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Farm-Fresh Beers and Food at North Hampton's Throwback Brewery

By S. Mathur

But first: what are farm-fresh beers? Co-Founder Nicole Carrier explains that "we strive to use ingredients for both our food and beer that come from within 200 miles of our brewery. We find that farm fresh ingredients really help to make our beer and food taste really fresh and vibrant." She uses the term "Terroir", transposed from wine-making, to refer to "the bouquet of flavors imparted by the soil, ingredients, and region a product is made in.

That, in addition to us leveraging the ingredients that thrive particularly well here, like maple syrup, apples, applewood, rye, wheat, etc., we are creating beers that are very New England in style and taste."

Quite literally, what you are getting with every sip and every bite are the fruits of the earth. The agricultural metaphors are apt, because Throwback Brewery plays an important role in the local farming community. Dozens of beers have ingredients from local farms: New Roots, Stout Oat, Meadow's Mirth, Brae Farm, Wake Robin, Tuckaway, Taylor Brothers, and more.

The restaurant, too, sources the majority of the produce from Seacoast area farms. The meat comes from New England Family Farms. Recently, the Brewery has begun growing food at their own Hobbs Farm, for use in the kitchen and in the making of the beers. "All together," says Carrier, "these efforts help support local food, local farmers, and retaining land as farmland."

The food is planned to complement the beer, and vice versa, Carrier adds: "We love to eat here, so we always craft our beer while thinking 'what would we eat while drinking this?'."

The most popular item on the menu is the Throwback Burger, and the one that she would recommend to a new guest. Described as a "deconstructed French Onion soup" it has a burger made with beef from Northeast Family Farms served on a house-made spent grain bun, with onions caramelized in maple sugar, gruyere cheese, and garlic thyme aioli. For vegetarians, she recommends the Kale & Couscous salad, which comes with cranberries, walnuts and parmesan cheese in an orange cumin dressing.

As the Brewery has grown, it has expanded its mission to become a positive asset to the community. Not only is it a place for people to meet, relax and enjoy farm-fresh food and drink, it helps to build and support community in a number of ways.

The events hosted at the Brewery include guitar lessons, bi-weekly yoga classes, cribbage nights, a summer CSA, and more. A weekend Book Club extends a standing invitation to all: "Anyone is welcome to the book club. We drink a little beer, laugh a few laughs, and talk about the book. And, for many, it is also a chance to catch up with friends old and new."

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