Culminating more than a decade of planning, Johannes von Trapp and The Trapp Family Lodge are proud to announce the launch of Trapp Lager and Trapp Microbrewery. This new endeavor continues in the spirit of the lodge, established more than fifty years ago by Maria von Trapp, matriarch of the family whose story inspired The Sound of Music; blending European and American traditions.
Johannes von Trapp, youngest son of Baron George and Maria von Trapp and president of The Trapp Family Lodge, has dreamt for years of replicating the lagers found in small local breweries in Germany and Austria. “Every time I’ve gone to Austria and I drink the good local beers, I come back here (to Vermont), and I can’t find any brews that replicate it.” Von Trapp says that Vermont is home to plenty of good local breweries and beers, mostly ales and stouts, and that it is harder to find good local lagers. Austrian style lagers tend to be lighter in flavor and alcohol content, yet have ample taste and body. “With the economy in the state it was in, we had to do something to make us happy!” says Johannes and so the time was finally right to start making beer.
The microbrewery is located just down the road from the main Lodge, in the building that also houses the bakery and deli. Master Brewer Allen Van Anda was brought into the project over a year ago to begin the process of planning both the brew facilities and the brews themselves. His research included trips to Austria and Germany to tour several small-town, small-batch breweries and sample local lagers with big, bold beer flavors.
Since late last year, Van Anda has been creating batches of Trapp Lager to the delight of Johannes and his son Sam, Vice President of Operations at the family operated lodge. Using pure spring water from the mountain top wells on the Trapp estate, the microbrewery will specialize in golden helles style lagers, which require longer fermentation time and lower temperatures than ales and lagers produced by most American microbreweries. “We’re doing something that’s very different,” says Van Anda “and we’ve been able to replicate the true style of Austrian lagers.”
Trapp Lager will feature not only the Viennese style lager but also a pair of wheat beers, hefeweizen, and it’s darker cousin dunkelweizen (Sam’s favorite). Von Trapp and Van Anda also hope to offer a non-alcoholic lager in the future. Trapp Lager will be available at The Trapp Family Lodge and at select local venues beginning in April with plans to eventually bottle and distribute Trapp Lager throughout New England.
Official Trapp Lager and Microbrewery Grand Opening celebration is planned for April 17, 2010 in Stowe. Details of the celebration are available at www.trappfamily.com and include three days of special events as well as lodging specials.