Lessons for Dad

Looking for a gift for Dad for Father’s Day? Northern Brewer classes may be an option, whether Dad is a lifetime brewer or more interested in a one-time brewing experience. He can brew his own batch of beer (no experience necessary), with help from experts, and set his own date and time (one to four guests), $180-$350. Or find out the basics of brewing in a group class (July 1 from 11 a.m.-noon); it’s free (no need to tell Dad!). Or maybe he’s more into making kombucha (June 17 or July 14 from 11 a.m.- 1 p.m.), $45. Or perhaps he’s yearning to make mead (June 30 from 11 a.m.-1 p.m.), $60, or hard cider (July 15 from 11 a.m.-1 p.m.), $70. Register for all these and more at Northern Brewer Home Supply (6021 Lyndale Av. S., Mpls., 612-843-4444; and 1150 Grand Av., St. Paul, 651-223-6114; tinyurl.com/7qnjclw, northernbrewer.com).

Sip of Canadian whiskey

The second edition of “Canadian Whisky, The New Portable Expert,” by Davin de Kergommeaux (Appetite by Random House, $20) may be just what Dad wants to order — or what he wants you to order for him. In this volume, de Kergommeaux offers tasting notes for more than 100 Canadian whiskeys from 49 distilleries. Canadian whiskey is indeed at home in the United States, where Crown Royal is the second-bestselling whiskey, after Jack Daniel’s. The Canadian variety is neither Scotch nor bourbon, but rye whiskey. De Kergommeaux describes how U.S. and Canadian whiskeys evolved not in parallel but along distinctly intertwined paths. The most important ingredient in whiskey, he says, is neither water nor grain, but its story, which he goes on to tell in clear and elegant prose. Really want to make Dad happy? Buy a bottle of Canadian whiskey along with the book.

Mark your calendar

So many choices! More than 65 food trucks will land at the Uptown Food Truck Festival, on Lake Street, between Hennepin and Dupont Avenues S., on June 24 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. The family-friendly gathering, which is free, includes live music and DJs on two stages (you will have to pay for the food, however). Two other food truck festivals will take place later in the summer. On July 21, the festival heads to downtown Anoka (noon to 10 p.m., 2015 S. 1st Av., Anoka; and on Aug. 18 to St. Paul’s Mears Park in Lowertown (noon to 10 p.m., downtown St. Paul). For details on which food trucks are at what festival, go to uptownfood truckfestival.com.

Lee Svitak Dean