John Garland

About John Garland

John Garland is the Deputy Editor at the Growler Magazine. Find him on twitter (@johnpgarland) or in every coffee shop on West 7th Street.

Shelf Stars: For great rosé, en Gard!

Welcome to Shelf Stars, The Growler’s cheap wine column in which we discover the best under-$15 bottles in town. This edition of Shelf Stars is brought to you with underwriting support from Central Avenue Liquors. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, it can be maddening to find the right rosé. Wine stores often … [ Read more]

Shelf Stars: A Better Vinho Verde

Welcome to Shelf Stars, The Growler’s cheap wine column in which we discover the best under-$15 bottles in town. This edition of Shelf Stars is brought to you with underwriting support from Central Avenue Liquors. Every spring, my good friends down the block host a gathering in their backyard called the Vinho Verde Opener. It’s … [ Read more]

10 Bars for 2020: Meteor

A no-frills neighborhood bar reaches back to its craft cocktail roots to weather the storm  This article is part of our “10 Bars for 2020” feature. Read more stories of bars that are defining this moment in drinking.  We just want to be a dive bar and have good cocktails, and the situation is not … [ Read more]

10 Bars for 2020: Republic

A seasoned restaurateur breaks down the dicey finances of operating in a shutdown  This article is part of our “10 Bars for 2020” feature. Read more stories of bars that are defining this moment in drinking.  It’s about managing your own expectations and your ability to adapt,” says Matty O’Reilly, owner of Republic at Seven … [ Read more]

10 Bars for 2020: Black Hart of Saint Paul

A Midway institution navigates uncertainty, loss, and the path towards better allyship This article is part of our “10 Bars for 2020” feature. Read more stories of bars that are defining this moment in drinking.  It’s weird to be grateful that it’s not terribly busy,” says Wes Burdine, owner of The Black Hart of St. … [ Read more]

Shelf Stars: The Magic of Montalcino

Welcome to “Shelf Stars,” The Growler’s cheap wine column in which we discover the best under-$15 bottles in town. This edition of Shelf Stars is brought to you with underwriting support from The Wine Thief and Ale Jail. Montalcino is what you think of when you picture a storybook Italian town. It’s a tight cluster … [ Read more]

The State of Spirits: Minnesota’s distillers reflect on a challenging year and uncertain future

Like all small businesses, Minnesota’s local distilleries have been challenged on multiple fronts in the wake of COVID-19. Stay-at-home orders shuttered their cocktail rooms. Restaurant and bar closures sent their on-premise sales into a tailspin. Loss of revenue prompted changes in staffing and operations.  Pre-pandemic, the industry was already disappointed that the Minnesota Legislature did … [ Read more]

The Growler’s Cocktail Hall of Fame: Our drinks editor selects the best drink recipes we’ve ever published

  It didn’t take long for five o’clock to assume a quasi-religious significance. Over seven weeks of layoff, stay-at-home, and various shades of quarantine and social distance, it became a welcome ritual. The clink of ice cubes, the pop of a shaker, something to mark the day and time. With no bars to frequent and … [ Read more]

Fridge Pickles Are The Taste of Summer

The last jar of pickles I bought at the grocery store was from a well-known national brand. The label had the words “artisan recipe” and maybe even “farmers market” as well. I brought them home to top a cheeseburger or Cubano or something, but I vividly recall the first bite of those pickles: a squishy, … [ Read more]

Shelf Stars • A Cheat Code for Summer: White Wine from Gascony

Welcome to Shelf Stars, The Growler’s cheap wine column in which we discover the best under-$15 bottles in town. This edition of Shelf Stars is brought to you with underwriting support from Central Avenue Liquors. In a mini-fridge in the basement of our home, my dad would keep bottles of a bargain California white that … [ Read more]

Fire at Ursa Minor Brewing temporarily closes taproom and patio

Ursa Minor Brewing announced the temporary closure of its patio and taproom following a fire that destroyed an outdoor storage area. The fire broke out around 1:30am on July 26—the cause of the fire is currently unknown. The fire consumed the wood-framed storage area on the exterior of the brick building, and destroyed a forklift, … [ Read more]

The Belgian Waffle: From hallowed import to sidelined style to mega-brewery powerhouse—It’s been a wild ride for Belgian beer in the American 21st century

In the barrel room at Brasserie Cantillon in Brussels, Belgium, these words are painted on a barrel head that’s been tacked to a column: “Le temps ne respecte pas ce qui se fait sans lui.” Time does not respect that which is done without it. The beer at Cantillon, the world-class lambic brewery, is aged … [ Read more]

The Growler’s Tourism Guide 2020: A Townball Tour in Southern Minnesota

Find more great travel ideas in The Growler’s Tourism Guide 2020 My wife is, let’s say, baseball-tolerant. She’d never watch a game on TV but is more than happy to head out to the park to soak in one of the 60-or-so days when it’s actually enjoyable to be outside in this state. And we’ve … [ Read more]

The Good, The Bad, and the Smooth: Blind tasting 21 local vodkas in search of the finest

While we often dote on the nuances of fine bourbon, great vodka can be awfully pleasant: rich and creamy, smooth and balanced, crisp and clean.

State senate bill introduced to expand bottle sales and production limits for Minnesota microdistilleries

Minnesota’s small distilleries are lobbying to remove the need for those tiny bottles in their cocktail rooms. A bill numbered S.F. 3870 was introduced to the Minnesota State Senate on March 2, 2020, that would increase the limits on how much off-sale product a distillery can sell to visitors. The bill would amend section 340A … [ Read more]