"Six years ago, when we started, the choices you had at the liquor store were maybe one cooler door," Ryan Petz remembers. It’s not just the Minnesota brewing scene that’s changed in that time, but the national landscape as well. "The sheer amount of choice that’s out there," he reflects, gives a new dynamic that’s helped craft beer grow from dedicated enthusiasts to average people on the street, "your dad or your uncle," he says, who don’t necessarily go by the enthusiast name.
Today through Friday Fulton is hitting six establishments about town with special beers. A special Ex Pat rye saison, aged for almost 2 years in red wine barrels, will be on tap at Pizzeria Lola tonight, with a rare barreled Libertine imperial red ale on offer Thursday at Happy Gnome, the restaurant where Fulton launched at the turn of the Aughts. Come Friday, they’ll close out the celebrations with a party at Stub & Herb’s, offering the last known keg of 300 from their 2015 brewing of the specialty beer after a few other stops along the way.
300 is a single hopped West Coast IPA made with Mosaic hops. "This one is probably the most hop driven beer we make," Petz says. It was first brewed a few years ago at their taproom as a commemorate "Batch 300," a milestone long surpassed over six years in business. Due to popularity, both among staff and with taproom patrons, 300 makes occasional returns for special occasions. This batch was brewed in July and Stub & Herb’s is the last location (they know of) still selling the beer. Its certain that Petz and his Fulton coworkers will be there to enjoy it before it’s gone, checking off another milestone for the rapidly growing brewery that started with a few bottles contract bottles out of Black River Falls, WI and now operates owns a large warehouse in Northeast Minneapolis and a popular taproom adjacent to Target Field.
Fulton’s sixth anniversary celebrations:
Wednesday Oct. 28 at Pizzeria Lola: Barrel-aged Ex Pat
Thursday Oct. 29 at Happy Gnome: 2014 barrel-aged Libertine
Thursday Oct. 28 at Blue Door Pubs (Minneapolis and St. Paul): casks of Libertine
Friday Oct. 30 at Acadia: cask of 2014 Worthy Adversary
Friday Oct. 30 at Central Ave Liquors: Liquor store tasting including special cellared beers
Friday Oct. 30 at Stub & Herb’s