Mark Van Sickle, co-owner of Legal Remedy Brewing Company in Rock Hill, started the same way many in the craft beer business do. With the help of four buddies, he home-brewed in his garage, liked what he concocted, and decided making beer was his calling in life.
The name of the brewery came about much the same way.
"One day when we were drinking and talking, I said that beer is good for what ails you," Van Sickle recalled. His business partner responded: "Well, it is a legal remedy." Voila!
Legal Remedy has been making beers with legal-sounding names (Motion to Strike Milk Stout, Double Indemnity Double IPA, Alibi Pale Ale) since 2014. Now, VanSickle and friends have company - five other breweries, as well as a cidery and a craft beer shop have developed, with help from Visit York County, to create the YoCo Brew Trail.
It's a first-of-its-kind-in-South-Carolina interactive experience that lets beer lovers sample a variety of local brews while earning prizes.
"People will come to experience the taste and experience the uniqueness of York County," said Billy Dunlap, CEO of Visit York County. "We want visitors and residents to immerse themselves in our local flavors."
To participate, beer fans download the Visit York County app on their smart phones and sign up for the Brew Trail. After registering, they can pick up a free Brew Trail koozie at the York County Visitors Center.
Once they've checked in at five or more of the eight locations, they earn a T-shirt with the "YoCo Brew Trail" logo on the front and "I Drank My Way Through York County" on the back.
Along with the brewery, Legal Remedy operates a restaurant onsite. Some of the newer breweries host food trucks on weekends.
"We've been five years in the planning," said Slow Play Brewing's Ben Lee, whose operation opened in October 2018. "We wanted to make better beers, and bring tourism to Rock Hill."
Here are the seven stops on the YoCo Brew Trail:
Legal Remedy Brewing, 129 Oakland Ave., Rock Hill; 803.324.2337
Slow Play Brewing, 274 Columbus Ave., Rock Hill
Amor Artis Brewing, 204 Main St., Fort Mill; 803.547.6464
Lake Wylie Brewing Company, 1741 Gold Hill Road, Fort Mill; 803.802.7001
Dust Off Brewing, 130 West White St., Rock Hill
Rock Hill Brewing, 121 Caldwell St., Rock Hill; 803.366.7266
Main Street Bottle Shop, 153 E. Main St., Rock Hill; 803.554.8309
Windy Hill Orchard & Cidery, 1860 Black Highway, York; 803.684.0690