Newsletter: Hey… nice tap handles…

Burning Brothers… Now with tap handles!!!

Pyro at the MN State Fair

We’ve had a number of inquiries as to where we will be at the Great Minnesota Get Together (i.e., the MN State Fair). So, hot off the press from our distributor, here’s the list:

  • Ball Park Cafe (East side of Underwood St between Dan Patch & Carnes Ave)
  • Cafe Caribe (South side of Carnes Ave between Liggett & Nelson streets)
  • Giggles’ Campfire Grill (Southeast corner of Lee Ave & Cooper St at The North Woods)
  • LuLu’s Public House (West End Market, south of the Schilling Ampitheater)
  • O’Gara’s (Just inside the main gate on Snelling Ave)
In addition to the above, we will also be at the Land of 10,000 Beers Exhibit as part of the MN Craft Brewers Guild. With all the breweries opening up in MN lately, there’s no way they can serve them all every day, so we will be rotating in and out throughout the run of the Fair.

Ask the Brewer

Why do some breweries can their beer, while others use bottles?

Like anything in life, there are pros and cons to both forms of packaging. Brewers must consider costs, packaging availability, consumer perceptions and a litany of other factors. One of key elements though is how the packaging treats the beer contained within. Making sure that the beer has the taste the brewer intended is a critical factor when considering packaging.

For example, you’re unlikely to find many craft beers in clear bottles. Why? The volatile oils in hops that give different beers their distinctive flavors change with exposure to light. Too much light exposure can potentially produce some really off notes, thereby causing the beer to taste differently than the brewer intended. Most beer bottles are green or brown for a reason, as they help to reduce that exposure to light.

Cans, like kegs, completely eliminate the light exposure issue, which is great for the beer inside. Unfortunately, cans are typically a more expensive proposition for a fledgling brewery. The machinery for filling and seaming cans costs significantly more than the equivalent bottle filler and capper. Cans themselves are almost always variety specific (i.e. printed on the can) vs. bottles which can easily switch between labels. Then, when you consider that the can suppliers require order minimums of 75,000 or more, it requires a significant outlay of cash versus bottles which can be ordered in smaller quantities.

As you can see, it’s not a simple choice. (Like many things in the beer industry!)

Taproom Tidings

As the photo at the top or our newsletter shows, our new tap handles have arrived!  We are very excited to show them off, and are almost ready to have our beer available on draft at select locations starting in September. We will announce locations offering Burning Brothers on draft as soon as we have them – in the meantime, stop by the taproom to check out our spiffy new handles.

The taproom has its regular hours all weekend, with growler fills available all of the days we are open. Highlights include:

  • Thirsty Thursdays is your chance for $1 off pints and $2 off growler fills (Remember, St. Paul doesn’t let us fill growlers after 8pm on Thursdays, so get here early)
  • Food on Fridays (FoF) brings us Moondog, slinging their German-style bratwursts & dogs here and throughout the Twin Cities.
  • Our featured cupcake from Groundswell is their Espresso Turtle. Chocolate espresso cake with chocolate mousse, whipped cream, toasted pecans and an espresso caramel sauce.
  • Tap selection includes Pyro APA, Roasted Coffee Ale, Fused Orange Blossom Honey, Parched Lime Shandy and our ever popular Blackstrap IPA. Growler and grumbler fills on everything.

While the Snelling Ave. bridge is OPEN and usable, it is one of the main routes in for the MN State Fair, so take that into account as you make your weekend plans!

Final Thoughts

If you are in the neighborhood for a beer, you should also check out the Midway Murals project. This project was the Knight Arts Challenge winner for 2014, and features 4 different murals along Snelling Ave, each done by a different artist and their team of volunteers. This art installation is celebrating the unveiling of the murals this Saturday, August 29th, with an event at Hamline Park on the corner of Thomas and Snelling, from noon until 6pm. Stop in for a beer with us, and then visit this inspiring neighborhood project!

As always, if you have questions, drop us a note via Email, Facebook, Constrained WritingTwitter or Google+.