Intelligent Design, if you’re unfamiliar, is a series of beers where one of our brewers gets to play in the sandbox (metaphor, there is no sandbox at Surly Brewing) and make their beer, their way. #5 is from brewer Brenton Tuominen. It’s called Osmotar’s Forest Mild.
Who are you and where are you from?
Brenton Tuominen. Grew up in Duluth, and moved to Minneapolis for school.
What is your brewing background?
I was a high school math teacher for eight years in Minneapolis (seven of them at Edison High in NE Minneapolis) and homebrewed frequently. I decided to make a life change and took a sabbatical to attend brew school. I went to Siebel in Chicago and then Doemens in Munich, Germany. After that, I began working at Goose Island as a brewer in their famous barrel facility. I moved back to Minneapolis to work at Surly three years ago, where I began brewing at the Minneapolis facility.
I’m constantly creating more projects for myself: I’m the safety coordinator, I help with the employee beer creations (So You Want to Brew a Beer), and, as a side/home project, I’m working on a video game featuring Surly’s logo.
What’s an Osmotar?
With my Finnish heritage, I wanted to make a special beer for my wedding (November 2017), so I brewed a beer based on the ingredients used to make a beer in the Kalevala, the Finnish epic poem. There are about 200 lines of poetry in it dedicated to the creation of beer, which was made for a wedding of the gods. Osmotar is the woman brewer created by the gods. I decided to adapt the recipe I originally created for the Intelligent Design series.
You’ll find notes of pine, honey, chocolate, and birch in this dark mild. I chose to use a dark mild as a base to be a refreshing, easy-drinking beer for the season, while allowing the other ingredients to be accentuated. I want it to feel like being in the woods during winter.
What’s your favorite Surly beer?
I always try different beers on tap, so I don’t gravitate towards a specific beer, but when I’m out, I can never go wrong with a Furious. I also feel a sense of pride, having brewed thousands of barrels of it.
Have you ever met local radio shock jock/municipal waterslide zoning nuisance Dana Wessel?
I have met this guy! It just so happens that he’s my brother-in-law–he even officiated our wedding at Surly!
- ABV: 4.5%.
- Hops: Willamette (bittering), Chinook (dry hop).
- Malt: Two Row, Crystal, Honey, Chocolate, Acidulated.
- Aged on yellow birch.
- Chocolate mild layered with honey and pine notes.