Life is moving incredibly fast these days! We all get busy in our everyday lives running from one obligation to the next. While social media promises building relationships and connections, those relationships built in the cloud can seem to be fading ghosts. When we stop running and look up from our phones and computers for a minute, we might find that we do not have many real relationships. In order to reverse that trend, my brother-in-law and I decided to get together and do a little brewery tour in Minneapolis. It was great to explore these places. While we sampled different beers and toured these different locations, there was a much deeper meaning to this outing.
Like the rest of the country, the craft beer craze has swept into Minnesota and Minneapolis. According to the Brewers Association, there are 112 craft breweries in Minnesota, and they produce 609,415 barrels of beer. Even though these are 2016 statistics, that is pretty impressive!
Minneapolis has a vibrant brewing scene. Of the 112 craft breweries in Minnesota, there are 36 breweries listed on the Brewers Association website in Minneapolis. It seems that there are craft breweries on every corner in some areas of Minneapolis! We certainly did not tour all of them on this trip, but we ended up going to five on their list.
I got together with David at Utepils Brewery off of Glenwood Avenue in Minneapolis. It would be our furthest west brewery that day. I had never been to Utepils before. The taproom actually opened on February 18, 2017, and it had a cool European charm to it. I really liked the bar and the artwork, and it was great to have a friendly guy at the door greeting us.
Utepils creates their beers in with distinct European-style recipes, which was different than what I was expecting. David traveled to Europe last year and had a lot of Belgian beers, and he confirmed that this was similar to the Belgian beers he had. We hung out there and enjoyed a couple of beers while the Badgers went on to win a victory against Indiana 45-17. Once the game ended, we decided to try another place.
We decided to leave Utepils and drove down Glenwood to Inbound Brewery. Inbound follows the modern microbrew pattern where the tap room is amongst the fermentors and equipment. The tap room was fairly large, and what made it unique was the large timber benches and furniture. I have never seen square logs suspended from the ceiling like that and used for tables. Pretty cool.
- Food truck in a converted Airstream trailer;
- Great patio area;
- Spacious tap room
- A cool bar a with a simple but effective private seating area (can be separated with a garage door).
The beer was really good; I had two Sweet Child of Mine Beers. Really good stuff! I recommend Fulton Brewery, and it was busy!
Modist Brewing Company
Dave and I decided to give Modist Brewing Company a try. We heard a rumor from some people at the next table that Modist was closed for a private event, and sure enough, they were correct. The closest we got was the front door. Oh well, we’ll have to go another time. From the outside, Modist Brewing Company was in a brick building with hops growing on the sides. Very cool!
Dave and I will have to go back to Modist Brewing Company. You have to appreciate a brewery with a sense of humor. Recently, they created a beer called “Dilly Dilly,” which Bud Light has been using for their marketing campaign. In response, Budweiser sent a town crier to “handle” the situation. Someone captured the town crier on video, and I posted it below. Kudos to Budweiser and Modist Brewing Company.
Dave and I finished our tour at The Freehouse to finish our tour. It is more of a restaurant than a brewery, but the beer tasted good. We had some truffle fries which really hit the spot after our brewery tour, and once we were done eating, we paid our tab and left.
Putting It All Together
I dropped Dave off at his house and headed home. I didn’t expect a beer at Utepils to turn into an afternoon tour. It was a really fun afternoon exploring these places, having a couple different beers and catching up with Dave.
The bottom line is that you don’t need to go to a bunch of breweries to hang out and catch up with family or friends. The real lesson is that you need to set aside the time and make a conscious effort to do it. Time marches on, and we only get so much on this spinning blue orb.
Make sure you reach out, make the effort and connect with people in 2018. Build your tribe and small community. I think you might have a lot of fun, have better relationships, and experience some cool things along the way!