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Author Archives: ryan

Hello from the “New Kid”

Here to drink your beer. Ryan Anderson.

Greetings from a recent Twin Cities’ transplant. I’m Ryan Anderson and I’ll be helping with FMBeer.com for the foreseeable future. About 10 years ago I started another website that you may be familiar with – MNBeer.com. And about three years ago, we cloned many of the elements of that site over to FMBeer.com, with local beer guy Dean Gundberg at the helm. Dean has worked tirelessly to keep this site active – I’ve mostly just ensured that it is functional and easy on the eyes.

My family and I relocated to the F/M area to be closer to all of our parents and to step away from ridiculous commutes. We both enjoyed our jobs (Hell, I worked at Brewers Supply Group… I loved my job), but wanted a change in order to slow our worlds down a bit, so here we are.

I spent my formative years in Fergus Falls, looking to Fargo as the “big city.” The music scene in Fargo drew me here in the early 90s and I spent a few years involved with the music and ‘zine world while in high school and college. During that time I developed a love for “dark beer” at Ralph’s Corner Bar in Moorhead (RIP), and then a palate expansion thanks to the Great Northern on Broadway and a few liquor stores that carried a variety of what we used to call “Microbrews.”

It’s been nearly twenty years since I’ve lived here, but I’m glad to be back. Our first two months here have been a whirlwind of moving, paperwork, acclimating, construction and more paperwork (selling a house is a lot of work). I’ve also been playing the role of stay-at-home Dad while we’ve been getting settled. Life is starting to get a little less crazy and I’m looking forward to connecting with local beer nerds, reps and brewery folks soon. We’re tossing around the thought of a FMBeer-related meetup sometime in the not-so-distant future. Drop us a line if you’re interested!

I’m also in the process of finding my dream-gig in Fargo/Moorhead. Most recently I’ve been working as a designer with the marketing team at Brewers Supply Group. Before that, I was the advertising manager for a Twin Cities ski/bike/paddle/camp outdoor store. Whatcha’ got Fargo/Moorhead?

Looking forward to drinking more of your beers!


Submit Your Own Events

So, uh, we took our sweet time with this one, but we are proud to announce that as of today, you can submit your own events to FMBeer.com. Pretty sweet, eh? Click here to check it out.

Once your submit your event, it’ll be routed to us for approval. Once approved, it goes live.

These are truly exciting times we live in…



Bemidji Brewing Co.

This article comes courtesy of our partner site, MNBeer.com. Thanks to David Duffey for the profile on Bemidji Brewing! Bemidji recently passed all of their state and federal licensings and have the green light to brew!

Do yourself a favor and spend some time in Bemidji; you won’t be disappointed.  It’s a pleasantly bustling, yet relaxed town with plenty of nature around to admire and get lost in.  In fact, if you stop by on a weekend you can sample the Mexican-Scandinavian fusion food truck, the Local 303.   The novelty of a lefse fish taco made with walleye should alone be reason enough to bring you in, but I’ll give you more: it will soon be the only place to find the beers offered by the Bemidji Brewing Company.


The seeds of the Bemidji Brewing Company were sown while Tom Hill, Tina Hanke and Justin (call him Bud) Kaney were in college.  There, they experimented with homebrewing and developed a passion for good beer and always harbored an inkling they would someday make a living out of it. Their careers took them, collectively, across the country from Alaska to Rhode Island, Texas to Montana and gave them some great experiences with craft beer.  In those years, Tom became a Certified Cicerone and worked at Northern Brewer while Tina and Bud had become well-practiced in community organizing, programming and marketing.  Feeling need for a change to the daily grind, the three chose to come back to their Northern Minnesota roots (Tom and Bud are BSU grads) and make their passion for beer into a full-time endeavor. The first step, though, would be getting back to Bemidji.  When they decided to launch the business, Tina and Bud were in Missoula while Tom was in Saint Paul.   These geographic limitations meant Skype meetings and document sharing were the norm while the three of them hashed out their plan for the brewery.  They launched (and successfully funded) a Kickstarter project [see the MNbeer.com profile of the Kickstarter trend here] and their nano-brewery was off and running.

Running in place, that is.  With a plan, but without a facility, the three were entertaining the thought of working from a shared-space when, by pure serendipity, Harmony Co-Op  in Bemidji opened the doors to their Community Kitchen.

Harmony Co-op Corner

One of the co-op’s visions for the kitchen is to be the extra push needed for a food producer to get a professional business off the ground and Bemidji Brewing’s plan presented a great opportunity for both the brewery and the co-op.

Making it work

This fortune came with a unique twist when it came time to obtain federal approval.  The TTB informed them they were the first brewery in the country to operate out of a shared space and as such, required more detailed assurances than normal.  Harmony Co-Op proved to be a steadfast supporter and was willing to assist with making necessary adjustments to obtain the federal approval. Working within a shared space means, among other things, Bemidji Brewing needs to clear out at the end of a brew day, so their equipment needed to be nimble, compact and for the most part, portable.  They found this in a custom-built steel brewing stand that is equipped with two burners and can hold three 30-gallon kettles. Perhaps most importantly, the entire stand can be loaded in and out as needed. To utilize the available fridge space in the co-op they use 26-gallon keg-style fermenters and a caged area in the existing walk-in cooler will house the finished product.

Finally, the three founders of the Bemidji Brewing Company are back, settled in, and finished with Skype meetings and long trips away from home.  The facility is set and the equipment is at the ready.  Federal approval came in August 2012 and now with state approval pending, Bemidji Brewing is only waiting to start selling beer and become a success story for the Co-Op’s Community Kitchen.

Expect to see Bemidji Brewing beers on tap this fall at select Bemidji locations. Keep up with the latest on their website  and on Facebook.

FermenterBrew Stand