Lake Superior generates cold wind, clean beer

(PHOTO: Doniree Walker, Flickr CC)

Duluth brags about its local beer. Maybe too much. But brewers and scientists alike suggest that Lake Superior water really does aid the process of beermaking.

Dan Kraker recently filed a story on this topic for Minnesota Public Radio. He talks to several local brewers who swear by the pure water available to them in Duluth.

Reports Kraker:

The claim holds water, according to Aileen Beard, dean of the School of Sciences at the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth. She’s also a professor of chemistry, and a homebrewer; she teaches a class called “The Chemistry of Beer.”

“It’s a blank slate. There’s not a lot in it … of the standard minerals that affect the flavor of beer — the calcium, magnesium, chlorine, sulfates — those kinds of things are in really low concentrations in Lake Superior.”

It’s not so much what’s in Lake Superior water, but rather what’s not in it, Beard said. She said all the wetlands around the big lake help filter out many of those minerals.

And it’s a lot easier to add back in minerals that brewers want to brew a specific style of beer, than it is to remove what you don’t want.

I don’t drink beer anymore. When I did I tended to consume quantities of cheap beer. But it’s fun to watch people go nutso for locally produced craft beers.

And it’s not just Duluth. We held our high school reunion at the Boomtown Brewery in Hibbing last year. Klockow Brewing in Grand Rapids has made a name for itself not only as a place for beer, but for local music.

Meantime, crews tore down an old building on Pokegama Ave. in Grand Rapids this week for the construction of another new brewpub, Rapids Brewing.

A lot of fresh, clean water pouring into the vats. Reminds me of the old apocryphal quote from out west: “Whisky is for drinking; water is for fighting over.”

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.