Who are you and your current job?My name is Matt Schwandt, and I’m the CEO, head brewer but mostly janitor at Bauhaus Brew Labs.
What was the inspiration behind your brewery?Our brewery is a literal family of musicians, scientists, artists and – above all – beer lovers, aiming to reinvigorate the spirit of the family brewery. We were inspired to create Bauhaus Brew Labs by Germany’s Bauhaus School, which was one of the most famous art and design schools in pre-WWII Germany. The Bauhaus school was inspiring not just because of an extraordinary group of brilliant, visionary people involved, but because it was fueled by a commitment to creativity and experimentation with the underlying tenet that work, play, and celebration should all be intertwined. At Bauhaus Brew Labs, we live by the Bauhaus concept that the joy of art and craft should be celebrated in everyday life.
Can you give us a tour of your beer scene?The Twin Cities, and greater Minnesota, generally, has a diverse range of inspired craft breweries producing high-quality beer. For reasons that I believe are similar to those that have attracted a vibrant advertising industry as well as creative arts-driven organizations like the Guthrie Theater and the Walker Arts Center, Minnesotans are attracted to craft beer due to its connection to culture and new experiences.
Our scene is also one that places quality over quantity, which is borne out by visiting any number of breweries across the state. Historically, Minnesota was a hotbed of small, community-minded lager breweries. At Bauhaus Brew Labs, we carry on the lager brewery tradition, offering a number of year-round lager styles with our added twist of playfulness and adventure.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to start a brewery?My advice for anyone considering starting a brewery is to ask yourself one question: How will I offer something unique and desirable in the marketplace that doesn’t already exist?
As the craft space has become more and more crowded, consumers have become more educated and particular regarding their taste for craft beer. Accordingly, new entrants must bring something new and exciting to the table with respect to both the beer offerings and the way they choose to brand themselves. Doing otherwise is a recipe for being drowned out by the myriad other breweries flooding the market.