If you spend any time at all with bearded pals who love IPAs, you've probably spent some time talking about how gosh-darned good Barrel Theory is.
The St. Paul brewery is one of the canonically accepted best breweries in the Twin Cities, often mentioned in the same breath as fellow St. Paulite BlackStack Brewing. Apparently it's a favorite among the editors at Thrillist, too, with an appearance on the most recent version of the site's "32 Hottest Breweries in America Right Now" list.
Thrillist's write-up really sticks to the facts: "Barrel Theory’s three co-founders represent different facets of a brewery gemstone: tech, beer-brewing, and finance," it begins, adding that the trio worked at Surly before they started rolling out their own beers.
"Though 'barrel' is in the name, that word means more than barrel-aging for the team: 'Barrel theory' is the principle that a barrel’s capacity is only as much as its shortest stave," the blurb continues. "In brewery terms, you’re only as good as your 'worst' beer."
All of the above is true information, easily accessible on Barrel Theory's website!
The only qualitative judgment Thrillist makes about the Lowertown titan is that "there’s hardly a worst beer here, with IPAs of all types, pilsners, stouts, Berliner weisses and more keeping regulars coming back for more."
That's great, and also true. For a little, uh, more substantial info, you could refer to our 2018 Best New Brewery nod to the brewery:
"Barrel Theory's rookie season is Wilt Chamberlain in ’60. Teemu Selänne in ’93. Ichiro Suzuki in ’01. After only one year in business, the St. Paul brewery owns four of the top 50 rated Minnesota beers on Beer Advocate, most notably the double dry-hopped version of their New England IPA, Rain Drops, which has become a must-try for beer tourists."
The Thrillist nod is only the latest in a stack of accolades for BT, which was one of Beer Advocate's 50 best new brewery picks last year and a USA Today reader-voted pick for the best new brewery in the country. The year prior, it was among Hop Culture's favorite new breweries of 2017 and a Growler reader's choice winner for Best New Brewery.
We'll go ahead and add that also, the names of these brews rule. Two Shooter McGavins, one Rage Quit, and a Feeling Cute, Might Delete Later, please!