We’d made the drive out to North Sarasota to poke into Drum Circle Distilling and have a taste of their Siesta Key Rum, but it wasn’t enough for my mother-in-law. She was looking for more, and asked if I knew whether there were any breweries in the area. It just so happened that I’d done my research on the off chance we could make a second stop. So we jumped into the rental and blasted off to nearby JDub’s Brewing Company.
Flipping through my Instagram feed on a late March day I happened upon a post from Wild Mind Artisan Ales. It described their first bottle release event for their Golden Ho/rye/zon American Wild Ale. I made a mental note but promptly forgot about it. The day of the event I was grumbling at work about being cooped up during the unseasonably warm weather and searching for any excuse to get outside. Just like that the event popped back into my head and, after a quick call to my wife, we were off.
This March we were given a rare chance to start patio season a little early. My wife’s family had rented a house on Anna Maria Island. We went down for a week, and my parents visited the week prior. Since we arrived on a Friday night and my parents weren’t leaving until Saturday afternoon, they wanted to take us to lunch before they hit the road for the long drive home. It didn’t take too much to convince my father that a brewery was a good idea, and as long as there was food my mother was happy. I’d done a little pre-trip research so I figured what better way to kick off our trip than a visit to Motorworks Brewing, Bradenton’s first craft brewery.
After a night of drinking, a rare opportunity to sleep in, and a breakfast of french toast we hit the road. Because our next taproom wasn’t open until the afternoon we needed to kill some time. We made a day of it by visiting a couple of apple orchards (tasty hot cider and crispy donuts), ate lunch at the historic Hubbell House, got a very informative tour and beer samples from Tod Fyten at nearby Mantorville Brewery, and took in Winona from the Garvin Heights overlook. After a full morning working up a thirst we finally arrived at our destination: Wenonah Brewing Company.
In an ongoing effort to nurture our relationships with people that, like us, lack children we called our newlywed friends Mattie and Sara up for a night out. They were looking for a night to unwind so we decided to visit a brewery in the cities. We had initially planned on using one of our Groupons but during the drive Samantha identified that it wasn’t good for that day! After some quick pivoting we decided to venture into St. Paul to the relatively new Bad Weather Brewing Company.