Fruitful Brews

Every spring, the Homewood Museum at Johns Hopkins University hosts An Evening of Traditional Beverages on the lawn of the museum’s grounds. Each year there is drink theme — everything from whiskey to champagne to last year’s theme of punch (boy, that was a FUN parTAY!) This year’s theme is Fruitful Brews.

Just to give you a little background…Homewood is the 1801 country house of Charles and Harriet Carroll and one of few surviving examples of Baltimore’s Federal Period architecture. This was a time when the City of Baltimore was a major boom town. The creation of a retreat for summer’s use was really the very beginning of the concept of “the suburbs”, which would be followed 100 years later by nearby developments such as Roland Park, Homeland and Guilford. At the time Homewood was built, the area around the house was quite rural and the site included a 130 acre working farm with two vegetable gardens, as well as an orchard of apples, peaches and pears. The farm and original orchards were the inspiration for this year’s Evening of Traditional Beverages: Fruitful Brews and also for the reestablishment of a small orchard that would have provided fruit for the table, for livestock and for delicious fermented beverages!

This year’s theme, Fruitful Brews, spotlights fruit beer and ciders which are coming back into favor lately—reviving America’s orchard heritage, revisiting traditional styles and bringing new sophistication to these age-old farmhouse beverages.

Woodberry Kitchen will offer seasonally-inspired, farm-to-table snacks and there will be brief remarks by Nina Beth Cardin, founder and director of the Baltimore Orchard Project; Rob Kasper, Baltimore beer scholar and journalist; and Corey Polyoka, beverage director at Woodberry Kitchen. The museum will open at 5:30 p.m. so that guests arriving early may visit the gift shop and period rooms, which illuminate life in early 1800s Baltimore.

A National Historic Landmark built in 1801 by Charles Carroll Jr., Homewood is one of the country’s finest examples of Federal domestic architecture and a historic house museum of Johns Hopkins University. “We’re hoping this event will bring attention to the orchard that once existed on Homewood’s 130-acre farm estate,” said Catherine Rogers Arthur, the museum’s director and curator. “Not just for cooking and feeding livestock, the fruit would have provided plenty of hard cider, the beverage of choice in early America.” The museum currently is raising funds to support the planting of an interpretive heirloom orchard to encourage appreciation of Baltimore’s agricultural heritage.

Since they have once again teamed up with Woodberry Kitchen for the event, you have Spike Gjerde to thank for the hors d’oeuvres selections. As for the libations, those were chosen by Corey Polyoka and Rob Kasper. Here’s what guests will enjoy:

Distillery Lane Ciderworks (Jefferson, MD) – Celebration Cider
Millstone Cellars (Monkton, MD) – Ciderberry
Union Craft Brewing (Baltimore, MD) – Cask Ale TBA – specially created for the event
21st Amendment Brewing (San Francisco, CA) – Hell or High Watermelon Wheat
Shiner (Shiner, TX) – Ruby Redbird
Dogfish Head Craft Brewing (Lewes, DE) – Festina Peche

I’m thirsty!

Museum open for guests at 5:30pm
Program at 6:15 with remarks, party runs until 8:00pm
Location: Homewood Museum Lawn
Price: $35 Members; $45 non-Members (must be 21 or over)
Purchase Tickets via Brown Paper Tickets

FREE parking is available at the University Baptist Church at 3501 N. Charles Street (use Greenway entrance), with pedestrian access across Charles Street at 34th Street. The museum lot is reserved for handicapped parking (accessible from University Parkway). For maps and directions click here or call 410-516-5589.

Sponsors include:
C.L. McCoy Framing / Lewis Contractors / McCracken Consulting / SMG Architects / Southway Builders / Union Craft Brewing / The Wine Source / Woodberry Kitchen / WYPR 88.1 FM / Ziger/Snead Architects

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