Thursday, April 19, 2012

A Return to The Cities - Part II

Saturday was the polar opposite of Friday in terms of the weather and a perfect day to visit another place that had found a new home over the past two years. Again the day started with a hearty breakfast - this time at The Strip Club Meat & Fish - and a little errand running - had to make sure that the Midwest beer that had been purchased would be enjoyed in Portland - we headed to the Eastern edge of Minnesota to check out the new brewery and taproom of Lift Bridge Brewing Company. Lift Bridge pre-dates Fulton by a few years and started out brewing their beers first at Flat Earth in St. Paul, then at Point in Steven's Point, WI. They took some undeserved flack over the latter since the beer was technically being brewed in WI although Lift Bridge is a MN brewery through and through. We'd known the Lift Bridge crew since the early days of the brewery and were excited to see what a place they could finally call their own looked like.

Three of their standard line up were available - Farm Girl, Crosscut and Chestnut Hill - in addition to seasonals Spring Fling, Irish Coffee Stout and a version of Irish Coffee Stout sans the cold press coffee. I'd had their standards too many times to count and enjoyed the Spring Fling the day before at BLB, so the Irish Coffee Stout was the obvious choice. It was also the absolutely delicious choice I had hoped it would be.

After The 4-Pack had acquired beers and chatted with some familiar faces, we moved outside for a few games of "bags" or as some know it, corn hole. The beauty of this game, like many other "drinking" games, is it's one-handedness, leaving the other hand free for a beer. The additional bonus is that unlike bocce or "ladder ball", it does not require the throwing of hard objects. They're just beanbags and although the surprise of being beaned by a bag might cause you to spill your beer or drop your glass, there's a very slim chance it'll result in a beer drinking break to the ER.

Before leaving we wandered inside the brewery to check it out. A standard set up, their biggest challenge at this point is getting more equipment in to meet the needs of thirsty Minnesotans and Wisconsinites. They're still working on obtaining enough fermenters but have purchased a bottling line. They had previously contracted with another company to handle the bottling but recently said company decided to bottle for a larger company due to the more lucritive aspect of the relationship. While that caused a hiccup in the availability of bottled Lift Bridge, I think in the long run they'll be happy having control over this aspect of brewing as well.

There was much more to the weekend than visiting Fulton and Lift Bridge but most of it had to do with catching up with friends. You're not interested in hearing about that. So to old and new, friends here and there, cheers!!


  1. Dang! I didn't realize how busy we were!

  2. And this wasn't even the half of it!

  3. Aw man, we missed you! Sounds like a great visit though-busy but great.