Reads Landing Brewing Company makes its home in a quaint historical building that was once a dry goods store and, more recently, the Anchor Inn. The brewery opened in August 2011, quickly earning praise for its Northern-style cuisine prepared according to the chef’s Southern influences. The menu highlights locally sourced products, including Winona bratwurst, creative cupcakes made in Plainview (one featuring Schell’s Firebrick beer), bloody mary mix from Rochester, and Brau Brothers’ ale from tiny Lucan, Minnesota.
Creamy, garlicky shrimp and grits ($8.50) makes a great starter choice; Carolina-style beef brisket served on Texas toast with apple barbecue sauce is fall-apart tender and delicious. To wash it down, Reads Landing offers close to 20 craft beers and six more on tap; a line of house-made brews is also in the works.
During the summer, visitors grab seats on the patio where they can kick back in the sun with seasonal drink specials. On cooler days, the crowds congregate inside at a bar lacquered with vintage beer labels or in the red dining area. For the best scenery, snag a stool facing the front windows to watch trains rumbling by and barges easing their way down the Mississippi channel. You might even spy a bald eagle if you’re lucky.