I recently had the opportunity to sample some of the craft beers being made by Big Wood Brewery in White Bear Lake, Minnesota.  The craft beer market is heating up in our region and it's nice to see local companies having success.

My testing sample was a 4-pack of 16-ounce cans of Big Wood Brewery's Morning Wood-Coffee Stout, Jack Savage-American Pale Ale, Bark Bite-India Pale Ale, and the Bad Axe-Imperial India Pale Ale. Each came in a characteristically-styled north-woods can that suggested what the contents inside would taste like.

I started with the Morning Wood variety and then worked my way through the rest in the pack.  I'll start by saying that I was very pleased with how these beers tasted.

Here are some more details:

  • Jack Savage-American Pale Ale:  This had a light hoppy taste that finished crisp on the pallate.  I could see this beer paired easily with a hearty salad.
  • Bark Bite-India Pale Ale:  Bold - with a decent amount of hops.  The taste was clean and refreshing.  I'd suggest this paired with pizza, a hearty sandwich, or broiled fish.
  • Bad Axe-Imperial India Pale Ale:  My favorite of the bunch. Bad Axe has a bold hop-flavor that lets you know you're drinking an ale.  I would recommend this paired with a grilled steak or a walleye filet.
  • Morning Wood-Coffee Stout:  I left this one for last.  Morning Wood has a heavy coffee flavor and is good and dark like a stout should be.  My drawback to this beer is personal in nature:  I'm usually not a stout fan and while I like coffee, my personal tastes usually don't mix the two tastes together.  But - don't let that deter you.  While the Morning Wood wasn't my personal "cup of tea" - it might be yours;  Even though it wasn't my favorite I would still rate it very high on a scale of taste and quality.

Overall I would suggest that you seek out and try Big Wood Brewery products for yourself.  Their website provides more information about their company, the beers they produce, and where you can locate some to buy.

[Twin Ports residents - I will tell you that currently Big Wood Brewery beers are only available in two locations:  Grandma's Sports Garden and Little Angie's Cantina and Grill.  However, it appears that it's pretty easy to find in the Twin Cities metro region.  Again - you can search on an interactive map on their website to learn more.]

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