Spirt of Philadelphia First Friday 2017 Leaderboard

Original 13 Ciderworks Opening Cider Brewery & Tasting Room in Kensington

by Jessie Donofrio on May 6, 2016 in Beer

With the recent opening of Saint Benjamin’s Brewpub and Evil Genius Brewery coming to town soon, Philadelphia is booming with breweries right now. However, one thing the city has been lacking is some hometown cider.

Original 13 Ciderworks plans to change that by opening a cider brewery and tasting room in Kensington this fall. John Kowchak, who came from a family of home cider brewers, launched his first line of ciders, Sir Charles, in 2014. They currently have two ciders: the Sir Charles Original Semi-Dry and the Hail, Cyser, a Semi-Sweet. With the opening of their new brewery location, the brewers plan on expanding their selections to include more hard ciders, perry, and apple wine.

Kowchak is an experienced businessman and brewer who received his MBA in Entrepreneurship from Drexel University. Additionally, he graduated from the Cider and Perry Academy in the UK. He plans for his brewery to be registered as a B-corporation, which means they’re pressing cider as environmentally friendly as possible. They’re doing this by distributing their product in cans as opposed to bottles, and have the vision of their new site being completely solar powered. They’re also keeping their produce local, are using apples from PA, and also have plans to create a cider using NJ blueberries.

As of now, Original 13 is working on getting all of the proper licenses and funding together. They’ve hired Judy Robinson, who designed La Colombe’s Fishtown location, to set the scene for the location. The team is hoping to create an industrial feel in the building, keeping close to Philadelphia’s roots, and create a mezzanine for amazing views of the cider production below. Stay tuned for updates, but we can definitely say we look forward to grabbing a pint of hard cider in the fall. 

Photo via Flickr user land_camera_land_camera

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