Friday, August 3, 2007

Drinking Local

In our continuing search for places to drink good beer Mag and I picked up Kat and Scott and headed over to Common Roots Café on Lyndale in Minneapolis last night. I had read about this recently opened place and with their emphasis on local food and beer I was looking for a time to give it a try. We were given a good reason earlier this week when Surly sent out an email that Omar would be giving out free Bitter Brewer there at 7:30 Thursday night. Common Roots offers four beers on tap: Surly Bender, Surly CynicAle, Flat Earth Angry Planet IPA (their organic offering) and from Milwaukee, WI, Lakefront Organic ESB. While disappointed there was no Furious to be had I consoled myself with a Bender and happily ate my grilled cheese sandwich made with Gouda, Chevre and raw milk cheddar. I think I enjoyed my meal the most out of our group but since our real focus was the beer it all sufficed to pad our stomachs. About the time we finished our meal Omar had arrived and was setting up the pin of Bitter Brewer toward the back of the restaurant so we decided we’d better grab a table nearby. Heading back there we ran into Dave and Sharon and then Lori and Paul who had brought along Paul’s sister who was in town for a visit. So we pushed a few tables together, enjoyed some free Bitter Brewer and more purchased pints. Still in a drinking mood but looking for a broader selection our group headed across the street to the original Bulldog. I’d been to the new Bulldog NE previously but this was my first trip to the original. Walking in the door was like walking into a freezer so we headed out to their patio. It’s a cozy, completely enclosed patio so don’t expect to come here with a large group. The seven of us ended up crammed together around a table meant for four but since our waitress wouldn’t allow us to move another table over (fire restrictions) we made due. They do have a great selection of beers and seven varieties of Tator Tots! We got the Cajun and garlic ones along with some of their soft pretzels. While the Cajun Tator Tots and the soft pretzels were good, the garlic ones were outstanding! All in all we had a nice Thursday night filled with plenty of tasty beer which served to whet my whistle for Sunday’s Surly Open. I’m sure I’ll have the worst score of all of the participants, but I’m not too concerned…I’ll be spending the afternoon outside drinking $1 Surly beers.

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