After having sampled a variety of Tree House Brewing's beers at the American Craft Beer Festival, I was hooked. And by hooked, I mean that the second I had a sip of their flagship Julius IPA, I was completely obsessed. Delicious, balanced and incredible, I needed more of it in my life. More of their other offerings as well. So on one fall day, my wife and I filled up the car with some gas and took an hour drive, from Boston, out to Brimfield to go check 'em out.
We easily got to the place thanks to our trusty GPS and arrived to a nearly full parking lot and a tiny red barn bustling with people.
Their story is quite interesting but in a nutshell it's a family who had a few members start the brewery up. Their's still considering a nano brewery as they only sell through their own retail outlet and don't distribute anywhere. However they are rapidly growing and have quite a following. Right now they brew and sell from a barn which is on the same property as their house. It's quite stunning out there and very tastefully decorated. There's even a koi pond and a nice little - you guessed it - tree house. It's very warm and welcoming and they're a friendly bunch.
With that said, there's having growing pains. They've outgrown their current space and they are going to be moving, by winter's end, to a new, bigger property about 7-10 miles away, West, from where they are. This will enable them to brew at a higher capacity in order to match their demand. Presently, especially on the weekends, they frequently run out of beer and/or you'll find yourself waiting in line, sometimes as long as 1 hour+ to get your 750ml bottles or growlers filled. Is it worth it? Sure. Annoying? Absolutely.
We decided to put a deposit down for five 750ml bottles and got 4 of their beers. Unfortunately for us, they ran out of Julius which we were very much looking forward to having but we were still able to get some of their others like their Space & Time Stout, their Sap IPA and 2 different versions of their Eureka IPA. One regular Eureka and one brewed with Galaxy hops. All four beers were excellent and despite the long waits, they did take the time to include a boost of nitrogen (I think?) into the bottles so that the beers would keep longer. Something that not all breweries do.
If you're a fan of craft beer, this is definitely a must-go-to spot but do plan your visit ahead and get there early as they, as I said, do frequently run out. Their selection rotates quite frequently as well so that's another thing to keep in mind as you may not be able to get what you had planned for. They do a good job updating their site.
As far as prices, they do vary depending on the beer but unless you already own Tree House Brewing bottles and growlers, you'll have to pay a deposit for them. It's the law.
Lastly, don't expect to be able to try their beers on the premise. They're not licensed for it. If you want to try them you'll have to consume them offsite. My recommendation: Drive to BT's Smokehouse in Sturbridge. It's a 10 minute drive and is one of the best BBQ joints in New England. You can BYOB there and chomp down on amazing, affordable food.
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