The Growler: Issue 75 – January 2020 – Next Gen


ach year, our editorial staff convenes for a two-day planning meeting to discuss the trajectory of the magazine. We brainstorm themes and features we want to pursue, but most importantly, we take a hard look at the mission of the publication. 

When The Growler launched in June 2012, nearly all of the content incorporated beer into its structure, from cooking with beer to album reviews with beers to pair. As the craft beer scene progressed and our readership’s interests advanced, the magazine began taking the form of a craft beer lifestyle publication, covering everything from food to sports and the outdoors. 

So what is the magazine’s mission today and where are we taking our content in 2020? 

With a mission to publish articles that inspire progress in the communities of food and drink, and a celebration of the craft lifestyle, The Growler will be filled with even more thought-provoking features on the beer and cider industry, enlightening takes on the spirits and wine scene, and honest reviews of new restaurants. What’s more, we will roll out a monthly blind tasting series of popular styles of beer but also other beverages like ready-made cocktails, canned wine, kombucha, or hard seltzer. 

As we enter 2020 and look to the future, our “Next Gen” issue shines a light on several young people staking their claim in the restaurant industry, the sports world, the Minnesota wine industry, and even in environmental policy. Food editor James Norton talks with the owners of Due Focacceria about carrying their family’s legacy of Italian-American dining into the next generation. Deputy editor John Garland learns about Colita’s house ferments, which are introducing radical new flavors to the cocktail scene. Writer Joel Hoekstra travels to Ireland where two historic brewing families, the Smithwicks and Sullivans, are betting big on red ale in an industry dominated by the latest trends. And The Growler’s Zach McCormick takes us to 36Lyn, a gas station that is changing the expectations we have for food and drink inside a corner convenience store.

Like the subjects of these stories, we hope The Growler leads you to ever more flavorful living in 2020. 

Brian Kaufenberg


Pink Drink Pandemonium
By Zachary Sapato

Red Ale Rising
An upstart Irish brewer is betting Americans will soon tire of exotics and embrace classics like its malt-forward ruby red ale
By Joel Hoekstra

The Taste Test: Hard Seltzer
By John Garland

Wine Time: Brava!
A new N0rth Loop Bar is removing the mystique of “natural” wine
By Bill Ward

Change Agents
A series of fermentation project at Colita is making old cocktails taste fresh and new
By John Garland

What We’re Drinking
January 2020
By The Growler Staff


Next Gen
These young people are staking a claim in the future of their fields
By Growler Contributors

Glen Perkins is Minnesota’s Ron Swanson
Visiting the former Minnesota Twin’s woodshop and home brewery at Gala Farms
By Brian Kaufenberg

Fueling Progress
On a crowded highway of convenience stores, 36Lyn is an oasis of quality
By Zach McCormick

Sounds Like Teen Spirit
Young Musicians overcoming doubters and expanding the all-ages music scene
By Youa Vang, The Current

Artist Profile
To see into the future, Patricio DeLara looks to the past
By Lauren Sauer

Growler Crossword
This month: “Bitter Harvest”
By Andrew J. Ries and Victor Barocas


A Star is Born
Estelle dazzles with Iberian- and Italian- inspired fare
By James Norton

New Wave, Old School
With Due Focacceria, Eric Carrara leverages tradition to define the future
By James Norton

Looking for past issues? Browse The Growler Archive.

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