#foragedbeers – PorchDrinking.com
For the last six years, Beers Made By Walking has offered beer drinkers in a select few cities an opportunity to explore a collection of one-off beers inspired by local nature and urban walks. This program began back in 2011 and over time has worked with 150 different breweries across six states.
This year, Beers Made By Walking hosted its annual Denver event at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, who was also the beneficiary of the proceeds from the event. Essentially, attendees got to feel like they were Ben Stiller in his Night at the Museum movies but with the added bonus of 33 breweries also hanging out for the evening.
Nestled in the woods of southern Illinois, among the dips and low hills of a surprisingly wild region of the state, sits one of the most innovative breweries operating in the American craft beer scene today. That innovation, however, comes by way of ancient tradition. Owners and brewmasters Marika Josephson and Aaron Kleidon aren’t pioneering cutting edge brewing technologies or using explosively flavorful new varieties of experimental hops. Rather, they’re reviving the use of ingredients and techniques that humans have used for centuries to make beer. Foraging among the underbrush of their wooded property for edible bark, nuts, fruits, flowers, roots and mushrooms, and growing yet more ingredients at their brewery garden, the folks at Scratch are bringing unexpected flavors to beer drinkers lucky enough to make it to their rustic property.
Foraging, it’s true nature is an act of survival, but in recent years this archaic form of collecting goods for nourishment has reinvented and re-defined modern cooking. Just ask world renowned chef René Redzepi, chef and founder of Noma in Copenhagen, whose use of foraged goods has earned the restaurant the distinction of two Michelin stars.