The people of Rhode Island are blessed with wonderful locally crafted alcohol. From great beer to delicious wine and spirits, we really are a small state filled with so many amazing options to choose from. Though we may each have our loyalties, I suggest giving every brewer a try for a perfect spring and summer filled with adult beverage bliss. Two places in particular have just launched exciting entries that should put them at the top of your list of places to visit as soon as possible.
Purple Cat Vineyard & Winery and Sons of Liberty Spirits Company have each developed their own individual lines of beer! You might not expect two drastically different businesses hailing from opposite ends of the state to have much in common, but these two places have really proven that great minds do indeed think alike. The two locally owned and operated establishments have been in Rhode Island for years and have grown in popularity for different reasons. Purple Cat Vineyard has specialized in providing delicious wine with locally sourced grapes, while Sons of Liberty is an exceptional whiskey distillery.
Found in the small town of Chepachet, Purple Cat first opened in 2014. The winery, which is named after a restaurant that ran on the property for decades, is housed in a unique, massive building. The property has seen many uses ranging from an emporium to a pharmacy, and now is a perfect home for a winery. The space also features a café and rooms available for private events, as well as a theater company.
Though beer hasn’t started flowing through the taps just yet, more than a dozen varieties of wine and exciting upcoming events are reason enough to visit. The owner even discussed plans to offer an outdoor field space adjacent to the building this summer, home to a series of events including concerts – and to portions of Chepachet’s very own Fourth of July celebration known as the Ancients and Horribles Parade. Their next big event will be the Spring Festival and Cupcake Challenge on April 29-30 with at least eight different bakeries from across the state competing to make the best cupcake.
Brewing will be launched at Purple Cat this spring, pending final approval from the state. Materials have already begun to be assembled and exciting recipes have been established. The owners are working with four brewers from diverse beer backgrounds, nicknamed the “Four Sages.” The brewers intend to offer 12-14 varieties of craft beer throughout the year with 4-6 available at any given time each season. The ales will be brewed right on the premises using a three-barrel system to be served on-site. You’ll even be able to take growlers home of your favorite varieties and eventually find bottles at select local liquor stores. purplecatwinery.com.
Found in South Kingstown, Sons of Liberty Spirits has been gaining national attention for their commitment to well-executed American single malt whiskies. Having recently won Craft Distiller of the Year for 2017 from Whiskey Magazine, the company has appeared in many stories about their products. Whiskey options currently include two American single malts and a one-of-a-kind seasonal line of whiskies. Sons of Liberty also produces a jenever-style gin distilled from a Belgian wheat beer.
The company’s addition of beer is a welcomed venture and has received much attention since its launch in early March. Brews so far include both a double IPA and traditional New England-style IPA, a barrel-aged stout, Belgian Tripel ale, and more! You can experience their unique recipes on draft at their tasting room and stay on the look out for new small batch varieties on rotation. Visit solspirits.com for bottled distribution information.
With spring in full force and summer quickly approaching, there is no better time to visit these two amazing new brewers! Whether you’re looking for light summer ales or hearty stouts, you’ll find delicious options right in-state. Both Purple Cat Vineyard & Winery and Sons of Liberty Spirits Company offer exciting events that will be perfect opportunities to experience both their new brews and familiar offerings of wine and whiskey alike.