Monday, October 15, 2012

Harvest Beer & Cider Sessions: The 5 Best Things I Drank This Weekend

Posted By on Mon, Oct 15, 2012 at 12:41 PM

If there's any acceptable reason to be out of the house before noon on a Saturday, it's friendly, locally-sourced day-drinking. And thus, I ended up at Factory on Kent Ave this weekend, knocking back sample-sized-drink after sample-sized-drink at the Harvest Beer & Cider Sessions (with Spirits), which was packed with local brewers, distillers, and mercifully, some food.

But what did I learn, you ask? Well, other than the fact that ciders are now in the midst of a huge, huge comeback (sales have doubled in the past year, apparently), all of my pre-existing alcohol prejudices have been mostly wrong. Hey, not everyone can be an expert like Mike "Beermaster" Conklin. In any case, besides being an afternoon of drinking and poorly Instagramming delicious autumnal booze, it was an afternoon of expanding my drinking horizons. Here are the 5 very best things I tasted:

Harvest Moon Ciders
  • Harvest Moon Ciders
Harvest Moon Cider

After one too many metallic-tasting Strongbows (and brutal, sugary Strongbow hangovers), I haven't gone near a hard cider in years. The entire festival changed my mind on this point, but the hands-down winner here was Harvest Moon, and in particular, their Four Screw blend. Absolutely everything I now know a cider should be.

Eden Ice Cider

Ice wine has a history of making me nearly as edgy as cider, and once again, I've been totally, totally wrong. Eden's aged Northern Spy ice cider was a minor revelation. And, for what it's worth, one of the best-designed bottles in the bunch.

Camp De Encanto Pisco

It wasn't possible for a Pisco to change my mind, because I had never heard of it to begin with. Apparently an ancient type of grape brandy, this was a perfect, stomach-settling change of pace after a raft of bubbly ciders and beers.

Steampunk Cider

Another big game-changer: as skeptical as I tend to be about cider, I am far more skeptical about anything involving the term "steampunk." This, however, was completely delicious, and did not in any way remind me of Amanda Palmer. Solid all-around.

  • Untappd
Carton Brewing Company

This one wasn't a tough sell, but was still a nice discovery. If anything promises to drag me out of my cozy IPA rut, Carton's nutty, complex ale might do the trick.

Follow Virginia K. Smith on Twitter @vksmith.

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About The Author

Virginia K. Smith

Virginia K. Smith

Virginia K. Smith is the Assistant Editor at The L Magazine and a Bushwick resident. Her profile picture was taken at Summerscreen, because she is a real team player.

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