By Lenn Thompson, Executive Editor

2011-LInanoCaskFest2b Here on Long Island, we're blessed with craft breweries like Southampton Publick House and Blue Point Brewery. Each makes some terrific beers — ones that I'm happy to drink anytime I see them at a restaurant or pick up at my local beer shop.

But, there's something even more exciting going on in the local beer scene — the rise of nanobreweries.

It seems like every few months I hear about a new smaller-than-micro brewery popping up on the Island, places like Barrier Brewing Company, Blind Bat Brewery, Barrage Brewing Company and Rocky Point Artisan Brewers, which was co-founded by NYCR alum Donavan Hall.

Look for a feature story here soon about this movement and some of the people driving it.

One challenge, even for an intrepid beer seeker such as myself, is getting your hands on these brews. Beyond here-and-gone growler fills and the occasional tap at a craft beer bar, it's not easy. Very few of these beers are bottled.

Enter this Saturday's 2011 Long Island Nano Ale Cask Festival, which will run from noon to 4 p.m. at DEKS American Restaurant in Rocky Point, NY.

For $40 per person, you'll get unlimited samples of locally made ales and a commemorative half-pint nonic glass. Designated drivers can attend for free.

Tickets can be purchased online, in person by visiting DEKS, located at 605 Route 25A, or by calling 631-821-0066.

I wish I could go, but we have our little man's birthday party at the same time, which is just about the only thing that could keep me away from this.