Here in the city, we are lucky to have a handful of breweries that make really great beer, but do we have a place that produces wine, cider, perries (pear wine), and mead? Not yet, but in a few months we will. Original 13 Ciderworks is opening on 1526 North American Street in Kensington and by late summer, you’ll be able to stop by their tasting room to try their fruity creations.
Like a lot of hobbies, president of Original 13, John Kowchak, picked up hard cider making from a family tradition. His grandfather, Charles, grew up in the mountains of Northeastern Pennsylvania and brewed hard cider for his family and neighbors. Years later, John picked up the hobby and grew to love it. After earning an MBA in Entrepreneurship at Drexel University and graduating from the Cider and Perry Academy in the UK, Kowchak founded Original 13. Also on the Original 13 team is Kowchak’s business partner, vice president of operations, and “mechanical genius” Travis Frehafer, and Franco Fusaro, Consigliere and events manager.