By: Anthony Brousseau
With so many different craft breweries and beers to try in Minnesota, how do you sort the wheat from the chaff?
Luckily, the Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild is here to help. Recently, the state’s preeminent organization of beermakers held its inaugural MN Brewers Cup, “the Guild’s first state-wide professional brewers competition.” Perusing the list of winners and runners-up will give you plenty of local beers to sample.
According to the guild, more than 500 beers from 80 breweries statewide were submitted for 24 categories—plus, a Best in Show award was handed out.
The beers were blindly judged by a panel of “certified beer judges.” Members of the guild also voted for Most Innovative Brewery, Best Collaboration Beer and Best Beer Art.
While Minneapolis may be Minnesota’s craft beer capital, the Lake Minnetonka area is a hub in its own right, with plenty of great local options. The guild recognized several of the area’s breweries with awards.
Minnetonka’s Unmapped Brewing Co. took home first place in the Light Lagers category for Purgatory Pils, and second place in the Belgian Farmhouse category for Saison Amelie, which is made with Minnetonka Gold honey.
Spring Park’s Back Channel Brewing took home some hardware as well, with their Horny Sidekick taking second in the Light Lagers Category. They earned a first-place win in the Imperial Stouts and Porters category for King of the Wring, an Imperial Stout with coffee that comes in at a whopping 11.25 percent ABV.
Wayzata Brew Works made an appearance in the Imperial Stouts and Porters category, too, taking third place with Puppies, Rainbows & Kitten Kisses (surely they would’ve won first place if there was a Best Beer Name award).
To see the full list of MN Brewers Cup winners, click here.