Since opening in 2013, Dangerous Man Brewing Company has been too popular to meet demand. They’ve hid it well by limiting growler sales to a handful per day in order to keep pint glasses full in the taproom, but all of that is about to be a thing of the past. This Sunday from 11am–6pm, Dangerous Man will open The Dangerous Man Growler Shop, a retail-style addition next door to the taproom that will focus on the sale of take-home beer.
Most of the beers available in the Dangerous Man taproom, which is connected via a walkway, will be available in The Growler Shop in pre-filled or filled-on-demand 64oz glass growlers, and 750ml crowlers, mini growlers, and glass bottles.
The brewery will mark the soft opening of the new space with a special release of 750ml bottles of a tequila-barrel aged Imperial Kristallweizen. The one-time beer will be $20 per bottle with a limit of two bottles per customer (while supplies last).
“This will be our celebration, our hurrah,” says Co-owner and Creative Director Sarah Bonvallet. She expects The Growler Shop to be 100-percent complete by mid-November once they finish work on additional coolers for pre-filled growlers and 750ml bottles.
The Imperial Kristallweizen to be released Sunday is the first in a new monthly series of barrel-aged beer releases. November’s release will be Dangerous Man’s Belgian Dark Strong Ale aged in cabernet barrels; December will see the release of their Russian Imperial Stout aged in bourbon barrels.
Also available on Sunday will be their Peanut Butter Porter, Chocolate Milk Stout, IPA, and most likely limited supplies of Cream Ale, Berliner Weisse, and Caraway Brown.
After the soft opening this Sunday, the next time The Growler Shop will be open will be Thursday, November 12, with initial store hours of Thursday–Sunday from 11am to 6pm, but the hours may change based on demand. Starting Sunday, November 1, the Dangerous Man taproom will also be open on Sundays.
[shareprints gallery_id=”33829″ gallery_type=”squares” gallery_position=”pos_center” gallery_width=”width_100″ image_size=”medium” image_padding=”5″ theme=”light” image_hover=”popout” lightbox_type=”slide” comments=”false” sharing=”true”]One of the brewery’s other growler policies will be changing with The Growler Shop: Dangerous Man will now fill any clean growler, from any brewery, a practice that Minnesota law allows, but that many other breweries have been reluctant to adopt, mainly because of a desire for their beer to flow out of growlers that display their branding and a concern about beer quality suffering if a customer’s growler isn’t perfectly clean.
Bonvallet says Dangerous Man’s original business plan called for an approach to selling growlers that was similar to how breweries out West handle them. “Growler culture everywhere but Minnesota is based around people reusing them,” she says. “You bring a growler to a party and crack it open and no one assumes the beer that’s inside is the beer on the label. It’s like, ‘Oh, what do you have in there?’”
It was illegal for Minnesota breweries to fill any other growlers but their own until recently. While a few breweries have started doing it, including Eastlake and Harriet, Bonvallet knows there will still be some education involved for their customers, but says they’re excited to take that on. “I’d love to see that growler culture change,” she says. “This idea of owning 17 growlers for 17 breweries is totally against the intent of that vessel.”
The reason Dangerous Man is now able to sell more beer in growlers and 750 mL bottles is that half of their 1,600-square-foot expansion is home to six new fermenters. While their 10-barrel brewhouse isn’t being upgraded, the additional fermenter space increases their brewing capacity by 300 percent. Co-owner and brewer Rob Miller says he plans to use the additional flexibility to release more sours and also intends to begin dabbling in lagers.
“Since we opened we’ve had an issue with not being able to produce enough beer, so we’ve made concessions,” Bonvallet explains. This led to people rushing to fill growlers early in the day, sometimes waiting in lines to do so. It also meant visitors from farther away—or patrons who weren’t able to get to the taproom until after work—often couldn’t get growlers because they were gone by the time evening rolled around. “We’re hoping this is going to solve it,” Bonvallet says. “I think it’s going to end some frustration and that rush to get here before anybody else,” which will also make the staff happier, she added. “[People] give us such a sad face and we feel horrible” when popular beers like the porter and stout run out, she says.
While the new retail space and six new fermenters position Dangerous Man to finally start keeping up with demand, the crew is in wait-and-see mode. “I think we’re going to be good,” Bonvallet says, laughing. “But that’s what I thought the first time, too.”
Keith Grauman also contributed to this report.