Beer-lovers visiting Minneapolis for the Final Four won’t have to go far to find Minnesota’s most beloved beers. Walk in any direction out of U.S. Bank Stadium and you’ll probably find a bar or a restaurant serving beloved craft beers from the Twin Cities, the North Shore and other parts of “The Land of 10,000 Beers.” But for out-of-town hopheads seeking a more direct experience of the state’s brewing culture, there are a few places that should be on your radar, because they’re well worth the Lyft ride from downtown.
Surly is a monster in Minnesota, and its flagship Furious IPA is one of the most iconic beers in the state. As such, it’s more or less required drinking for any beer-lover visiting Minnesota. Surly’s popularity stems from its being in the game for a long time, since before Minnesota breweries could even serve pints on their premises. But thanks to “the Surly bill,” breweries and taprooms have sprouted up across Minnesota like so many spring flowers, and the bill’s namesake also constructed a massive beer hall of its own. Surly’s Beer Hall is a behemoth building, with an inviting outdoor beer garden, upstairs pizzeria and up to 35 Surly beers on tap. It’s about a 10 minute Lyft ride from U.S. Bank Stadium.
This microbrewery and taproom is located in the brewery-haven that is Northeast Minneapolis. It features small-batch brews and an ever-changing taplist. (At the time of writing, they’re serving a double cream ale with coffee and a guava grapefruit sour, among other things). The vibe inside is comfortable; it’s a neighborhood spot, after all. However, on weekends the place is packed, often with a line out the door, a testament to the quality of the beer and the brewery’s location, as it’s next to the much-lauded pizza spot Young Joni and another Northeast staple, Anchor Fish and Chips. Dangerous Man is about a 10 minute Lyft ride from U.S. Bank Stadium.
This is another Northeast Minneapolis operation. The Fair State Brewing Cooperative has a small-ish taproom on Central Avenue, but its beers have gotten international recognition. For sour-lovers, a must-try is Fair State’s Roselle: it’s a perfect way to get a taste of spring in Minneapolis. While there’s no food to order at the co-op, you’re encouraged to bring in food from nearby restaurants, which include the great Holy Land Deli, Khao Hom Thai and Taco Riendo. Fair State is about a 10 minute Lyft ride from U.S. Bank Stadium.
This experimental-focused brewery is located in Minneapolis’ North Loop neighborhood, home to many of the Twin Cities’ most beloved restaurants and bars. Stop here for a fruit punch milkshake IPA or a cold press coffee lager before venturing out to try some of Minneapolis’ favorite eats, such as Black Sheep Pizza, Parlour (home of the famous Parlour burger) and Bar La Grassa. Modist Brewing is about a 7 minute Lyft ride from U.S. Bank Stadium.
This is the only St. Paul brewery on the list, but it’s still just a 10 minute Lyft ride from U.S. Bank Stadium. The first woman-owned microbrewery in Minnesota is adored for its tasty brews and diverse menu — it’s not just a list of IPAs of varying intensities. Also, the food is incredible. From house-made burgers (including vegetarian-friendly options) to fried chicken to mac and cheese, there’s some dish to go with every beer.