March 3, 2016

Last Friday evening Samantha and I were looking for something to do and decided to head down to 612Brew. On our way there we stopped by one of our favorite food trucks turned restaurant; Cafe Racer Kitchen. This was particularly fitting because the last time we were at 612 it was to evaluate them for our wedding. After filling our stomachs with some delicious Latin American cuisine (try the pulled chicken) we made the short drive to Northeast, Minneapolis.

612Brew is located in The Broadway a large historic building that houses many office and retail locations. It’s a great space. The taproom is on the ground floor and opens out to a small patio and the building’s shared green space. Inside there are exposed brick walls, timber beams, and two large murals. One mural is in the main taproom area while the other is in their “The Cellar” location which can be reserved for private events. There is a mix of high tops, community tables, and bar seating. It all comes together to make the industrial space feel cozy.

We arrived around 7:30pm and it was packed! After surveying our surroundings we snuck in on the end of a table and ordered a flight. It was probably the fastest flight I’ve ever gotten as they’ve got a mechanism to fill each glass at the exact same time.  We were meeting up with my sister in-law Jill and her fianc√© David so we kept our eyes peeled and snagged the first table of four that opened up. The demographics of the place ran the gamut in regards to age. I could’ve swore some of the patrons were too young to drink, but I’m sure that’s just me getting old.

It was a preset flight of four: Gateway Park Pre-Prohibition Lager, Six American Pale Ale, Unrated Rye India Pale Ale, and Blue Coat Blueberry Cream Ale. As 612 has been established for awhile I wasn’t surprised to find that I enjoyed each of them. In particular the Unrated and the Blue Coat were great. The Blue Coat was straw yellow with a creamy mellow blueberry flavor and aroma. I’ve had other similar beers and the blueberry in this one was subtle and worked with the cream ale style really well. The Unrated was a surprise and probably my favorite beer of the night. Samantha ordered a pint of it which is quite the endorsement as it’s one of her least favorite styles. You can taste the rye right out of the gate, and after some deliberation we determined it smelled like pumpkin guts. This sounds worse than it was since we both enjoyed it thoroughly. I was also able to try their third anniversary beer which is a Belgian Style Tripel. At 9.3% ABV I was surprised at how smooth it was. Not surprisingly it was very sweet. This beer was also a hit with the group.

We definitely enjoyed our visit. After an initial busy period it did calm down. They had a live DJ and while the music selection was good it was a little loud for our taste. Their private event space was open to the public and it was much quieter in there. I would recommend checking the events calendar before visiting to see what food truck and music is playing on the night you’ll visit. Cafe Racer was slated to be present but they couldn’t make it. As a replacement the brewery was generous enough to order Mesa Pizza for everyone which was unexpected and much appreciated. Most importantly the beer was great and 612 is a worth a trip to anyone wanting to explore the Northeast beer scene.

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