By Elizabeth Riggs
Looking to let off a little steam? On Saturday, May 13, fill your wine glasses and beer mugs with local brews and vinos as the Springville Area Chamber of Commerce hosts its second annual Craft Beer & Wine Festival.
According to Chamber Board President Bill Gugino, the festival was inspired by the popularity of similar craft beer and wine events held around the Western New York area.
“Last year we started reaching out to different breweries and wineries to see if there’d be any interest from them in participating and there was,” Gugino said.
The Craft Beer & Wine Festival is also an extension of one of the Chamber’s most popular events: Oktoberfest.
“We do Oktoberfest at end of September and the idea was to have a second event halfway through the year that might complement that,” Gugino said. He also said that the event is a way to draw new visitors to the area.
“What we’re hoping is two-fold; not only to reach some of our local population, but also to reach people from out of town and highlight some of the things Springville has to offer,” Gugino said.
The full listing of breweries on tap for the event include Ellicottville Brewing Company (EBC), Flying Bison Brewery, Gorden Biersch Brewery, Hamburg Brewing Company McKenzie’s Hard Cider, Pearl Street Brewery and Southern Tier Brewery. Wineries include 21 Brix, Chateau Buffalo, Ellicottville Distillery, Main Street Winery, Midgard Winery, Savage Winery, Winery of Ellicottville and Winery at Marjim Manor.
The Winery of Ellicottville will be pouring several of their customer favorites, including Sweetest Thing, a double gold medal winner at the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition, EVL White, Snow Fox, and a gold-medal winning Riesling, among others.
“We are bringing a pretty good variety of whites and reds,” said Winery of Ellicottville part-owner Beth Sheehy, who says that events like the festival are an opportunity for the winery to receive more exposure.
“We really like doing off-premise events because we get to meet new people and they get to try new wines, and maybe that will entice them to come into the winery,” Sheehy said.
The Winery at Marjim Manor, located in Appleton, NY, is a family-owned farm winery offering wines that have been made with local, homegrown produce to produce options ranging from cherry, apricot, strawberry, blueberry, peach and other fruit wines.
“Our wines are different – they’re made from fruit, they’re not flavored wines. We press the cherries, ferment the juice and make actually cherry wine. It’s something different. These days, people are looking for what’s new and what’s unique,” said Marjim account manager Janet Walker.
“Doing events in the community is a great way to educate people about our family wines. We like to go out and do events like this all over upstate New York,” Walker said of the festival.
The Winery at Marjim Manor will be pouring its gold-medal winning Cherry Concerto; gold-medal winning strawberry and blueberry blend, Katapalooza; gold-medal winning Lady of the Manor; an apple, peach and pear fruit sangria, Applegria.
Ellicottville Distillery, the lone distillery at the event, just opened last fall and will be pouring samples of their apple cider vodka, corn vodka, and a clear corn whiskey.
“The corn whiskey and corn vodka are both New York state grown,” said distillery manager, Bryan Scharf, who encourages people to give the distillery a try. “There’s nothing like a new spirit and a new story. There’s a whole bunch of vodkas out there, but everybody’s got a story.”
Savage Winery will also be attending with their line of Caveman-themed wines, including white, red and blush varieties, as well as local favorite, Loganberry, which the owner says he created on a whim.
“I was playing around one day and it’s been a hit, people love it. It’s a super sweet wine. It’s not like drinking wine; it’s like drinking really sweet pop, but it has a kick; 9 percent alcohol,” said Savage Winery co-owner Rich Byington.
Pre-sale tickets for this event can be purchased for $25 online or in person from Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m.—3 p.m. at the Springville Chamber Office, located at the Lucy Bensley Center, 23 North Main Street, or at Sheret Jewelers, Cheap Chollies and B&B Homes. Tickets will be $30 at the door.
The Craft Beer and Wine Festival will be held from 4-7 p.m. at the Springville Volunteer Fire Company, 405 West Main Street, Springville. For more information on the event or to purchase tickets online, visit the Chamber’s website: http://springvillechamber.com.