Posts ByRich Stoner, Author at PorchDrinking.com
When it comes to being active outdoors, no pursuit is ever complete without a celebratory beverage or two. Hiking, biking… it doesn’t matter. Nowhere is this more evident than in the ski and snowboard industry. There, they have turned celebrating a day on the mountain into an art form. Known as après-ski, it encompasses all the social activities that take place after a day in the snow. Most of these endeavors include good craft beer, which has become synonymous with skiing over the years. Recognizing this connection, breweries are capitalizing by using ski culture in their branding. Breweries like Common Roots Brewing Co. and their Gondola Session IPA define the idea of celebrating in the outdoors.
Après-ski. Taken literally, it is a French phrase that means “after ski.” However, to anyone who has ever skied, snowboarded or been anywhere near a mountain in the winter, it is so much more than that. Après-ski is more appropriately defined as the social activities that take place after a day of skiing or riding. No day on the mountain is complete without it. It’s filled with good food, good cheer and, of course, good beer.
Drink local. From t-shirts, to hashtags, to just being uttered in conversation, it’s a phrase that comes up often within the craft beer industry. The idea of prioritizing local beers in and around your hometown appeals to many. Everyone has their reasons. Whether it’s the terroir, ingredients or lack of travel time, people have an affinity to drinking beer from an establishment close to their homes. Local beer and breweries seem more authentic than some of the more well known, larger craft breweries. It is this type of originality that is on display at The Good Wolf Brewing Company as they take you on a hike through Tahoe with their brewery and, more particularly, forest beers.
Calm winds, the rising sun and a glass like ocean…this is the allure of being part of the Dawn Patrol. For surfers, the attraction is undeniable. They forego the extra sleep while others lay tucked in their beds knowing that getting the goods early is an opportunity too good to pass up. For these dedicated few, the day’s first waves are worth it. They’re exhilarating!
Summer still managed to show up on time amidst all that is currently going on in our country. Coincidentally, most states have also relaxed on the number of people allowed at outdoor gatherings. Bring on BBQ season! Nothing says backyard BBQ like meat sizzling on the grill, cold craft beer and a few games of cornhole. Fortunately for us, you only need four to play the ultimate backyard game. So, not only does cornhole fit well within the standards of a small gathering, but it also lends itself to good conversations over many craft beers.
The calendar may indicate that it’s not technically summer but the passing of Memorial Day suggests otherwise. Temperatures are on the rise, changing for the better and allowing us to further enjoy the outdoors. This annual transformation comes with many perks, including an inherent change in our beer taste buds.
I remember my first time like it was yesterday. It was late March in the winter of 2016. My wife and I were looking for some après-ski nourishment. After a long day of skiing at Stowe, this was an absolute necessity. Making our way down the mountain access road we eventually wandered into a restaurant called Doc Ponds.
Gazing at the beer menu while taking a seat at the bar, I asked the bartender, “what do you recommend?” An avid Vermont skier, I’m very familiar with the Green Mountain State’s vast craft beer market. However, I always like a local’s take when I can get it. Ultimately, his response pushed me in the direction of Zero Gravity Brewery Green State Lager, a beer that they had just put on tap. One sip and I was in love, hooked on the light, crisp, bready Pilsner bearing the state’s name.