Minnesota: Butcher and the Boar, Minneapolis


When I visited Minneapolis, Minn., for a conference a couple of weeks ago, I expected to find cold, snowy weather – and I did. What I didn’t expect to find was a great bourbon bar. But that is exactly what I did find – and it was all thanks to social media.

Several weeks ago, I posted a blog entry about pairing bourbons with Girl Scout cookies. A fan of cookies and bourbon in Minneapolis saw the post and tweeted it to a friend who happened to be in Louisville for a conference. I tweeted them back, mentioned I’d be in Minneapolis in a few weeks, and that’s how I found myself having a couple of bourbon flights with them at Butcher and the Boar.


Butcher and the Boar, which just celebrated its first year in business, has a menu devoted to corn-fed pork and, as Mpls St. Paul magazine put it, “the other great attainment of corn: bourbon.” This place has 60+ brands, including its own bottlings of Knob Creek single barrel and Buffalo Trace small batch. If you plan to have dinner, make a reservation. Or enjoy a few drinks in the beer garden (yes, it’s heated), which also has a full bar. Thanks to my Twitter friends for introducing me to Butcher and the Boar. See? Social media really can be social.


Also in Minneapolis, I tried an intriguing cocktail at the Loring Kitchen & Bar. How could I not order something called the Berry Baptist Bourbon, especially when the description read, “Full of hell, fire and damnation. No refunds”? The drink mixes Buffalo Trace bourbon with Bordeaux-infused cherry juice, jalapenos and “spicy water” – red pepper flakes in warm water. It was spicy, but mostly on the front; my lips tingled, but the bourbon and cherries tamped down the fire and gave the drink a sweet finish. It was curiously refreshing and warming. I didn’t even mind the brisk walk back to the hotel.

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The Bourbon Babe

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