A. The Great Brew Tour guys
Leave home every summer
Best week of the year
Q. What are your three favorite things?
A. Family, friends, good timesQ. Why do you travel?
A. We travel to meet new people, see new things, and revisit the best people and things we have encountered on previous trips.
Q. How long have you been seeking out craft beer when you travel? What was your first craft beer travel memory?
A. The first time I traveled to seek out craft beer was in the summer of 2001. Mark and I took the very first Great Brew Tour and enjoyed visiting and tasting at New Glarus Brewing, Adler Brau Brewery (now Stone Cellar), and the Stevens Point Brewery. Since then, we have traveled to Wisconsin every summer to seek out the best craft beer the state has to offer. 11 consecutive years, and we have no plans to stop now.
Q. Where all have you been? What breweries have you visited?
A. City Brewery, LaCrosse, WI
Pearl Street Brewery, Lacrosse, WI
Capital Brewery, Middleton, WI
New Glarus Brewing, New Glarus, WI
Miller Brewing, Milwaukee, WI
Milwaukee Ale House, Milwaukee, WI
Adler Brau/Stone Cellar Brewpub, Appleton, WI
Point Brewery, Stevens Point, WI
O’so Brewing, Plover, WI
Central Waters Brewing, Junction City, WI
Leinenkugel’s, Chippewa Falls, WI
Sand Creek Brewing, Black River Falls, WI
Surly Brewing, Brooklyn Center, MN
August Schell Brewing, New Ulm, MN
Q. What do you look for in a beer destination when you travel?
A. We especially like special access to the brewery and the staff when we visit. We love to meet brewmasters and other brewery staff, see the inner workings of the brewery, and taste the best of the best!
Q. What are some of your favorite breweries that you have visited?
A. I think our group would all agree that our 3 favorites are Capital, Point, and City Brewery.
Q. How do you find craft beer when you travel?
A. We usually have our itinerary planned before we leave home. New things we learn about on our trips usually get added in subsequent years.
Favorite Beer City to travel to:
A. LaCrosse has two wonderful breweries and some of the best bars on planet earth. We love LaCrosse!
Best Beer State in your opinion:
Brewery you want to visit:
A. Tyranena Brewing in Lake Mills, WI
Tell us your most memorable brewery visit:
A. I think our most memorable brewery visit was to City Brewery in LaCrosse in 2004. Brewmaster, Randy Hughes, took us on a personal tour of the giant facility that is City Brewery. He spent over 2 hours with us taking us from the roof to the basement of most of the historic buildings there. It was an unforgettable trip where we were given access to places that the average person could never see. We also sampled some City Fest Bier right from the tanks. It was some of the finest beer I’ve ever sampled.
Q. What is the most unique beer you’ve enjoyed?
A. I tasted my first bourbon barrel aged Russian Imperial Stout at the original site of Central Waters Brewing in Junction City, WI. This was back in 03. At the time, that beer blew my mind with the complexity and originality that it had.
Q. If you could have dinner and beers with anyone in the craft beer industry, who would it be and where would you go?
A. We’ve already done it a few times; John Zappa, Brewmaster at Stevens Point Brewery. Someday I’d like to add Kirby Nelson (Capital) and Randy Hughes (City) to the mix and have a real Wisconsin Craft Beer meeting of the minds!
Q. Where can we find more about you online? Twitter/Facebook/Website etc.
Special thanks to Jesse for the interview this week. TRP first met the guys of the Great Brew Tour in the Summer of 2011 in Steven’s Point, Wisconsin. We joined them for tours of Point Brewery and O’so Brewing Co.