Potlicker Kitchen specializes in Vermont beer and wine jellies and small-batch artisan jams. In 2009, founders, Nancy and Walter Warner, left their rewarding and ever interesting careers in archaeology to relocate to Vermont so Walter could attend the Vermont Law School. While Walter honed in on cultural resource law, Nancy, already food-centric and an avid forager, began to focus on the local bounty and found great inspiration in Vermont’s food and beer culture.
The first batch of strawberry chipotle jam was made with 10lbs of berries harvested at the Thetford Strawberry Festival. This was quickly followed by other unconventional flavors such as homegrown blackberry basil jelly & wild sumac jelly. Hooked on canning, Nancy had a cupboard of jam and Walter pushed her to the farmers market…. possibly with the hopes of paying off law school loans.
One winter when fresh fruit was out of stock Nancy began turning all ordinary things (like coffee or wine) into jelly. After making wine jelly, the craft beer lover was determined to create a jelly that tasted like beer. The first beer jellies were cooked up late winter 2011 and quickly the most popular was beer jelly was made with local homebrew. Potlicker Beer Jelly began to gain ground and the homebrew crew couldn’t be asked to keep up with demand. Local Vermont craft beer is now sourced from no less than 6 Vermont craft breweries.
One of the most unexpected and most wonderful side stories of this whole journey is Nancy’s beer-ducation. She have learned so much about beer styles and the brewing process. She has met and had the opportunity to work with, a wonderful group brewers and like-minded individuals.