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Five Fresh Local Beers for Spring

This is what you want in your glass right now.

Let the sunshine in.
Let the sunshine in.
Modist Brewing Company

A long winter of bold and malty beers to forget the cold is behind us. It’s time to reach for the light, crisp and refreshing beers to forget the soggy shoes and bike repairs that arise with the change of the season. Oh, and to celebrate of course. In springtime hope shines eternal, they say. Just look at the bright and sunny designs of some of these cans and head to a nearby patio or porch to try out a few of Minnesota’s newest spring beers. Instead of high alcohol sippers, springtime is a season of easy drinking beers of a lighter hue.


Surly Xtra-Citra Pale Ale

The sunshine on the can isn’t just a graphic, it’s bursting out of this beer that highlights the citrus forward and aptly-named Citra hop.  Session is the word of the season, and with Xtra-Citra pouring a mild 4.5% ABV, the beer is light and breezy. While its aroma leads with a dominate citrus profile, the beer works because of a strong malt base akin to Furious. There’s a firm backbone and soft balance all the way through. It’s pretty much the definition of a patio beer.

Image credit: Surly Brewing


Grain Belt Lock & Dam Lager

It’s the rise of the lager. The oft-overlooked style has been abused and lightened by the macros, but beers like Lock & Dam highlight its strengths perfectly. The latest in the expanding Grain Belt line, Lock & Dam is bright golden with a definitive effervescence. This beer is crisp and hyper carbonated, making it relaxing and a new go-to lawnmower beer. The flavor is a familiar lager and malt mix, but with a buried hop profile that gives off a certain freshness, a green and light floral flavor that accents and refreshes an already easy drinking beer.

Image credit: Grain Belt


NorthGate Get Together IPA

A new session IPA from British-inspired brewers NorthGate, Get Together is a stylistic marriage of American hop forward beers with more traditional British brewing that uses hops as a bittering agent. The beer has a notable lemon and orange, followed by a biscuit impression and a zesty pine that comes in the tail end atop a balanced profile. British in build with a light mouthfeel that suits it well to the season. It’s fresh but without overdoing the hop element.

Image credit:


Finnegans' Hoppy Shepard

Seeing a trend here? Another session ale, this new Finnegan’s offering has been on market since February and adds a hop forward recipe to their Irish themed lineup. Including four different hops, it carries hints of tropical fruits, grapefruit, and tangerine in a complex but smooth package. Plus, it’s for charity: an excellent excuse to have another.

Image credit: Finnegan's


Modist pHresh

Modist is redefining beer, using a unique mash filter to separate their wort. But that’s industry talk, when the finished product is what matters. pHresh is their true standout upon opening, a "gateway sour" that’s more in line with typical beer expectations but with a tart fruity pear and a hint of salinity to complement the honeydew melon flavors at the start. It’s light and simultaneously both sweet and sour. It’s also incredibly unique, which is what sets Modist apart.

Image credit: Modist

Surly Brewing Company

520 Malcom Ave. SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

Northgate Brewing

783 Harding St NE, Minneapolis, MN 55413 (612) 354-2858 Visit Website

Modist Brewing Co

505 N 3rd St, Minneapolis, MN 55401 (612) 454-0258