I’ll try not to wax poetic as I talk about Bauhaus Brew Labs, but the truth is it’s my favorite brewery we’ve visited so far. The brewery’s About page contains their deftly articulated German Bauhaus art and design philosophy, uniquely stylized employee photos, and a detailed history about their location in the old Crown Iron Works Company building, throwing both cultural weight and excitement behind what might otherwise be a gorgeous, but meaningless, construction of brick, iron, Christmas lights, games, art, science, Germany, and, of course, beer.
If Bauhaus were a character on TV, it would be a fully-formed HBO protagonist, complete with a backstory, personality, and ingratiating character tics. One of those personality markers is play. A branded bean bag toss, comprehensive board game collection (lounging underneath a quote about play from Johannes Itten, a Bauhaus instructor), and (intriguingly), a collection of vintage arcade games all speak to Bauhaus’s philosophy of fun first.
Other character traits include science and learning (beer coasters that teach you German), music (a stage occupies a large swath of one corner), and history (Bauhaus has done little to alter the spirit of the foundry upon which they reside). Everywhere you turn at Bauhaus, there is something new to see.
The clientele at Bauhaus skews in the same direction as many other northeast breweries: young and hip. You may sometimes get closer to your neighbors than you’re used to, due to Bauhaus’s German biergarten-style seating that uses long tables and benches that span the room.
At this juncture, the discussion of beer almost seems ancillary. Perhaps that is the mark of a good brewery: a sense of community and brand so strong it almost makes the beer seem beside the point. But, as with everything else about Bauhaus, the beer is impossible to ignore.
“Hoppy” and “Tropical” are my two favorite descriptors to see for an IPA, and Bauhaus’s Sky-Five! Midwest Coast IPA delivers on both. It is probably tied for my favorite beer in the Twin Cities with Surly’s inimitable Todd the Axe Man. You can read my review of Sky-Five! on Untappd here, as well as my reviews of their Wonderstuff Neü Bohemian Pilsener and Wagon Party West Coast Style Lager.
Pros: Strong identity, friendly and interesting atmosphere
Cons: What can I say?
Number one reason you should go: In the world of Twin Cities breweries, the dynamic Bauhaus Brew Labs hits close to the heart of what a brewery means and should be for its guests: a place of warmth, style, play, and good beer. It is not to be missed.