In a little town known for its crystal clear mine lakes and red dirt bike paths, you’ll find Cuyuna Brewing. The fledgling taproom is a refurbished historical building adorned with mining relics and happy drinkers.
I helped myself to a flight including the Blonde (my favorite of the lineup, and perhaps a new favorite style for me), a British ESB, a Red Ale, and a Cornish Stout. Each beer was solid and quite drinkable, and the environment only improved the experience.
Nick and Laura Huisinga, a husband-wife duo, run the brewhouse and taproom respectively. The couple moved their family to Cuyuna for the town’s sense of community; a brewery—they hoped—would fit in perfectly. They were right.
While I was fortunate to meet both halves of the couple, it was Nick who offered me advice. He told me, “You should love yourself and love your life. If you can’t do that, you should change your life or yourself.”
Brewery owners consistently demonstrate a spirit of something more than entrepreneurship—they create and run a business that aligns with their lifestyle. Brewers are this group of people who build a world that attracts the best of us: dog owners, cyclists, yogis, donut shops, food trucks. Hell, if these are the groups whose lifestyles align with breweries, I’m spending my time in the right places. Though making beer and running a business is hard work, it’s not a bad gig when you do it right.