There is no substitute for a cold beer on a hot summer day in Minnesota. We had a Groupon to burn and were determined not to use it on the last day possible. So in late June on a particularly warm and extremely breezy day, Samantha and I met up with some family at Enki Brewing.
It began thousands of years ago when Enki, the Sumerian god of water, crafts, and creation, brought fresh water to the fertile crescent via the Tigris and Euphrates river. The Sumerians used that water to create beer and became one of the first known societies to drink it. Jump forward to the year 2012 when two friends Dan Norton and John Hayes grew tired of their jobs and wanted to make the world a better place. What better way to do that than to brew beer? They located a 100 year old creamery building in Victoria and are now fulfilling their goal, two beers at a time.
Enki Brewing occupies a small square building in downtown Victoria. As you walk in the front door you make your way past fermenters and other brewing equipment to the small bar and indoor taproom. We grabbed a flight before heading outside to their patio. At first glance it appeared small until we noticed tables scattered across their lawn and another set of tables under a tent behind the building. We grabbed a spot on the lawn with plenty of shade and views of Steiger Lake as the backdrop. It wasn’t long after that the rest of our family arrived with beers and popcorn in tow.
The flight of four came on a simple flight paddle, no nonsense. We had Victoria’s Gold, Reunion Red Ale, Relevance Session IPA, and Hootenanny Hefe Weiss. Each one was pretty good but the Relevance was my favorite. It was a one time release that was very crisp and refreshing with a citrusy, floral, hop aroma and flavor. The cream ale seems to be a favorite as well and it was rich, malty, and creamy. Another seasonal was the Hootenanny. It was super sweet on the nose and tongue, and the Isoamyl acetate came out big time with its banana runt flavor. I was also able to try their III Anno and Tailfeather IPA. The former was a Triple IPA made to celebrate their fourth anniversary. It was quite boozy with a very sweet almost maple syrup flavor. Samantha described it best by saying it had “a little woo at the end.” The Tailfeather is available year round and also one of my favorites of the night. It’s got heavy bitterness with just enough malt to counterbalance it.
We had a great night at Enki Brewing, and I think they’re well on their way to making the world a happier place! They’ve got food available to order in from either the Victoria House or The School of the Wise. Depending on the time you visit they may be in a completely different building. They are currently planning on moving just down the road to a much larger building. It’ll increase their brewing capacity by ten times and provide a much larger taproom for visitors. No matter when you visit I think you’re sure to have a good time.