For those of you who follow my Instagram, (warning: shameless self promotion), which is my main social media of choice, you know that I get around. Not like a whore, but, well, kinda like a beer whore. On this last trip to Vermont I was invited via Instagram to the bar The Ruck in Troy, NY. Nick, the cicerone there, invited me to come check out the bar and have a beer. And what I though was going to be a casual 1 hr meeting turned into one of the best blind Instagram dates I have had in a long time! We happened to be driving back from Vermont (yes with a trunk full of Heady Topper I waited to long in line for) and decided to stop by. And what I found hidden in this forgotten town was a funnel of amazing beer from the Northeast at its gates.
Driving up to The Ruck it pops up in the middle of a block of apartments and the open doors make it seem like a patio to a ground level apartment. Walking in I was struck by the austere rust belt look from the inside plastered with all my favorite brewery stickers. I asked for Nick at the bar and he then met me where we enjoyed quite a few beers in this college town beer cavern.
Nick is a great guy. Just an all around American lover of craft beer. He lights up when you talk to him about how going full time in the bar rescued him from the grave of his 9-5. And my oh my does he know his stuff. Passing the cicerone certification really bled through the conversation but not so much that it was inappropriate. Rather, his knowledge and experience of his passion and love complemented the conversation into the late hours of the night. And, thankfully, the will be soon doing beer education classes at The Ruck!
Now the Ruck is an old vestige of the Rust Belt for sure. But buried within this old mining company building Nick is hard at work planning Homebrew competitions, organizing taps by genre, and educating the city Troy and beyond about the goodness of craft beer. You can be sure to find a healthy supply of local beer from the Northeast. The likes of which include but are not limited to Long Trail Brewery, Jacks Abbey Brewing, Main Beer Company, Switchback Brewing and many more. They are in fact the only brewery to have Switchback brewing on cask!
So when you drive to the Northeast, get up and get to Troy NY where you can enjoy the treasures of craft beer from Nick at The Ruck. Its well worth your time to stop in and enjoy the splendid variety they have there.
Until next time, pour proper my friends.