A boxy, white, slightly dirty deep-freeze is a standard piece of equipment found in any average garage. It’s not something one would look at with much interest, nor does it beg the question, “What’s inside there?” To the unassuming guest, it’s just another place to store frozen pizza and steaks.
That’s not the case for Phil Glenn and his family, though. The cooler in his garage contains a carbon dioxide tank and four kegs of his home-brewed beers: a lemongrass, blonde, vanilla porter and maple nut brown.
He’s been brewing his own beers for more than 10 years now, but he’s ramped up production even more in the last two years.
“This last year he made a ton and stockpiled it because my stepmom was missing out,” said his son Alex Glenn. “I think the reserves were gone by the time she could get to it, though.”
With a fresh new flavor just a few steps away from the living room, it’s not hard to see why it disappears so fast. Alex says he makes “the whole rainbow spectrum of beer,” including the blonde and lemongrass wheat, along with porters, dunkels, browns, Irish reds and others.
Phil sets up his brewery in the kitchen of his home, which may not sound like an ideal place, but the rest of the family has come to enjoy the sweet-smelling process. He puts the beer in a basement storage room to ferment, and then it goes out to the garage.
Just by looking at the cooler, one can tell it is often used. A few stains and colored rings where people have set down their beers decorate the white lid.
“You can tell it gets some use because of all the spills surrounding it from someone who doesn’t know how to pour beer from a keg,” said Alex. “It happens to the best of us, though you better take care nobody sees you do it.”
The kegs only take up about half the cooler, and the other side is filled with other beverages welcome for the taking. Alex says it’s just one of the perks of having a dad who makes his own beer.
“It’s like having a bar in your house,” he said. “Except you have to pour your own drinks. And sometimes your dad’s. I was always told that’s the perk of having kids.”