Checking in with Kelso Brewmaster Kelly Taylor

Kelly Taylor knows the ins and outs of beer. As owner and brewmaster at Kelso, Kelly brews 10 ongoing and seasonal beers at his Brooklyn based brewery. This Spring, we teamed up with Kelly to create a signature draft for Hudson Common. One Hop Stop, an Uncommon lager premiers this week at Hudson Common with Kelly himself pouring the first draw. Here is an inside look into the brewing process at Kelso and what inspired the making of One Hop Stop.



What does it take to create a unique brew that forms loyalty over years?
In short, consistency and staying true to your brand. Quality product doesn’t hurt, but in this market, there are a ton of competitors. Find your niche and stick to it.

What does being a Brooklyn-based brewery mean to you?
Brooklyn is very local focused, and reminds me of more hip parts of the west coast. Brooklyn is neighborhood by neighborhood, each with unique character. It’s an honor, and quite fun, to be part of that local focus.

What innovation do you predict in the brewing industry for the coming years?
Canning will continue to grow in acceptance. You’ll see the smallest nano brewery be able to package their product and get to market. This will be a driver in the experimentation of beer styles and push the envelope of favors.

Walk us through the brewing process of Hudson Common’s signature beer.
Basically same as other brew processes , but with two small twists. We had staff from Common come and pick a single hop to use (most beers are a blend of hops), and we used a lager yeast instead of an ale yeast. Longer fermentation, cleaner finish in lagers. Its nice to work with a bar so engaged in the process.

We see that you are heavily involved in charitable initiatives within the New York community, why is this important to your company, how do others inspire your craft?
It is important for every company, especially manufacturers of product consumed in the community, to be a part of that community. These are your friends, neighbors, employees, and yes, competitors, that are drinking or consuming your product. You must give back to them and be engaged in the neighborhood in order to be sustainable. Others inspire us by creating new, interesting flavor combinations, develop great /innovative marketing campaigns, or jut plain old sell, sell, sell. Put our feet to the fire.

If you should have a beer with anyone in the world, who might it be?
Former President Bill Clinton. I mean really. Assuming he still has a couple now and then. Yes, I like to talk politics after a few beers. Not a great trait, but there it is.