We have a hobby here at A Look Into. Obsessive, maybe. Hazardous, potentially. A good time, absolutely. So when we need supplies, we have one shop. On Grand Ave. you’ll find Northern Brewer. At this point a household name as homebrewing central across the country, to us it’s just the local place to get great supplies, smell grain, fantasize about owning a bourbon barrel and a fantastic place to get some knowledge on making your brew better.
Since the beginning in 1993, when Christopher Farley decided to found Northern Brewer after a stint with the James Page Brewing Company, the craft beer renaissance can be thankful for Chris and his shop in St. Paul, along with the Ken Grossmans of Sierra Nevada, the Fritz Maytags of Anchor Steam and of course the Jimmy Carters who signed legal homebrewing into law in 1978.
It’s the pioneer spirit we love about Northern Brewer and the aforementioned that we find endearing and damn respectable. The kid from the Twin Cities is now a recognized name nationally with their Brewing TV branch and partnerships with passionate celebrity homebrewers like Wil Wheaton.
Listen, we’re no expert in the homebrewing business. So what else do we love about the place. The wall of recipe kits as we like to call it makes homebrewing accessible and paired with a starter kit, running barely over $100, and a beer style of your choice, you’ll be up and running in no time. It’s the kind of thing that once shared with friends, who shower praises on you for such a good brew, makes you feel great. So in a way we’re thanking Northern Brewer for making us seem like masters.
In the end the best part about Northern Brewer is that it makes what could be an intimidating endeavor an enjoyable experience that can easily turn into experimentation, socialization and expression.