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Beer and Breweries Posts

Hoops Brewing opens Tuesday

A year and a half of planning and hard work has come to fruition. Hoops Brewing is set to open on Tuesday, June 27.

Summer 2017 Duluth-area Beer Festival Primer

There’s nothing quite like kicking back to quaff a cold beer in the summertime. The warmest season ushers in plenty of chances for those craving craft brews to get outside, sit back and sample suds. We’ve done the legwork for you and compiled a list of some of the top tasting events and beer festivals in the Twin Ports area.

Brew North: A Beer Story

WDSE-TV‘s recent documentary on the brewing history of northern Minnesota can now be viewed online … right here. Brew North: A Beer Story explores the many ways beer established a niche in the Duluth area and continues to leave its mark on the region.

Rolph, Wilson named head brewers at Earth Rider

Earth Rider Brewery in Superior has named Allyson Rolph and Tim Wilson as lead brewers. The craft brewery, founded by Tim Nelson, is expected to launch later this year. It will service bars, restaurants and liquor stores throughout the Arrowhead region. The project was announced in February.

Annual Duluth-area beer production hits one million gallons

At the end of 2016 there were seven craft breweries in Duluth and nine more across the region. Another six are in the planning or soon-to-open stages in 2017. In the two years since Perfect Duluth Day conducted its first tally of the region’s beer production the total barrel output has grown from roughly 20,000 to nearly 35,000. That equates to more than one million gallons of craft beer locally brewed in 2016. By other measurements, it’s about 70,000 kegs, more than 8 million pints or more than 11 million 12-ounce bottles and cans.

The largest contributors to the recent growth were Bent Paddle Brewing and Castle Danger Brewing. Bent Paddle doubled its output over the past two years while Castle Danger grew six fold. Meanwhile, Moose Lake Brewing launched operations, Blacklist Artisan Ales opened a taproom and started canning, and South Shore Brewery opened an additional brewery and tasting room in Washburn.

In the year ahead, the brewing landscape is set to shift dramatically with the opening of a half-dozen new operations in the region. Newbies in the immediate Twin Ports area will be Hoops Brewing in Canal Park, Oakhold Farmhouse Brewery in Midway Township and Earth Rider in Superior. The Iron Range, home to only one brewing business in 2016 — the Boathouse in Ely — could soon welcome three more. Rapids Brewing Company and Cantankerous Brewing are in the works for Grand Rapids, while Boomtown Brewery plans to open at the former Zimmy’s Bar and Restaurant location in Hibbing.

Below is a breakdown of the 2016 stats.
 

Bent Paddle BrewingBent Paddle Brewing
30-barrel brewery and taproom, founded in 2013
1912 W. Michigan St., Duluth
Colin & Laura Mullen + Bryon & Karen Tonnis, co-founders; Charles Brodell, head brewer; Brent Rowe, regional sales manager; Pepin Young, taproom manager
2016 production: 15,700 barrels 

Castle-Danger-BreweryCastle Danger Brewery
30-barrel brewery and taproom; brewery founded in 2011, taproom opened in 2014
17 Seventh St., Two Harbors
Clint and Jamie MacFarlane, owners; Lon and Mandy Larson, owners
2016 production: 9,200 barrels (est. for 2017: 14,000 bbl)

Fitger's BrewhouseFitger’s Brewhouse
10-barrel brewery supplying six pubs and a retail store, founded in 1995
600 E. Superior St., Duluth
Rod Raymond, owner; Ted Briggs, master brewer
2016 production: 1,862 barrels

Bent Paddle bends into Wisconsin

Bent Paddle BrewingDuluth’s Bent Paddle Brewing has announced a partnership with Dean Distributing of Green Bay. The relationship will expand the availability of Bent Paddle’s beer into the Wisconsin counties of Ashland, Iron, Oneida, Vilas, Forest, Langlade and Price.

Distribution to those areas will begin this week with events marking the expansion. On Wednesday, April 12, representatives from Bent Paddle will be offering samplings in Rhinelander at Trig’s Cellar from 3 to 5 p.m., followed by a tap event at Bucketheads Sports Bar & Grill from 6 to 8 p.m.

There will be more samples in Hurley on Thursday, April 13, from 3 to 6 p.m. at Town and Country Liquor and at the Ashland Super One Liquor from 3 to 6 p.m. on Friday, April 14.

Spring 2017 Duluth-area Beer Festival Primer

Beer-Fest

The United States now boasts over 5,000 craft breweries as the thirst for quality beer continues. The Twin Ports are clearly part of the trend. Duluth and Superior are home to eight breweries, with two more planning to launch in 2017. Several others dot the north and south shores of Lake Superior. The great news for beer aficionados: there’s no shortage of local beer and opportunities to taste the latest batches. The next three major swillfests are highlighted here.

New Canal Park beer hall among largest in Minnesota

Hoops Brewing founder Dave Hoops and Head Brewer Melissa Rainville pose in front of recently installed beer kettles. Hoops Brewing plans to open in late May or June.

Hoops Brewing founder Dave Hoops and Head Brewer Melissa Rainville pose in front of recently installed equipment. Hoops Brewing plans to open in late May or June.

Seven stainless steel tanks and a catwalk preassembled with pipes and pumps were lifted off flatbed trucks and squeezed through the stone doorway of a former Canal Park restaurant on March 21.

The equipment, including four huge fermentors and two beer tanks, was hauled inside on heavy duty carts and laid on a new custom-built floor like tipped-over beer bottles. The massive move, which stopped traffic outside 325 S. Lake Ave., was a major step in plans by longtime Duluth brewmaster Dave Hoops to open Hoops Brewing, a beer hall that will match the largest in Minnesota.

Old English radio spot from 1943

Via WDSE-TV, enjoy the sounds of this Old English 600 ad. Peoples Brewery in West Duluth developed the recipe for Old English 600 in the 1940s. The company sponsored a radio show with old-time music and several pitches for Regal Supreme Beer and Old English 600 Malt Liquor.

The documentary Brew North follows the boom, bust and rebirth of brewing in the Arrowhead region. The premiere broadcast is on Monday, March 6.

Fitger’s Beer radio spot from the 1950s

Via WDSE-TV, enjoy the sounds of this old Fitger’s Beer ad. The documentary Brew North follows the boom, bust and rebirth of brewing in the Arrowhead region. The premiere broadcast is on Monday, March 6.

Earth Rider Brewery coming to Superior

Tim_Nelson

Earth_Rider_BreweryTim Nelson and his company Bev-Craft have announced plans to build Earth Rider Brewery in Superior. The new craft brewery will service bars, restaurants and liquor stores throughout the Arrowhead region.

The brewery will reside on the north end of Tower Avenue at 1617 N. Third St., just across Ogden Avenue from Bev-Craft’s offices above the Cedar Lounge. The building being redeveloped for the brewery is the former Leamon Mercantile Co.

Nelson expects redevelopment of the structure to begin in the spring with the first batch of beer brewed in late summer.

Earth Rider’s brewing operations will occupy a 16,300-square-foot facility, with a project budget to exceed $2.5 million in private investment with support from the city of Superior, Superior Choice Credit Union, Wisconsin Business Development, Douglas County Development Association, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, Northland Foundation, Northeast Entrepreneur Fund and APEX.

Mammoth Saloon

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Back in the day it was sometimes tough work just to get a drink. Above is an undated stereoview reproduction from an 1875 McKenzie original. The reverse reads: “Duluth, Minn. in 1875. Mammoth Saloon, Jake Liedel, Prop. Lake Ave 2 blocks north of canal.”

Brewhouse gets new master brewer

tedbriggs

Ted Briggs, the new brew master at Fitger’s Brewhouse

Just Take Action announced Ted Briggs as the new master brewer for Fitger’s Brewhouse this week. “Mr. Briggs will continue to build on the great legacy of quality Lake Superior craft beer first initiated by Dave Hoops and later, Frank Kaszuba,” the company stated in a news release.

South Shore Brewery expands into Washburn

south-shore-breweryAfter a 102-year absence, the steam plume from a brewery has returned to the Washburn skyline. On Nov. 30, South Shore Brewery’s kettle fired up its inaugural batch of Nut Brown Ale, which will be bottled on Solstice Wednesday, Dec. 21.

South Shore Brewery was founded in May 1995 with brewing facilities in the basement of the Deep Water Grille in Ashland. It was northwestern Wisconsin’s first microbrewery and the state’s seventh. Bo Bélanger, South Shore’s original brew master and president, bought the business in 2004.

In February he expanded operations into Washburn, opening the Lake Superior Tap House, a satellite tasting room and retail outlet. The recent move of the brewing facilities to the Washburn operation was done with the goal to make the brewery more efficient and competitive while increasing output.

In addition to the expanded brewing facility, the Lake Superior Tap House features a tasting room with a variety of South Shore beers on tap, windows that look into the brewery, and a shuffleboard table handcrafted from a piece of bowling lane preserved from the old Super Bowl Lanes, which previously occupied the building.

Over a Pint Interview with Brian Schanzenbach

brian-schanzenbachIn this interview segment, the Duluth Experience sits down with Blacklist Artisan Ales Head Brewer Brian Schanzenbach at the location of the new brewery and taproom set to open in Downtown Duluth this month.