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Jason Brizzi, Shawn Horton & Mike VanDelinder.

Posts from the journal Category

Urban Growler Brewing building

On Thursday and Friday, the Urban Growler Brewing Company hosted an open house at their new facility. Urban Brewing Company is a brewery in planning with the stage being set for a late-2013 launch. The open house allowed for the public to tour the brewery’s new space, sample a variety of the brand’s upcoming beers, as well as look into helping fund the new brewery.

Urban Growler Brewing is crowdsourcing the needed funding for their SBA loan. In exchange for sponsoring the brewery, investors gain different levels of membership depending on the amount invested. Followers of the Minnesota craft beer scene may remember a similar fundraising effort from Minneapolis’ Northbound Smokehouse and Brewpub.

When the Urban Growler Brewing Co. opens later this year, the facility will use locally sourced ingredients for small batch beers in addition to the food the brewery plans to offer onsite. An example of their efforts was evident in a sample of their Rhubarb Wit.

A Belgian Style Wheat Ale that’s very pale and cloudy in appearance. The crispness and twang comes from wheat. The slight tartness in the background comes from Minnesota Rhubarb. Highly carbonated and lightly spiced with orange peel and coriander, this is a refreshing early summer favorite.

I felt the beer had a subtly clove, sweet aroma, while the tartness that was contributed by the rhubarb was an absolute sleuth upfront. The wheat lends a medium body to the beer, while the rhubarb’s tartness makes your mouth water and finishes in a balance with floral flavors.

The official sampler lineup also included:
+ Cowbell Cream Ale – medium bodied and slightly malty; flavor sticks to your tongue and bitterness rolls off the sides.
+ Everyday Ale – in the style of Kentucky Common Beer – medium bodied with a spruce like spice, with the hops imparting a dry bitterness
+ Graffiti Rye IPA – spiciness from the rye, but intense citrus flavors from the hops + Midwest IPA – 2012 Minnesota State Fair Blue Ribbon winner that will punch the back of your throat with hops
+ Endicott IPA – dank, resinous aroma that gives way to a pleasant and juicy mouthfeel + Patio Porter – served on nitrogen; tastes like cold coffee upfront with chalky roast and dry bitterness towards the end
+ Wild Rice Ale – another example of locally harvested ingredients, but ran out before sampling

The facility currently makes good bones for the future brewhouse. Throughout the tour, the public was able to view artistic renderings of what the future taproom would look like. Additionally, there are plans to create a beer garden for the outdoor patio. The location of the brewery is in close proximity to the proposed location of Surly Brewing’s future destination brewery, which will be 5-minutes away on the west side of MN-280. The open house was a busy time at the facility, but there seemed to be ample parking as well as ready bike racks.

In addition to the taproom, UGBC will be packaging their beer in bottles as well as offering it around town on draft. We’re going to hear more about Urban Growler Brewing Company as we get closer to the opening. In the meantime, check out the sponsorship program on their website, and watch for updates through Facebook and Twitter.

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Urban Growler Brewing Company 44.970371, -93.193232 Urban Growler Brewing Company2325 Endicott StSt. Paul, MN 55104

Urban Growler Brewing Rhubarb Wit sampler Mural at Urban Growler Brewing Panorama of Inside Urban Growler Brewing Urban Growler Brewing Patio

Today marks the public release of Surly’s seventh anniversary release – SeVIIn. SeVIIN is a Belgian Style Ale brewed with rye, oats, and wheat. There was a release party for the beer at the Varsity Theater in Minneapolis last night. As it goes with Surly special releases, there are a limited number of bottles being distributed to liquors stores across the Twin Cities. What we are trying to do is track down when and where people are purchasing their bottles of SeVIIn. We aim to use this information as a way to gauge future pricing and availability of special release beers across the Twin Cities. If you were able to find a bottle of SeVIIn or enjoy the beer on draft, we would love if you could provide the details by following this link:

Surly SeVIIn Release Survey

Did you make it to the SeVIIn release party, or open your bottle as soon as you got home? Leave your comments on the beer below.

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Happy Father’s Day Minneapolis / Saint Paul!

If you’re looking for something fun to do this evening, you should head over to Republic at Seven Corners in Minneapolis. You’ll have a chance to enjoy beers and chat with three well-known brewers on a beautiful Sunday evening!

Details for the event:

Who — You, the craft beer drinkers of the Twin Cities!

What — Meet the brewers: Shaun O’Sullivan and Nico Freesia of 21st Amendment Brewery (San Francisco, CA); and Dick Cantwell of Elysian Brewing (Seattle, WA).

Where — Republic, 7 Corners Minneapolis (not Calhoun Square location in Uptown). Directions to the Seven Corners area here. Note: ample bike parking, metered spots (most likely free on Sunday), and a paid ramp at the hotel across the street.

When — The fun starts at 6PM today, June 16th.

Why — Nico and Shaun will be celebrating the seasonal release of their Hop Crisis Dick will have samples of his beer, not (yet) sold in the Minnesota market. 21st Amendment is celebrating the release of Hop Crisis, their imperial IPA aged on oak spirals.

We Beer Genome Project staff will be there, and we hope to see you too! If you have questions, please ping @beergenome on Twitter, or ping @21stAmendment for details!

White House Honey Ale

President Obama brought homebrew into the headlines last week when it was discovered the president brought his White House homebrew along on the campaign bus. One gentleman from Minnesota even got to take a bottle of the homebrew home after coming across the president on one of his campaign stops in Iowa.

We have known about beer being made at the White House ever since the 2011 Super Bowl, when the president served White House Honey Ale to guests of a party. The beer was served again for St. Patrick’s Day, and served periodically for special guests at the White House.

Not much is known publicly about the contents of the beer, because the recipe has never been released. Blurbs from news articles let us know that one batch was made with one pound of honey from the White House beehive. We also know that the kitchen staff are mostly responsible for brewing the beer, though the president paid for the homebrewing kit out of his own pocket.

So what is the recipe for the White House Honey Ale? We may get our chance at finding out if enough people sign the petition submitted to the White House’s We the People site.

In keeping with the brewing traditions of the founding fathers, homebrewers across America call on the Obama Administration to release the recipe for the White House home brew so that it may be enjoyed by all.

If this petition is heard, this is likely the closest I will come to ever tasting the White House Honey Ale. If you are a homebrewer and want to find out if the White House is all-grain or extract brewing, show your support by signing the petition before September 17.

Updated (September 1, 2012):

The White House has published the homebrew recipes for both White House Honey Ale and White House Honey Porter.

Inspired by home brewers from across the country, last year President Obama bought a home brewing kit for the kitchen. After the few first drafts we landed on some great recipes that came from a local brew shop. We received some tips from a couple of home brewers who work in the White House who helped us amend it and make it our own. To be honest, we were surprised that the beer turned out so well since none of us had brewed beer before.

Here’s a link to a PDF version of the recipe.