Many will tell you that craft beer is a science. But at Hay Camp Brewing Company, the work is being done by bona fide scientists. Tucked into a corner of the historic Fairmont Creamery Building, Hay Camp offers limited runs of high quality, complexly-flavored beers available during abbreviated business hours. This sense of exclusivity is part of the draw for many craft beer enthusiasts, but for owners Sam Papendick and Karl Koth, who each work fulltime jobs, it’s a necessity. The pair sat down with 605 to chat about their passion for brewing.
How did Hay Camp start?
Sam: Karl and I went to high school together. We went our separate ways for undergraduate degrees. Karl went to Minneapolis and I went to Fort Collins. We got degrees in physics and chemical engineering and after our undergrads, we moved back here and started going to grad school at the School of Mines. Karl was in the Geological Engineering department as a master’s student and I started my PhD program in Chemical Engineering, so we saw each other around there. One evening, we started talking beer at the Independent Ale House and realized we were both home brewers. Karl had been home brewing for 10 years at that time and I might have been brewing as a novice for five or six years. We started home brewing together. The beer was good and we had no problem getting rid of it. We decided to start a brewery.
Karl: It’s something that had been on my mind for a while in Minneapolis. When I got my physics degree, I took a year off and really took in the beer culture in Minneapolis. I worked at a small brewery called Vine Park Brewing Company in St. Paul and really realized it was something I was passionate about and something I could do. Then Sam and I got together. He’s a motivated guy, too, so we started a good working partnership.
Sam: We call it the ‘craft beer bug.’ Once you get it, you’re in it.
Read the full article in the May issue of 605 Magazine or here.