February 18, 2016
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Unveils New Taste NY Alliance With Barclays Center in Brooklyn

Governor Cuomo Unveils New Taste NY Alliance With Barclays Center in Brooklyn

World Renowned Sports and Entertainment Venue to Promote New York’s Growing Beverage Industry


Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that Taste NY is partnering with Barclays Center, home to the Brooklyn Nets and the New York Islanders, to expand the promotion of New York’s craft beverage producers. The alliance features the launch of the new and first-ever Taste NY Bar, which is offering a full selection of New York products from across the region and state to Barclays Center’s approximately two million visitors annually.

“New York’s craft beverages are some of the best in the industry – and through this new partnership, we’ll be introducing them to more consumers than ever before,” said Governor Cuomo. “The Taste NY Bar at Barclays Center will give visitors the chance to enjoy some of the greatest beer, wine and spirits that this state has to offer. This is about raising the profile of craft beverage producers and stimulating economic growth across the state, and I’m pleased to see this partnership moving forward.”

“We are honored to align with Governor Cuomo to open the inaugural Taste NY Bar,” said Brett Yormark, CEO of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment. “Taste NY is a great complement to our Brooklyn Taste program, Barclays Center’s culinary platform that features 55 popular Brooklyn restaurants and food vendors, and furthers our commitment to sourcing from local producers.”

The Taste NY- Barclays Center agreement is part of the Governor’s promise made at the third Wine, Beer, Spirits & Cider Summit to continue to support and provide resources for this growing industry.

The Taste NY Bar is located in a prime location in the venue—on the main concourse, next to the main entrance. To promote the Taste NY Bar, Taste NY branded messaging will be displayed on the more than 700 HDTVs and LED displays in concession areas and throughout the venue, including in the arena bowl and on the Oculus—the 3,000 square foot LED marquee outside of Barclays Center’s main entrance. The Taste NY Bar will also be featured on BCTV—a custom in-arena and online video network featuring original content about the arena’s events and the Brooklyn community. BCTV programming appears on the venue’s HDTVs prior to and following events, as well as online at BarclaysCenter.com.

Barclays Center will also become a place for the industry’s producers to engage and connect with enthusiasts and consumers. The partnership provides opportunities for Taste NY producers to host hospitality and networking seminars with distributors.

Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, “Total gross sales of the Governor’s Taste NY initiative have tripled, increasing from $1.5 million two years ago to more than $4.5 million this past year and supporting agribusinesses and craft beverage manufacturers across the state. Through a new partnership with Barclays Center, we will continue to grow the industry by encouraging hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers and visitors to enjoy the Empire State’s homegrown products at events throughout the year.”

New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, “The Governor’s Taste NY initiative is all about helping our farmers and producers reach new customers and promoting our agri-businesses to grow the economy. This innovative new partnership with Barclays Center—a venue that has hosted more than six million visitors since opening in September 2012— is an incredible opportunity to shine the spotlight on our craft beverage producers and bring the industry to the next level.”

Brian McKenzie, NYS Distillers Guild President, said, “The NYS Distillers Guild is very excited to be part of the Taste NY initiative at Barclays Center. The opportunity to showcase our spirits at such a high profile location will help continue to bolster our industry and we think the venue will appeal to visitors who are looking for locally-made food and beverage products.”

Paul Leone, New York State Brewers Association Executive Director, said,“We’re always trying to find ways to market New York State products to the consumers of this state. By partnering with a world class facility like Barclays Center, this is certainly an innovative and creative way to bring awareness to our industry. We applaud Governor Cuomo and Taste NY once again for leading the way when it comes to promoting the craft beverage industry in New York State through this effort.”

Jenn Smith, New York Cider Association Director, said, “Barclays Center is built on first-class guest experiences, and the Taste NY Bar offers first-class craft beverages. Cider provides a refreshing alternative to the choices at sporting and entertainment events. As the fastest-growing craft beverage category in the nation and a force for New York State economic development, cider is a natural for inclusion in the Taste NY Bar's offerings. We are pleased to be a part of the opportunity.”

Jim Trezise, New York Wine & Grape Foundation President, said, “Since its beginning, Taste NY has supported a number of diverse partnership opportunities, and we are excited for the addition of New York wines at this major sports and entertainment venue. The Taste NY Bar at Barclays Center is a very exciting opportunity for the New York wine industry, and we are grateful to Governor Cuomo and Taste NY for making this happen.”

About Barclays Center
Barclays Center opened on September 28, 2012, and is a major sports and entertainment venue in the heart of Brooklyn, New York. One of the most intimate seating configurations ever designed into a modern multi-purpose arena, Barclays Center offers 17,732 seats for basketball, 15,795 for hockey, and up to 19,000 seats for concerts, and has 101 luxury suites, four bars/lounges, four clubs, and 40/40 CLUB & Restaurant by American Express.

Barclays Center hosts an extensive variety of events, including premier concerts, major professional boxing cards, top college basketball, family shows, the Brooklyn Nets and the New York Islanders.

Barclays Center has redefined the arena customer service and culinary experience. Its more than 2,000 employees are trained by Disney Institute, the business advisory arm of The Walt Disney Company, and its BrooklynTaste™ food program features selections from 55 well-known restaurants and vendors in the borough.

About Taste NY
Governor Cuomo launched Taste NY in 2013 to promote New York's food and beverage industries. It is overseen by the Department of Agriculture and Markets and has created opportunities for local producers to showcase their goods at large public events such as the Great New York State Fair. The program has also opened stores at Thruway rest stops and other transportation hubs, enabling travelers to buy New York State's homegrown and homemade products. Approximately 1,100 local companies have participated in these opportunities, further linking their products and the state's growing food and beverage market to consumers from across the globe.

Contact the Governor's Press Office

NYC Press Office:  212.681.4640

Albany Press Office:  518.474.8418