Our friends Dewey and Lori came to town and brought their friend Thomas. So you know what that means. Beer, and lots of it. Let me tell you about our weekend.
It all started on a hot and humid Saturday afternoon. Dewey called and said they were in town. I suggested that we meet at LTD Brewing’s taproom in Hopkins. The place was already getting busy for the night, but we were able to get a table for us all.
Shellie and I have been to LTD several times before, but I was still able to get in 4 new beers. LTD is always changing up their line up. I like most of their beers, but some of them are misses for me.
After LTD we went and ate Thai food. It was delicious. But…there was more drinking to do.
We went to the hotel where everyone was staying (except Shellie and I) and dropped off cars so we could take an uber to the places with the beer.
Last Saturday we did the unthinkable, the unimaginable, the just plain crazy. We took the bus.
But wait there’s more.
We took the bus from our place in the burbs to downtown Minneapolis and from there we hit each of the 7 brewery taprooms along the Green Line light rail.
And we lived to talk about it.
The bus part is neither here nor there and you shouldn’t worry about that. You just need to wrap your head around starting at Fulton Brewing on a beautiful spring day with the Twins playing at home. Fulton was pretty busy, but that didn’t stop us.
Okay, I want to start this post off by saying this was never meant to be a review. Actually, I never meant to go to Ruby Tuesdays. We went because Shellie had a gift card that was given to her and we figured what the hell. I mean, free food, right? I know it’s a chain, but it isn’t like it’s fast food or something.
And so we went. We went to Ruby Tuesday in Plymouth, MN. I’ve been to this chain before, and I’ve never been impressed. Honestly, I don’t know what the draw is. Is it a slightly fancier Applebees? No, seriously. Can someone explain it? Anyway, we went there on account of the gift card.
I want to get something out of the way before this starts. This isn’t going to be one of those reviews you read where you know the guy was pissed about something going in and there was nothing the place could do to change that. We’ve all read that review where someone rambles on about every little thing that goes even slightly wrong. So this isn’t that. I don’t really care one way or the other about Ruby Tuesday. And that’s as far as my feelings go for them.
I went into the new Eastlake Brewery last week. By new I mean they just opened. Not that they have been around and this is their new brewery. Eastlake has been open about a month at this point. They are nestled in a corner of the Midtown Global Market (which I’ll be writing about soon).
I started with their Blueliner. It’s an American pale ale, which is a style I really dig. This one was tasty and super balanced. Sometimes pale ales can be too hoppy or malty or just plain boring. This wasn’t any of those. Some of you are saying “woah woah woah, there’s no such thing as too hoppy.” And I say well kinda there can be. You know, depending on the style of beer. This beer had a distinct flavor that I can’t put my finger on. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out they use the same hops as LTD uses in their Australian IPA. Anyway, this was really good. And hit the spot with my burrito.
Next up I had a Stick Style. This is their India pale ale. It too was really good. I like their choice of malts and hops. I’m not sure which ones they use, but these go well with each other. So, it’s a good beer and I would be happy to have one right now.
That’s it. I didn’t have the time or driving ability to have any more than these 2 beers. I liked what I had and I will be back for more.
Eastlake is in the south east corner of the Midtown Global Market. They have a nice area that is a little bit sectioned off from the rest of the market. There must be about 50 seats. I wish I would’ve taken more pictures. Here’s the other picture I took.
This has to be the smallest brewing space in Minneapolis. It’s like a brewery, only little. But no matter the size of the brewery, they are putting out some really good stuff.
Also, I love their art. The coasters and glasses all have these pictures on them that are both a little creepy and kind of cute. They depict animal/human creatures doing things like sitting by a fire or carrying a hacksaw with an animal leg thrown over it’s shoulder. I don’t know whats going on and I don’t care. I think they are rad.
Surly built their new destination brewery in Minneapolis and it just opened 2 weeks ago. Shellie and I went there last Saturday night at about 9 PM. Upon walking in we were carded and told the kitchen was closed, so beer only. Which wasn’t a problem since we just ate at Jerusalem’s. We got a couple beers and started poking around.
Of course I had read about this place, both before it opened and the recent reviews of it, so I kind of knew what to expect. But honestly, this place is bigger and better than I pictured. The Beer Hall, as they are calling it, is the main room of the building. I’m not sure how many people it seats, but there are a lot of tables in there. Most of them are bigger and shared with other groups of people, but there are a few smaller tables. At one end of the room there are windows into the brewing area. At the other there are windows facing out to the patio (patio! this is an acre of soon-to-be-beer-garden that can seat another 500 people). These windows are actually doors and it looks like the whole wall can be slid to the sides and opened up.
I don’t even know where to start on this one. Because, according to Google maps, LTD is 3.4 miles from my house. But it took me 7 months to get there. That, by any standard is incredibly slow. But I did make it. And I’m glad I did since LTD Brewing has some seriously great beer.
I went into LTD Brewing alone one night when Shellie was out of town. The place was pretty empty at 7 pm. I like the space. The brewing equipment is to the left as you enter and the bar is straight ahead. There are tables and chairs through out and 2 areas with lounge chairs and couches. They also seem to have a TV with Nintendo 64, but it wasn’t on when I was there.
LynLake Brewery is one of the latest taprooms to open in Minneapolis. The brewery and taproom are in the historic Lyndale Theater on Lyndale Ave in the LynLake neighborhood. The space is pretty sweet and was full of people when we stopped in a couple weeks ago.
Listen, Christmas shopping is tough. I know. Believe me, I know. Other things that are tough include: regular shopping, walking, dealing with crowds, going into Build A Bear Workshop (hell, just walking past Build A Bear sends me straight to the bar), and not getting a drink for awhile.
So, since you’re stuck at the mall you may as well sneak away for a pint or two. And as luck would have it I’ve been to The Mall of America once or twice. I may or may not have had a beer.
Let’s do this floor by floor and side by side. Quick aside…the mall has 3 regular levels and one entertainment level. The fourth floor is mainly on the east side, with the movie theater on the south.
The last time our friends Dewey and Lori were here from Illinois we went to Libertine. Libertine is a pretty new restaurant here in the Uptown neighborhood of Minneapolis. Libertine is owned and operated by legendary chef Tim McKee. The restaurant is in the Calhoun Square shopping mall in uptown.