Local Leaders - Long Trail BreweryDecember 14, 2017
In Bridgewater Corners, overlooking the Ottaquechee River sits Long Trail Brewery. Now employing over 80 Vermonters, Long Trail is one of the original and most successful producers of our signature Vermont beer and visiting the brewery is a must-do for both visitors and natives of the state. A quick drive from the Killington access road and near the intersection of the Appalachian and Long Trails, the brewery is a destination for adventure seekers. Adventure, experimentation and Vermont are embedded in the Long Trail brand from the outdoor mentality of the staff to their “Green Brewing” commitment to sustainability.
Speaking of adventure, just down the road from the main brewery headquarters is an old farmhouse now smaller brewery – that’s where the magic happens. One brewer’s full-time job is in this research and development focused brewery lab, executing the experimentation that makes Long Trail a leader in the field. The “R&D” brewery is where their latest release Medicator, the first Vermont CBD-infused brew was developed as a collaboration with Luce Farm in Stockbridge. For those of you not in the know, Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of many cannabinoid molecules produced by Cannabis. CBD is non-psychoactive and everyone's excited about its broad range of potential medical applications. Local hemp farmers and CBD honey producers Joe and Rebecca Pimental, who also happened to be brewery regulars, inspired this heady collaboration which has gained national attention. What's the CBD beer like? It has a base of a pale ale, neutral malt character and the latest iteration is lightly hopped. Hemp is a genetic relative to hops, so the addition is a natural complement to a hopped beer's flavor and aroma.
Long Trail has always had an adventurous and open attitude towards partnering with their farmer neighbors like Luce Farm, from beer-cheese collaborations and Vermont maple infused beers to their pub menu at the brewery. “When people visit the brewery, we want to showcase what have here in Vermont,” Long Trail Communications Guru Drew Vetere shared, “that’s a priority with our menu.” What local eats pair best with Long Trail pints? “Definitely cheese,” says Drew, “beer and cheese are probably my favorite things to put in my body.” The pub menu has some excellent local cheesy options like their Cheddar Ale Soup featuring Plymouth cheddar, Rutland-based Thomas Dairy and of course Long Trail Ale. This hearty soup is so popular at the brewpub, that when they once tried to remove it from the menu for the season – regulars staged a revolt. “Lesson learned. We won’t be pulling that again,” Drew reassured.
Another menu favorite is the classic local burger and throughout December, each burger sold will generate a donation to the Vermont Fresh Network! Visit the brewery, enjoy a pint, and grab a burger (add local cheese, please) with a side satisfaction that your meal supports a great cause! Pro tip – a great beer pairing for a burger is the seasonally apropos Winter Hibernator. This popular beer was just pulled from retirement much to the excitement of its huge fan base. The Hibernator is a super approachable, malt-forward beer showcasing the butterscotch and caramel flavors – it’ll warm you right up!
“Hit the Trail” as the Long Trail slogan says – we’ve created a DigInVT trail for your visit to the brewery!