When I was in elementary school the local newspaper asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up. There were the typical answers of firefighter, astronaut and then my response, an Olympic skier who wins a gold medal and lives in Whitefish Montana. It was a pretty specific dream that obviously I did not achieve… and I’m pretty sure I won’t achieve the gold medal part this late in life.
While passing through Whitefish this summer I made a familiar stop at Great Northern Brewing. You didn’t really think I was going to drive to Whitefish and not stop at a brewery did you? Great Northern Brewery has been around since 1995 with a distinct 3 story brewhouse that has a pretty spectacular view of Big Mountain, which is not only aptly named but also the town’s ski mountain.
I found myself a spot at the bar and decided to try a beer that I had not had yet, which was going to be difficult as I am well versed in their beer from visiting the brewery and hanging around beer fests in Montana. I decided on the Good Medicine Strong Red Ale. I always enjoy a red ale and if it’s “strong”, what’s not to like? The beer has a 7.5% Alcohol by Volume (ABV) and a 55 International Bittering Unit (IBU). I gave it a 4 out of 5 on Untappd and snapped a photo for Facebook to make all my friends at home jealous! It worked 🙂
I only had one beer before I went but I did learn from the bartender an interesting bit of news. Great Northern Brewery has partnered with Glacier Distilling. This development is interesting because it creates a loophole in Montana’s weird “we stop serving beer at 8pm” law. Great Northern now has a liquor license so they can serve beer until closing – genius!
The bartender also offered up another tidbit – that I should make every effort to try out Bonsai Brewing, also located in Whitefish, as they are kicking out some great beers as well. It’s always nice to see friendly competition. Although time would not allow me to stop at Bonsai, it does give me another reason to return back to Whitefish…. as though I needed another reason!
Actually I already see another reason. Posted on Great Northern’s website is their 2015 Weathervane Series, seasonally released beers. And I already see a few beers to add to my wish list. The Big Mountain Tea Pale Ale. I assume this is similar to their previously released Tea Pale Ale, which is an ale infused with Earl Gray tea leaves. YUM! I have had this numerous times at beers fests around Montana and it is delightful. I am also looking forward to the Cadillac Black IPA. Black IPA’s are my go to beer right now and I am hoping this one fits the bill.
Great Northern Brewery is located at 2 Central Ave Whitefish Montana. Tours of the brewery are offered Monday – Thursday at 1 and 3pm during the summer months and off season by appointment only.