Well, folks, we’re at the finish line.
Er, sorry, wrong analogy – we’ve reached the championship round of our Ultimate Minnesota Beer Bracket. On Monday, someone is going to cut down the figurative nets. We'll get to that in a minute.
But first! It’s been a heck of a journey to arrive at this final matchup, which we never could have expected in our wildest dreams.
Your ultimate contenders? Schell’s, our 9-seed, and Castle Danger, our 6-seed.
Schell’s, our shining Cinderella, has had one of the toughest paths of any brewery, holding the role of underdog in each matchup and subsequently dispensing each powerhouse.
After brushing past Steel Toe Brewing in the opening round, Schell’s was responsible for taking down Surly – the No. 1 seed – and now Bent Paddle, our No. 2 seed, which looked almost as strong as the Twin Cities giant. The old-school brew house has only appeared stronger in each round – beating Bent Paddle by more than 13 percentage points.
How did we get here? Well, clearly Schell’s has done an impressive job of mobilizing its base of passionate drinkers, for one. The brewery has just over 32,000 page likes on Facebook, compared with about 85,000 for Surly, yet the brewery's posts touting the contest and an overflow of Facebook fan response shows that those who love Schell’s are very engaged.
Now from a seed perspective, Schell’s will be the ’dog once more, when it faces Castle Danger for all the sudsy, ale-ite and foamy glory.
But don’t expect Castle Danger to go down without a fight. With just 9,085 likes on its Facebook page, Castle Danger has the smallest social media following of any Foamy Four competitor, but it managed to thump Summit by a crushing 22.2 percentage points. Wowza!
And don’t forget that in the previous round, the Two Harbors brew house walloped 3-seed Indeed Brewing, another popular Twin Cities choice that looked to have a smooth path.
Castle Danger may be feeling its own underdog slight, so we should have the makings of one heck of a final showdown.
Here are the full Foamy Four results:
And now, on to the main event! That's right, it's time to vote in the championship round.
You have until 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, March 29, to enter your pick using the form below.
We'll unveil the grand champion Monday morning in the newspaper and at our Ultimate Minnesota Beer Bracket hub.
Now cast your vote!