A couple of weekends ago J learned that his favorite brewing company would be closing their doors to public tours and tastings. I jokingly suggested that we make a trip up to Vermont so he could bid it a fond farewell.
Not five days later, guess where I found myself? Waterbury, Vermont. The Alchemist Cannery to be specific. Alchemist makes the BEST beer according to beer nerds and the brothers behind Beer Advocate, also known as Heady Topper.
I’ve mentioned that J likes hoppy hoppy beers that I often find yucky. Well, this is one that we can both agree tastes delish. It’s very well balanced, but don’t let the smooth taste fool you—it’s a potent beer, with more than 8% alcohol content.
Side Note: You can’t get Heady Topper on tap anywhere outside of Vermont and in cans anywhere outside of the Northeast. With the cannery closing to the public, it’s obvious that Alchemist is trying to protect their product from the black beer market (Yes, it’s a thing.). It’s also unlikely that you’ll find Heady Topper on any menu outside of Vermont anytime soon. They’ve since announced they will open a retail store in Waterbury.
Our first stop of the trip was the cannery for a freshly brewed Heady Topper and possibly to pick up a few cases. Of course, with all of the buzz surrounding the closing, there were no cases, cans, or drops of beer left to be purchased. Instead, we had a complimentary tasting (and another $1 tasting) and took a peek at the teeny-tiny production facility.
To be fair our weekend only mostly (not totally) revolved around beer, we decided to make the three-hour drive worth our while and booked a room in a cute little B ‘n’ B and had a full list of Vermont-y things to do. Check out our weekend of Vermont activities this week on the blog!
Photography by me. November 2013.