Saturday January 7, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- Wandering Star Brewery has only been making beer for six months, but already the company is winning high-profile recognition.

Editors at Food & Wine magazine listed the Pittsfield brewery's Mild Heart -- an English dark mild ale -- as one of its five favorite beers of 2011.

The endorsement came as a surprise to Chris Post, brewer at and owner of Wandering Star, who said he had no idea they'd been picked as a stand-out until a colleague spotted the endorsement on the magazine's website.

"[This] was really, really exciting for us," said Post. "I guess it just shows we're really doing something right."

Food & Wine editor Megan Krigbaum likened Mild Heart to the beer version of a chocolate milkshake.

"The beer is rich and malty, but remains somehow light on the palate," wrote Krigbaum in her yearly editor's picks, which included brewing heavyweights like San Francisco's Anchor Brewing Co.

Post said he wasn't sure about the comparison to a milkshake, but he appreciates the compliment none the less.

"I kind of get it, because it's got a chocolate flavor with no bitterness, but it doesn't taste very sweet," he said.

Post hopes the national recognition will help expand his business' distribution to pubs and bars across the Northeast.

"The craft brewing field is very, very competitive," said Post. "It's important to get recognition, and this will definitely help us stand out among our peers.


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Wandering Star officially opened in a nondescript building off Merrill Road in June. Last year they brewed 350 barrels of beer, equivalent to 700 standard-sized kegs or 86,800 pints. Post said he expects to produce twice that amount this year.

The brewery only distributes its beer to bars and pubs, primarily in New York City and the Berkshires.

Locally, Post says you can find his brews on tap at the Purple Pub, Hops and Vines and Desperado's in Williamstown.

In Pittsfield, it's available at Mission and Brulees. It's also on tap at the Brick House in Housatonic, and at the Old Forge in Lanesborough.

To reach Ned Oliver:
noliver@berkshireeagle.com,
or (413) 496-6240.
On Twitter: @BE_NedOliver