This past month, a small crew from Formaggio Kitchen was lucky enough to get a tour of Mystic Brewery from Brian Greenhagen, the founder and owner. At the time of our visit the Chelsea, MA facility was in preparations for a recently announced growth of their saisons and traditional wild ales program, in partnership with Cambridge Brewing Company. This expansion will quadruple their current barrel aging capabilities, allowing for new possibilities for what their beer has to offer. This exploration is something New England – Boston specifically – is quite accustomed to, considering its important role in setting a foundation for beer in America.
The intertwined history of Boston and beer is as rich and bold as the ales crafted at Mystic’s Chelsea brewery. There are few facilities that honor this history in the modern day, but Mystic is one of them. A contemporarily driven approach to historical preservation is something that Brian takes very seriously. With a degree in biology and a self-adorned degree in New England history, the owner has managed to find ways to nod at the past from the nuances in his beers and aesthetic, from the striking reclaimed wooden beams in the tap room that resemble an 18th century-era publik house to their newly-expanded barrel aged program.
Brian and his team have achieved an impressive and growing line of beers. Mystic’s unique charm comes from both a deep respect of the timeless brewing process and an expansive scientific knowledge behind the fermentation needed to achieve this liquid gold. This marriage of knowledge shines brightest in one of Mystic’s Wild Ales, which not only requires the harvesting of yeast – the owner’s childhood backyard being one location – but also the patience and watchful eye needed when dealing with barrel aged brews.
Formaggio Kitchen is excited to see where the new chapter in Mystic will be taken. We look forward to stocking our shelves with new ales in the near future. Cheers!
Tyler Willette is a member of the produce, beer, and social media teams at Formaggio Kitchen Cambridge.