With Riverside celebrating the 150th birthday of Frederick Law Olmsted’s plan for the village, a Riverside business and a brewery with local connections have teamed up to help residents hoist a toast in the founders’ honor.
On April 26, Riverside Foods and BuckleDown Brewery officially unveiled their “Lush by Design” dry-hopped wheat ale during a special tasting event at the downtown Riverside grocery store, followed by a celebratory keg-tapping down the street at La Barra Ristorante.
“The reception so far has been very warm,” said Peter Boutsikakis, co-owner of Riverside Foods. “I hope this can be an ongoing project to highlight different aspects of the community.”
Riverside Foods has been stocking BuckleDown products since the brewery started canning beer in 2015, and BuckleDown has been a consistent participant in the Frederick Law Olmsted Society’s HopStop craft beer festival each fall.
A portion of the sales — $1 per six pack, said Boutsikakis – will go to support the Olmsted Society and Riverside Arts Center.
The 12-ounce cans, sold by the six-pack for $9.99 at the store, feature a an Olmsted-inspired wrap depicting the famed landscape architect’s General Plan of Riverside – the brewery got permission from the Riverside Historical Commission to use the map.
The “Lush by Design” in Victorian script refers to Olmsted’s 1869 vision for Riverside, said Boutsikakis. The wrap itself was designed by BuckleDown co-owner Sean Maloney. The brewer is co-owner Ike Orcutt, who is a Riverside resident.
“Peter came to us with the idea of a beer to celebrate Olmsted’s 1869 plan that both Riverside Foods and BuckleDown could put their thumbprint on,” said Orcutt, who moved to the village about a year ago to be closer to the Lyons-based brewery. “I was all over it.”
The brew uses Motueka hops, a variety from New Zealand with which Orcutt was experimenting when Boutsikakis inquired about a partnership on a celebratory beverage for the 150th.
“The hops present a tropical aspect and a juiciness to the dry beer, and I thought it’d be spot-on with spring around the corner,” Boutsikakis said.
While the BuckleDown might brew another batch of Lush by Design, for now it’s a very limited run of just 100 cases, sold exclusively at Riverside Foods, 40 E. Burlington St. Within days of it showing up on the shelves at the store, it was selling briskly, Boutsikakis said.
If you miss out on a six pack, you can buy a pint on draft, while they last, at four locations in Riverside, including La Barra, The Chew Chew, Mollie’s Public House and 34 East Lounge, all in downtown Riverside.