Now Open: Bauhaus Brew Labs

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July 18, 2014
By: Ben Johnson
Matt Schwandt
Ben Johnson
Ben Johnson
Northeast's latest brewery hopes to create a niche with drinkable lagers and an action-packed atmosphere

Today Bauhaus Brew Labs became the fourth tap room to open in a 12-square-block area of Northeast, cementing its status as the epicenter of Minnesota’s craft brewing industry.

“Initially we were looking for anywhere but Northeast, to try to do something that was a little bit different, maybe in a neighborhood that didn’t have a tap room yet,” said Bauhaus co-founder Matt Schwandt. “But as soon as we saw this space we were like ‘Yeah, it has to be here,’ and since we’ve moved in we’ve really rethought what it means to be in Northeast.”

Tucked into the backside of the Crown Center at 1315 Tyler St. NE, Bauhaus’s spacious, brightly-colored design implies this will be a louder, more jovial place than the typical tap room. There’s two stages, one inside and one outside, and the patio sits under a string of lights, looking out at a (still under construction) garden for Crown Center tenants on one side and a graffiti-plastered wall on the other. On a recent visit a miniature trampoline lurked mischievously in one corner of the tap room.

The Bauhaus patio -- photo by Ben Johnson

Trivia Mafia will begin hosting a regular trivia night in August, and Schwandt said he’s working on karaoke, a game show night and booking an eclectic mix of bands.

“We want this to be our playland,” said Schwandt, a former business attorney.

The tap room will be open 3-11 p.m. Wednesday-Friday, and noon-11 p.m. on Saturday.

Schwandt began seriously pursuing opening a brewery in the fall of 2012, and it quickly snowballed into a family affair. Six of his relatives join him as co-founders, including his two brothers, Mark and Mike, and his father-in-law, Howard Haines, who has been his brewing partner for more than a decade. The Schwandt brothers play in a cover band called Viva Knievel, which will be the brewery’s house band.

“It’s a family business, kind of like a new version of Schell’s. We hope to start a new legacy,” said Matt.

Bauhaus is already distributing beer to about 15 local bars and once its canning line is installed it will sell packs of 12-ounce cans to liquor stores.

Bauhaus is the first Minneapolis brewery to focus mostly on lagers. Its flagship beers are Wonderstuff, a Bohemian pilsner; Stargrazer, a German-style Schwarzbier; Wagon Party, a West Coast-style lager; and Skyfive, a Mid-coast IPA. Ideas for the rotating seasonal tap include an American IPA, a Baltic Porter and a dark American wheat ale.

“We want to create a craft beer brand that is impactful but inclusive and unpretentious, and lager beers are the perfect vehicle for that,” said Matt.

Ben Johnson // 612-436-5088 // bjohnson@journalmpls.com // @johnsonbend