by Betsy Davis
Anyone with a craving for some liquid Cajun culture can take a ride down Highway 3185 and indulge their senses at the Mudbug Brewery, a young Thibodaux-based manufacturing and distribution business that’s got something to different to offer even the most curious pallets.
The King Cake Ale is one of Mudbug’s flagship beers. Tones of cinnamon and vanilla bean give it that sweet king cake flavor connecting it to Mardi Gras and the regions favorite sweet treat. The Intercostal IPA brew is named for the Gulf Intercostal Waterway that runs through the state, and the Pelican Pilsner pays homage to the Louisiana state bird, the brown pelican. In each of these, and the others like the
Café au Lait Coffee Milk Stout, there’s little flavor of the South’s colorful culture, and that is something that the native owners of the brewery have worked hard to capture from day one.
“We want to keep it as culturally relevant as possible,” said Leith Adams in a Times Picayune article shortly after the brewery first opened its doors.
Looking in on it now, Adams and the other two owners of Mudbugs, Brance Lloyd and Peter Leichty, seem to have done just that.
Since Mudbug’s opening in 2014, they and the surrounding community have watched the brewery blossom into a reputable and culturally-rooted establishment. The business distributes its brews to local restaurants and bars like Pepper’s Pizzeria, Fremin’s and Spahr’s Seafood Restaurants in Thibodaux, and it has branched out to the Houma and New Orleans area as well.
For anyone interested in a tasting, though, all they have to do is walk through the front doors of the brewery itself and settle in at the bar of the tasting room for an order. The setting is rustic and clean with a comfortable décor, ambient lighting and a variety of ales to choose from. Tables and seating are available throughout the room, when there is space, and right across from the bar is a wide window that lets customers take a peek at where all of the magic happens in the back half of the building. This is where the large metal tanks and brewing equipment busily works to churn out one Cajun themed ale after another.
Thus far, the response has been positive with the locals and surrounding community. Mudbugs has almost 1,000 followers on their Twitter feed and a few thousand more followers on Facebook. The brewery uses these media sites to keep in touch with customers, answer questions about machinery, equipment and distribution, and to let everyone know what Cajun-themed ale they will be brewing up next.
Some of the ales offered are seasonal, like the Burning Saison that’s brewed with local molasses for the sugarcane harvest season in the area, or a Cajun Stout brewed with cayenne pepper to add a little kick to the Louisiana winter. Now as summer approaches, locals can expect some new and enticing flavors from the Mudbug Brewery, but throughout the year everyone will know that one thing is certain:
This is one place that is mixing up its batches Cajun-style.