It really is a bummer that Bent Brewstillery did not make an earlier appearance in this beer adventure. Although, I might have saved myself a few months of spending all my money on fantastic gin. Once you give me a gin with lavender in it, I might as well start forwarding my paychecks to your bank account–I can’t help myself!
This Roseville taproom offers a lineup of great beers, backed by a dangerously delicious line of spirits. After enjoying an Oooo Pear and sampling a Dark Fatha (an “empirial” stout…get it?), I settled in with an Enuff, an English Style IPA (ABV 6.5%, IBU 65). The combination of specialty malts and fruity aromas balanced well with a strong hop character.
I was fortunate enough to meet Bartley, the Owner and Head Distiller at Bent Brewstillery. He shared with me samples of three different spirits, Gunner Ghost Gin (botanicals, meet my tastebuds), Bent Anchor Poitin (an Irish moonshine made with potato peels from Minneapolis’ own The Anchor Fish & Chips), and Stormbringer Spiced Rum (just the right kind of smooth and warm).
Bartley is a former NASA employee, who says opening a combination brewery and distillery was his way of deciding to “actually work.” Because, you know, working at NASA and building transonic wind tunnels isn’t work. Bartley is one of those people who pretty much only does things that nobody else has done. Examples: opening a brewstillery, distilling poitin in the US, and distilling gin with hops.
It’s no surprise that Bartley’s advice to me was to, “Lead, follow, or get the hell out of the way.” You can guess where he falls on that list. While it might sound harsh, we all know that one person who is a follower masquerading as a leader and is frankly wasting everybody’s time. Someone needs to tell those folks to let the people who make booze and blow things up lead the way.