We recently had a beer tasting hosted by Viking Liquor Barrel out of Prior Lake. It wasn’t your traditional tasting where you walk around and sample beers at various tables. Instead we sat down and were given a presentation on the beers we were trying from brewery employees. It was slower paced and we didn’t get to try as many beers as normal, but hearing the origin of beers and some tasting notes on each was a pleasant surprise. At the end they mentioned they would be having their annual beer, wine, and spirits tasting at Lakefront Days. Say no more, sign us up!
The sheer amount of beverages available to sample was astonishing. There were two large tents setup in two hockey rinks, and smaller tents surrounding them. They had everything you could think of, and I decided to focus my efforts on the beer. I had a ton of samples but there were four standouts.
First up was the Traitor IPA from Badger Hill Brewery. Badger Hill was at our earlier tasting, but we didn’t get to try this one. It was very well balanced between the citrus and the hops and crisp and refreshing. Second was the Clown Shoes Galactica, an Imperial IPA. A high ABV but lacking the usual boozy taste like others I’ve had in this style. It was smooth and flavorful.
Next was the Excelsior Minnegose, a seasonal Gose. It was tart, almost sour, and really stood out from the other beers I had during the night. Lastly was the Wheatstone Bridge from Tin Whiskers. I’ve had this in their taproom before and really enjoyed it. It’s a sweet wheat beer with honey and chamomile flavors. Very tasty!
A full list of the beer and ciders that I tried are below. There were many more that were available. If you’re looking to try a bunch of different beers, wine, and spirits then look up the tasting next year. I guarantee you’ll get your money’s worth.
- Squatters: Off Duty IPA, Hop Rising Double IPA, Honey Ale
- Four Daughters Winery: Loon Juice
- Bent Paddle: Lollygagger Pale, Cold Press, Bent Hop IPA, Bent Paddle Blonde
- Woodchuck: Gumption
- Magners: Pear
- Sierra Nevada: Oktoberfest, Pale Ale, Hop Hunter, Nooner
- Clown Shoes: Tramp Stamp, Galactica
- Evil Twin: I Love You Stout
- Off Color: Troublesome
- Kona: Big Wave, Fire Rock Pale Ale, Longboard Island Lager
- Badger Hill: Traitor IPA, High Road, MSB, White IPA
- Mankato: Organ Grinder Amber Ale, Haymaker IPA, Duly Noted
- Excelsior: Big Island Blonde Ale, XLCR, Bridge Jumper IPA, Minnegose
- Tin Whiskers: Wheatstone Bridge, Flip Switch IPA
- Samuel Adams: Oktoberfest, Rebel Rouser IPA