Category: cooking & food

Castro’s Reserve to Debut at Northbound Smokehouse Brewpub on Friday

A cigar smoked beer? Yes, it works. The crew at Northbound Smokehouse Brewpub has a way with smoke, and their latest creation is an Imperial Brown Ale smoked with cigars. Ten of them to be exact. They smoked 20% (100 lbs) of the malt base for five hours and aged the beer in rum barrels. The result is a complex beer with flavors of vanilla, dark cherries, chocolate, and some subtle leather notes. The ABV on this is 8.4% and the IBUs clock in at 32.

Joel Scott is the head brewer at Northbound and the idea came about while he was getting his brewing education at Siebel Institute in Chicago. He had a couple of questions before giving this a go. The first was that he was wondering if he could get the tobacco flavor to come through in the beer. The second was if the beer would taste like an ashtray. The answer to the first question was yes, and no to the second.

The beer will be released on Friday, May 12th at the brewpub. They will use the wood from the barrel to create a Cuban pork special for the release. You’ll wanna get there early though because this beer probably won’t last long. On a side note, they will be making this again at a later date and will be submitting this beer at the Great American Beer Festival this year.


Got the Winter Blues? Modist Has You Covered

Summer festival season is still months away and the Modist crew wants to fill the void on February 18 from 5 pm until 10 pm with music, food, and beer. They’re partnering with ZZQ Smokehouse and Genius of Fun Promotions for the event which will feature music from Hurricane Harold & Doug Otto, Brothers Band, Black River Review, and Jorgensen Tagg Band.

Tickets will cost $39 and include:

3 pints of beer (see list below)
2 BBQ (pulled pork or chicken) sliders and a side (potato salad or coleslaw)
Live music
Specialty beers
Discounted room rate ($149) at Hewing Hotel

Modist will be serving their flagships TOATS, Smoove, Wasteland, pHresh, and First Call—as well as something from their Deviation Series and several specialty beers. Additional food and beer will be available for purchase at the event.


Modist Introducing the Deviation Series

The brewery in town known for pushing boundaries is launching a series of beers they’re calling Deviation. Keigan Knee and his crew of brewers plan to make use of a 10-barrel fermenting vessel they installed 6 months ago with the sole purpose of experimenting with ingredients and processes to create new beer experiences.

These “experiments” will be taproom only releases and will not be made in large batches unless they are successful—measured strictly by popularity with their patrons. Those cute names they’ve given their flagships offerings will not apply to this series. Each batch will only be assigned a number beginning with 001 and 002. The first two will be available in the taproom on Friday, October 14th beginning at 7 pm for 001, and 8 pm for 002.

Deviation 001 is being described as a dark beer that was brewed with pilsner, rye, wheat, and coffee malts. The hops used in this batch were Amarillo, Cascade, and Columbus. Only 17 kegs were produced so it won’t last long. 5.6% ABV, 43 IBU, 21 SRM.


Deviation 002 is a wheat monster. In fact, it was brewed with 100% wheat malts (which is very uncommon) and tons of Citra, Bravo, and Ella hops. This should be a beautiful, hazy looking beer due to the use of 100% wheat malts. Only 20 kegs were produced. 7% ABV, 88 IBU, 4 SRM.


These releases are one-of-a-kind so you don’t want to miss out.

The Modist vision:
At Modist, our aim is to modify beer and how it is perceived by defying rules and
expectations. We don’t abide by established style guidelines and refuse to bend to pre-
conceived notions. We push past traditional brewing by embracing creativity and
unconstrained experimentation, taking an innovative approach to ingredients and
techniques in order to harness raw inspiration and create a new beer experience.



Bauhaus Bringing a Taste of Kentucky to US Bank Stadium

Bauhaus is teaming up with Revival to bring a taste of the south to US Bank Stadium this fall in the form of a beer called Slawhammer—a Kentucky Common Style Ale. Matt Schwandt who is the President and head brewer at Bauhaus spent some time living down in Nashville and was excited to work with Revival on this beer which will also be featured at their restaurants. “When I lived in Nashville, I learned that there are really only two beverage options for Tennessee hot chicken: sweet tea or a cold beer. So we figured, why not marry those ideas” he says.

Kentucky Common Style Ales were brewed pre-prohibition and they were  popular in that region of the country. They were also cheaper than other styles being sold in and around Kentucky during that time period, sometimes selling for half the cost of other varieties such as Stock Ale.

The Bauhaus version will have some citrus and black tea notes from the hops that were used in the brewing process. It’s extremely drinkable at 4.8 % ABV and should pair nicely with that phenomenal chicken sandwich offered at the stadium.

Nick Rancone who is a co-owner of Revival was happy to align with Bauhaus due to the product they put out, and their similar values. “We are thrilled about the partnership. Revival is all about tradition and modernity, and that is the same way we view Bauhaus. It’s so important to align with people that you respect and adore, and share values with, and it was most excellent that this collaboration came to fruition in the way that it did. We couldn’t have asked for a better partner” says Rancone.

Look for this beer to debut at US Bank Stadium in 16 oz. cans on August 10th, and on tap at The Revival/Corner Table family of restaurants in the Twin Cities in the following weeks.


Surly Brewer’s Table Named Top Ten Restaurant by Food & Wine Magazine

Two years ago Surly hired Jorge Guzman as the Executive Chef for their new destination brewery, a position that came with a lot of pressure. Two years later the accolades are rolling in.

The Star Tribune named Jorge Guzman Best Chef of 2015, while award-winning local food critic Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl gave The Brewer’s table a glowing review a couple months back. Now, Food & Wine Magazine has named The Brewer’s Table among the top ten restaurants in the country. That’s right….the entire country!

The Chef & Brewer Pairing Menu consists of four courses including beer and will run you $70, not bad for a fine dining experience. The menu changes regularly, but if you see octopus be sure to order it. It was fabulous when this writer paid a visit.

Jorge is also competing in the national COCHON555 competition (June 18th in Snomass Village, CO) after he was awarded the title Prince of Porc (winner of regionals) back in February. The goal at the national event is to use a whole heritage breed hog (head-to-tail) and win over the judges by serving a selection of the dishes that won at regionals.

practice pig

If you’d like to check out the Brewer’s Table you can make your reservation here.