LAKEVILLE – A brother and sister will unveil the next chapter of their family’s tasty legacy this weekend, right in Livingston County, on Big Tree Road in Lakeville.
On May 28 and 29, Stump Blower Cidery’s owners, Elise Barnard and Eric K. Smith, will be host to live music and tastings through their entire facility, which is family-based to the core. The cidery even owes its name to the ways of their father and uncle.
“My old man and uncle used to make our original cider and hide it in stumps, so when they were out on the tractor they could hop off and take a swig,” said Smith. “Their wives were supposed to be none the wiser, but I think they knew. Uncle Charlie passed away last year, and that’s really what got us started. We had been talking about starting a cidery for a long time but that was the moment when we thought now is the best time to do this.”
By design, every inch of the cidery is crafted from repurposed from materials in New York State, and all of the produce that goes into their ciders comes from New York State farmers.
“I literally have a repurposed road sign for a front door of our cooler,” said Smith. “The front of the bar is an old barn door from a Batavia farm. It’s New York everything, from the materials to the apples. That’s kind of our mission. We’re local.”
The team at Stump Blower is skilled and driven by their passion. Cider brewing wizard Mark ‘The Professor’ Havens has made their cider his masterpieces, and will be listening intently to customer reviews this weekend.
“Mark is a chemist. He’s a cider Walter White,” said Smith. “He understands what is going on with the ciders on a chemical level. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate having him with us, and how much I am learning just from being around him.”
This weekend’s tastings will include interesting ciders like their Little Lakes Semi Sweet and Ginger Citrus, as well as their Concord Grape cider, which is technically a wine. Of course, the team is eager to share their forebears’ original cider.
Tastings run from noon to 9 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday at 5901 Big Tree Road in Lakeville.