Last weekend, Two Roads Brewing Company kicked off its inaugural Roadsmary’s Baby Pumpkin Fest with a sold out crowd, special bottle release, and an outdoor screening of a horror classic: Rosemary’s Baby.
The Stratford, Conn. brewery is no stranger to throwing kickass events. Beer lovers in the area have already been enjoying Two Roads’ Winter Classic, Ok2berfest, and the popular Road Jam Music Festival thrown in early summer. This time around, the brewery’s planning pros incorporated everything that makes those events solid and painted it orange.
The five-hour long event took place in the hop yard. A $20 ticket got you inside and offered the screening of the film, a whole bunch of fall-themed activities, and included a pint of their now-flagship fall seasonal, Roadsmary’s Baby, a traditional pumpkin ale aged in rum barrels. Being a local, Roadsmary’s Baby is one of my pumpkin go-to’s this time of year. It’s smooth and has hints of spices, vanilla, oak, and rum, coming in at 6.8% abv. (For those averse to pumpkin beer, it’s really not that sweet—you should try it.)
The other activities on hand included pumpkin bowling, a huge barrel-burning bonfire, a paint-your-own-pumpkin station, corn hole, and bocce. There was also enough free popcorn and candy to go around, so you could eat yourself sick just like one of your childhood Halloween nights. Total bonus.
The biggest pull of the festival though was the limited release of two special Roadsmary brews: Roadsmary’s Other Baby ($10) and Roadsmary’s Step Child ($12). The Other Baby is aged longer than the standard brew, increasing the wood and rum flavors. It’s 9.0% abv and it’s crazy delicious. The Step Child is a sour style variation, with a little bit of tang and a dry finish. Also very delicious! Both bottles were limited to two per person, per style. (I picked up two of the Other Baby to take home.)
For the non-pumpkin fans, other beers on tap included the session IPA Lil Heaven, the cold brew coffee stout Espressway, and a new unfiltered pale lager called Miles 2 Go, among others. Though the special-menu list wasn’t heavy on IPAs, there was certainly something for everyone.
Everything else you’d come to expect at a Two Roads shindig rang true: food trucks, vendors, good tunes, and great vibes. Film fans brought chairs, blankets and hoodies, and hunkered down for the movie once the sun set, but that didn’t stop the beer from flowing. Those who weren’t into it continued to get their drink on by the fire and food trucks in the back of the Hop Yard. Though, I’m curious to know what they’ll screen next year, as I can’t see them playing the same thing every year, despite the borrowed “Roadsmary” title. Alternating classics could be fun as the years go on. (The original Halloween would be rad.)
Regardless, if you’re a fan of the beer-candy-popcorn trifecta, the price of admission was well worth it. Any Two Roads festival is a well-run good time, but if you’re a fan of Halloween and want to get in all those peak Fall feels (plus an outdoor movie!), look out for next year’s Roadsmary’s Baby Pumpkin Fest.