An ode to Genesee


Dear Genesee Brewing Company,

Recently, you rereleased your legendary 12 Horse Ale, as if that weren’t enough, you released it in the stubby brown bottles of my childhood. Throw in the Cream Ale and Genesee and I forgive your assault on my liver.

You see, growing up in the shadow of Genesee brewing and Rochester, every male family member drank their Genny from a stubby brown bottle. I wanted to be just like my Daddy…and my Paw-Paw too. Your short brown bottles represent all that it meant to be a man in the 1970s, at least to this grade schooler’s eyes. Every time I drain one of your glass cans I am transported to Aunt Lavonne’s on a hot August day watching the fireman’s parade with promises of fried dough and tilt-a-whirls at the carnival to follow.

Genesee was a working man’s beer. I see my Grandpa and Dad, I smell the cigarettes, I feel excited about the candy the firemen will throw, and I hear the carnival in the distance.

Growing up I remember people disparaging Cream
Ale and as a 20 something beer snob I turned my nose up. Then I started making beer and discovered the refreshing heaven that is Cream Ale. Kim even hoisted a Cream
Ale in here post Ironman picture!

12 Horse takes me back to Connelly’s Cove restaurant on Sodus Bay. I grew up in a family that didn’t frequent restaurants but when we did go out to dinner, my father would order a 12 Horse. It was his special occasion beer. When 12 Horse disappeared in 2003 I hoarded my remaining cases and lamented its retirement.

As for Genny, I drink buckets of it. It’s the fuel of summertime labor. My lawn mower and hammer are both Genny powered.

So thanks Genesee for the memories, as for the glass cans, you had me at 12 Horse.

Your Happiest (and Drunkest) Customer

PS I would be remiss if I failed to mention in my food blog that your neighbor makes my number one grilling accessory…



One response to “An ode to Genesee

  1. These took me back too. I had to keep an empty, recapped bottle of each! I don’t even have a bottle collection…

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