When my friend Mitch texted me and asked what I was doing the next Saturday I knew what was on his mind. He wanted to visit a brewery, the only question was which one. After he mentioned the Fargo-Moorhead area I knew what breweries he had in mind, and I knew that we would have to take full advantage of our time. At 8AM he arrived at my home in Bloomington and we began the long trek to Fargo Brewing Company the first stop of our jam-packed day trip.
We’d just descended the main trail at Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument. It wasn’t a full descent. Upon arrival the ranger told us we wouldn’t have time to make it to the top and that for most people it takes up to double the time we would have. My wife and our friends Nicole and Eric were determined to give it a shot. We set a blustering piece and a short while later we were a stone’s throw away from the top when a ranger turned us back. Almost made it! Once we returned to the parking lot we figured we’d earned a beer, or three. We called our friends and told them to meet us at Santa Fe Brewing Company.
Anytime you have a metaphysical experience you should follow it up with a beer. Which is why, after running around and exploring the magical world of Meow Wolf, we took a walk around the corner to reflect on our experience and trade notes about all of the craziness. Our destination was one of several craft breweries in the area, and since one couple in our group was now pushing a stroller we chose the closest: Second Street Brewery’s Rufina Taproom.
When I was looking for breweries in Albuquerque there were two names that kept cropping up. On our way to Santa Fe it just so happened we needed somewhere to eat lunch. What better place than a brewpub? For those two reasons it was an easy decision to stop at the Bosque Brewing Co. Public House.
We had just spent the afternoon at the ABQ BioPark and were looking for a spot to relax before dinner. The previous night we got a hot tip to go to El Pinto and I knew from my pre-tip research that there was a brewery near there in West Side Albuquerque. Without hesitation we piled into the rental car and set course for Boxing Bear Brewing Company, dreaming of craft beer and rested feet.
With only a couple of hours to spare before we had to pickup our friends from the airport, my wife’s friend Lisa turned and asked me what was next on the agenda. There were a couple of breweries that the entire group wanted to visit based on the list I sent them previously, so I had to pick one that wasn’t on it. Luckily only one mile down the road Dialogue Brewing awaited.
I do a ton of research before traveling to a new place, and these days a fair chunk of that research is devoted to breweries. When we decided to visit New Mexico and I learned that we were flying into Albuquerque, my first thought was Breaking Bad. What I’d soon discover is that there is a relatively robust craft beer scene in the city, and I ended up with far too many breweries on my list for the two days we’d be in town. We had a full afternoon to visit a pair of breweries but we needed to stay near the airport so that we could pick up another couple that was arriving that evening. With the sun high and our throats dry we set out for Marble Brewery.
Chippewa Falls on a cold winter’s night leaves you with only a few options. That’s why we’d found ourselves on a brisk walk along the Chippewa River. Our plans were to end the night at a local bas, a wish we would grant for someone’s 60th birthday. But before a local dive, we wanted a trendier option. We would soon spot the blue and yellow signs of the Chippewa River Distillery & Brewster Bros. Brewing Co.
My father in-law isn’t a big craft beer drinker. He suffers through the endless breweries trips that the family likes to take fairly regularly, and only he has recently found a couple of beer styles that he can be familiar with. There is one craft beer that you can consistently find in his fridge, which led us to take a road trip for his birthday. That drive took us over the border into Wisconsin and ended at the Leinie Lodge, the birthplace of Honey Weiss, and the home of Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company.
After our first brewery of the day, we found ourselves a bit ahead of schedule. I was determined to get my money’s worth for the rental car which meant that it wasn’t quite time to head up to Tampa. Falling back on my pre-trip research, I knew that there was a brewery on our way north. It was without hesitation that we piled into the car and headed for our next stop: Big Top Brewing Company.