SOURCE: Verde Canyon Railroad

Verde Canyon Railroad

July 29, 2016 02:00 ET

Ancient Autumn Traditions Meet at Verde Canyon Railroad: Beer and Brats at Ales on Rails

SEDONA, AZ and JEROME, AZ and CLARKDALE, AZ--(Marketwired - July 29, 2016) - Beer and bratwurst are a fantastic combo when they meet trackside with Verde Canyon Railroad for the very popular Ales on Rails celebration every autumn. Every Thursday through Sunday in October the Railroad features this ever-popular brewfest at the train depot from 11:00 a.m. until 12:45 p.m., prior to the train's 1:00 p.m. departure. Local craft brews and illustrious international ales, by the taste or by the bottle, steal the spotlight, but a traditional German-style luncheon including grilled bratwurst, secret-recipe potato salad, sides of sauerkraut, hot pretzels and strudel symbolize the flavor of the season.

One must wonder the evolution of this very tasty, seasonal delight. The history of beer dates back to 5000 B.C. and the ancient civilizations of Egypt and Mesopotamia. Many believe the earliest beers fermented by accident soon after man mastered the cultivation of grains. By 3900 B.C. odes were being written to Ninkasi, the patron goddess of brewing. Through time each culture created its own interpretation of ale and by the 13th century southern Germans had perfected the recipe, with hops and higher alcohol content preserving the delicious beverage and allowing commercial production to commence. By 1313 Bavaria conveniently became the birthplace of the bratwurst, finally bringing beer and brats together as was their destiny. Little about sausage has changed since the first-known written recipe was documented in Ireland circa 1432.

First arriving with German immigrants and growing in popularity in regions like Milwaukee, Chicago and other railroad hubs and crossroads throughout the Midwest, beer and bratwurst finally made their way across the U.S.A., eventually arriving in Clarkdale, Arizona at Verde Canyon Railroad's Ales on Rails event.

Craft beers harken back to the local flavors present in early commercial brewing ventures and Verde Canyon Railroad promises a great selection of state and regional beers. Chosen in a variety of styles from the darkest stout to the hoppiest India Pale Ale and all points in between, Ales on Rails offers something to please every beer drinker. The party continues with the train's departure into the golden autumn wilderness of Verde Canyon. Specialty beers are stocked aboard the train and available for purchase during the leisurely but thrilling four-hour rail excursion. October is a month of warm days, cool nights, and late-season blooming wildflowers amidst burnishing riparian foliage rich with seasonal hues.

A treasured bit of history traversing a rare and scenic Arizona wilderness, Verde Canyon Railroad is a fresh view into the unspoiled heart of the West. Postcard-perfect scenery is only part of the magic. Awe-inspiring rock formations, historic trestles, ancient cliff dwellings and soaring raptors are just a few of the trip's many highlights. The caboose is a luxurious, private car for six dear friends or family members. First-class cars boast plush seating, complimentary appetizers and a full-service bar. Coach offers vintage Pullman-style seating, panoramic windows and snack bars. Everyone has access to open-air viewing cars offering 360-degree views and spectacular photographic opportunities. The Railroad recently added one more class of ridership for one fortunate person each day … next to the engineer and conductor in the vintage FP7 locomotive.

A stone's throw from the hillside mining town of Jerome, Verde Canyon Railroad's Clarkdale depot is located in the heart of the Verde Valley, a diverse crossroads featuring amazing adventures in every direction. Only two hours from Phoenix and 25 minutes from Sedona, Verde Canyon Railroad is the perfect Arizona day trip. Reservations are accepted online at or at 800.293.7245.

It's not the destination; it's the ale-tasting journey

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