Food Reviews

5 Minnesota Craft Beers for Summer Drinking

A Review of Pale Ales From Twin Cities Craft Breweries

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Minnesota’s craft beer scene is hot with dozens of breweries throughout the state. In honor of American Craft Beer Week, I reviewed five Minnesota brews. With so many to pick from, it was hard to narrow down my selection. So I choose to review five pale ales from around the Twin Cities.

  1. Rise to the Top Cream Ale by Third Street Brew House. Brewed in Cold Spring, Minnesota, this ultra pale, golden-colored ale is light bodied with almost no head. This is a smooth, mild beer with a a corn and grassy hop aroma. It’s a light to medium body brew with a slight bite to finish. A non-complex drink, for a hot day.
  2. Sweet Child of Vine India Pale Ale by Fulton Beers. This Minneapolis brew is a copper-colored IPA with minimal head and carbonation. A sweeter blended aroma of malt, hops and fruit. This medium bodied beer has a fruit and malty flavor, though it could use more malt. This is a simpler beer much like the Rise to the Top Cream Ale with a mildly bitter finish. I’ve enjoyed this brew several times and would buy it again.
  3. Preservation IPA by Tonka Beer Company. Based in Minnetonka, this light bronze colored ale has a slight herbal / earthy smell with some floral notes. It’s lightly carbonated, and is too malty sweet for my taste. It was my least favorite of the bunch. However, drinking this brew can help support our lakes. Tonka Beer Co. donates 100% of their profits to support Save Our Lakes to help eradicate invasive species. Way to go Tonka Beer Co.
  4. Dyno Pale Ale by Lucid Brewing.  Another Minnetonka brew, this ale has a light pine and citrus aroma. It’s a cloudy copper-colored brew with a decent head with little retention and medium carbonation. This light to medium bodied beer has a nice malt flavor with grassy and citrus flavor. A solid beer choice.
  5. Day Tripper Pale Ale by Indeed Brewing. Another Minneapolis brewed ale with a pale color and a moderate head with light to medium carbonation. There are aromas of citrus and pine, a nice hoppy taste and finishes with a some bitterness. A good overall pale ale worth a second glass.

I’d like to do a shout out to a couple of other great breweries. Stop by for a tour, or a pint in their tap room and of course don’t forget to take home a growler – Excelsior Brewing in Excelsior, Lift Bridge Brewery in Stillwater, and Harriet Brewing Co. in Minneapolis. Leave me a comment with your favorite craft beer.

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