Edelbrau Brewery Opens
Near Zingerman's Southside
From the April, 2019 issue
Teo Watson-Ahlbrandt and two fellow-brewers at the newly opened Edelbrau Brewery got into the craft at an early age. About twenty years ago, all three were in Tom Dodd's project-based Earthworks class at Community High School. "The teacher kept saying 'whatever you want to do,' and I kind of called his bluff and he kept calling my bluff to the point where I went down to the library and learned how to make beer," Casey Pennisi recalls. He brewed a batch of Kolsch beer and the teacher "basically locked the door and said 'start your presentation.'"
Watson-Albracht was working at Zingerman's Deli when he decided he wanted to see if he could make a Zingerman's beer. He studied traditional brewing styles, made batches at home, and soon was working as a brewer and consultant at half a dozen Michigan breweries.
He started Edelbrau with Spike Oliver, a manager a Zingerman's Mail Order. It's not an official Zingerman's business, but there's a friendly relationship: Zingerman's Creamery sells Edelbrau brews, and Creamery gelato shares space with German sausages in Edelbrau's freezer.
Located near Zingerman's Southside complex in the Airport Industrial Park, Edelbrau brews a rotating selection of old-world-style (and some new and eastern) beers, including imperial and malt versions of the "Old Malt Brown Ale, an "American Ale," and a bottom-fermented "Bock," whose history can be traced back to the middle ages.
There's a small tasting room, but it's mostly a retail outlet. Watson-Ahlbrandt says they're looking for additional products to sell alongside the canned beer, sausages, and gelato. "We'll stick to the stuff that we'd like to eat."
Edelbrau Brewing Company, 719 W. Ellsworth Rd., Ste. 2. (734) 926-5351. edelbraubrewingcompany.com
[Originally published in April, 2019.]
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