For the second year in a row, Minnesota craft beer will be on display in the Agriculture Building. You can learn everything about our local suds; from where the ingredients come from to how it is made and who produces it. The exhibit will feature local examples from some of the 40 breweries represented at the fair.
The response to this exhibit could not have been better during last year’s Great Minnesota Get Together, where flocks of people came to learn about and sample various local brews. “We had people knocking the door down at 9 AM last year,” said Clint Roberts, the Executive Director of the Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild.
That success prompted the Brewers Guild to double the space for this year, which will include a wall dedicated to brewery art and two additional flights of beer bringing the total to six. “We don’t want people to just come in for a beer, we want them to take in the entire cultural aspect,” said Roberts. This year they are also introducing Firkin Friday. That means on Fridays they will switch out one of the typical beers in your flight with a special beer drawn from a firkin (basically a small keg). These are usually limited or rare varieties that the brewers don’t brew every day.
Once again the exhibit will feature speakers from all corners of the craft beer scene from brewers to educators. If you happen to be at the fair on Sunday, August 25th you won’t want to miss Doug Hoverson, author of Land of Amber Waters: The History of Brewing in Minnesota. Doug is well-versed in the history of brewing in Minnesota and is extremely interesting to listen to.
One of the best presentations last year involved both Mike and Dave Hoops—two brothers brewing at two different brewpubs here in Minnesota. Mike brews at Town Hall Brewery at Seven Corners in Minneapolis and Dave brews up at Fitger’s Brewhouse in Duluth. They will be presenting again this year on Tuesday, August 27th at 6 PM.
Another promising presentation in the lineup is Artifacts and Agriculture, which will cover a variety of topics such as old brewery memorabilia (Dave Wendl of Breweriana Collectors Club of America), the growing of hops (Charlie “Hop Star” Rohwher Ph.D.) and the malting/barley industry (Cargill’s Mark Ruark).
Here is the full presentation schedule:
Thursday, August 22
- 3pm – Getting to Know the Guild: Clint Roberts, Guild Executive Director
- 6pm – Beer Tourism: Dan Justesen, Guild President, Vine Park Brewing Co.
Friday, August 23
- 3pm – Member Showcase: 612Brew, Indeed Brewing Co.
- 6pm – The Art of the Cask: Tony Digatono of Great Waters Brewing Co.
Saturday, August 24
- Noon – Homebrewer Award Program
- 3pm – Primary Fermenter Showcase
- 6pm – Member Showcase: Surly Brewing Co., Fulton Beer
Sunday, August 25
- Noon – A Historian’s Perspective: Craft Beer with Doug Hoverson
- 3pm – Minnesota Hop Star: The U of M’s Charlie Rohwer, Ph.D.
- 6pm – Member Showcase: Third Street Brewhouse, Boom Island Brewing Co., Flat Earth Brewing Co.
Monday, August 26
- 3pm – Member Showcase: Excelsior Brewing Co., Lucid Brewing Co.
- 6pm – Exploring Beer Artifacts: Steve Ketcham
Tuesday, August 27
- 3pm – Discussing Different Brewing Styles: Damian McConn from Summit Brewing Co., Jace Marti from August Schell Brewing Co., and Todd Haug from Surly Brewing Co.
- 6pm – Brotherly Brewing: Mike Hoops (Town Hall Brewery) and Dave Hoops (Fitger’s Brewhouse)
Wednesday, August 28
- 3pm – Member Showcase: Castle Danger Brewery, Lift Bridge Brewery
- 6pm – Member Showcase: Dangerous Man Brewing Co., Big Wood Brewery
Thursday, August 29
- 3pm – The Flavor Profiles of Beer: Michael Agnew
- 6pm – Member Showcase: Lift Bridge Brewing Co., Town Hall Brewery
Friday, August 30
- 3pm – A Veteran Perspective on Minnesota Craft Beer: Mark Stutrud of Summit Brewing Co., Ted Marti of August Schell Brewing Co.
- 6pm – The First Family of Minnesota Craft Beer: The Marti Family of August Schell Brewing Co.
Saturday, August 31
- Noon: Local Flavor: Artifacts and Agriculture: Dave Wendl, North Star Chapter, Breweriana Collectors Club of America, U of M’s Charlie Rohwer, Ph.D. (hops), Cargill’s Mark Ruark (barley/malt)
- 3pm – Duluth Beer City: Tim Nelson, Frank Kaszuba, and Dave Hoops from Fitger’s Brewhouse
- 6pm – Exploring the World of Barley and Malt: Chris German from Brewers Supply Group
Sunday, September 1
- Noon – From Farm to Glass: Joe Pond (Olvalde Farm and Brewing Co.) and Dustin Brau (Brau Bros. Brewing Co.)
- 3pm – Member Showcase: Excelsior Brewing Co., Third Street Brewhouse
- 6pm – The Craft Beer Consumer: The Four Firkins
Monday, September 2
- 3pm – Homebrewing 101: Jeff Merriman of Northern Brewer
- 6pm – Another side of craft beer.
Be sure to check out the Minnesota Brewers Guild site for the rest of the details and remember to ask questions while you are there.