Drinking, Minnesota Drinking, MN, Twin Cities

Twin Cities Beer Lovers Itinerary- 2 Days, 9 Breweries + Food

We planned a brewery weekend to make a small dent in our long list of breweries that we want to check out in the Minneapolis area.  Our hotel in Roseville was perfectly positioned serving as the perfect home base for the weekend. If you’re so inclined, we’ve mapped out the Twin Cities Beer Lovers Itinerary for you below!

Full disclosure: Fitting this many breweries into 2 days does not allow time to sit and really soak in each brewery or properly taste all the beers. These many breweries in just 2 days will give you a taste (see what we did there) of the breweries you want to revisit. It also gives you a quick look at the vibe and allows you to determine under what circumstances you’d want to visit that brewery again.

Also, we went into the weekend thinking we’d have flights at every brewery. We immediately saw fault in our thought process.

1. Not every brewery offers flights. 2. There is no way we’d have made it through this itinerary of 9 breweries in 2 days had we enjoyed a flight at each brewery. Perhaps if we were in college. LOL. We wanted to enjoy our beer and our time together and make it through our itinerary.

Day one

We left Mankato around 9am and went straight to our first stop of the day.

Brewery #1- Surly Brewing Company

Surly is, in a word, stunning!

We arrived about 10 minutes before Surly opened for the day. This gave us a few minutes to walk around the outside. This was late September so unfortunately, it was a little too cool to enjoy the patio. It’s well-manicured and has lots of outdoor seating, Surly-branded Bean Bag Boards are set up for those who want to play. There are also several fire pits. This patio would be a hot spot in the warmer weather.

We were impressed already with the vibe on the outside. One step inside and we knew this place was special. It’s shiny, rustic and classy.

Surly Brewing Company

Surly has a full menu. Although we didn’t eat at Surly we did find some plant-based options for us to eat in a future visit.

Our brewery weekend was off to a good start. We’ll most definitely be back.

We recommend: Coffee Grinder (shown in the middle, below)

Beers at Surly Brewing

Notes about Surly Brewing:

520 Malcolm Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

website | facebook

Food: Yes, full menu
Flights: No
Patio: Yes
Tours: Yes, on weekends

Lunch at J. Selby’s

We’re absolutely smitten with J. Selby’s and wanted to take Jason there, as he’d never been. It did not disappoint. We started things off with wings. We filled up on the Falafel Burger, Spicy Peanut Stir Fry, and the Dirty Secret. Each and every dish was amazing. It’s obvious why the line is always out the door when we visit here.

After J. Selby we went to our hotel to drop off our bags and grab a hotel shuttle ride to our next brewery on the itinerary.  Sam, the hotel driver took us right to 612 Brewery.

Brewery #2: 612Brew

612Brew

One step into the brewery and it’s obvious that you’re in the brewing space. The smell of hops is prevalent as are forklifts and kegs. It’s fun to observe the process while sitting at one of the many tables. Although it’s a smaller space inside, there is plenty of seating. There’s also a nice, big patio.

We ordered our flights here. At the beginning, we explained we thought this would be how the 2 days would go. This was our first indication that we likely should and would not be ordering a flight at each place.

Tucked into an old building with other businesses, there are lots of architectural aspects to look at inside the brewery as well as on the patio. Lots of exposed brick and timber throughout. We loved sitting by the water feature and also enjoyed the homage to Minnesota’s own, Bob Dylan.

Bob Dylan on the Patio of 612 Brew

Flights of beer at 612Brew

We recommend Red Stack Farmhouse Ale. 6.3% ABV – 19 IBU

Notes about 612Brew

945 Broadway St NE, Minneapolis, MN 55413

website | facebook

Food: No. Food trucks on the weekend or bring your own.
Flights: Yes
Patio: Yes
Tours: No

Brewery #3: Bauhaus Brew Labs

Exterior of Bauhaus Brew Labs

After our flights, we took a little walk to our next stop, Bauhaus Brew Labs, just down the alley from 612Brew. Fun and busy atmosphere. There is lots of indoor seating. There is also a giant patio with bags games,  more tables, and space for food trucks.

Patio of Bauhaus Brew Labs

Bauhaus Brew Labs Beer & a Food Truck

We recommend: The Shandlot Lemon Shandy  4.5% ABV – 15 IBU (shown in the  middle)

Notes about Bauhaus Brew Labs

1315 Tyler St NE, Minneapolis, MN 55413

website | facebook

Food: No. Food trucks on the weekend or bring your own.
Flights: No
Patio: Yes
Tours: Once per quarter

 

At this point, we called our hotel shuttle for a ride back. We had plans to attend Tapped & Uncorked where we were able to try even more Minnesota Brews. It was great planning on our part. It was a very cool event and you can read more about our experience.

Tapped & Uncorked Tasting Glasses

We went back to our hotel room and enjoyed some snacks that we brought with and went to bed fairly early. Afterall, we had a full agenda of eating and breweries on Saturday!

Dining Table & Bedroom

Day Two

After an amazing brunch at Tongue in Cheek we went back to the hotel to drop off the vehicle for the day, as we planned to get around via Lyft rides.

Here’s a photo of one of our brunch dishes. Each dish was incredible and we recommend you visit.

Vegan options available at Tongue In Cheek

Brewery #4: Insight Brewery

We had already been to Insight Brewery but Stacy & Jason had not. After a delicious brunch, we knew we had to pace ourselves, as we had a long list of breweries to hit. Tough duty, we know.

Seating at Insight Brewing

As we mentioned on day one, we were remiss to think that flights at each brewery were possible with an itinerary this aggressive. We all decided to try the Crazy Aunt, which is gin & tonic-style ale. We all agreed it was delish.

Since it was somewhat early we decided to sit and enjoy a few games of cribbage and our beers before heading to the next brewery.

Beer & Cribbage at Insight Brewing

We recommend: Crazy Aunt  6% ABV –N/A IBU 

Notes about Insight Brewing:

2821 E Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55413

website | facebook

Food: Food trucks
Flights: Yes
Patio: Yes
Tours: Yes, Saturdays at noon

Brewery #5:  Dangerous Man Brewing

Seating at Dangerous Man

Urban Sub Food Truck- lunch!

Another Lyft ride brought us to Dangerous Man. This brewery totally lived up to our expectations. It was mid-afternoon by the time we arrived so it was really busy. We were lucky to get a corner of a table. People of all ages were here, including kids.

By this time, we were getting hungry and were happy to notice a food truck parked out front. Thankfully, Urban Subs had a meat-free sub. We split a couple of the Garden Veggie subs at our table in Dangerous Man. They were exactly what we needed.

Dangerous Man Peanut Butter Porter

We recommend: Peanut Butter Porter 6.1% ABV –29 IBU 

Notes about Dangerous Man

1300 NE 2nd St, Minneapolis, MN 55413

website | facebook

Food: Food trucks
Flights: No- we don’t think they have flights but can neither confirm nor deny
Patio: No
Tours: Yes, Saturdays at noon

We decided that our next stop, Indeed Brewing, would be within walking distance. The walk and the fresh air was perfect. Here are some things we spotted along the way.

6th Brewery:  Indeed Brewing

We arrived mid-afternoon and it was packed! We were happy to grab a table to stand at outside. The atmosphere was lively and fun. Even thought it was incredibly busy, yet we were served fairly quickly at the bar. There was a food track parked outside. We did not eat this time.

Bar at Indeed Brewing

Pint at Indeed Brewing

Patio at Indeed Brewing

We recommend: Yamma Jamma Harvest Ale  5.0% ABV – 10 IBU

Notes about Indeed Brewing

7111 15th Ave NE Minneapolis, MN 55413

website | facebook

Food: Food trucks
Flights: No- we don’t think they have flights but can neither confirm nor deny
Patio: No
Tours: Yes

It was time to move along. We called for another Lyft ride and were happy to be heading closer to “home” for the evening.

7th Brewery:  Can Can Wonderland

True, Can Can Wonderland is not a brewery, but it is an experience that needed to be had. Plus, there is a brewery upstairs from Can Can Wonderland so it fit well into the weekend. Kelly was first introduced to Can Can World on another trip to Roseville. What trip Can Can Wonderland is. I thought it would be the perfect spot to grab a bite to eat and then look around a bit. We ordered bloody mary’s and vegan pizza with toppings from The Herbivorous Butcher. They were so good!

This Wonder Mary is Infused Modest Vodka, Bloody Mary Mix and sparkling wine. ???????? Whaaaat? I added the “Skewer of Vegetarian Ridiculousness” and was thrilled enjoy @theherbivorousb #vegan brat & vegan cheese. Also, the pepper was SPICY!! Our tour of Can Can was made extra special with a talk given by the CEO & Founder of Can Can Wonderland, Jennifer Pennington. A wonderland it is! You simply must experience this yourself. Just one of the fun things that @visitrosevillemn made sure we experienced in the Minneapolis / St. Paul area. #mysaintpaul #cancanwonderland #twincities @foodietribe #bloodymaryMN #bloodygoodbloodys #liquidlunch #bloodymaryMN #saintpaul #drinkyourveggies #YouHadMeAtBloodyMary #exploreminnesota #cocktails #dailyfoodfeed #foodgawker

A post shared by Kelly & Dusty (@diningduster) on


Shown here is the ” Vega-Za” Pizza. So good. We all shared the pizza.
Pizza at Can Can Wonderland

We took a walk through Can Can Wonderland and just took it all in. Nobody was in the mood for a game of mini golf but it looked fun.

Inside Can Can Wonderland

Truthfully, the bloody mary and the pizza really slowed us down. We had already put in a solid day of brewery samples! Don’t worry, we didn’t come this far to skip out on the rest of our itinerary. Luckily, we only had to make it upstairs to check off our second to the last brewery on the itinerary.

Notes about Can Can Wonderland

755 Prior Ave North St. Paul, MN 55104

website | Facebook

Food: Yes- full menu
Flights: No- it’s not a brewery but they have beer, wine & spirits
Patio: No
Tours: It’s not a brewery so no tours but you can explore and do whatever you want at Can Can Wonderland

8th Brewery:  Blackstack Brewing

Foodtruck outside Blackstack Brewing Blackstack Brewing

Though not pictured, we recommend the Coffee Cream Ale  5.2% ABV – N/A IBU

Notes about Blackstack Brewing

755 Prior Ave North St. Paul, MN 55104

website | Facebook

Food: Food trucks
Flights: Yes
Patio: No
Tours: No

From here we took one more Lyft ride to our final brewery back in Roseville. Stacy and I were here on another occasion and we couldn’t wait to go back and try the bidet in the women’s bathroom. Yes, you read that right, there is a bidet in the women’s bathroom.

Even cooler than the bidets in the bathroom is the story behind Bent Brewstillery. Bent Brewstillery is the only brewery & distillery in Minnesota and there are less than 30 in all of the United States.  He formerly worked at NASA and decided to quit when he realized that it just wasn’t satisfying him as a person. The idea of Bent Brewstillery started with a home brew kit from his wife. It intrigued him, he soaked up all the information he could and then built Bent Brewstillery into what it is today. Stacy and I met Bartley at a previous event. We went and re-introduced ourselves and had a nice chat.

9th & Final Brewery: Bent Brewstillery


We recommend: Tröpricöt sour ale with apricot

Notes about Bent Brewstillery

Food: food trucks
Flights: yes
Patio: yes
Tours: yes

Finally, it was time to go home! One more Lyft ride back to our hotel and we were ready to relax for the evening. When we got “home“, we ordered Pizza Lucce and basically called it a night. We were tired but proud of ourselves for making it through our itinerary.

Here are two maps of all the brewery stops we made. As you can see, they are all pretty close to our hotel.

Day One Eating & Brewery Map

Day Two Eating & Brewery Map

We had an absolute blast. We definitely want to revisit the breweries, one at a time, so we can really sample the beers and enjoy the surroundings a bit. This was a fun way to knock out a bunch of breweries at once to get a taste of what each one is like.

We also hope to do this again. We may schedule fewer stops next time.

Tips for a packed weekend breweries

  • Arrange for a sober driver. For us, Lyft worked out great. We had a wonderful experience each time. Since we chose breweries that were close in proximity to each other, our rides ranged from $8-$11 per ride for 4 adults. Not bad and totally worth it, especially when you split the cost between couples.
  • Utilize your hotel shuttle where you can to help save money.
  • Hydrate during the day. Order water along with your beer.
  • Make sure to eat several times throughout the day.
  • Go into it with a good attitude. As the day went on, especially Saturday, some of the breweries were more crowded than we would have liked.
  • Before you go, check out your brewery stops online. Check to see if there is an event planned for the day you wish to visit. It might be a good or a bad time to go, depending on what you’re looking for out of your brewery visit.
  • Pace yourself!

Pin these for your own Minneapolis brewery weekend

Pin for your Minneapolis Brewery Weekend Pin for your Minneapolis Brewery Weekend

Tell us, what’s your favorite Minnesota Brewery that we should add to our list to visit.

7 Comments

  1. Sam Temsah-Deniskin

    December 13, 2017 at 10:55 am

    Surly Brew sounds delicious! Love the name too!

    1. Kelly & Dusty Ratcliff

      December 13, 2017 at 1:58 pm

      It’s a great name for a great brewery!

  2. operatingrn

    December 11, 2017 at 8:53 pm

    Nice itinerary Kelly. I definitely have to return to Minnesota for a brewery hop. I loved Surly when I was there in August.

    1. Kelly & Dusty Ratcliff

      December 12, 2017 at 11:18 am

      Thanks, Janet! We had such a blast. Surly is beautiful- we really liked it there!

  3. Stacy

    December 11, 2017 at 10:03 am

    Definitely plan on eating next time you visit Surly! Their food is incredible, especially the plant-based options.

    1. Kelly & Dusty Ratcliff

      December 12, 2017 at 11:18 am

      Stacy- the menu looked very promising! We will absolutely be back and plan to eat there as well.

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