Explore the Hudson Valley

Experience The Hudson Valley

Liquid Gold

  |   October 1, 2019  |  Comment

As the Hudson Valley craft beverage industry continues to emerge as a national destination, take time this fall to enjoy the distinctive flavors of terroir and jovial ambiance the region’s breweries, taverns, and distilleries have to offer.

With a mission of reclaiming abandoned orchards and crowdsourcing hand-foraged apples from local property owners, the Abandoned Cider’s effervescent elixirs have become the toast of the town. It doesn’t get more local than this, and you can taste the difference. The classic cider has a smooth round taste, while the hopped offering blends the floral bitterness of hops with the sweetness and acidity of cider for a juicy, well-balanced flavor. The barrel-aged blend brings the deep rich taste of charred oak to the cider to give a full flavor with a vanilla nose.

Despite profusion of craft distilleries, few have ventured into the sweet, tasty realm of liqueurs. Occupying a former carriage house on the historic Jacob Rusten van Rensselaer Mill Complex in Claverack, Olde York Farm Distillery & Cooperage uses local ingredients to make limited-run seasonal offerings like peony rose liqueur and black walnut bourbon. Olde York has a tasting room on the property where you can sample and purchase spirits directly, or find them at liquor stores and restaurants across the Hudson Valley.

Founded in the summer of 2012, Rushing Duck Brewery now boasts 20 taps and two tasting rooms. This family-run IPA-centric brewery presents a communal atmosphere while delivering on the Hudson Valley taste expectations. In addition to the 13 sturdy year-round workhouses, seasonal brews range from the lightly sour German-style Berliner Weisse to the Girl Scout cookie-inspired Gimme Samoa beer to their wild ale. Head to the Duck In tasting room if you plan to stay awhile, or pop over to the Duck Out to buy cans or fill your growler. Rushing Duck is also available on tap at restaurants across the region.

At Wild Arc Farm, which has skyrocketed to popularity since its founding in 2016, newbie winemakers Todd Cavallo and Crystal Cornish are gaining traction creating natural wines using New York State ingredients. The bulk of their output comes from the Amorici vineyard in Washington County, home to a dozen hybrid varieties. The farm winery specializes in unfiltered single-varietal piquettes as well as blends. With a tasting room still in the works, for the time being Wild Arc’s wines are available in a few restaurants, bars, and stores from the Hudson Valley to New York City.

Kingston’s newest addition to the world of small-batch brewing veers a bit off the modern mainstream. At Kingston Standard Brewing Co., the focus is on traditional, light, drinkable ales and lagers, as well as mixed fermentation styles like lambics and Flemish reds, rather than IPAs. The beers pair well with the seafood fare on offer—fresh-shucked New England oysters (one of the co-owners is part of Brooklyn Oyster Party), lobster rolls, and the like. For non-beer-drinkers, the menu also offers a selection of Hudson Valley wines and ciders, such as a rosé from Fjord Vineyards in Marlboro and cider from Westwind Orchard in Accord.

Drink More Good’s syrups, shrubs, and mixers are the perfect complement to the booming craft beverage scene. For the past seven years, the company has been serving up healthy pop in an era where soda has gotten a bad rap. Drink More Good offers 11 flavors ranging from classic cola to spiced chai, with seasonal fruit flavors that come and go, so you can mix the perfect cocktail or mocktail just how you like it. Their flagship retail store is on Main Street in Beacon, and their syrups are also sold throughout the Hudson Valley.

 

Pictured above: Owners Louise and Sophie Newsome behind the bar at Olde York Farm Distillery in Claverack. Photo by Michael Altobello.

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