Menage à cuatro: Dockbox Sampler– next in a long line of famous fours

 

Menage à cuatro: Dockbox– next in a long line of famous fours

Aristotle once said “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”

The idea was that if you combine already great things, you can take it to the next level.  A scant 2300 years after his death, Excelsior Brewing is proud to prove his theory correct with the release of the Dockbox.  Our four signature brews– XLCR, Bitteschlappe, Bridge Jumper and Big Island Blond combined in one twelve-pack box to offer beer drinkers variety and a rare chance to corroborate a Greek philosopher by drinking beer.

Why four?  Because great things generally come in fours. 

The A-Team

No one likes injustice.  So when a crack commando unit of four was sent to prison for a crime they didn’t commit, it rubbed all Americans wrong.  The foursome promptly escaped and became fugitive mercenaries in the Los Angeles underground using hand grenades and machine guns to blast lemons into lemonade.

It was vigilante justice served up with automatic weapons on the streets of LA from a shockingly conspicuous van.  Something today we’d call terrorist threat level 1 billion and end with a series of drone strikes, in 1982 it was simply called justice.

Spinal Tap

In life, it’s hard to get to a perfect 10.  It took four visionaries to raise the stakes even higher.  David St. Hubbins, Derek Smalls, Nigel Tufnel and Viv Savage attained 11 through hard work and perseverance.  Despite repeated setbacks including drummers combusting on stage and meddling girlfriends, the iconic band eventually rose to #5 on the Japanese charts with their seminal hit Sex Farm.  This set the stage for a Smell the Glove tour for the ages, and cemented the power of four.

Is the dockbox as powerful as BA Baracus? 

Can dockbox prevent spontaneous human combustion? 

The lawyers won’t let us say for sure, but with a taste spectrum spanning four of our best, at this point we can’t rule either possibility out.

 

A Night out with the MVG (Most Valuable Ginger)

Print Redhead man looking up

 

A Night out with the MVG (Most Valuable Ginger)

How will you spend the longest night of the year?

Winter solstice hits December 22nd and we think 16 hours of darkness could lead to some interesting revelry.  While there is no question about your libation of choice (Shattered Solstice now available in bombers and the taproom).  Deciding who will accompany you can be just as important.

Our light-bodied, ginger-infused amber is too good not to share, but with whom?

We suggest you go with the theme, find a redhead and ginger-infuse your entire night.  To help you along, we’ve created a list of the top five ginger’s that would make your night memorable…

Presidential Hopeful Donald Trump
We didn’t say you had to vote for him, but draining a few Shattered Solstice bottles with this guy would at the very least be entertaining.  Make sure to chill his gold chalice before you pour and let the unintentional comedy begin.  Odds are he may even pick up the tab at the end of a night bar-hopping in his chopper.

Ultimate Wingman Ron Weasley
Who better to scare up trouble than Harry Potter’s lead bro?  The guy has a nose for adventure and ultimately ended up with Hermione, so you know he’s got game.

Washed-up Rocker turned Mom Ginger Spice
Who?  Yeah we know, but she really fits our theme so we’re including her even though as a conversationalist her acumen remains unproven.  At the very least she’s not bad to look at and you may get the dirt on Posh.

Gold Medal Snowboard Beast Shaun White
There’s no doubt the Flying Tomato has stories to tell and is no stranger to a cold beer.  He may even let you wear one of his two Olympic gold medals out– those can’t hurt as conversation starters in the taproom.

Hemp-infused Legend Willie Nelson
A fun dude to hang with, though you’d have to be sure not to go totally Chris Farley on him.  “Remember that time you got drunk in jail and were banned from ever returning to the Bahamas? … That was awesome.”

 

So who did we miss?  Ron Howard?  Conan O’Brien?  Who would you most like to share your Shattered Solstice with, and more importantly what would you do?   Tweet us at #excelsiorbrew

It’s the Most Wonderful Time… for a Beer

It’s the Most Wonderful Time… for a Beer

The holidays are all about families, so who decided we should squander our tryptophan buzz getting trampled at a local Wal-Mart?

Reject the commercialism of Black Friday and instead join us in Excelsior as we kick off advent in style with the traditional German festival known as Christkindlsmarkt.

Running Friday through Sunday Thanksgiving weekend, the all-ages festival offers Christmas crafts for the kids, music, traditional German food, a beer garden and much more.

Even St Nick himself is scheduled to make an appearance and he’s bringing live reindeer and a sleigh to add to the holiday revelry.

The fire pits will be lit, the brews will be flowing and the air filled with music.

Scheduled bands:

Friday:  6-8pm David Leduc,  9-11pm Chris Kelly Band.

Saturday:  2-5pm Alpensterne for your German needs.  Soon after, we turn it up w/ Alive (Pearl Jam) from 6-8pm, then Subliminal (Sublime) 9-11pm.

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The fun begins at 10 am  on Friday and runs throughout the weekend so grab the kids and head over for a pretzel, a pint and some holiday fellowship.   It is truly a tradition like no other.

Christkindlsmarkt: light on vowels, but heavy on family fun.

 

Historic Excelsior Personified- Mr. Jimmy

PrintHistoric Excelsior Personified- Mr. Jimmy

 

What makes Excelsior a superior place to live is her people. Despite being nestled in the suburbs of a major metropolitan area, the culture of small town values and the traditions of this community have persevered.

This is apparent from Excelsior’s main street to her town festivals to the continuing tradition of Excelsior Elementary School’s annual Halloween parade.  History is important here, as are the values that built this town. It makes Excelsior a truly unique place to live and work.

Perhaps no one personified this attitude quite as much as Jimmy Hutmaker. The late great city ambassador, he knew every local by name and was a fixture on and around Water Street for decades. Always up for a chat, the cigar-chomping legend even claimed his place in the rock history books by inspiring a young Mick Jagger– such was his way with people.

Jimmy epitomized life in a small town where residents take time to get to know each other and take care of their own. As both the recipient and the benefactor of this fine tradition he taught us that you can’t always get what you want, but as part of a community, you really do get what you need.

This is why we each year we brew a tribute beer to Mr Jimmy. Not only for what he did, but for what he embodied.   With each award-winning brew, he finally gets his cherry, and we all get to celebrate his legacy. Not only a win-win proposition, but a fine new tradition for a city that already has so many.

  • Now available in the taproom Mr. Jimmy’s Baltic Porter, our 2015 tribute beer to Jimmy Hutmaker.
    • Made w/ Licorice root and aged on cherry wood, this classic, true to style, Baltic porter will make you realize you got what you wanted!

More info:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jimmy_Hutmaker

 

 

 

National American Beer Day- Finally, a fake holiday for the rest of us

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The greeting card companies have contrived many a holiday.

Virtually all of these involve some half-baked and poorly masked excuse to either make husbands feel guilty, drive sales or both. Just a week and a half ago something called Sweetest Day came and went.

Did you notice?

We were frankly dubious of the entire practice, until we checked the fake holiday calendar and saw that October 27th is something called National American Beer Day (NABD).  Suddenly our attitude changed.

A chance to crack a few cold ones on a random Tuesday in October? We’re in.

Are you new to the rich and storied tradition of NABD? So is everyone.

Since the whole thing is pretty loosely defined, we decided to lend a hand and add some structure.

Effective immediately…

  • Greeting cards of any kind are not allowed for NABD. A simple left-handed handshake delivered while clutching a malt beverage will suffice as acknowledgement of the High Holiday.
  • Buffalo wings (a quintessential American food) are now the preferred food accompaniment for all NABD celebrations. Also acceptable, apple pie. If celebrating alone- Funyuns and beef jerky.
  • Consumption of cheap swill at NABD sanctioned events is verboten. Since Belgians and South Africans own the two major breweries, this should be obvious. Support your local brewery and their superior products.

That’s it, pretty straightforward. If an enterprising young EBC aficionado could see to it to post these regulations on Wikipedia, we’ll make this thing quasi-official.  Thank you in advance and Happy National American Beer Day.

  • What did we miss? Got an idea for another new NABD tradition? Post it on our Facebook page.
  • Looking for last minute NABD gifts? Growler koozies makes a fantastic present and are available in the taproom all this week –with special NABD pricing (not really).

Brews, Walter and a Fireside Chat

Brews, Walter and a Fireside Chat

Corporate retreats typically involve C-suite executives jetting off to luxury hotels to squander shareholder money on lavish vacations under the guise of discussing strategy. These involve plenty of consultants, P & L statements, expense accounts and probably a little adultery.

At EBC none of that is our style. Our focus is elsewhere, primarily on brewing superior beer and secondarily on slaying walleye.  So it is appropriate that two of our owners and a few close advisors recently set out for a different kind of corporate retreat.  This one held in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area where minimalist camping met malt beverage and some solid fishing.

It was a chance to put the day-to-day tactics of running a brewery aside and focus a little more on enjoying God’s creation and focusing on the why behind this business.

Sitting around a campfire our two owners along with a few good buds came up with the following founding principles– not only where we stand, but who we are.

Excelsior Brewing Founding Principles

  • At Excelsior Brewing we believe a life well-lived is lived outdoors
  • We believe that genuine people and majestic natural resources make Minnesota a superior place to live
  • We believe in slowing down, taking the scenic route and catching your own dinner
  • We believe warm sun, a cold beer and a live bite nurture your soul
  • We believe we have a responsibility to leave a legacy to the next generation
  • We believe that what you drink matters, so you should make it great

A little hokey perhaps, but knowing why you are in business gives you clarity to tackle the everyday tasks while still retaining your focus.  For us, the retreat served as a good reminder that it’s not all taproom parties and shenanigans, though there are plenty of those too.

  • See all the pictures from our corporate retreat on Facebook:   Pictures
  • Got ideas on adding to our list of Founding Principles? Share them via twitter @ excelsiorbrew    #XLCRBWCA

Cool things to follow…

A YEAR IN THE WILDERNESS:   This fall, follow explorers Dave and Amy Freeman on their next adventure advocacy expedition:
spending a year in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness to help protect the area
from the threat of proposed sulfide-ore copper mining on the Wilderness edge.  Trip dates are September 23, 2015 – September 22, 2016 and you can follow them here:

A Year in the Wildnerness: Save the Boundary Waters

 

 

 

 

 

 

Docktoberfest 2015 – Harvesting of the Docks

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We’ve all heard of Oktoberfest. Two Austirans get married. Lots of flowers, plenty of beer, and we celebrate it in September for some reason. Well we like it as much as the next guy here at Excelsior, but around these parts we celebrate an even prouder tradition. Docktoberfest!

 

Docktoberfest is an annual celebration of the ritualistic harvesting of the docks—that time of year when we say “see ya later” to summer and bring the docks ashore. Heavy from a season of soaking up fun (and water), hauling them in can be hard work! So we celebrate these docks, and those who harvest them, in a party of pierless proportions.

 

So don your ceremonial Waderhosen, grab your stain-glass stein, and go from harbor to hops at the Excelsior Taproom and our annual Docktoberfest celebration.

 

Thursday October 8, 4-11pm

Friday October 9, 4pm – 11pm

Saturday October 10, 12pm – 11pm

Sunday October 11, 12pm – 6pm

 Band Schedule Here

As the tradition calls for, there will be refreshing season brews, delicious food and fare, live music and authentic Docktoberfest bar games. Most importantly, it’s a time of year when a community can come together to drink while we dry, and have a great time doing it.

MinneGose Gose Style Ale- new release!

MinneGose Gose Style Ale- new release!

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

EXCELSIOR GOES-UH ALL OUT WITH GOSE-STYLE SEASONAL BREW

EXCELSIOR, MN—June 8, 2015—Local craft brewery Excelsior Brewing Company is launching a new limited seasonal brew unlike anything they’ve crafted before: a Gose-style wheat beer that’s been christened MinneGose (pronounced Minne-goes-uh).

Based on the regional specialty beers of Goslar, Germany, Excelsior’s take on the Gose uses the same coriander and sea salt agents and a unique top-fermentation method. It’s not a particularly easy style of beer to make, but it’s extremely easy to drink, with a light citrus body, no hop bitterness, and a dry finish. According to President John Klick, MinneGose will pair well with light bodied foods like sea bass, lobster, and avocado salad, mild cheeses, and deserts like lemon tarts, salted caramels, and roasted pears.

Available now in 6-packs and on draught lines throughout the state, once MinneGose goes away, it’s gone!

XLCR- Now with all American hops!

XLCR- Now with all American hops!

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Excelsior flagship brew XLCR to become more XLent

EXCELSIOR, MN—June 9, 2015—Local craft brewery Excelsior Brewing Company is announcing a new recipe for its flagship XLCR pale ale. The brewery has grown a lot in three years since opening its doors, and now XLCR is growing too, with more complex flavors that should delight fans of the brewery’s lineup.

Head brewer Niles Lewin explains that the recipe now features strictly American hops, resulting in a truly American Pale Ale with better mouth feel and an improved nose, while retaining the toasty, malty characteristics that helped launch the beer (and the brand) in 2012. Suggested pairings include grilled meats, sharp cheeses, and fruit-based desserts. In short, it goes with just about everything that makes America a great place to eat and drink.

If you love America, and you love beer, you’ll love this even-more-American Pale Ale. Try it today (or tonight, if that’s more convenient)!

 

Maifest May 8th & 9th

The week is upon us- our first annual Maifest is this Friday and Saturday! The taproom opens at 4p on Friday and noon on Saturday with lots of bands, food and of course beer.

Join us Friday for Refrigerager hitting the stage at 8pm. We will have service at the front bar, a bar in the middle of the brewery and food from the Excelsior Masons. Come early to purchase your very own Maifest pint glass for $5!

Saturday we kick off the day with the blessing of the Maibock, the Minnesota BeerCast will be in the tent recording their show and bands start at 1pm. The Excelsior Masons will be serving up hot food in the tent as well. The line up includes:

12-2p- Dale Grove (accordian player)

1-3p- John Rosensteel

3-5p- Jeff Dayton & Friends

6-9p- The Big Wu

9-11p- The Bitter Roots

A few things to note- we do have an ATM but recommend bringing cash ($1s!). On Saturday you can access the tent via the patio alleyway. Well behaved pups on a leash and kids are welcome- but we suggest coming early to avoid the crowd.

Bike parking will be available – please park with your tires in the slots- not sideways. This helps us ensure there is plenty of room for everyone!file15315

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For more information be sure to visit our Maifest page here: http://excelsiorbrew.com/maifest-58-59/