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Woodstock Brewing
Photograph: Courtesy Woodstock Brewing

This New Yorker bottled an "Emotional Support Beer" that you can actually buy now

We dare you to find something that is more quintessentially New York.

Anna Rahmanan
Written by
Anna Rahmanan

A bit over a year ago, Brooklyn resident Floyd Hayes was riding the bus from the city to Kingston when a recorded announcement caught his attention. "It said: 'no loud cell phone calls, keep your headphone on low, don't distract the driver and the use of alcohol is against federal law unless you have a prior written permission'," he recalls over email. "The 'written permission' tickled me. I liked the idea of enjoying a beer and then unfurling a scroll of permission if challenged by the law."

And so Hayes did what any creative New Yorker would do and registered a pint of beer as an emotional support animal with the USA Service Dog Registration (fine, not any New Yorker...). As is the case whenever something odd happens in modern history, the story went viral and Hayes enjoyed a modicum of fame for a few weeks before resuming his life as a self-employed city dweller.

But now, Hayes' Emotional Support Beer is a real product that people can actually buy. Working with upstate brewery Woodstock Brewing, the Brooklynite bottled (well, canned) his idea and is selling it for $20 per four-pack, also donating a portion of the proceeds to Operation at Ease, an organization that pairs shelters dogs with veterans and first responders while providing free training for post-traumatic stress and light mobility service dogs. A beer with a few causes!

In terms of flavor, expect the Citra hop IPA ("my only ask was for it to be an IPA, one of my favorite styles," says Hayes) to be, well, citrus-y, also boasting notes of mango and honey.

Is the newly minted brewmaster planning on developing other products? "Always!" he says. We'll be here, patiently waiting for his next ingenious idea to take shape while sipping on his ale.

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