In pursuit of balance

WCBN-MR-53-2-Joseph-SwanRussian River Pinot Pioneer Joseph Swan: Now, as ever, true to terroir

by Karl H. Kazaks

FORESTVILLE, CA – The weathered gray sign, softened by patches of green and orange lichen, practically disappears into its surroundings. It is a simple sign; a post and an arm, beneath which hangs the engraved board announcing “Joseph Swan Vineyards.”

Driving down Trenton Road, just off of River Road (a major east-west thoroughfare bisecting the Russian River Valley), you might miss the mottled sign, might not notice the small winery tucked aside the rows of vines. [Read more…]

One sweet reward

WCBN-MR-44-2-Bee-Well-925013by Samantha Graves

Jeremy VanSice was fortunate that on the day he set off for a walk in deep contemplation about a direction for his life, he stumbled upon a lost artifact that would change everything. That artifact was a long-abandoned farm outbuilding located on some land owned by his in-laws. Cocooned within its four sturdy walls was something emblematic of the future of the four VanSice siblings. As it turns out, the small structure had once been a honey house and its contents included beekeeping equipment. [Read more…]

Making mead means no idle tanks

WCBN-52-3-Making-mead-means21by Sally Colby

SUNNYVALE, CA — As a re-enactor, Mike Faul was interested in what people drank during the Renaissance period.

“I came across mead, and the different versions of mead,” said Faul. “My wife Maria got some mead at an airport, brought it home and we liked it, but we couldn’t find any more. I did some research, then tried making some.” [Read more…]

Brewers and farmers: Malting barley trials

by Tamara Scully

Rutgers Agricultural Experiment Station’s Snyder Research and Extension Farm is growing malting barley, as extension agents research the feasibility of farmers cashing in on this in-demand crop. While these particular field trials are new, they demonstrate the old adage “everything old is new again.”

Although today’s resurgence of craft brewing has caused interest in locally grown and adapted varieties of hops and malting grains, barley trials like this one are certainly not new. [Read more…]

Three Notch’d “makes its mark” in the central Virginia beer community

WCBN-MR-28-2-Three-Notch2by Karl H. Kazaks

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – In colonial times, Three Notch’d Road was a major east-west thoroughfare that cut across what is today central Virginia. Sometimes called Three Chop’t Road, the route was likely named after the blaze pattern used to mark the trail – three notches cut into adjoining trees. Today US 250 and I-64 pass through the corridor established by Three Notch’d Road. [Read more…]