Wednesday, May 12, 2021

A Visit to Tanzenwald Brewing

Back when I was still running my travel blog. The Sheltered Gallivant, in the summer of 2018, I decided to focus my efforts mainly towards covering the various craft breweries and distilleries that I found myself at. That should’ve been a sign that I should’ve returned to the world of craft brewing but that’s another story altogether; One that I actually talked about at great length about a year ago.

Anyways, one of the breweries I visited was a place called Tanzenwald Brewing in Northfield, MN. My first time there, I found myself enjoying the atmosphere, beer, food and various homages to Northfield. In fact, when I did my initial piece on it, I talked about at great length as to how much I enjoyed the brewery. Well the travel blog is no more and it’s been 3 years since I last visited Tanzenwald, so I figured it was time to go back and check them out; This time as a beer blogger.

Located along Water Street and nestled in between an auto body shop and a Holiday Gas Station, Tanzenwald is the brain child of Jenaveve and Steve Pittman, a former brewer of Lagunitas Brewing. Having first opened their doors in 2017, they’ve been providing libations for the thirsty patrons of Northfield as well as those who happen to be passing through ever since. They also offer a full menu and a kitchen for those who wish to grab a bit to eat while sipping on beer.

Housed in what used to be an old creamery, the brewery itself oozes with rustic charm and it’s evidenced by the d├ęcor as well as the overall atmosphere. In other words, pretty much the same place I first visited the first time around. It was mid-afternoon and it wasn’t terribly busy, so my wife and I came at the right time.

Anyways, let’s talk about beer. While some of their selection were definitely ones that I saw before, they’ve added quite the variety to their lineup. Amongst this: Sours! So I decided to try out a variety of styles just to get an overall feel for what Tanzenwald has been up to since I last visited them 3 years ago.

Rio de Oro – A pineapple atole sour made with corn, cinnamon & lactose. This is an easy drinking sour with nice pineapple and vanilla notes with a hint of cinnamon spiciness and a nice tart finish. An overall delectable sour that paired wonderfully with the nice and sunny day.

Life on Mars? – A sour made with berries and aged on oak. Having been impressed with Rio de Oro, I decided to try out their other sour offering: Life on Mars? This has a nice raspberry flavor with a pronounced oakiness to it, with a nice tart finish and a slight funk. Tanzenwald definitely has their sour game where it should be based on their offerings.

Captain Amore – A Salted Grapefruit IPA. This one honestly surprised me for a couple reasons. One, it’s got a very light body for a beer that is 6.1% ABV. Two, the grapefruit flavor here is quite profound. Most grapefruit IPAs I’ve had are grapefruit plus citrus/piney hops but this isn’t the case here. It’s all grapefruit throughout the palate with a slightly bitter hop and pale malt finish. There are beers out there that some refer to as “Dangerously Crushable” and I think that this beer is a textbook example of that. That said, I enjoyed this beer a lot!

Gottlieb – A Bavarian Style Pilsner. This has a nice and light body with a solid pilsner malt base with a touch of floral hops and lemongrass. Another overall drinkable beer that I could see myself drinking on any given occasion.

A much deserved award!

All and all, the beers from Tanzenwald have definitely improved over the past 3 years and that’s evidenced by both their quality and styles in which they offer. I’ll certainly be on the lookout for more offerings from them in the future and you should be too, if you do happen to find yourself in the area! 

They can be found at:

103 Hwy 3 North

Northfield, MN 55057