August Schell Brewing Company Gets Current

This is not the first time the brewery and The Current have worked together—in fact, Schell’s has been a partner with The Current for years, and has been the sponsor of the station’s annual Birthday Party concerts. When The Current pitched the idea of a co-branded beer, Schell’s was on board right away.

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“We hold the same values,” explained Kyle  Marti, Schell’s sales and marketing manager and son of Ted Marti. “MPR’s big on local roots. They really try to speak to local listeners. It’s the same here at Schell’s.”

Soon the team at Schell’s put their minds to what kind of beer The Current Beer would be, deciding it had to be a sessionable ale or lager and perfect for summer. According to Kyle Marti, they considered brewing a new beer for the occasion, but all agreed Zommerfest from Schell’s seasonal selection would make a perfect base beer. The recipe was modified with additional hops, special artwork was designed, and The Current Beer was born.

August Schell Brewing has undergone a shift recently, as a new generation reinvigorates the Schell’s brand and explores new territory in German craft beer. The company’s sleek new website proudly proclaims, “We are German Craft Beer” and offers an in-depth history of the company from its inception to modern day.

The new branding is a reminder to craft beer drinkers that Schell’s is still on the forefront of craft beer in Minnesota. “We may be 154 years old, but we’re not old and stodgy,” said Marti.

The brewery has introduced a host of new beers in recent years including a fresh hop pilsner series, as well as more uncommon styles like Gose and radler, the German version of shandy.

In 2013, Schell’s announced it had restored a cypress tank from 1936 for use in its Noble Star Collection, a series of beers based on the Berliner Weisse style. The first two beers in the series, Star of the North Berliner Weisse and Framboise du Nord, received high praise from consumers on beer review websites, and the third—the Märzen Berliner Weisse—will be released in 2014.

Schell’s is in its sixth generation as Kyle Marti and his brothers Jace, Schell’s Brewmaster, and Franz, Schell’s groundskeeper and draft technician, have entered the family business to continue the Schell’s legacy.

“It’s very heavy. No pressure or anything,” joked Kyle Marti, adding on a serious note, “All three of us are excited to be a part of this and lay down our own piece of history.”

With a major brewery expansion near completion, several new beers on the horizon, and an inventive music and beer collaboration with The Current, the next chapter for August Schell Brewing is already being written.

Learn more about The Current and Schell’s music and beer collaboration by visiting The Current’s website. More information about the launch events and the free music downloads will be available this May at thecurrent.org/beer.

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About Brian Kaufenberg

Brian Kaufenberg is the editor-in-chief of The Growler Magazine.

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