The Growler’s Complete Guide to Beer at the 2016 Minnesota State Fair






The Great Minnesota Get Together is back for another year of cramming everything the state has to offer into a 12-day extravaganza that sends summer off in style (or in Zubaz, but what’s the difference?). While food often gets top billing, particularly the new foods for 2016, The Growler is here to help in you in […]

PHOTOS: Relive Eaux Claires 2016






The second Eaux Claries Music and Arts Festival took place last weekend in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. The festival included performances from Bon Iver, James Blake, Bruce Hornsby, Erykah Badu, Mavis Staples, and many more, and saw an increased focus on art installations throughout the festival grounds. The Growler Staff Photographer Kevin Kramer was at the […]

Sociable Cider introduces barrel-aging program






Sociable Cider Werks co-owner Jim Watkins is never satisfied. He’s always tinkering with things, whether it’s cooking a steak or sourcing apples for the cider served at the taproom in Northeast Minneapolis. It’s no wonder then that the Sociable team is experimenting with the complex flavors that come from barrel-aging their fermented fruit beverage. The […]

Augustine’s Bar & Bakery coming to the Saintly City this fall






After hitting the 10-year mark earlier this year, the team behind The Happy Gnome—the nationally recognized craft beer bar in St. Paul—is looking beyond the walls of their 498 Selby Avenue location. It’s not a second Happy Gnome, but an altogether new project from owner Tony Andersen, Gnome pastry chef Hollis Roads, and another silent […]

Local architects add one-of-a-kind patio to one of Minnesota’s most unique taprooms






Bang Brewing in St. Paul, Minnesota, is built on environmental stewardship—both in a physical and philosophical sense. These ethos are evident in their energy-efficient brewhouse and their commitment to using only organic ingredients in their beer. Their new patio is a visual and experiential extension of that sustainable spirit. Located in St. Paul just down the road from Bang […]

The Secret of Square Lake






The tiny festival taking music and film off the off the trail and into the woods Life can be tough for fans of low-key music festivals. Around the world, fests pair performances with raging stage shows and, all too often, the spectacle absorbs the art. However, anyone who is able to make it to Stillwater, […]

Collab Chronicle: Follow the breweries competing in this year’s In Cahoots!






12 Minnesota breweries will form six teams to brew six unique collaboration beers for In Cahoots! at the Red Stag’s annual summer bash Collaboration and competition don’t usually go hand-in-hand, but when 12 of Minnesota’s best craft breweries combine the two, delicious things have been known to happen. Back for a third year is In Cahoots! […]

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Artist Profile: Jeff Nelson






If you’ve dined out in the Twin Cities sometime in the last several years, you’ve likely seen the work of Jephemera, aka Jeff Nelson. He’s one of the most sought-after chalk-art and hand-lettering artists in the state, hired by restaurants, pubs, bakeries, and taprooms to customize menus, most of which are displayed on chalkboards. But […]

Play ball: Returning to the roots of America’s pastime






Across the northlands each summer people flock to ballparks big and small to revel in the American tradition and pastime of the game we call baseball. They set up their folding chairs along grassy third-base lines, settle into cushioned seats under flashy jumbotrons, or relax on rickety bleachers behind home plate. This tradition dates as […]

Bev-Craft aims to help startup breweries hit the ground running






Tim Nelson’s finger has been on the pulse of the craft beer scene on the North Shore since he co-founded Fitger’s Brewhouse back in 1995. In the 20 years that followed, he seized opportunities to bring craft beer to more people through opening other bars and restaurants. Even now, after selling his stake in those […]

PHOTOS: First taste of food options at U.S. Bank Stadium






When a billion-dollar stadium is built, expectations are high. For some fans, that means winning the Super Bowl; for others it just means noshing on a world-class bratwurst, steak sandwich, or bucket of cheese curds to get through the three-and-outs. While U.S. Bank Stadium won’t officially open doors until August, when it will host concerts […]

Booked: How your favorite bands choose the venues they play






The process by which bands are booked into venues is, for the casual music fan, opaque. It may even be mystifying—especially if you just can’t understand why your favorite band is playing your least favorite venue. Booking, say local pros, is both a science and an art—and like the rest of the music industry, it’s […]

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Welcome to boathouse island






The view from the Highway 43 bridge that crosses from Winona into Wisconsin is pristine: muddy blue-brown channels and green islands decorate the Mississippi River as it flows past Winona’s historic downtown. On Latsch Island, situated on the Minnesota side of the river border, there are several fixtures along the beach just next to the […]

Photos: MN United FC vs. Club León at Target Field






Minnesota United FC took on Mexico’s Club León in the first ever soccer match at Target Field on June 25. Though the friendly game ended in a 2-4 loss for the home team, it was a great experience for fans in attendance, particularly the two main supporter groups, the Dark Clouds and True North Elite. The […]

Now Open (Or Damn Close): Twin Spirits Distillery






Michelle Winchester wanted to get outside her comfort zone. She’s been a stay-at-home mom and part-time freelancer most of her life, and her four sons are mostly grown now. Her new adventure: taking what was once a boarded-up building in Northeast Minneapolis and starting Twin Spirits Distillery, the first solely woman-owned distillery in Minnesota set […]