If you’ve heard of Cooperstown, New York, it’s probably baseball related. Thanks to the National Baseball Hall of Fame, Cooperstown has been drawing in fans by the droves since the 1940s—especially during summer. What many don’t realize, though, is that there’s much more to Cooperstown than baseball… i.e., a killer craft beer trail. Read on.
The history of beer in Cooperstown dates back to the 19th century, when the tiny village was the epicenter of hop production in the USA. The regions combination of nutrient-rich soil, and deep wells with high-quality water, makes it ideal for beer making.
In 1997, the first farmstead brewery on U.S. soil in 100+ years was built in Cooperstown. Known worldwide for its Belgian style beers, Brewery Ommegang constructed its massive facility on 136 acres of land which had historically been used for hop farming. These days, it’s one of eight breweries and wineries that make up the Cooperstown beverage trail.
Pretty cool, right? We thought so too. So when Go Cooperstown reached out to Escape Brooklyn regarding a beer-themed weekend, we gratefully accepted and strapped on our drinking boots. And you can, too!
The exact destination is the beautiful Inn at Cooperstown, who offers beer-themed weekends in cooperation with Brewery Ommegang. Designed as the ultimate weekend for beer enthusiasts, its Bed & Brew Package is quite the epic adventure. On Friday, soon after check-in, guests from all over the country gather by the fire to bond, sharing their favorite local craft beers with other attendees. The following evening, everyone loads into a bus for a private VIP tour of Brewery Ommegang, followed by a tasting, then a multi-course beer/food pairing dinner. (Transportation is included, so no need to designate a driver. Go crazy!)
The Bed & Brew Package is offered once a month during fall, winter and spring. Its signature events, like the private tour and dinner, are exclusive to The Inn at Cooperstown. Pricing includes:
- 2 nights lodging at The Inn at Cooperstown
- VIP guided tour and tasting at Brewery Ommegang
- Multi-course, gourmet beer and food pairing dinner
- Transportation to/from Brewery Ommegang
- One exclusive, commemorative, custom growler filled with of your choice of on-tap Ommegang beer
- A Ommegang beer glass (one per person)
- A Brewery Ommegang sweatshirt, or two t-shirts
Packages begin at $580 for the weekend, which is a total steal for all the stuff you get. Other perks include 5% off the price of dinner at local favorite Nicoletta’s, and $5 off a beer at Council Rock Brewery.
While You’re in Town: Check Out These Other Cooperstown Attractions
While the Bed & Brew Package is designed to keep you pretty busy, there is some downtime in the mornings. Go for a hike, antique shop, or explore some of the other breweries in the region! Here’s some of our favorite finds in Cooperstown.
- Go for a short hike at Brookwood Point. The public garden is lovely, and a short trail takes you to Otsego Lake. Kayak and canoe rentals from Memorial Day to Labor Day; the park is open April through November.
- Check out the Native American and folk art collection at Fenimore Art Museum.
- Experience 19th-century farm life at the Farmers’ Museum. Demonstrations and exhibits are set up all over the the museum, which is comprised of a working farmstead, a recreated historic village, a historic carousel, and a Colonial Revival stone barn listed on the National Register for Historic Places. Bonus: the Cardiff Giant I.R.L.
- Shop at indoor/outdoor antique barn Wood Bull Antiques. Although it’s technically an antique barn, many folks stop in to peruse the outdoor spaces, which is set up more like a sculpture garden than a shop.
- Brush up on your baseball knowledge at the Baseball Hall of Fame. For the record, we didn’t—but hear it’s pretty cool.
- In addition to Brewery Ommegang, there’s a whole Cooperstown beverage trail to explore. Stops include a distillery, brewery, winery, and cider mill. If you’re not up for a beverage trail, but want to try some local stuff, check out the lakeside Fire Bar at The Ostego. Please drink responsibly!