Monday, August 27, 2007

Bike Ride: Stony Brook Reservation

Milwaukee Who? In the years before Prohibition, Boston had more breweries per capita than any other American city. My neighborhood of Jamaica Plain hosted as many as 17 breweries at one time, all clustered along Stony Brook, known for its exceptionally clear water.

Prohibition killed off brewing in Boston. But in the 1980s, Jim Koch founded Boston Brewing Co., locating it in the old Haffenreffer Brewery on Germania Street in Jamaica Plain. Using an old family recipe, he created Sam Adams beer, launching an entirely new market segment in U.S. brewing: the craft beer. Nowadays, Sam Adams is brewed in industrial quantities in giant breweries in Pittsburgh and Cincinnati, but there's still a small working brewery at the Haffenreffer site, where brewmasters test new formulations. Plus there are the inevitable brewery tours and tastings.

Stony Brook rises in the Stony Brook Reservation, which straddles Enneking Parkway on the Hyde Park - West Roxbury border. It then flows northward and empties into the Muddy River in the Back Bay Fens, and from there the short distance to the Charles River. Unfortunately, today Stony Brook is completely "culverted," routed through concrete pipes buried six feet under.

Distance: 10 miles. Fully interactive, zoomable map below:

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