Barley John’s Brewpub

March 24, 2019

I’m at an age where you start to see your friends less and less often. Everyone has a family and they’ve settled into their own routines. There are a few people that I’m lucky to see more than once a year. I’ve been working in St. Paul for over a decade and one day it dawned on me that one of those friends lives relatively close to my office. It took just a few texts to line up a time after work to meet my friend Adam at Barley John’s Brewpub in New Brighton.

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Waconia Brewing Company

March 24, 2019

I had never attended a baby shower before. Of course, I’ve heard about them. You play silly games, talk with people you’ll never meet again, and graze on miscellaneous snacks. All of my expectations were met but what the other guests may have not expected was my competitiveness. Nobody sent me the memo that the games were meant to be fun, not to be won. After a fierce round of baby jeopardy with the oddest rules I’ve ever encountered, I needed a drink. My wife wasn’t present to temper my competitive streak, she was dealing with a screaming baby. Needless to say, she needed a drink too. So we popped the kid in the car and made for Waconia Brewing Company.

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Imminent Brewing

March 22, 2019

While my wife and I were on our thru-hike of the Superior Hiking Trail we had 22 days to discuss our approach to parenting. It was a nice way to kick off a new chapter of our life by getting aligned about one of the biggest changes in it. One year later and we had our baby girl! Something we agreed was that we would regularly plan some individual time away from our parenting duties while the other filled in. When my turn came up I called my friend Mitch and we decided to visit Imminent Brewing, the only Northfield area brewery that either of us had yet to imbibe.

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Eastlake Craft Brewery

March 13, 2019

One of my primary goals for 2018 was to use all of our expired Groupons. When my brother in-law and sister in-law reached out to us for week night brewery visit I looked at my stack and was surprised to find that only one remained! A couple of texts later and we were on our way to Eastlake Craft Brewery.

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Keepsake Cidery

February 28, 2019

When we visited Anna Maria Island last year there was a small barbecue place next door to our condo. While lunch there we learned they had two locations and the other was actually in Northfield, Minnesota! We swore to ourselves that we’d visit them sometime after we returned. It took us half the year to remember to stop at Smoqehouse and since it was one of the hottest days on the year we determined that a cidery would be the best place to quench our thirst. Next stop Keepsake Cidery!

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Summit Brewing Company

February 26, 2019

It was the first wedding anniversary since our daughter was born. My wife was on maternity leave and I was on paternity leave and we were determined to get out of the house and enjoy what was left of the summer. We chose to begin by giving the tread of our new stroller an off road test on Fort Snelling’s Pike Island. Instead we got lost immediately after leaving the parking lot, took a harrowing trip down a steep path, and ran out of energy before we really began. Once we pushed the stroller back up the hill we agreed that it might be more fun to just go have a drink at the Summit Brewing Company Ratskeller.

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Copper Trail Brewing

February 23, 2019

Before our child was born, my wife and I were determined to hold on to as much of our previous life as we could. That’s why we were in a car driving north to spend the second week of our daughter’s life at a resort on Lake Clitherall. We’d taken her to the Minnesota State Fair when she was only 6 days old but now it was time for her first brewery, an environment with a lot less of a safety valve than massive fairgrounds with over 100,000 people. With some degree of trepidation I took hold of her carseat and stepped into the taproom of Alexandria’s Copper Trail Brewing.

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Bobbing Bobber Brewing Company

February 19, 2019

We’d heard that garlic can induce labor. When our baby didn’t show up on her due date we took the hour drive west to the Minnesota Garlic Festival in Hutchinson, Minnesota. After bouncing around the fairgrounds, avoiding the abnormally creepy Narren, tasting all manner of garlicky foods, and nibbling on delicious black garlic we were determined to cleanse our palate with a couple of brews at the local Bobbing Bobber Brewing Company.

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Flat Earth Brewing Company

January 28, 2019

We have a couple of friends that spend most of their leisure time exclusively in the Minneapolis area. Imagine our surprise when we received a text asking if we’d like to accompany them to a relatively under the radar brewery in St. Paul. They’d seen a photo of their patio on Instagram and they wanted to see it first hand. After meeting them at another brewery in Northeast, Minneapolis we headed to the Dayton’s Bluff neighborhood of St. Paul. Our ultimate destination: Flat Earth Brewing Company.

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Minnesota Craft Beer: Best of 2018

January 3, 2019
Tap Traveler Post at Bobbing Bobber

I really enjoy writing this article, but these awards get harder and harder every year! That’s mostly because there are so many great breweries in the state and partly due to some self imposed limits. Every award must go to a brewery I’ve visited in the calendar year and I won’t give a brewery the same award two years in a row. I also added a Best Innovation category to reward the breweries that are consistently pushing the envelope! I’ve visited almost 100 breweries in Minnesota and written posts about a healthy amount of them. If I’m missing your favorites I’d love to hear about them. Let’s get to it!

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