Gathering Ingredients with Lakes & Legends Brewing Company

Here at T&D, there are often untold stories behind the scenes of our Field Trips. But far too often, we're on to the next thing before properly reflecting on all the goodness that went into crafting a story... not this time!!

Last month, we were lucky enough to partner with Lakes & Legends Brewing Company, co-founded by Derrick Taylor and brother in law Ethan Appleton, who along with their head brewer Andrew Dimery, specialize in creating farm-to-table Belgian and Farmhouse ales.

We love them because they believe in using high quality ingredients, sourced from local farmers whenever possible and they're not afraid to experiment with flavor profiles that truly change with the season. #loveyourbeer

But first... a brief backstory. 

I've known Derrick Taylor for almost 10 years...

We met when we both worked at Red Bull (ok he was my boss) and we traveled around the state, sampling product and supporting events. He was like our cooler older brother... only he told us what to do and how not to be so awkward (thanks for that D!). 

If I know one thing about Derrick, it's that he only does things with heart. Not only is he smart and hardworking, he's also one of the nicest people you'll ever meet. Always the first to introduce himself, crack a smile or congratulate you on whatever you're doing. It was this genuine respect for people that has always stood out and it's why I loved working with him so many years ago. 

When Derrick told Olivia and I about his newest pursuit, Lakes & Legends Brewing Company, he described it with such heart, we couldn't wait to hear more and meet the rest of the team. When we did, we discovered they would be traveling to different farms around the state, gathering ingredients for their seasonal brews, starting with the Cranberry Saison. Major ingredient? Cranberries! So we joined their crew for a joint field trip to Minnesota's ONLY cranberry farm to learn more about these delightful little berries. 

Derrick with Randy, checking out the cranberry vines before the fields are flooded

Derrick with Randy, checking out the cranberry vines before the fields are flooded

Getting some harvest footage

Getting some harvest footage

Knee deep in cranberries!

Knee deep in cranberries!

Here is a more accurate representation of what the 'behind the scenes' crew looked like. Neighbors, family, friends, the high-school principle and even the girls Future Farmers of America instructor, (not to mention us), all came out to watch the Forster family harvest the cranberries they'd spent all season cultivating. It was a beautiful thing. Followed by real cranberry juice and wild rice soup, right from the land. What more can you ask for?

Fresh cranberries being boiled into juice

Fresh cranberries being boiled into juice

Shop talk, in the shop

Shop talk, in the shop

Homemade Wild Rice soup straight from the farm

Homemade Wild Rice soup straight from the farm

The Lakes & Legends crew hauled home almost 300 lbs of fresh cranberries to be frozen and experimented with by head brewer, Andrew Dimery. The result would be one of the most delicious and unique beers I've had in quite some time, the cranberry Saison, now available on tap or in growlers. 

These growlers are an EXCELLENT christmas gift, packed with heart, local goodness and most of all, flavor. I picked up four.. so go get yours now before I buy them all already!!!

Check out this great recap video featuring this trip:

Stop by the Taproom, located at 1368 Lasalle Ave, Minneapolis, MN, 55403.

Stay up to date with Lakes & Legends Brewing Company online at:
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#loveyourbeer

And for more on our feature story highlighting the Forster family, pop right on over here

Another great field trip, wrapped! 
xoxo