Saturday, March 2nd, 2024

NW Beverages hugs Finnriver at Peaks & Pints

Peaks & Pints taps Finnriver Farm & Cidery Head Cidermaker Andrew Byers’ delicious ciders Thursday, March 7 beginning at 5 p.m.

NW Beverages hugs Finnriver at Peaks & Pints

The last time NW Beverages distribution company reached excitement levels this high was when their sales executive Mike “Taco Boz” Bosold make homemade ice cream for the team. The Western Washington distributor just added Finnriver Farm & Cidery to their portfolio — and they’re celebrating with a Finnriver tap takeover at Peaks & Pints Thursday, March 7.

On the northeast corner of the Olympic Peninsula is an extension of land called the Quimper Peninsula, named after Manuel Quimper, a Spanish Peruvian explorer, cartographer, naval officer, and colonial official. The narrow peninsula became the home of towns Port Townsend, Chimacum, Glen Cove and Fort Worden, just to name a few. Today, Quimper Peninsula is home to some of the best cideries in Washington state, including Finnriver in Chimacum.

When one of Washington’s earliest cidermakers, Drew Zimmerman, retired, Finnriver owners Keith and Crystie Kisler, and CFO Eric Jorgensen, transplanted 1,000 of his trees from Mount Vernon to their Chimacum farm, a heartwarming, if labor-intensive transition from old guard to new. A working farm, Finnriver houses rows of espaliered apple trees, fields of flowers, working geese, and on weekend nights, bands add to the merriment.

Andrew Byers, a botanist, wordsmith, and Le Cordon Bleu chef turned cidermaker, has been managing microbial populations at Finnriver for almost eight years; before that he helped produce estate-grown sparkling cider in cider orchards of upstate New York.  He mastered an academic emphasis in fungal ecology and systems thinking/design to the forefront of his home cider production, as well as a deep knowledge of tree fruit. Bring your dictionary on Byers-led tours of the farm.

Peaks & Pints toured Finnriver Farm & Cidery with Byers in September 2019. We can never forget how he described Finnriver’s farm and cidery.

“It’s a 33-acre block of land,” said Byers. “This is where owners Crystie and Keith make cider for you to hold on to. As long as deeds and property ownership exist this is going to stay a big ol’ rectangle block of land. Twenty years ago, Elijah and Kay came to Chimacum Creek and did a restoration planting to grow blueberries. This is what a 25-year-old restoration planting looks like on a creek. It’s big. It shades. And it makes a ton of life. And cougars took the hill three years ago. We work here to make ciders. Cider is a means to an end. It connects people back to the land. It’s a means pay the mortgage on an awesome piece of land. Cider is a means to economically stimulate a rural economy other than strip malls and Best Buys. And we gainfully employ people in a small town. That’s what it is all about. In fact, that seems like our main focus — the human component.”

Join NW Beverages and Finnriver Farm & Cidery at Peaks & Pints 5-8 p.m. Thursday, March 7 for a night of drinking some of the best cider made in Washington state.

NW BEVERAGES HUGS FINNRIVER AT PEAKS & PINTS, 5-8 p.m. Thursday, March 7, 3816 N. 26th St., Basecamp Proctor, Tacoma, no cover

LINK: Peaks & Pints beer and cider cooler inventory