The Genesee Country Village & Museum (GCV&M) will host their Hop Harvest Festival, which looks at the journey of hops, one of New York States original cash crops, from field, to brewery, to pint glass, on Labor Day, Monday, September 6th from 10 am to 4 pm.
GCV&M is one of the only museums in the United States with a 19th-century brewery. Grieve’s Brewery is a
reconstruction of a ca. 1803 brewery from Geneva, NY, with portions of Rochester’s old Enright Brewery (closed in
1907) and an early timber-framed structure from West Bloomfield, NY.
Visitors to Hop Harvest Festival can tour Grieve’s Brewery, learn from costumed historical interpreters how brewing relied on gravity during much of the process, with liquids either pumped by hand or ladled into troughs throughout the building. From the pump logs that move water and wort to the dry barrels that hold the malted grain and the wooden mash rakes, everything in the brewery was crafted by hand — including the 250-gallon copper brew kettle.
At the Hop Harvest Festival (and all season long), visitors can enjoy two craft beers on tap in the Museum’s historic Freight House Pub, both brewed referencing historical recipes by Flying Byson Brewing Company in Buffalo, NY. Sample Stocking Hill Ale, an American Wheat Ale with ginger which pours a light hazy gold color with wheaty aromas and a bittersweet gingery finish. Or, try a crowd favorite, Fat Ox Ale: an American-style brown ale with notes of dark chocolate and coffee. Visitors can enjoy a sample, purchase a pint, or bring home a growler of either of these historical brews.
In addition to exploring the historic brewery and sampling craft beverages, visitors can meander through the Historic Village during Hop Harvest Festival and explore local history related to beer and brewing. Learn how hops were used to dye fibers and fabrics, sample beer bread baked in the Livingston-Backus House Kitchen, explore the medicinal uses for hops, purchase savory treats in the Confectionery to take home, and more. Plus, a limited number of guests can enjoy a historic meal served out of Hosmer’s Inn (built in 1818).
From 11 am to 4 pm, attendees can spend the afternoon in the Beer Garden and enjoy beer tastings and pints from a variety of local breweries. Food specials will be available in the Depot Restaurant and a local food truck will serve festival fare. Live music will be provided by Rochester-based band Big Logic and the Truth Serum and one-man-band Jackson Cavalier, and the Heindengold German Dancers will be performing traditional dances in costume.
Event admission is $23 for adults; $20 for seniors (62+); $20 for students (13 – 18); $17 for youth (3 – 12); and free for children 2 and under. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit the Genesee Country Village & Museum website.
Photo of Grieve’s Brewery provided.