Beer and wine galore at Yorktoberfest

About 80 brews and eight wineries had samples available at Santander Stadium in York.

By Ted Czech @TedCzechYDR on Twitter

Bob Kucherich, of West Manchester Township, plays a lawn game with an Oatmeal Stout in hand during the Yorktoberfest beer and wine festival Sunday/ (Paul Kuehnel)

Four guys who used to hang out at York College and always tried to one-up each other by finding the best craft beer are ready to open up their own pub in York — the Baldy Beard Brewing Company.

But before they do, they had to stop at Yorktoberfest at Santander Stadium Sunday to hand out samples of their work, like the Notorious F.I.G., a winter fig-infused offering, and their newest creation, My Yammy Weiss, a fall-spiced ale.

“We’re very excited. York is exploding — it’s becoming craft beer central,” co-owner JP Terwilliger said.

Terwilliger, who, along with brother Mike Terwilliger, and friends Dan Leiphart and Jarrett DeMent, want to be a part of the craft beer culture in York that includes the Mudhook Brewing Company, Liquid Hero Brewery and the Holy Hound Taproom, they said. And yes, they are all bald and have beards.

Lindsey Keeney, of York, bites into bacon on a stick at the GNAWJAW stand during the Yorktoberfest beer and wine festival. The Lancaster county bacon was custom sliced and seasoned for the event. (Paul Kuehnel)

Yorktoberfest coordinator Brian Dudley said the beer and wine extravaganza has increased in size and patronage in each of its three years.

“Every year, we increase beer tickets, and every year, we sell out of them,” he said.

He estimated that last year, there were between 2,000 to 2,500 patrons, and that this year, that number would be between 3,000 to 4,000.

Dudley said the allure of the festival can be linked to the recent popularity of craft beer.

“The industry itself is growing, the quality is getting better and they’re making interesting things,” he said. “This is a place where you can sample 80 different beers — if your liver can handle it.”

Dudley added that Yorktoberfest is a non-profit event, with a portion of the proceeds benefitting the Sons of the American Legion in Glen Rock.

Warren Mikesell, of Bee Kind Winery in Clearfield, Pa., said the winery has been to Yorktoberfest all three years.

“Everybody says we’re the best wine at the festival,” he said.

This year, Bee Kind brought with them 12 wines, “from dry reds to sweet fruits,” he said.

Jesse Mills, of Dillsburg, left, and William Leonard, of Conewago Township, with their Hop & Barrel beers were one of several home brewers at Yorktoberfest that hope to commercialize their craft. (Paul Kuehnel)

As for the winery’s name, it’s a combination of the phrase “be kind,” but also, winery owner Joe Kendrick’s desire to use honey in a product, Mikesell said.

“It takes a couple years to make a good mead,” he said. “He’s working on it.”

The event drew Lancaster couple Joel Trimmer, 29, and wife Caralyn, 25, who dressed in Halloween costumes.

Caralyn Trimmer was a cyborg-skeleton, with half her face done up like it was stripped of skin. She also cut holes in a T-shirt so that the metal of a back brace she is wearing from a fall could be seen.

Joel Trimmer wore a black and red get-up and called himself “The Liquid Hero” after the York pub.

“I can drink beers fast, while sitting on the couch in my slippers,” he said of his super-powers.

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