We managed to visit SIX breweries on and around Seneca, Cayuga, and Keuka Lakes during our weekend visit to the Finger Lakes. The majority of these were new ones for us that we had either missed on prior trips, or that had opened more recently. All in all, they were very impressive not only with quality of beer but also with the friendliness of their staff and ambiance of their breweries. Check out our visits to Lucky Hare and Heavily Brewing Companies here. Now, here’s the scoop on Steuben and Bacchus Brewing Companies:
Steuben Brewing Company: Steuben was one of the standouts during our cruise around Keuka Lake. Established in 2013, Steuben resides on the west side of the lake on sprawling farm land.
This brewery is unique due to its commitment to its Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) model of brewing, which entails working closely with local farmers as well as the local community for beer production and consumption. It has a clearly loyal following, as it was by far the most crowded brewery we visited on Keuka. The beers were excellent and the atmosphere energetic, which seemed to be buoyed by having the cheapest prices around for a cold pint.
- Beers: None of their options disappointed. We were most impressed by their two IPAs – the Steuben Club IPA and the Hopyard IPA – and the Vacation Ale was a great beer for sitting outside and enjoying the beautiful view of Keuka Lake.
- Vibe: The brewery was crowded but with plenty of room to spread out, as people sprawled in lawn chairs and perched on the edge of the deck out back. Overall, it is a fun and energetic place to visit.
- Check out Steuben Brewing Company here!
Bacchus Brewing Company: We had attempted to visit Bacchus in our past visits to the Finger Lakes region, but due to their somewhat limited hours we hadn’t been able to until this most recent trip. Bacchus is located quite as close to the lakes as the other breweries, but is instead in a town called Dryden outside of Ithaca. We arrived at Bacchus toward the end of a full day of brewery stops, which resulted in tasting a number of beers with already-full and somewhat distended bellies. Nevertheless, the beer was excellent and we had a nice time chatting with our bartender. This brewery opened in 2012 and has since partnered with Americana Vineyards, a Finger Lakes winery.
- Beers: We both did a tasting of each of their beers on tap. Some of the standouts included the Irish Red Rye, which had a nice malty flavor with a dry finish, and the Cyclehops IPA, which is a single-hopped beer with a clean and pleasantly bitter taste.
- Vibe: The exterior is somewhat stark but the interior has a cozy feel. Our informative and friendly bartender created a warm and inviting atmosphere as we tasted the beers. The tasting room was quiet with only one other couple joining during our time there. Although it lacks the beautiful views of the lake, it was a pleasant place to visit with equally pleasant beers.
- Check out Bacchus Brewing here!
Bethany and Mike