Last weekend most of Minnesota's brewers were en route to Denver for the World Beer Cup. Six medals later, they've grabbed their return flights and are back serving suds to thirsty Minnesotans.
This weekend brings a newly reopened taproom. Excelsior Brewing in, you got it, Excelsior, had a soft open on Thursday night, showing off their remodeled and expanded digs. The space is now open to the public and a grand opening celebration is in the works.
As for beer nightlife, Lift Bridge Brewery is hosting Mean Gene & the Woodticks live in their taproom on Friday from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.
Also on Friday, Mankato Brewery is releasing Ceres Summer Ale, a straw colored wheat beer. Then, Saturday night, the brewery is hosting a fundraiser in their taproom for the Mankato Area Mountain Bikers with live music and a raffle.
Also on Saturday, Four Firkins is hosting a tasting of several import beers with Natedogs serving food outside.
There are a bunch of new Minnesota beers on the market recently, too. Schell's Goosetown is back on the shelves, and new beers such as Third Street IPA, Rush River Uber Alt, and a saison from Boom Island were all recently released.
For those planning ahead, ticket sales are open for this year's 22nd Annual City Pages Beer Festival. The festival is slated for May 31 from 5 to 9 p.m. near 10th and Hennepin. Also now on sale are tickets for All Pints North, the third annual Duluth beer festival which will be held on Saturday July 26.
Surly will be making some brewery updates this weekend and won't be giving tours. However, the taproom is still open. Natedogs will be there on Friday and A La Plancha will be serving on Saturday. Motley Crew's will be at Steel Toe on Friday, and Hibachi Daruma will be there on Saturday.