Brew Review – Surly 16-Grit
March 22, 2009, 3:17 pm
Filed under: Beer, Wine & Cocktails

My almost three year old often dictates what we’re going to do for dinner on the nights I decide not to cook.  He’s well-versed on some great places in town and usually picks a place that D.Jones and I are also happy to go.  Last night was no exception when, around 4:30 in the afternoon he said “Mommy, I’m hungry.  Can we go to Common Roots?”  Bravo, my boy, bravo!

Now, I am beginning to tire of touting the fabulocity of Common Roots.  Not because they are no longer fabulous, but because last week when I attempted to take my friend Alfred there, we realized there was a lineup of folks looking for a table about 6 deep, so we had to leave to find some place else to go.  I beg of you small business owners, will someone please open another internet cafe in S.Mpls that offers lots of outlets, great food and fantastic beer & wine?  Seriously.  In one night Alfred and I attempted to find a table at Common Roots, Gigi’s and Wilde Roast, almost to no avail!  Thankfully a tiny little corner table at Wilde Roast opened up for us to squeeze into.  Wait.  You know what?  I take that back.  Forget about opening a different internet cafe, instead I beg of owner Danny Schwartzman to open a second location.  Pleeeease?  Pretty please?!  I mean, there’s not a thing wrong with this place.  The food is consistently wonderful, fresh, organic and tasty.  The beer selection is local.  The wine selection is affordable and offers some good organic wines (which are hard to find, in my humble opinion) and they are the most socially conscious, green spot in town.  Cue one standing “o” for Common Roots….and what we need is another one!  I heart them in a big way.

So, when Cooper suggested good old Common Roots for dinner last night, we were happy to oblige.  Plus, D.Jones knew that they had a keg of Surly’s 16-grit available and he’s been dying to try it, so off we went.

When we got there I was overjoyed to see that there wasn’t much of a line.  I’m sure we were right on the early side of the dinner rush, so there were even plenty of tables available.  Score!  Then I saw the little sign indicating they also had their Creamy Tomato Basil soup available.  Double-score!  Man that soup is good!  D.Jones inquired about the 16-grit, holding his breath thinking that they may already have run out due to the limited release and they still had it!  Excellent all around!

We ordered one white bean burger, one grilled cheese, a cup of creamy tomato and a cup of curry squash soup, plus a Surly 16-grit.

The food, as always, was spot on.  Not a thing that could have been better.  And you know they work a miracle in the kitchen when little Cooper Jones asked us to get him a second cup of the curry squash soup.  Wow.

 Now on to the beer….

Surly released the 16-grit, a double-IPA, as what they state on their website was a “farewell to growlers”.  They have released it in limited availability at a few different places around the city. 

In the glass it showed as a gorgeous dark golden hue.  A bartender friend of D.Jones’ had said it was going to be like “Furious-times-three.”  It wasn’t.  It was smoother than Furious to me…perhaps slightly more drinkable.   Maybe because the malt is more apparent and the hops are toned down a little from Furious.  D.Jones would definitely pick a Furious over the 16-grit, and granted, lots of folks are looking for the majorly hopped-up beers when they think of Surly, but to me, to have it a little more subtle was nice.  Now, don’t get me wrong and think I’m saying this is a subtle beer.  It’s anything but!  This beer is bursting with flavors…the citrus of the hops apparent and the overall taste slightly sweet, but balanced.  Very full bodied, as always with Surly.  I mean, Surly has never disappointed us, and this one certainly didn’t.  I’m just bummed that in probably a couple more days they won’t be any more to be had….


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