Left Bank Ciders opened its doors on July 10th, 2021, which wasn’t an obvious time to start a brand new tap room business. But partners Tim Graham, his wife Anna Rosencranz, and their friend Dave Snyder, had an opportunity they couldn’t pass up. “The space was so good,” Graham said. “We just had to give it a go.”
The 3000 square foot basement space at 150 Water Street in Catskill was rustic and unfinished, “like a subterranean wine cave,” said Graham, who had been home brewing for several years before making the leap to a full-scale operation. “The temperatures are super stable, which is great for making cider. There probably weren’t a lot of other businesses that would love being in a basement, but for us, it’s perfect.”
They poured concrete floors and made the furniture themselves — a perfect complement to the rustic, lime washed brick and beams. There’s also a spacious outdoor patio that overlooks the Catskill Creek, with a great view of the Hudson Valley sunsets.
The cider is made on site from wild apples they forage themselves, along with stock from “friends and acquaintances who give us everything they can’t use,” said Rosencranz. “Everything else, we buy in from local suppliers.” There are usually 8 or more varieties on tap; read their origin stories here. My personal favorite: the Spyser — a co-ferment made with apples and honey. It’s smooth, dry, and just a bit tart. My perfect Sunday night go-to!
You’ll notice that there’s a fourth founder crawling and playing at Left Bank. Tim and Anna had a baby, Abraham, in May 2020, just two months before they opened mid-pandemic. So, with Abe snuggled in a Baby Bjorn, they were fearlessly tending the bar and making cider with an amazingly cheerful newborn on board.
Where to Find Left Bank Ciders
Drop by the tap room to relax by the creek! It might be a bit tricky to find Left Bank Ciders on your first try, so: If you’re on Main Street, you can find Left Bank Ciders by walking down the alley next to New Century Chinese Food (Left Bank posts a blackboard sign on Main Street to guide you down the alley, on the days that they’re open). Or, if you’re on River Street, use Google Maps or Ways, and park in the lot on the right side of Left Bank’s patio.
Once you’re there, you’ll find local beers on tap and by the can, and a nice wine selection, in addition to the killer cider. Looking for dinner, too? Grab some takeout from nearby Avalon Lounge (they’ll deliver!) or Mermaid Cafe and dine on the Left Bank Cider porch. It’s one of my very favorite ways to enjoy Catskill.
Left Bank Ciders has also begun distributing their products locally, in Hudson, Catskill, Millerton, Coxsackie and Saugerties, and they’ve got a grab-and-go section at the tap room.