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Oct 11, 2007 07:14 AM

Minnesota Beers

I'll be at Town Hall drinking Masala Mama Friday night.
I can't wait to get my hands on Surly's Furious. I plan to bring home many cans. Where can I find it on tap?
Barley John's was recommended on the Midwest board. What would you consider their signature beer? What do they do that will please a hophead?
What other beers should I look for that I can't find in Iowa?

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  1. You are going to love, love , love Furious! Click on the following link for a list of places that serve Surly on tap. The most recent place I had Furious on tap was at Mackenzies Pub on hennepin & 9th in downtown Minneapolis about 2 weeks ago.

    At Barley John's, you should try the Stockyard IPA if you love hops. Barley Johns clearly seems to be the favorite brew pub around these parts for those who really love beer. Too bad it isn't bigger (tiny place) and closer into the city (although it is a very quick drive, and worth it


    It should also be noted that you can get growlers at both Surly (at the brewery) and Barley John's!

    1 Reply
    1. re: autmommy

      I did check Surly's website. Growlers on Saturday from noon till 2:00 only.
      So, I know what I'm doing at that time.
      I read a review of Town Hall, on Beer Advocate, that mentioned the Black and Blue Burger as being good. I'll probably stick with that. I'm really just there for the Masala Mama. I've only tried it once from a growler that spent a weekend in the trunk of a car. Not a fair sample.

    2. If you like Ethiopian food, I would recommend Blue Nile. Its a very unusual place that can be either empty or packed, depending on whether there is music that particular evening.

      The bartender, Al (known on Beer Advocate as "feloniousmonk"), always carries whatever is available from Surly on tap. If you are lucky, Darkness may be available.

      1. I assume you are going for the brew pubs? Barley John's is the best in my opinion. I just wish it were closer to my home to go more frequently.

        For the micro brews I think the Summit beers and ales can hold their own with anyone and I also like the Schell's brands out of New Ulm, MN. But right now I am carrying on a love affair with the Bell's brand of brews out of Michigan and working my way through a different six pack a week that I can get at the Excelsior Village liquor store. This week it is Bell's Lager of the Lakes.

        8 Replies
        1. re: Davydd

          I love Bell's Two Hearted Ale. They just stopped shipping it to Iowa because of our incredibly stupid state laws governing beer distributing. Can I get Two Hearted up that way? What about Hopslam?

          1. re: Bobfrmia

            Two Hearted Ale is available at the Excelsior Village Liquor Store a block north of SH 7 on County Rd 19 in Excelsior (Lake Minnetonka area). That's where I buy mine. Haskell's around town might carry it as well. MGM Liquors, a big chain around town, does not carry it.

            1. re: Bobfrmia

              On tap, I know that you can get 2 Hearted and Oberon at both Grumpy's downtown and NE Bulldog (Bulldog also has a rotating stock of Belgian taps and bottles including Deus if you're a high(er) roller). I know there are many other places that have it as well. On several Wednesdays, the NE Bulldog has had an unfiltered cask-conditioned 2 Hearted 1/4 barrel. Absolutely terrific.

              I have seen HopSlam at Surdyk's, though I do not think they have it there now. I have not seen it anywhere around here on tap. Sounds like you're into hoppy beers, so definitely check out Furious @ Surly and Summit's ESB.

              If by some chance you end up in Hudson, go to the liquor store off 94E exit 2 next to County Market and get the pride of Wisconsin micros: New Glarus. Definitely try the Hop Head (IPA). I also like Yokel (unfiltered Pils), Fat Squirrel (nut brown), Naked (unfiltered lager I think), try all of em. We can't get it over here in MN, but we make runs coming back from the cabin.

              1. re: Foureyes137

                Foureyes137, Thanks for the New Glarus in Hudson tip. I did not know you could find them so close to the Twin Cities. We stopped in New Glarus earlier this year and tried a few of their brews. My wife bought a large liter bottle of their Cherry Ale in the local grocery store and thought it was a bottle of wine. Since it was red she opened it warm. Not good. We refrigerated it and it tasted better later.

                1. re: Davydd

                  New Glarus' Lambics are terrific. The rasberry tart is bright, but the cherry is one of the few fruit beers I really enjoy...cold btw. ;)

                  1. re: Foureyes137

                    New Glarus does not make lambics; they are produced in one small part of Belgium and nowhere else.

                2. re: Foureyes137

                  I see Hudson is about 30 miles from where I'll be. Probably as close to New Glarus as I'll be for some time. I will try to make a run over there. Thanks for the tip.
                  Now I gotta pack and get on the road. Furious is waiting for me.

                  1. re: Foureyes137

                    Actually, gab the Summit IPA -- ESB's typically have less hops than then your average beer, and Summit's has a malty finish with a strong burnt toast note. If you're a hophead like I, it's great for cooking, but not as much for drinking.

              2. don't forget to pick up a couple packs of lake superior's offerings. it think it's too early to track down their old man winter warmer, unfortunately, but you might like some of their other offerings


                1. Ok, here's what I found.
                  Blue Max is the greatest store I've ever been in. For anything, anytime. A feeling that I haven't had since I was a small child, and mom took me to the toy store.
                  I now have in my fridge(and out) Masala Mama, from Town Hall, which I was able to try the Cask conditioned. Maybe the best beer I've ever had.
                  Surly Fest, Surly Furious, Hop Devil, Sierra Nevada Harvest, Sierra Nevada Anniversary, Goose Island Demolition, Sam Adams Hallertau Imperial Pilsner, and New Englands Sea Hag. I bought the Sea Hag blind. Intiriqued by the cans. I've tried one, and find it pretty good for canned beer that isn't real expensive.
                  A few of these will be fairly common beers to some of you, but I can't get them here, so I wanted to try them.
                  Oh, and I picked up some Two Hearted.
                  All I can say is, you Minnesotan's can buy much better beers than us Iowan's, except on Sunday.
                  Didn't make it to Surly for the growlers, or Hudson for New Glarus.
                  Reasons to return.
                  Wow, drinking a Furious as I type this. Wow. I should just note, Wow.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Bobfrmia


                    You come to Minnesota for beers and I go to Iowa for breaded pork tenderloin sandwiches. ;)

                    1. re: Davydd

                      Either is a fine reason for a road trip.
                      Be sure to check the link I just posted on the Midwest board. I will be trying a new one soon.