Nestled snuggly in the village of Lake George is a brewery larger than its visible size, Adirondack Brewery! At first glance you can tell that the brewery is also a restaurant and brew pub, and while this might have been their starting point of pints, the word is out – and it’s all about Adirondack.
John Carr, Adirondack Brewery’s head guy in charge, discovered his appreciation for good beer while wandering his way around Europe after college. Upon finding himself back at his home in Vermont, he realized there was something missing. The brews he could afford didn’t quite stand up to the delicious variety he encountered during his European travels. So he decided to try his hand at homebrewing. Who would have known, he was great at it!
He met his wife, who happened to be from Lake George, and decided to move. In 1999, Adirondack Brewery & Pub was opened with the brewing aspect solely for the pub’s customers. Word of his tasty brewing style spread quickly, and soon other Lake George restaurants and bars wanted to get their hands on some of his beer. Starting out by self-distribution, they got their beers out there, and today their span includes most of New York State, even New York City and Long Island.
Adirondack Brewery has been one of my favorite breweries to get to know. It's a quick drive in the Capital Region, and the Lake George views help, but when push comes to shove they make really great beer. Their core lineup of beers include the famous Bear Naked, Dirty Blonde, Beaver Brown and my personal favorite, Iroquois Pale Ale. You hop heads out there – be aware of this one. If you haven’t gotten your taste buds wrapped around it yet... get to the store. Run, don’t walk!
Beyond the basics Adirondack has to offer, they also are constantly diving into the wide world of styles. They have barrel aged beer that is out of this world! I actually got to try one that was aged in a pinot noir barrel last week and it was a little too good. They are also starting to experiment with sour beers. Keep your eyes out for their Blackberry Oatmeal Cream Stout and Barrel Aged Imperial IPA – completely different from one another and worth having a pint or two.
The team of brewers they have put together create a perfect symmetry in beer world. Some are known to look a little on the geekier side of things, while others add some inspiration (you should see the lab they have here). I was lucky enough to brew a batch of Beaver Brown last year, and just experiencing the way the brewery works as a whole made me appreciate them a little more.
So, here’s the deal… Obviously you NEED to get to Adirondack Brewery. They have a fully functional and delicious restaurant, a summer full of events, an Oktoberfest filled with lederhosen, dirndls and even a dancing chicken. If you are looking for something a little closer, this weekend is their Festival of Barrels! The wild and weird brews come out to play, as do the partiers. Dress warmly, as this event is outside, but you will surely be toasty by the fire pits, sipping on their many brews. Don't miss this event!
Melissa Hildreth is a German fräulein and loves her beer and bratwurst. Melissa is an advocate for following your passions in life, no matter how ridiculous. She will dance the night away if the moment is right. Some have said she has an unhealthy relationship with chicken wings, but is there even really such a thing?! She also happens to be a Certified Cicerone/Mother of Dragons in case anyone’s asking.