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United States

Craft Beer Travel, Taproom Talk, Travel, United States

A Look at Phoenix’s Food and Craft Beer Scene with Wren House Brewing Brewer Preston Thoeny

Wren House Brewing is located in a 1920’s era bungalow in Central Phoenix’s Green Gables neighborhood. The brewery opened two years ago and epitomizes everything a neighborhood brewery should be. I stopped by to interview Preston Thoeny, Master Brewer, on a Tuesday afternoon, and the quaint, white tile splashed taproom was packed with business folk catching an after-work beer, tourists exploring the greater Phoenix beer trail, and neighborhood locals stopping in for a…

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Brewery Reviews, Craft Beer Travel, Travel, United States

Good City Brewing – Bringing West Coast Hops to Milwaukee

As I wrap up coverage of the Twin Cities, this edition of Brewery Spotlight provides a glimpse at where The Wandering Gourmand is going next – Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I chose to highlight Good City Brewing first because the brewery epitomizes everything about Milwaukee’s rebirth in craft beer. While Milwaukee is the original Beer City, USA (the birthplace of Pabst, Miller, Schlitz, and Blatz), the city was slow to participate in the beer…

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Brewery Day Drives, Craft Beer Travel, Travel, United States

New Ulm, Minnesota Day Trip – August Schell Brewery, Buffalo, and a Glockenspiel

As we ventured off the interstate from Minneapolis towards New Ulm, Minnesota, I was reminded about how vast and beautiful the United States of America truly is. The farmlands and prairies we passed on the hour-and-a-half drive were alive with greens of a thousand different hues. Our final destination for the day was August Schell Brewery in New Ulm, Minnesota. But first, we had a few other fun stops planned to learn…

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Brewery Day Drives, Craft Beer Travel, Travel, United States

Stillwater Day Tripping – Where to Find Craft Beer in Stillwater

One of the things that amazed me the most about Minneapolis, and Minnesota in general, is the amount of things to do there. Who knew you could easily spend a week’s vacation in a state that’s frozen a good portion of the year? When that snow melts though, the scenery is lush and the temperatures are pleasantly mild.     While I spent most of my time in Minneapolis at a travel…

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Eating, Food, Travel, United States

Mall of America Food Tour – Seriously? Seriously!

There aren’t many things that I hate more than malls and hotel food. Just the thought of walking through the claustrophobic, shiny corridors makes me clam up. And then there’s the lights and signage and digging through store racks for something that might look good on me. No thanks. I’ll do my shopping with StitchFix. And hotel food? Seriously? Why eat in your hotel when there’s an entire city to explore? Why…

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Craft Beer Travel, Taproom Talk, Travel, United States

Bang Brewing – Exploring St Paul’s Food and Craft Beer Scene with an Organic and Sustainable Lens

There’s a lot that can be said about Bang Brewing. They’re organic, minimalist, and housed in a grain silo. They’re the exact opposite of the over the top beers that seem to be catching headlines today. Yet, Bang Brewing is capturing all the attention they want in their hometown of St Paul, Minnesota. I stopped into Bang Brewing back in May after a whirlwind brewery tour of St Paul. I’d say it…

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Brewery Reviews, Craft Beer Travel, Travel, United States

Surly Brewing – Great Beer, Even Better Food

February’s edition of Brewery Snapshot, featuring Surly Brewing, pauses coverage on Northern Ireland for a moment and foreshadows where The Wandering Gourmand plans to take readers next – to the Twin Cities. I was in Minneapolis last May for a travel writers’ conference. And, of course, no conference is just about the conference for me. It’s also about exploring the local craft beer and food scene any chance that I get.  …

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Beercation Itineraries, Craft Beer Travel, Travel, United States

Huntsville Beercation – It’s Like Space Camp but with Beer

Huntsville may not come to the top of mind when planning a beer weekend, but it should. The city has all the trappings of what helps make other cities great beer destinations – an entrepreneurial spirit, an independent attitude, and lots of friendly locals. Oh, and did I mention that Huntsville also has space? That’s right, Rocket City is home to NASA and the U.S. Space and Rocket Center. Yes, you can…

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Brewery Reviews, Craft Beer Travel, Travel, United States

Brewery Snapshot – Good People Brewing in Birmingham, Alabama

In this month’s Brewery Snapshot, I dropped into to Good People Brewing in Birmingham, Alabama. Good People Brewing is one of the first breweries that comes to mind when mentioning Alabama craft beer. As Good People Brewing is the oldest operating brewery in Alabama, most consider them to be pioneers in the state’s growing craft beer movement. While I’ve sipped on several Good People Brewing beers on my various trips to Alabama,…

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Brewery Reviews, Craft Beer Travel, Travel, United States

Brewery Spotlight – Summit Brewing in St Paul, Minnesota

Mark Stutrud, Founder and President of St Paul’s Summit Brewing, is that brewery legend not many have heard of unless they live in the Twin Cities area. While the brewery he founded 30 years ago is the 29th largest brewery in the country, 75% of those 130k barrels are sold within Minnesota.     In an industry where it seems like weekly a favorite craft brewery sells out to big beer in…

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