Red Cow hosts Oskar Blues Brewery and introduces new grass-fed burgers

Edina's Red Cow launches a new weekly grass-fed beef burger and celebrates with Oskar Blues
At the beginning of the month, Oskar Blues Brewery announced it would be moving its brand of canned craft beer into the Twin Cities market. Now this Colorado-based brewery has taken over a tap at Edina's Red Cow, with a selection of 12 drafts, including a few highly exclusive beers that will only be available at Red Cow and only while supplies last. That's not all: To celebrate the brewery's arrival, the Red Cow has also introduced a weekly burger special to its gourmet burger offerings. Consider this an invitation to get your beer and burger fix.

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Costello's to close; Red Cow moving in

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Butcher & the Boar hosts first ever brunch bash

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Butcher & the Boar hosts their first Brunch Bash this Sunday at 11 a.m.
If you've ever dreamt of waking up on a Sunday morning and heading down to your local meat palace for brunch, hold on to your seats, because that dream is about to come true. This Sunday, in lieu of their regular weekend beer bashes, Butcher & the Boar will be hosting their first ever brunch bash.

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Grain Belt gets a "friendly" facelift

Grain Belt gets itself a new, friendly, retro-style label

Did you know that Grain Belt was once known as "the friendly beer"? The company picked up the nickname after the repeal of Prohibition, when brewing companies were pushing to gain back the market. The folks over at Grain Belt are now digging deep, re-examining their roots and resurrecting the old campaign, and with it, they're adopting a new, retro-style redesign for their locally brewed line of beers. 

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Northbound Smokehouse makes USA Today's Best Brewpubs list

Northbound Smokehouse makes USA Today's Best Brewpubs list
Just when we thought the smoke had cleared from a week of Twin Cities bars blowing up on the national scene, another one goes and finds its way onto another selective list. This time, Northbound Smokehouse in south Minneapolis has landed on USA Today's list of the 20 best brewpubs in the U.S. 

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Pat's Tap and Pig & Fiddle make Food & Wine's list of best gastropubs
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Pat's Tap and Pig & Fiddle make Food & Wine's list of best gastropubs

Pats Tap Logo.jpg

In a trend that doesn't seem to be letting up anytime soon, a few more Twin Cities establishments have earned national nods. This time, Food & Wine magazine has put South Minneapolis' Pat's Tap and Pig & Fiddle on its list of best gastropubs. This marks the second time in less than a week that Twin Cities bars have gained national recognition.

The article cites a hearty beer selection, a "lively" menu, and their vintage skee-ball setup as a few of the reasons for their Pat's Tap pick. As for the Pig & Fiddle, it's the long list of local taps coupled with a chef-driven Eastern European style menu. The two Minneapolis locations join national ranks with the likes of New York's Spotted Pig, Chicago's The Publican, and Wisconsin's The Old Fashioned. 

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Happy Gnome and Republic named two of the best beer bars in America, again

Courtesy of Republic's Facebook page
Draft Magazine puts Republic & Happy Gnome on its 100 Best Beer Bars in America List
Last week, Draft Magazine put out its annual list of the 100 best beer bars in America and this year two Twin Cities bars have again made the grade: Minneapolis's Republic and St. Paul's Happy Gnome. This is the fifth year in a row that the Happy Gnome has made the brew-centric list and it also marks a return for Republic, which made its first appearance last year.

Draft Mag breaks down its list into four separate regions: West, Midwest, Northeast, and South. Other Midwestern bars worthy of the list include Palm Tavern in Milwaukee, Bangers & Lace in Chicago, and the Bier Station in Kansas City. Other Twin Cities bars that have made the list in previous years include Minneapolis's Blue Nile (2010) and St. Paul's Muddy Pig (2010-2012).

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Beer of the Week: Robust Porter from Town Hall Brewery

Emily Weiss
Across-the-pond influence on a local brewery
This week's Beer of the Week is the Robust Porter from Town Hall Brewery, a longtime favorite local drinking establishment that has enjoyed a lot of press of late with its recent win at the Great American Beer Festival. 

This here-today, possibly gone-tomorrow seasonal is one in a long line of about 40 rotating feature beers at Town Hall, and has a rich chocolatey malt flavor, curvaceous body, and a crisp finish, which is uncommon for the style.

"Our Robust is based on the standard English robust porter style," says head brewer Mike Hoops. "But there are some other American-style ones that we liked, and this is our attempt at merging the two to do a bit of a twist on the standard style."

We chatted with the award-winning brewer to learn more about how he achieves balance in this cross-continental porter hybrid.

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Beer of the Week: Brimstone Belgian Tripel from Boom Island

Courtesy Boom Island Brewing
This week's Beer of the Week is full of fury: Brimstone from Boom Island Brewery.

This gorgeous, thick Belgian Tripel smells of banana split and pours out all hazy and golden, which is kind of how you feel after drinking one, thanks to its 9.5% ABV. The Hot Dish caught up with Boom Island's owner and brewer Kevin Welch, a self-professed "Belgian freak" in the land of hopheads, to learn more about the process behind this fruity, spicy brew.

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Liftbridge Launches Mini-Donut Beer

Image from Liftbridge Brewery
Liftbridge Brewery releases special State Fair only, mini-donut beer

The State Fair is literally right around the corner and Stillwater's premier craft brewer, Liftbridge Brewing Co., has announced that they've got a little something special planned for this years festivities. Instead of launching another tired (yet loved) on-a-stick inspired food item, the folks at Liftbridge have teamed up with the Ball Park Cafe to offer an exclusive mini-donut flavored beer.

The beer is described as having a warm, tan color that imitates the color of the freshly fried fair treats and has a malty base paired with natural flavors that combine for both a sweet and rich beer. The glasses will also come rimmed with a cinnamon and sugar mixture in order to help emulate that traditional mini-donut experience.

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Cafe Maude hosts Guest Bartender Night featuring Jourdan Gomez

Photo courtesy of Michael Bowman
A crafty cocktail courtesy of Jourdan Gomez

Cafe Maude's Loring Park location, in conjunction with the crafty cocktailers at the Northstar Bartenders Guild, will host a special evening of top shelf cocktails in their upcoming Guest Bartender Night. The event will take place on Tuesday, July 23, and will feature Minneapolis-expat-turned-trendsetting-New Yorker, Jourdan Gomez.

For those who may recall, Gomez helped to setup and establish some of Minneapolis' hottest cocktail bars including Bradstreet Crafthouse, Icehouse, and The Lowry. Last year, Gomez moved out to New York to help open Pouring Ribbons, an upscale cocktail bar in Manhattan's East Village.

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