What could top off a strenuous hike or leisurely amble through the postcard-perfect, Instagram-ready scenery of Orange County, N.Y., better than an artisanal beer crafted in the very region you’ve been enjoying?
With so many trails for hiking, wandering, and exploring, as well as a dynamic and growing craft beverage industry, it’s no surprise that there are inviting brewery taprooms and beer gardens to be found at the end of your journey. To make things even simpler, plan your hike to conclude at one of these popular destinations, where you can enjoy good food and drinks, socialize with the locals, and maybe even catch some live music.
Here are several ideas for matching breweries with hikes in Orange County:
Heritage Trail to Rushing Duck Brewing Co., 2 Greycourt Ave., Chester, N.Y.
Wandering the scenic Heritage Trail into Historic Downtown Chester is a great way to reach the small, family-owned Rushing Duck Brewing Company.
The 19.5-mile trail follows the path of the former Erie Railroad and links Harriman with Middletown, passing historic landmarks, meadows and streams. Chester lies at about the midpoint. Find Rushing Duck near the historic 1915 Erie Depot, and stop in to wind down from your walk with a selection from the innovative brewery’s wide variety of full-flavored, carefully crafted beers – hoppy, malty, American-styled, Belgian influenced, barrel aged, sours and more.
Heritage Trail to Clemson Bros. Brewery, 22 Cottage St., Middletown, and Equilibrium Brewery, 4 South St., Middletown
Near the west end of the Heritage Trail, in downtown Middletown, you’ll find two breweries within a half mile of each other – Clemson Bros. Brewery at 22 Cottage St., and Equilibrium Brewery at 4 South St. Both are great places to relax after a walk.
Clemson’s historic, restored 1890s building, sits not far from where the trail ends at E. Main St. and Railroad Avenue. The brick building – three stories and a tower of 19th century industrial character – is where the Clemson family first established themselves in the 1800s, developing the company Star Hacksaws. The brewery now includes a restaurant in the beautifully restored space, offering plenty of food to accompany the beers. In a nod to family history, one of the burgers is called The Hacksaw.
Equilibrium Brewery offers award-winning beers and barbeque. Founded by partners educated at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the brewery weds craft and science to create innovative beers such as Photon, Wavelength and Rho, an imperial coffee stout that pours jet black. Enjoy them in the taproom and Bonfire restaurant, or outdoors in the beer garden.
Outdoor Club of Port Jervis to Fox N Hare brewery, 46 Front St., Port Jervis
Port Jervis offers ample opportunity for outdoor fun with nearly 50 miles of hiking and biking trails, under the stewardship of the Outdoor Club of Port Jervis, plus one of the East Coast’s largest pump tracks for cyclists by the Delaware River. Find maps, plus shirts and hats, at the club’s kiosk in Action Bikes, 27 Front St., just down the street from Fox N Hare brewery at 46 Front St.
When you’re done hiking or riding, stop in Fox N Hare, a fun and popular spot in a restored 1880s building with a pressed tin ceiling. The beers there boast a strong German influence, but satisfy all tastes, and they’re matched by “comfort food in a comfortable space” including blackened chicken, Mexican street sausage and several burger varieties.
Sugarloaf Mountain to Tin Barn Brewing, 62 Kings Highway Bypass, Chester, N.Y.
With more than 300 acres of hiking trails, climbing routes, farmland and diverse habitat, the mountain is not just a spectacular part of the scenery, it’s a destination for outdoor activity. With all that and its colorful history, including mining and bootlegging, it’s no wonder people love to explore the area. Not far from the foot of the mountain is Tin Barn Brewing, a craft brewery and taproom. Rest and savor a beer from among their tasty selections. For fuel, order snacks and one of their range of pizzas, including a variety of white pizzas.
Sleep in an architecturally significant B&B, or book a room at a nationally known hotel. Casual travelers as well as visitors looking for luxury will find a wide range of properties to consider. There are lodging options for everyone – Try our user-friendly lodging search below and come stay with us in Orange County, NY.