The first batch of Long Trail Ale rolled off the line in 1989. Back then the brewery—known as the Mountain Brewers—was a modest brew house tucked into the basement of the Old Woolen Mill in Bridgewater Corners, with the goal to brew an affordable, American-made alternative to the pricey German and English exports that filled the shelves.
At the time, the craft brewing industry in America was on the rise and Vermont was better known for maple syrup than beer. In 1989, Long Trail Ale hit the taps at local watering holes; blazing the trail for Vermont’s craft brewing industry.
With the Mountain Brewers leading the pack, Long Trail Ale slowly weaved its way into the Green Mountain landscape—becoming as much a Vermont tradition as the hiking trail itself. Commonly referred to as “the Long Trail guys,” we eventually changed our name. When we outgrew the 8,000 barrel-a-year system in the Old Mill basement in 1995, we decided to take a hike on up the road to where we reside today.
When we first started out in the Old Mill brewery, the greenest part of our operation was the glass we used. Besides being green in color, the original Long Trail Ale bottles were recycled and reused Beck’s and St. Pauli Girl bottles. The bottles have changed some in 25 years but our commitment to sustainable brewing practices and environmental stewardship remains rooted in our philosophy.
Besides making great beer, our other passion is serving the community, in Vermont and beyond. Long Trail’s commitment to charitable organizations is a part of our footprint that we take great pride in. Every year we partner with nonprofit organizations to sponsor a host of events like the Century Ride, a 100-mile bike ride fundraiser that benefits Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports.