Meet the Brewers: St. Joseph's Abbey Addition

SpencerTraplabelAmerica’s first Trappist Ale

We reported last week that St. Joseph’s Abbey’s brewery was officially named as America’s first Trappist brewery.  This was exciting news for the American craft beer scene as American craft beer is often considered to be decisively American; young, confident, and brash.

The addition of a Trappist brewery to America’s considerable craft beer credentials is something unexpected and amazing.  It shows that while we specialize in over-the-top IPAs and stouts, Belgian Quads, and sours to knock your socks off that we can also produce refined, subtle beers of the utmost quality.

We were so excited about the news we did a samplesode on Trappist beers to give a better insight into the world of Trappist brewing and why you should care.

Yet for all the talk of the beer there is something that is decisively missing and that is the discussion of the quiet, reserved, and inarguably pious men behind the beer.  What does it mean to be a Trappist monk in the 22nd century in America?  What a day in the life of a Trappist monk at St. Joseph’s Abbey really like?

The Abbey, smartly seizing on the publicity of their Trappist announcement, released a video with their new website illustrating a day in the life of a Trappist monk.  From the vernal, picturesque, and idyllic abbey grounds brimming with history and religious iconography to the daily hobbies the monks partake in to fund the abbey.

I found the abbey itself to be incredibly beautiful from the tiles on the floor, to the wooden lockers used to house religious clothes for services, to the potter’s room where monks can create handmade pottery.  What was most surprising to me was how high-tech the brewery was.  From large, stainless steel kettles to smart-looking microscopes for checking the health of their yeasts the only clue you were at a Trappist brewery was the clothes of the brewers.

It is an interesting look into the life of a Trappist monk who live humble, internal live is the service of God.  As a craft beer drinker who takes some consideration in where his beer comes from and who makes it there is no better way to make sure your beer is brewed with the most reverence and care than a Trappist beer.  I’m excited to try their Spencer Trappist Ale.