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     Brew Pub Reviews

Brew Pub Details

Production: n/a
Tours: Not Sure
Restaurant: Yes
Smoking: Yes
Games: Billiards & Darts

Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery

1430 Washington Avenue South
Minneapolis, Minnesota  55454
(612) 339-8696

Reviewed by: Blask
Saturday, August 11th, 2001

The Arrival

Mapquest fell through on this day, but it's actually really easy to get there. It's about one block east of the 35W/Washington intersection. We walked in through the outdoor seating area, which was pretty full since it was a nice, cool summer night. The bar itself was long and empty, just like we like. We were celebrating the bachelor party of the beerandpoetry.com Webmaster, and there were four in our group contributing to this tasting. Classic old school bar, felt like maybe the 1930s, plenty of room.

The Beer

English Mild - (with nitro, not CO2) Its smooth body makes it goes down like root beer, with a slight coffee aroma. Other comments: "caramelized odor, like subdued cattle feed because of the grains;" "My friends who like macros would enjoy drinking this all night, but it does little for me;" "hit the mark on the 'mild'." Don't take these as necessarily negative, since the cattle-feed guy actually liked this beer. The consensus seemed that it was in fact the mild it should be, and might be perfect for a full ni
Reviewer's Rating: n/a

West Bank Bitter - "This is a little more my speed; just a bit stronger than the English mild;" "I like it," says Czar, resident man-of-few-words. "possibly more Americanized than the other beers;" "actually much sweeter than the IPA;" "right in between the Mild and the IPA; it's that simple." There was a subtle aftertaste, with a "re-creep" of bitterness. Surprising and enjoyable. Almost no chance for a pre-taste/mouth-taste, as the aftertaste didn't wait to take hold. This, on average, was the favorite choice of
Reviewer's Rating: n/a

Sparnfarkel Smoked Porter - Czar says, "This was good, but I can't explain why." That's why we like this guy. "Smooth and easy to drink; someone wanting to seem sophisticated by drinking a dark beer can handle this;" "This would be great to simmer brats in (we are in the Midwest);" "soothes the taste buds; a really good dark flavor."
Reviewer's Rating: n/a

Belgian White - "a mild citrus/lemons flavor, almost like hard lemonade;" "a good summer beer;" (those were both written almost identically be two of the tasters); "I can see what is appealing about this beer, but it's too fruity for me."
Reviewer's Rating: n/a

Masala Mama IPA - "The aroma is inviting and says, 'Come hither and drink me'" (Mike's quote; I would never say that.); "a nice lemony herbal aroma if you take the time;" "floral nose, begging for a lemon." The aftertaste is obviously bitter, but also with a sour tinge. Very grassy, acetic. Too much of an aftertaste for some. "I would like to have a cigar to catch the bitterness that lingers."
Reviewer's Rating: n/a

Imperial Stout - Look out! Czar also liked this but couldn't explain why. Mike enjoyed it, too. The rest of us thought it was just too much. At first taste it was, "Wow; this a real stout, the farthest thing from a cream stout you can get." It's taste was described as acidic, alcohol, caramelized, soapy, wine-like, black licorice, bitter/sweet aftertaste. It had the mouth-feel and warmth of a Merlot or fortified wine. So you can see, good or bad, it stirred up the taste buds.
Reviewer's Rating: n/a

Discussion with Brewmaster

The Brewmaster was in Madison that day at the big beer festival. Hopefully we'll be in contact soon. The staff was especially helpful and friendly, and we got lots of pictures taken with them.

Image Gallery

The Atmosphere

A good time. Like I said, because of the weather most people were outside. That area seemed very cool, a laid back get together with friends spot in the summer. And any place with beer engines is my kind of place (too bad none of the samplers came from them).

Having just eaten, we weren't able to sample the food at Town Hall. Maybe next time. If someone's eaten there, write in and let us know how the food is. (Or just tell us how completely way off base we are about the beer. We love to hear from anyone not from the snob or "Style Nazi" brigade. Regular people, please; let's not take ourselves too seriously.)

Afterthoughts

I would definitely recommend trying the English Mild, Bitter, and Porter, in that order. These three put together a string of subtlety married with character that builds from one to the next. The other three are almost one-at-a-time kinds of beers that don't necessarily follow a logical progression for a sampler platter, but are better consumed independently.

Much of a tasting is subjective, but if we had to rank Town Hall's beer in order, I'd have to say the West Bank Bitter was the best, followed by the Sparnfarkel Smoked Porter. After that, half of us went with IPA, English Mild; the other two enjoyed the Imperial Stout. The Belgian White was strictly a light, summertime alternative.

A definite revisit.

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