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Breakout Brewer: Prairie Artisan Ales

The two brothers behind Oklahoma-based Prairie Artisan Ales put a lot of effort into pursuing their flights of fancy—and they wouldn’t have it any other way.

Tom Wilmes Apr 17, 2016 - 7 min read

Breakout Brewer: Prairie Artisan Ales Primary Image

For a brewery located square in the American heartland, “in the middle” is a phrase that doesn’t apply to Prairie Artisan Ales. On one end of the brewing spectrum, Prairie produces highly regarded, cleanly brewed beers packed with flavor and personality—including Bomb!, an Imperial stout aged on espresso beans, cacao nibs, vanilla beans, and chile peppers—at a production brewery in Krebs, Oklahoma. Meanwhile, at Prairie’s hometown facility in Tulsa, Brewmaster and Cofounder Chase Healey is testing the boundaries with inventive sours, wild ales, and other funky barrel-aged projects.

Healey is making the nearly two-hour drive between the two breweries—a trip he makes at least once a week—when he calls for our interview. As we talk, it becomes apparent that he’s an inspired and ambitious brewer who is often moving in at least two directions at once.

“It’s hard to more or less have two breweries and develop them in such a way that each stands on its own but both are part of the same bigger vision,” he says. “Maybe it’s a little easier for a brewery that focuses on a core lineup, but for a guy like me, who has a lot of ideas and wants to try a lot of stuff, it’s difficult to make sure we’re doing what we need to be doing at the larger facility while still creating an identity for our new place.

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