The Sullivan Catskills is home to some of the best breweries, distilleries, cideries, and wineries in the Catskill region. If you enjoy indulging in libations, make a weekend of it and travel our Good Taste Artisanal Beverage Trail – a sought after experience when visiting the Sullivan Catskills.
Located in the heart of Callicoon, the Callicoon Brewing Company offers a variety of NY state beers and cider on tap including their very own Callicoon Cow Pale Ale and the Brown Cow Porter. Feast on thick Reuben sandwiches, smoked baby back ribs or house-baked mac and cheese. While they currently occupy a converted firehouse, they’ll be moving across the street to the renovated Olympia Hotel (Spring 2019). Live music, friendly faces and good times can be found here. Stop by…
Touted as one of the best brewery experiences in New York state, the Catskill Brewery features fresh ales and lagers made with the finest natural ingredients and pure mountain water – produced sustainably. As you arrive at their Gold LEED certified taproom, pause for a selfie – there’s a grain silo with their iconic raccoon. The entire building, from design to construction, utilized the greenest, most environmentally friendly building technologies. Once inside, you’ll find a bar amidst the fermentation tanks. Pull up a seat and ask for a Freak Tractor (a wild ale) or an Eye of Newt (a Flanders-style red ale). They back up the regulars with a variety of eclectic seasonal and barrel-aged brews – so be sure to ask the bartenders what’s new. On your way out, grab a few four packs and growlers to go.
Step into a former firehouse turned brewery at Roscoe Beer Company. With its warm and cozy cabin atmosphere, it’s no wonder folks from near and far travel to sip on their iced cold craft brews. Whether you like IPA, double IPA, amber ale, pale ale, red ale, brown ale, or stout – they’ve got you covered. Their Facebook reviews spew accolades of friendly bartenders, great food, knowledgeable staff, terrific beer – the list goes on. During the week, locals and visitors alike gather for live music, trivia, and beer bingo. Throughout the year, they play host to some of the best events in the Sullivan Catskills – Wild Ramp Festival, BBQ & Brews, and Reel Harmony. There’s a full menu – house cut fries, specialty grilled cheeses, salad bowls, and locally raised venison brats. Roscoe Beer Co. is family and pet-friendly – so be sure to put them on your “must visit” list. Tours take place every Saturday at 11am. In 30 minutes, you’ll go through the main stages of their brewing process.
All natural, locally-grown, non-GMO ingredients – just one of the secret’s to Shrewd Fox Brewery’s ales, lagers, porters and ciders. They pride themselves on using innovative natural brewing methods to avoid chemicals, additives, and preservatives commonly found in industrial-produced beer. What started as one location in Eldred, quickly expanded to a second location just 5 miles away in Glen Spey. Sip on seasonal, classic, barrel-aged brews and shrewd cider – a great option for the gluten-free folks in your group. In the summer, hang outside in the beer garden. The staff and owners are super friendly and welcome tours and questions.
One of the best experiences in the Sullivan Catskills, hands down. Owner, singer and Janis Joplin look-alike Stacy Cohen has created a unique property you’ll want to explore. As you enter the driveway, the Dancing Cat Saloon will greet you – a restaurant/bar hangout filled with iconic Woodstock décor and live music. Stacy herself is a singer and guitarist. If you’re lucky, you’ll see her on stage. Further back is the Catskill Distilling Co. A tour is a must – you’ll be blown away by the process. And, just wait until you enter the aging room filled with barrels of bourbon and whiskey. Inhale and you may feel like you just threw back a shot. It’s impressive and another must see when visiting the Sullivan Catskills and Bethel, NY. Music, bonfires, community events – there’s always a lot happening at the distillery. Before you head across the street to Stray Cat Gallery (also owned by Stacy), be sure to take home a few bottles – Peace Vodka makes a great gift.
Located in historic Roscoe, NY, Prohibition Distillery made the 1929 Roscoe Firehouse and former VFW Hall their home in 2008. Take a tour before you step into the tasting room for a sip of gin, vodka or whiskey. Browse their great gift shop with lots of local products and stock up on mini bottles for little gifts. In the summer, Bootlegger Alley is the place to be with live music, cocktails and a delicious menu featuring local purveyors. The most interesting part, the symbols seen throughout the distillery – a poppy flower and Florian Cross. The poppy, an enduring symbol of medicinal analgesic from the battlefields of World War I to the opium dens of the far east. It’s a nod to the Art Nouveau style popular during Prohibition, as well as powerful image worn throughout the world as a symbol of remembrance of soldiers who have died during war. They put it on every bottle as a toast to the memory of fallen friends. And, as they operate out of the Roscoe Firehouse, the Florian Cross, a symbol for the patron saint of firefighters. Prohibition Distillery – put it on your “must” list.
Located just across the Sullivan County line in Long Eddy, NY, sits Rock Valley Spirits – a family-owned small batch artisan distillery. This 5th generation family has lovingly restored a century barn, where they mash, ferment, and distill vodka and gin using local ingredients and traditional methods. While their grand opening is slated for sometime this May, folks are more than welcome to make an appointment to take a tour and chat about their process and plans.
Produced in Wurtsboro, NY, Aaron Burr Cider (aka The Cidery) is a small homestead farm dating back to the early 1800s. In 2006, Andrew and Polly began with the planting of a cider-orchard. In case you didn’t know, cider-apples are as different from eating-apples as wine-grapes are different from table-grapes. Using their own apples and locally grown and foraged apples, Aaron Burr Cider is on a mission to re-create “true cider, the rightful table wine of our land.” Aaron Burr is not open to the public but you will find their cider at various eateries and liquor stores throughout the Sullivan Catskills. In season, find them at area farmers’ markets for a taste. And, now you can have Aaron Burr Cider shipped to your door!
Wild and abandoned apples – that’s the foundation of Abandoned Hard Cider. Perhaps one of the coolest business models yet, they work in collaboration with our community, crowd-sourcing apples from landowners with backyard trees and abandoned orchards. Folks trade their apples for bottles of cider – a win-win for everyone. While you can’t visit their cidery, you can find their cider in local eateries and shops. Class, hopped, barrel-aged – which will be your favorite?
Aiming to be the northeast’s premier orchard-based cidery, Seminary Hill uses holistic methods to produce apples and pears without the use of pesticides and herbicides. They have more than 30 apple and pear varietals in their 1200-tree, 12-acre orchard. In 2020, Seminary Hill will open their production facility, tasting room and event space. Needless to say, you’ll want to keep an eye on these folks – have a peek at what they’re building.
One of the hottest spots in the Sullivan Catskills and another definite “must.” Bashakill Vineyards is an incredible organic vineyard and winery in the pristine Bashakill Wetlands. If you’re looking for a great time, and want to kick back and relax, this is the place to do it. Imagine farm to table Mexican and South American street food (prepared from scratch), cheese boards, homemade ice cream (made with local milk), tacos, wine on tap (reds, whites, rose), cocktails made with Prohibition Distillery vodka and gin, and NY craft beers. Play ping pong and cornhole, hike the trails or launch your kayak across the street in the wetlands – on Saturdays and Sundays there’s live music. They’re generous with their pours and you can sample any 4 wines for free!
If you love wine, don’t miss the 8th annual Wine Festival at Bethel Woods Center for the Arts. Over 2 dozen wineries from the Hudson Valley and Finger Lakes will be on hand for you to taste and bring home. Live music, games, an expansive food court, and paint and sip are all part of the fun.
Quench your thirst with a variety of beer, spirits, cider, and mead brought to you from craft beverage makers across the region – all while you enjoy live music, food and artisan vendors at Bethel Woods Center for the Arts. Their 7th annual Craft: Beer, Spirits and Food Festival will leave you stuffed to the gills. There’s so much to drink and eat, you’ll need to pace yourself and take the occasional breather.
Lord Huron, The Revivalists, Marcus Samuelson, Alex Guarnaschelli, and so many other musicians and celebrity chefs came together for a weekend of incredible food and drink experiences at the 2018 Catskills Wine & Food Festival. Details have yet to be released for 2019 but stay tuned…
As always, please drink responsibly and designate a driver.