Brewery Updates in Minnesota (2020)

Discussion in 'Midwest' started by islay, Jan 2, 2020.

  1. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    You know the drill. Linked is last year's thread.

    First new-to-me BIP of the '20s: Bear Cave Brewing in Hopkins

    I plan to publish an updated list of breweries-in-planning and the like soon.
  2. HeadRetention

    HeadRetention Initiate (82) Jul 13, 2015 Minnesota

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  3. Chaz

    Chaz Poo-Bah (2,125) Feb 3, 2002 Minnesota
    Society Trader

  4. Windvaner

    Windvaner Initiate (64) Nov 7, 2014 Minnesota

    Thanks for starting this 2020 thread! Can you post up your list of planned breweries on this first page Islay ? One I’m not sure has been mentioned :

    Rail Werks Brewing Depot - planned for Columbia Heights
  5. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    2019 openings ("bp" indicates brewpub). I apologize if I've missed any.
    1. 22 Northmen Brewing Co., Alexandria
    2. Block North Brew Pub, Aitkin (bp)
    3. Drastic Measures Brewing, Wadena
    4. Falling Knife Brewing Co., Minneapolis
    5. Fat Pants Brewing Company, Eden Prairie
    6. Fergus Brewing Company, Fergus Falls
    7. Forbidden Barrel Brewing, Worthington (bp)
    8. Forgotten Star Brewing, Fridley
    9. Inver Grove Brewing Co., Inver Grove Heights (bp; second location of Lakeville Brewing Co.)
    10. Lake of the Woods Brewing Company (LOWBREWCO), Warroad
    11. Mineral Springs Brewery, Owatonna
    12. Oldenburg Brewing Company, Belle Plaine (bp)
    13. ONE Fermentery & Taproom, Minneapolis (bp)
    14. Outstate Brewing Company, Fergus Falls
    15. Pig Ate My Pizza, Robbinsdale (bp)
    16. Rapids Brewing, Grand Rapids
    17. Sleepy Eye Brewing, Sleepy Eye
    18. The Lab, St. Paul
    19. Thesis Beer Project, Rochester
    20. Thousand Lakes Brewing, Parkers Prairie
    21. Trout City Brewing, Preston (bp)
    22. Yoerg Brewing Co. Saloon, St. Paul (bp; predated by client brewing company of same name under separate ownership)
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  6. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    Breweries-in-planning. I've included only those that had an update of some sort in 2019. Again, I apologize if I've missed any.
    1. Arbeiter Brewing, Minneapolis
    2. Bear Cave Brewing, Hopkins
    3. Benefactor Brewing, Minneapolis
    4. Big Bear Brewco, Chanhassen (bp)
    5. Big Heist Beer Company, South St. Paul
    6. Bold I'land Brewing Company, Albert Lea
    7. Bricksworth Brewing, Burnsville (bp)
    8. Bus Stop Burgers and Brewhouse, Minneapolis (bp; open now as a bar; supposedly will ferment on site from shipped-in wort, but no updates on that aspect in many months)
    9. Chanhassen Brewing Company, Chanhassen (formerly known as Frontier)
    10. El Loro, Sauk Rapids (bp; open now as a restaurant; equipment in place from Urban Lodge days)
    11. Fell Run Brewing Company, Taylor's Falls
    12. First Draft Brewery, Isanti
    13. Foremost Brewing Cooperative, Owatonna
    14. Head Brothers Brewing, Coon Rapids
    15. Hidden Falls Brewing, St. Paul
    16. High Pines Brewing Co., Roseville
    17. Iffy Brewing Company, likely Blaine
    18. Iron Exchange Tavern and Brewery, Maple Plain (bp; opened as bar 2019)
    19. Minn'Ohana Brewing, Mankato (bp)
    20. PawPrint Brewery, Chatfield
    21. Prime Stein Brewery, Rochester
    22. Rail Works Brewing Depot, Columbia Heights
    23. Red Cow brewpub plan, Nordeast Minneapolis (bp; rumored Mikkeler Brewing outpost)
    24. Rendezvous Brewing, Hackensack
    25. SmitHops Brewery, Zimmerman
    26. South by Southeast Minnesota Brewing Company, Pine Island
    27. Swing Barrel Brewing Company, Moorhead
    28. Wooden Ship Brewing Co., Minneapolis
    29. Unnamed Kim Bartmann heritage-grains brewpub plan, Minneapolis (bp)
    30. Unnamed Stillwater plan
    31. Unnamed Thief River Falls plan
    32. Unnamed Travis Temke / M.O.E. Craft Co. plan, St. Paul
    33. Unnamed West St. Paul plan (unclear if it would be a brewery of any sort; perhaps just a bar; connected to Bartley Bloom of Bent Brewstillery)
    #6 islay, Jan 3, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2020
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  7. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    Other situations / various:
    1. 12welve Eyes Brewing, St. Paul (closed in 2019 and equipment for sale at current space)
    2. 612Brew, Minneapolis (will undergo a taproom revamping)
    3. AEGIR Brewing Company, Elk River (expanded taproom opened in 2019)
    4. Ashby Brewing Company, Ashby (taproom opened in 2019)
    5. Bad Habit Brewing, St. Joseph (new, larger brewery and taproom opened in 2019)
    6. Birch's Lowertown, St. Paul (for sale)
    7. Boom Island, Minnetonka (new location opened in 2019)
    8. Cold Spring Brewing Company / Third Street Brewhouse, Cold Spring (expanding)
    9. Copper Trail Brewing Company, Alexandria (new, larger location opened in 2019)
    10. Gull Dam (long closed, for sale)
    11. Humble Forager Brewing (client brewing company associated with Forager in planning. Client brewer at Octopi in Waunakee, WI)
    12. Lazy Loon Brewing Company, Glencoe (new location and taproom-in-planning)
    13. Lift Bridge, Stillwater (expanding at new site also in Stillwater but to smaller degree than originally planned)
    14. Oldenburg Brewing Company, Belle Plaine (for sale)
    15. Portage Brewing Company (reopened in 2019 in new building)
    16. Saint Paul Brewing, St. Paul (moving taproom within facility, expanding brewery, adding event space)
    17. Schram Haus, Chaska (opened new brewery and taproom in 2019; Schram Vineyards already existed)
    18. Vine Park, St. Paul (taproom-in-planning)
    ElmerLovejoy likes this.
  8. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,827) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    Any new information on why?

    "Owners have other interests" or some such was the previously stated (and very odd) reason. How about "Owners have business ADHD"? :wink:
  9. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    I meant to include this in the opening post: The Growler's Land of 10,000 Drinks Map. I think it's the best listing and map of Minnesota breweries (and more) available.

    I don't have an update there beyond that the ProBrewer "for sale" ad was taken down long ago (not long after it went up), for whatever reason. I can't say for sure that it remains for sale. Social media remains active and engaged. I'll leave this one to the local beer press to explore if they so choose (which I encourage; seems like an interesting story).

    I've visited Oldenburg only once, soon after it opened, and thought it was off to a pretty good start in terms of beer. It's a unique venue with an Old West saloon vibe and its own line of premade cocktails called Chatfield Fine Spirits (I've never quite understood that side of the business). I'd say it's worth a visit for Twin Cities area brewery explorers (about 40 miles southwest of Minneapolis). When I visited, everyone working there was part of the Oldenburg family, so you may be able to get the scoop in person.
    MNAle likes this.
  10. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,827) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

  11. RAH-RAH-Beer

    RAH-RAH-Beer Initiate (30) Jan 1, 2019 Minnesota

    Has anyone checked Bus Stop Burgers and Brewhouse to see if they are selling their in house beer? The website says coming soon, but there is a virtual tour that shows beer on sale.
  12. JMN44

    JMN44 Initiate (171) Sep 19, 2013 Minnesota

    It seems like almost every town will have their own brewery soon (only half kidding). Much has been writing about how largest regional breweries are struggling for growth but I wonder how the older, mid size MN breweries are doing with all this newer, more local competition (Bent Paddle, Indeed, Lift Bridge, Fulton etc). I think this may also be a hard size brewery to be in the future or at a minimum it will be difficult to achieve previous sales increases. Any thoughts?
  13. Chaz

    Chaz Poo-Bah (2,125) Feb 3, 2002 Minnesota
    Society Trader

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  14. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    "Minnesota’s oldest craft brewery..." [According to the article]? Lake Superior Brewing was founded in 1994. That's eight years after Summit (1986), even if you want to exclude Schell's (1860). That error aside, Lake Superior was a fine and underrated, if old-fashioned and insufficiently diverse/creative/prolific, brewery. Old Man Winter Warmer and Mesabi Red in particular were well-above-average beers in their respective styles.
    JMN44 likes this.
  15. RAH-RAH-Beer

    RAH-RAH-Beer Initiate (30) Jan 1, 2019 Minnesota

    I stopped there the weekend before Thanksgiving while in Duluth and there was only one group of 4 when I arrived and one group of 2 when I left. I had several 3oz tasters and all were good. The tap room was kind of like a warehouse which was kind of a negative.

    I was at Ursa Minor earlier that day and it was jammed.
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  16. Windvaner

    Windvaner Initiate (64) Nov 7, 2014 Minnesota

    If those without access to the article but are interested in this endeavor here is the article -

    A new brewpub called Bear Cave Brewing is in the works for a former tire shop on Hopkins’ Mainstreet.

    Nathan Bergeland paid $700,000 for the 1201 Mainstreet property in a deal that closed Nov. 19, according to an electronic certificate of real estate value. The CEO of Eden Prairie-based USAdvisors Wealth Management, Bergeland is a seasoned homebrewer who also owns and operates Wooden Link Vineyard located about 20 miles west of Alexandria in Barrett, Minnesota.

    Bergeland said he’s had early conversations with Hopkins city planners about his designs for the 11,600-square-foot brewpub, which he said could open as early as August or September. He’s recruited architectural and engineering firms for the project, and his vision for the brewpub includes a main-floor dining room, second-floor event space and rooftop deck. A 12-stall parking lot could be converted to green space, he added.

    Bergeland and his wife, Jillian Link, who is also a financial adviser, were previously in the running to purchase a city-owned property in Chanhassen but in May lost out to another husband-and-wife team pitching their own brewery concept. That business, Chanhassen Brewing Co., is currently recruiting investors, according to its website.

    Bergeland said Link is also a designer of high-end residential properties and will be involved in developing the look of Bear Cave Brewing.

    The goal is to have 10 to 16 beers on tap at opening. Bergeland plans to install a self-pour tap system and have patrons order food from their tables via an app.

    Bergeland, who is polishing his beer-making skills with classes this winter, plans to have a role in brewing process but will be recruiting a master brewer to take the lead at Bear Cave Brewing.

    Bergeland said he opened Wooden Link Vineyard in 2010 and has been selling grapes to nearby Carlos Creek Winery. The vineyard also produces hops that flavor his homebrews.

    He just started producing wine that will be sold under his own label and aims to add grape-based alcohols like vermouth and brandy to his offerings in the future. A Wooden Link Vineyard tasting room is also in the works but likely won’t open until at least 2021, he said.

    By Dylan Thomas
    – Staff reporter, Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal Jan 2, 2020, 11:50am CST
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  17. barrybeerdog

    barrybeerdog Initiate (137) Aug 17, 2012 South Dakota

    Did I miss the part where they state it's MN oldest craft brewery? I read " One of MN oldest craft breweries" I can't find the error in the article.

    Anyway, too bad. I always bought & enjoyed Kayak Klosch...I guess these "old" craft brewers just aren't hip anymore, that sucks!
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  18. Chaz

    Chaz Poo-Bah (2,125) Feb 3, 2002 Minnesota
    Society Trader

    I had always enjoyed their beers, but
    wondered about their continued market viability since they sold two years ago.

    The move to cans was smart, but may have been an instance of “too little too late.”
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  19. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    The article must've been updated to eliminate the error.
    barrybeerdog likes this.
  20. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,827) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    I sent the author an email about an hour or so ago pointing out the error.

    He thanked me and corrected the article.

    Kudos to him. :+1:
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  21. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    PawPrint Brewery in Chatfield is "shooting for a Jan 24th @4pm grand opening....fingers crossed," according to a December 30 Facebook post. Interestingly, another post from the same day mentions and pictures a "32oz crowler canner." I hope for PawPrint's sake that's an inaccurate size or that it can also handle 25.4 oz. crowlers. Under Minnesota law, breweries are allowed to prefill only 25.4 oz. or 64 oz. containers.
  22. A__J__H

    A__J__H Initiate (31) Dec 7, 2017 Minnesota

    Drove thru Chatfield last week and they were close to opening. Could buy gift cards and merchandise. Looked to be a small contingent having some beers inside
    islay likes this.
  23. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

  24. gatornation

    gatornation Poo-Bah (5,904) Apr 18, 2007 Minnesota
    Society Trader

  25. gatornation

    gatornation Poo-Bah (5,904) Apr 18, 2007 Minnesota
    Society Trader

    A prime piece of real estate on that block with New Bohemia gone also and luxury apartments springing up its ripe for development.
  26. HammsMeASAP

    HammsMeASAP Initiate (126) Jun 14, 2012 Minnesota

    It's unfortunate about Lake Superior. I like their beers and would hit up their taproom every time I was in Duluth.

    And purchase their beers. Really like Sir Duluth and currently drinking a Split Rock Bock.
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  27. Chaz

    Chaz Poo-Bah (2,125) Feb 3, 2002 Minnesota
    Society Trader

    When I started working across the street, it had been a used car dealership.

    And it might be again?

    Douggo likes this.
  28. Xanthophhyll

    Xanthophhyll Initiate (28) Sep 25, 2017 Minnesota

    "islay said: Gull Dam ceased operations on December 31, 2018. As far as I know, the building (which I never visited but for which I've seen a lot of praise), equipment, and brand remain for sale, so it's possible that it will be revived. "

    Since I didn't get a chance to reply before the 2019 thread was closed down: Yes, it really is a nice building and for the life of me I can't figure why somebody hasn't snatched this up yet. Great outdoor seating with a stage, great spacious indoor seating. Beautiful building..... So many times I've visited Big Axe and wished they had more space, this seems like it would perfect. Though I seem to recall that someone (in the 2019 thread perhaps?) said that the owner is insisting that whoever buys it keeps the name? Strange hill to die on.....
  29. HeadRetention

    HeadRetention Initiate (82) Jul 13, 2015 Minnesota

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  30. deadbody

    deadbody Aspirant (256) May 10, 2010 Minnesota

    Might be the old owner wants to name to stay so he can require royalties from new owners. I know the brewery that opened in stillwater about 10 years ago and closed not too long after tried the same thing. He wanted to sell, but refused to even talk to anyone or turn over financials unless they agreed in writing to royalties to him in perpetuity. Too bad his beer was so bad it was trade bait for those "Worst beer ever" guys :slight_smile:
  31. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

  32. HeadRetention

    HeadRetention Initiate (82) Jul 13, 2015 Minnesota

    PawPrint in Chatfield had a soft opening this Saturday
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  33. morimech

    morimech Poo-Bah (3,808) Nov 6, 2006 Minnesota

    Waconia Brewing is adding two additional fermenters and a new canning line that will increase production. So for better or for worse, you will see Chocolate Peanut Butter Porter on a lot more store shelves.
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  34. HeadRetention

    HeadRetention Initiate (82) Jul 13, 2015 Minnesota

    And another for the 18th before Grand opening 24th
  35. OS_Brews_and_Meads

    OS_Brews_and_Meads Initiate (10) Jan 13, 2020

    Thunder Brothers Brewery (formerly First Draft Brewery) in Isanti will open on the 16th.
    islay and Victory_Sabre1973 like this.
  36. doner24

    doner24 Initiate (99) Apr 16, 2013 Minnesota

    sounds like a wrasslin tag team
    Xanthophhyll likes this.
  37. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    The Growler covers Iron Exchange Tavern & Brewery in Maple Plain, a brewpub that opened as a restaurant and bar in December and will have house-brewed beer on tap soon. "Over the next couple weeks, Iron Exchange plans to roll out its first two or three beers, before getting up to six or eight varieties for their grand opening on the weekend of January 24."
  38. Beerfordays2

    Beerfordays2 Initiate (10) Oct 24, 2019

    Karst Brewing in Fountain MN moved their Tap Room to a much larger adjacent building in November 2019. They previously housed the Brewery and Tap Room in a 612 square foot building. It was cozy.
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  39. islay

    islay Disciple (333) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    I didn't hear a peep about that one, although I do now see a single post on the topic from October on the brewery's Facebook page (which I'm not going to pretend I normally follow). The Karst publicity team needs to get hustling. I visited the original taproom once and enjoyed the tiny, makeshift setting. The beer was pretty good too, and there clearly was more local demand than the space could accommodate.

    In other news, The Growler has coverage of the very recently opened PawPrint Brewery in Chatfield as well as the very soon to open Thunder Brothers Brewery in Isanti.
    Victory_Sabre1973 likes this.