By Tina Wright
It's fall, time for hard cider, as our New York state apple brew takes the world by storm. Hard apple cider sales have doubled every two years nationally since 2000. GreenStar has added to the surge by stocking local farm-to-bottle craft ciders on the shelves as they come on line, and packing cold cider six-packs in a new enclosed cooler at the West-End store at competitive prices.
Let's survey our ciders at GreenStar, kind of a Cider 101. The lab portion of this course is a Finger Lakes Cider Week event sponsored by GreenStar at The Space on Tuesday, Oct. 6 from 7 to 8:30 pm. This free event, "Cider and Cheese: The Perfect Pairing," is part of the local Science Cabaret series, and will feature fantastic tastings of local hard ciders and cheese. Autumn Stoscheck of Eve's Cidery will chat with Gavin Sacks, Cornell flavor scientist, and cider blogger Meredith Collins on the Cider Week version of Ithaca's Science Cabaret. Join in.
So we'll start our course at the West End's new beverage cooler with six packs of hard cider: DeMunck's (from Southern Tier Brewing, the awesome beer crafters from Horseheads), Original Sin, and McKenzie's, and four packs of Hazlitt's. People like really cold bottles. According to Morgan Greer, Assistant Grocery Manager, "Cider sales numbers are huge." She points out that six-pack ciders can all be purchased individually to be sampled at home. These beers are priced reasonably (and competitively at GreenStar) and are perfect for family gatherings with your brother-in-law who is used to six-pack cider.
But this is a survey. We are now moving up to Doc's Draft, a 22-ounce bottle from the other side of the Catskills, a "gateway" bottle that should wean anyone from six-packs at $4.99 a bottle. I haven't found it for less than $5.99 anywhere else in town. GreenStar should call it a BASICS product; the quality is outrageous for the price. The next step up is Bellwether's Original hard cider, another real bargain at $10.39. Bellwether's other varieties go up in price and sweetness but the local pioneer cidermakers hit it right the first time by me.
By Kristie Snyder,
Beer lovers now have a lot more to be happy about at GreenStar. The recent addition of two large coolers in the West-End store has allowed the Grocery Department to bring in more variety and more local beers, and much of what was already available on the shelves can now be purchased chilled.
"We have at least 38 new beers from several new companies," said Grocery Manager Adam Morris. "We have ten times as much cold beer as before. And we are much less likely to run out of your favorites now that we have more space."
All of the beers on offer at GreenStar are local (sourced within 100 miles), regional (sourced within 300 miles), or organic, as set out in the member referendum passed in April 2007 that allowed alcohol to be sold at the Co-op.
For those who like to experiment, nearly a quarter of the new cooler space is dedicated to single bottles of beer. Pick up one that looks interesting, or make your own six-pack of cold beer. It's perfect if you're curious about a new variety, but don't want to commit to an entire six- or four-pack.
For those who prefer organic, Wolaver's, a longstanding favorite, is in the cooler, with plenty of space dedicated to their popular Oatmeal Stout. Peak Organic Brewing Company's six-packs are also available chilled, and their IPA is available in the singles cooler.
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New in Grocery
|Beer, Chocolate, and Gummy Bears|
Looking for seasonal beer? It's here. Halloween treats? Got 'em. And, check for sales on baking supplies.
Welcome to fall. Finally! As some of you may have noticed, our seasonal beer selection is already up and running! We've got a great assortment of regional and local favorites, as well as some organic varieties — all sure to spice up any weekend gathering! Be on the lookout for your favorite Halloween snacks and treats as well. Yummy Earth gummies, Sjaaks vegan holiday chocolates, all your favorite drizzled popcorns, and so many other options and treats will be on sale yet again! And let's not forget the old adage about the early bird and its reward: now may be the best time to take advantage of some sales on baking supplies and other goodies to set you up for the perfect Thanksgiving. You know it's coming — once the cold weather gets going, there's just no stopping it! And, have you seen our new Basics flyer? It's a handy guide to shopping the hundreds of products at rock-bottom prices throughout the store.