Evans in Albany, Ommegang in Cooperstown, Schmaltz in Clifton Park. Saw these at the festival, also more recently met folks like the Davidson Brothers crew, the Mad Jack brewers in Schenectady, and the Druthers breweries in Saratoga and Albany. A good time.