Have three beers, then say it five times fast.
Bobbing Bobber Brewing Company is about as Minnesotan as it gets. The new Hutchinson brewery revolves around fishing themes, featuring Port-A-Docks for tables, a bar that looks like the back end of a boat, and fish-shaped tap handles. I even got a pre-taste of their Kölsch, a classic boat beer.
But fishing is more than the brewery’s decor; it’s in the mindset of the team. Here’s an excerpt from a piece I wrote for The Growler.
The taproom is located on Main Street, just north of the Hutchinson Event Center. You can recognize it by their sign out front—an iconic red and white round bobber. Dan Hart, president of the company, came up with the name for his would-be brewery years ago on, appropriately, the lake.
“I’m not a very good fisherman, but my brother-in-law is,” Hart says. “I’ll sit on the boat, drinking my homebrew, and realize all day I’ve just watched my bobber bob. If I can’t get a fish to bite, at least I’ll always be able to set the hook on a nice good homebrew.” These days, Hart is upgrading his homemade boat beverages with beer made by Bobbing Bobber’s head brewer, Lane Wanous.
As much as the trio [of owners] look forward to enjoying a beer in their taproom (or on the fishing boat), they are just as excited to become a part of the Hutchinson community, from supporting the high school trades programs to hosting the city’s pre- and post-parade party in their parking lot this summer. “We’re not in it to become big rich beer pigs. We want to bring a good product to the community and be a good part of the community,” states Hart.
Being a fishing-minded brewery doesn’t keep the team from doing big things, though. In fact, it might inspire them even further. I asked Wanous and Hart for their life advice for the blog.
Lane Wanous advised me, “If you have a passion, don’t sit on your hands—chase it. The biggest regrets you have in life are the risks you don’t take.”
Dan Hart followed up with a message about putting in hard work: “Always stay kind, stay persistent, and be humble. But you can’t do it alone; always have a good team because there’s nothing in life that you can do by yourself. ”
Though we often associate fishing with a lackadaisical lifestyle, there’s more meaning behind the activity than we give it credit for. Fishing requires years of accrued experience, a strong community, and patience with oneself. It might be that we all have something to learn from a bobbing bobber.