Once upon a time, it was a road trip weekend.
Wilson and Wonderful Beer Wife were tired, exhausted and tuckered from all the work, labor and whatnot. With the Upper Mississippi Mashout scheduled, judging at a competition seemed a good excuse to head over the river and through the woods.
How convenient, thought Wilson. I’ve been wanting to hit Worth Brewing Company, just off I-35 and just south of the Minnesota state line. Can you believe he actually thought the location part?
Worth Brewing is a tiny little brewpub in Northwood, Iowa, with a great philosophy focused on quality beer, small and local, recognized styles, community involvement and historic preservation. Husband-and-wife owners Peter Ausenhus and Margaret Bishop opened on St. Patrick’s Day, 2007 to “reintroduce a great tradition – the locally owned brewery serving hand-crafted, high-quality, distinctive beers for the enjoyment of locals and lucky visitors.”
With Good Beer in mind, the Wilsons packed up the brewvanamobile and headed north. Owner-and-brewer Peter Ausenhus took the time to show the brewvana staff his brewery, a 10-gallon system that surely is one of the nation’s smallest commercial breweries. The true wonder is the the front-of-house, which Ausenhus restored in beautiful fashion.
Ausenhus took the time to chat with us about his small-and-local beer odyssey. What a beautiful thing! What if every beer geek put his money where his mouth was? Rather than pester Stone and Founder’s and Surly to distribute in his or her state, Mister or Miss Beer Geek could instead open an extremely small and local craft brewery in his town or burrough, just like was so prevalent so many years ago.
That would be a cool little story book world, wouldn’t it? It was that way once. And is, in some places today.
We worked our way through a few of Peter’s standard offerings: pale ale, brown ale and stout, and checked out his Tettnang Lager and Winter Warmer, as well as his one-time, specially blended Cherry Elixir. And sucked in the pleasant atmosphere of a small town brewery.
No, he doesn’t distribute to your town. You must go there. Which is good.