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You’ve probable heard of people that love to travel to different hockey rinks, restaurants or parks just to experience what each attraction has to offer.
Now a North Bay craft brew maker says he’s starting to notice people taking trips that centre around beer tasting in the north. John Lechlitner, owner of Cecil’s Brewhouse and Kitchen says he’s seeing a small but growing trend.
“We’ve had people who have been travelling strictly to check out craft breweries and make a point of stopping because we are a craft brewery. It’s becoming part of our regional tourism fabric. People like ourselves, New Ontario, the guys in South River (Highlander), Stack that opened in Sudbury, the guys on Manitoulin Island. A lot of the people have sampled the products at numerous places.”
Just south of here there is Muskoka Brewery in Bracebridge, Lake of Bays Brewery east of Huntsville, and Sawdust City in Gravenhurst which form a beer loop that makes a convenient day trip.
“Every day of the week we have people walk in who are local, or more encouraging, people who stop and are travelling to taste craft beer. We see growth month over month,” added Lechlitner. Much of the credit for his success, he says is the local water.
When planning his brewery one of the first things he did was to take a sample of North Bay water to a lab to be tested.
“We sent the results to our brew master and he was extremely impressed to the point where we have minimal filtration. We don’t have hard water, we have that right balance in it. There was nothing we had to remove from the water. Let’s face it, beer starts with water and if you don’t have good water it’s going to impact the taste.”
Top seller at Cecil’s changes by the season, but a consistent seller is the Temagami Amber Ale. However, in the summer the Algonquin Whitecap, which is an American style wheat rivals it for number one. Craft brewers are also jumping on board with protecting the environment.
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