Bike from the University of Minnesota campus through St. Paul to discover a pocket of local breweries with premier drafts on tap

Photo of Bang Brewing Co. by TJ Turner/Greenspring Media

By Claire Noack

If you are visiting Minneapolis and St. Paul, chances are you’ll end up near the University of Minnesota campus. The sports-centered hub attracts people from all walks of life, resulting in a fair number of bars and international cuisine to enjoy. A short bike ride from the university lies a neighborhood of local breweries whose location may be discreet, but who are certainly on our radar for their refreshing crafts beers. Whether you are an adventurous college student looking to explore the neighborhood via bicycle or a sports fan hoping to take in the local culture pre or post game, these breweries on the edge of the U of M and St. Paul are worth a sip.

First up on the bike tour is one of the most well known brewers to come out of the Twin Cities. Surly Brewing Co. not only created a name for itself before the craft brewery boom, but the company also fought to pass a bill allowing breweries to include taprooms for the first time in Minnesota. We’ll raise a glass of their brews to that!

Pedal across the border into St. Paul to the first woman-owned microbrewery in Minnesota, Urban Growler Brewing Co., where art, music and beer abound. Stop in next door to sip on an organic ale and see the circular, win-powered “Bin” that is home to Bang Brewing Co. Just a short trek away is BlackStack Brewing, the new kid on the block whose expansive taproom and variety of brews with just the right amount of twist will make you want to stay and sip awhile. Let your celiac friends drink their fill, or order another round for yourself, at Burning Brothers Brewing, where their beer is all-gluten free and comes in flavorful varieties such as orange blossom honey, lime, coffee, chocolate oatmeal and cranberry. For the final stop on the biking tour, imbibe monster themed beers at Lake Monster Brewing Co. that will leave you wondering what creatures lurk in the depths of Minnesota’s 10,000 lakes.

Best time to start pedaling: Thursday starting at 4 p.m., Friday starting at 2 p.m., or Saturday starting at noon


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