Today at noon tickets to the popular summer beer fest held in Duluth will go on sale. This is certainly one of my favorite festivals since it is out of town and is a great excuse to spend a weekend up on the beautiful North Shore. Check out the details below.
The doors to Town Hall Brewery opened wide on Friday, just in time for the always popular Barrel Aged Week. The newly renovated space is beautiful; complete with stained glass, updated restrooms, and cozy booths.
One of the greatest improvements was adding an event space in back, complete with a tribute to owner Pete Rifakes' mother who passed away last year. A photo of her is displayed on the wall just below her beautiful glass-encased, handmade tapestries recognizing some of their nationally awarded brews. “She didn’t even use a machine,” said head brewer Mike Hoops. “We decided to lock them in for life.”
The brewery itself gained more space, which is especially important considering all the house beer that needs to be produced to satisfy the other two sister locations. This added space allows Hoops and the brewing team to make more seasonal beers and one-off beers as well. “I’m really excited about the new space,” said Hoops. “The seasonals are super fun, and they keep the creativity flowing.”
The additional brewing space also allows them to continue their barrel aged program, which culminates on Monday with the beginning of Barrel Aged Week. The schedule looks like this:
Monday 4/14 5 pm Release
Twisted Trace- Town Hall's Twisted Reality Barley Wine aged in Buffalo Trace Oak Barrels. Recipient of 2013 Great American Beer Fest Silver medal honors Denver, CO
Tuesday 4/15 5 pm Release
Eye Wine -Town Hall's Eye of the Storm Honey ale aged in Gambling McDuck French Oak Cab Franc Wine Barrel from Napa, CA
Wednesday 4/16 5 pm Release
Manhattan Reserve - Town Hall's Belgian style Grand Cru aged with tart red cherries and finished in Woodford Reserve Barrels
Thursday 4/17 5 pm Release
Buffalo Bock- Town Hall's Weizenbock aged in Buffalo Trace Barrels
Friday 4/18 5 pm Release
Big #7 - Town Hall's Strong Belgian Bruin Aged in Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey Barrels
Friday 4/18 5 pm Release
Project 3106- Town Hall's Strong Belgian Aged with Belgian Chocolate, kumquat, and finished in a Buffalo Trace Barrel
Saturday 4/19 **1pm Release**
Czar Jack- Town Hall's Jack Frost Imperial Stout aged in Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey Barrels
Saturday 4/19 **5pm Release**
Double Barrel Aged Jack Frost- Town Hall's Jack Frost Imperial Stout aged in Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey Barrel then aged in French Oak Red Wine Barrel
Of these releases the Manhattan Reserve aged on Woodford Reserve barrels (being released on Wednesday) is one not to miss. Tart cherries stand out in this one but subtle hints of plum and spice can be detected as well.
Others that were sampled and held true to Town Hall’s reputation were the Czar Jack, aged in a Jack Daniels barrel, and Buffalo Bock, which was aged in a Buffalo Trace barrel.
The Czar Jack had some very nice vanilla notes to go along with a hint of smoke and plenty of chocolate. Buffalo Bock was quite nice with esthery banana notes from the yeast and caramel and toffee flavors that really come through as well.
To sum up the improvements you can expect:
Be sure to check out the new space and try out the new food menu while you are at it.
Aesthetic Apparatus is holding their annual $5 Scratch and Dent Sale on Saturday, April 12th at noon. Here you will find a bunch of cool prints and posters (some of which are beer related) that would normally run you around $20 for only $5. All of these items are scratch and dent but are in near perfect condition.
Saturday, April 12th at noon
Party starts at 7 PM
2215 Snelling Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55404
On Friday, March 28th from 7 PM to 11 PM Chris Reuvers from ESPN 1500 will be hosting an event benefiting research for Cystic Fibrosis in the DQ Club at TCF Bank Stadium. Present will be many regional brewers pouring samples of their handmade brews.
Cystic Fibrosis is an inherited chronic disease that affects the lungs and digestive system of about 30,000 children and adults in the United States. In the 1950’s many children didn’t live to attend elementary school but thanks to medical advances, it is now possible for people to make it into their 30’s and 40’s. With more research, the foundation seeks to find a cure for this chronic disease.
General Admission tickets are $95 ($44 of this amount is tax-deductible) and will get you unlimited beer and food samples, a tasting glass, $20 off an UBER ride and access to live and silent auctions.
The VIP package will cost $150 ($76 of which is tax-deductible) and includes unlimited beer and food samples, special beer pours exclusive to VIP guests, a dinner reception with local sports celebrities and ESPN 1500 radio personalities, a tasting glass, official Brewer's Ball t-shirt, access to live and silent auctions, and $40 off an UBER ride. Tickets can be purchased here.
For further details on this event follow this link to the event website.
Ask just about anyone on the street here in the Twin Cities how they feel about Sunday Sales and, unless they own a liquor store or work for a distributor, they will likely say they support the selling of alcohol on Sunday. This, of course, is not true of all liquor store owners as it is estimated that at least 30 - 40% are in favor of a law change.
Daniel Mays of Stinson Wine Beer and Spirits is a big supporter of Sunday Sales and believes that his business will increase if the legislation were to pass. “We want the choice to be open because our customers want it and we believe we will do more business not just spread it out,” said Mays. “Between tourists who are flocking to the Twin Cities for the craft beer/craft distillery revolution, sporting and special events, last minute plans, and simply convenience we will sell more and the costs to us are negligible.”
Mays also points out that liquor stores “[A]re already paying rent and heating/cooling whether [they] are open or not,” and goes on to say that the, “[N]ew sales which will happen will off set labor easily and this is for a store that pays a living wage. We want the choice to be open and in Minnesota 2014 that just seems like common sense.”
Andy Schmitt, who runs Minnesota Beer Activists has been busy drumming up support for a bill that would make Sunday Sales legal in Minnesota for the first time since prohibition. He believes that legislation in support of this bill would bring more revenue and jobs to Minnesota. “If a bill like Sunday liquor sales that would undoubtedly bring money and jobs to Minnesota doesn't pass then Governor Dayton’s ‘unsession’ is the same as every other session,” said Schmitt.
You might wonder why, after 80 years, nothing allowing Sunday sales in Minnesota has passed. The answer is money from opposing lobbies, not just in our state, but also in North and South Dakota and Wisconsin. It makes sense that Wisconsin and the Dakotas don’t want Sunday Sales to be legalized here as it would take away valuable business from border stores in these states. So much so, that according to an unnamed source, their Sunday business “keeps the lights on, and the rest of the week is all profit.”
According to Schmitt, the time is now for people to act and to get involved. In fact, he explained that this week is crucial and if the hearing doesn’t happen this week, the issue could be dead for 2014. Supporters of Sunday Sales can go to sundaysalesmn.org to send emails to their representatives, but calling them is most effective. The direct link to find your Representatives is right here.
This is a current list of Minnesota establishments who support Sunday Sales:
Village Wine and Spirits in Lakeland
Fifth Street Liquor in Winona
Merwin Liquors in Falcon Heights
East 7th Liquor in St. Paul
Northbound Smokehouse Brewpub in Minneapolis
Chicago Lake Liquors in Minneapolis
Dinkytown Wine and Spirits in Minneapolis
Stinson Wine Beer and Spirits in Minneapolis
Dangerous Man Brewing in Minneapolis
North Loop Wine & Spirits in Minneapolis
Merwin Liquors in Minneapolis
Boom Island Brewing in Minneapolis
Shakopee Wine Cellars in Shakopee
Southbridge Liquor in Shakopee
Princess Liquor & Tobacco in St. Paul
Arbor Pointe Liquors in Inver Grove Heights
Booze Mart in West St. Paul
Diffley Square Liquors in Eagan
Old Vine Wine & Spirits in Bloomington
Pairings Food & Wine Market in Minnetonka
The Four Firkins in St. Louis Park
Steel Toe Brewing in St. Louis Park
Liquor Boy in St. Louis Park
Maddie’s Market in St. Paul
Merwin Liquors in Maplewood
Barley John’s Brewpub in New Brighton
Domacin Wine Shop in Stillwater
Hansen’s Liquor in Stillwater
On the Rocks Wines & Spirits in Hugo
Haye’s Public House in Buffalo
JT’s Corner Bar and Grill Liquor Store in Houston
Day Block Brewing in Minneapolis
La Crescent Wine & Spirits in La Crescent
Bissen’s Tavern in Brownsville
Fetketter Family Bar and Grill in Eitzen
Don’t Remember in Harmony
Shellhorn Roadhouse in Brownsville
Peterson Off Sale in Peterson
Southside Corner in La Crescent
3rd Street Liquor in Winona
Golfview Liquor Store in Winona
Kato Liquor Ltd in Winona
Bergies Bar and Grill Liquor Store in Houston
J & B’s Liquor Store in La Roy
Kinney Creek Brewery in Rochester
Hometown Wine & Spirits in Wanamingo
Wenonah Brewing Co. in Goodview
Red Wing Brewery in Red Wing
Jack Pine Brewery in Baxter
Sawmill Saloon Liquor Store in Virginia
Leech Lake Brewing Company in Walker
99 Bottles in Moorhead
Bridgeview Liquors in Moorhead
Boathouse Brewpub in Ely
Rock Bottom Brewery in Minneapolis