Category: brewpubs

Winterfest 2020 Preview

Winterfest will take place inside the confines of U.S. Bank Stadium for the first time in the long history of the event. The Polaris Club will play host, and the lineup of beers looks to be fantastic as usual. More than 100 Minnesota breweries will be featured at the event and there will also be some small plate pairings to enjoy along with all of the beers. Here are some beers you should add to your list as you prepare for Winterfest.

American Tuxedo Sour from Bent Paddle Brewing – This Berliner weiss is brewed with real blackberries, pineapple, and Jarrylo hops. The ABV is around 8.3% which is rare for a sour, and perfect for a special occasion such as Winterfest.

Lunker Barleywine from Steel Toe Brewing – French oak barrels lend some dark chocolate notes to this fine ale that showcases flavors of toffee and caramel with a subtle burn of alcohol on the tail end of every sip. It’s very hard to find good examples of this style, and Steel Toe nails this year after year.

Snuggle Situation Chocolate Cherry Milk Stout from Ursa Minor Brewing – This rendition of a cherry cordial brings flavors of chocolate malt, cherries, and vanilla to the palate. Duluth has a reputation for being the home of fine local breweries, and Ursa Minor confirms this. Dessert anyone?

Blueberry Cobbler Ale from Dangerous Man Brewing – Ok, most of us are tired of all of these trendy pastry beers. But Dangerous Man brings all of these trendy styles to life, and does it so flawlessly. Flavors of cinnamon, vanilla, and blueberries shine in this slightly tart ale that will change the way you think of pastry-style beers. This may be a contender for Best Beer at Winterfest.

Quadriga (2018) from Utepils – Classic styles seem to be out in the beer world. But don’t tell that to the folks at Utepils. They are making some of the best beer here in the Twin Cities, none of which are hazy IPAs. This Belgian Quad will remind you of why you got into homebrewing and craft beer. Toffee and caramel stand out in this fantastic version of a Quad that doesn’t typically exist the U.S. market. 

For those that don’t already have tickets, you can grab them here:


ONE Fermentery Grand Opening Saturday

Days after I fully revamped the Minnesota Brewery list, the announcement came that ONE Fermentery and Taproom would be celebrating their Grand Opening this Saturday, November 16th from noon-10pm at their new brewpub in the North Loop located at 618 North 5th Street in Minneapolis. Expect a variety of house-brewed beers as well as a curated cocktail, wine, and guest-beer menu.

ONE Fermentery and Taproom is a project borne of a couple of recognizable faces in the Minnesota beer scene, Ramsay Louder (Dangerous Man, New Holland Brewing) and Joe Alton (The Growler) as well as partner Sally Schmidt. No doubt Dangerous Man fans will be excited to see what Lauder and Alton have up their sleeves! If you didn’t find your way into their soft opening Monday evening, be sure to check them out this weekend or sometime soon!

Blessing of the Maibock

Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery is bring back their oldest tradition this Saturday at 5pm – the Blessing of the Maibock. Reverend Aron Kramer returns yet again to bless the Maibock at Town Hall and usher in spring. This is an awesome event and we think you should go! Bonus: free maibock!


Saturday, May 4, 5 p.m. blessing, following by free maibock until 6 p.m.

Winterfest 2019 Preview

It’s that time of year again. Dust off your best outfit and prepare for some of the biggest and most unique beers being made in town. The Union Depot will once again play host to Winterfest, which is the premier beer event and a fantastic showcase of food and beverage featuring only local breweries and restaurants. It’s fitting that the state capital (St. Paul)  is home to the premier Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild event.

The event was held at the Minnesota History Center for years, but the number of breweries has grown exponentially so it moved to the Union Depot a number of years ago. Food has been disappearing from beer festivals over the years to try and keep ticket prices down, but the food at Winterfest is usually very good and worth the bump in ticket prices.
Here are five beers that I’m looking forward to trying at this year’s event:
Ice Cream Social from Barrel Theory Beer Company – This Imperial Stout with strawberry, vanilla, cacao, and marshmallow was aged in Willet bourbon barrels. I don’t suppose this will last very long so you might want to put this near the top of your list.
Brave Woman Scottish Ale from Little Thistle Brewing – Steve Finnie knows his Scottish Ales, and I expect this to be one of my favorite beers at the festival. Named after his great, great grandmother who saved the lives of 15 fishermen in a storm, this beer promises notes of caramel, toffee, and chocolate. It boasts a modest 5% ABV which is always welcome at a festival that features so many heavy beers.
Twelve Parsecs from Junkyard Brewing – Lemonade meets IPA. Flavors of summer are here to save us from this bitter cold weather, and I’m excited to taste and smell those Ekuanot Cryo-Hops that they used at the end of the brewing process.
Munich-Style Dunkel from Steel Toe Brewing – Michael Wagner has been tinkering in the brewery over in St. Louis Park for a couple years now, and the results have been great so far. I’m excited to try out his version of this classic style which is very hard to anywhere these days.
#1225 Cherry Ale from Hoops Brewing – If there’s one thing that Dave and his crew are great at, it’s fruit beers. An unapologetic beer that is supposed to taste like cherry pie, just like your grandmother used to make. Door County cherries are the star of the show and will come through in both the flavor and the aroma.