Wow, this place is legit. Seemed to be plenty of street parking, as well as a dedicated lot. Nice corner building, large space but broken up into smaller rooms. Dining and a large bar area up front. Tap handles all over the damn place, which is not surprising given how many beers they have running. Lots of wood which is nice. A quick look at the taplist shows that Drake nailed it - a lot of thought went into this, loads of interesting locals, tons of rarities and great beers, broken up loosely by characteristic (light/dark, malty/hoppy/sour, "Belgiany" etc). Flights of 5 were available, with "some exceptions" that I did not encounter. Flight price was indeed steep, but for beers of this quality I was ok. Bartender was helpful and efficient, and left me to tick when it was obvious that was what I was there for. Seemed to be a locals hangout, and I could see why. I would basically kill to have a bar of this quality in Silicon Valley. After I left I realized that I never even asked to see the huge bottle list. I can only imagine what I may have missed. I guess the one possible knock was beer age - I had a Fair State Keller Blanc as one of my flight that didn’t have much pop, and found out later that evening that it is not a very recent release. Not sure why it was still on.
People have told me this is the best beer bar in the twin cities, and I believe them. Place was about halfway full on a rainy Monday afternoon. I had a bowl of beefy corn chowder that was excellent. They’re up to 89 taps with lots of rare selections. Any beer geek will find something new here unless they happen to live next door. Bartender was exceptionally helpful and was happy to give samples and advice. I asked him for a recommendation and the beer he recommended was excellent. 5 beer flight for $20 is a little steep. But, I got a flight of basically all sour ales so it didn’t seem too bad. Yeah, the prices are steep as others have mentioned but you get what you pay for. Comfortable inside. Lots of corners and beer swag on the walls. Music just to my taste, they played The Who, Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd while I was there. If I were a local this would be my regular stop.
Visited after the Northern Lights fest with jackl and Chris, and we plan on having Sunday brunch here as well. The gnomes are everywhere. Large corner bar, restaurant tables around the corner. Bustling late on a Saturday night, efficient and friendly staff. Very solid beer list. Delicious food. Great stop.
This place is one of my absolute favorites! A very cool bar with a "roof" above it and lots of booths around the edges. Service is always great and they are very knowledgeable about the beers and willing to take time to explain things. One of the best selections in the city, if not the best in terms of quantity and quality. Samplers available. Food is delicious! Prices a touch high, but worth it for the quality! Love this place!
A pretty cozy restaurant/bar in a very nice part of St Paul. The weirdly shaped bar goes around a corner, so it’s impossible to see all the taps available from one seat. Luckily, the bar staff was pretty patient and happy to fill me in on what was available. The beer list is large and features a lot of Belgian stuff on tap. I was primarily interested in local beers, and found the tap list a bit lacking in that area. Still, what was available was of good quality. I had some awesome beers from Indeed and Steel Toe. The food I tried was definitely a cut above average. Definitely consider eating here. Prices weren’t exactly cheap. Overall, worth a detour for a meal and a few beers.
Stopped here on a tour of University of Minnesota with my daughter. Had to wait for a table, but it was worth it. Killer beer selection on tap, and the food is good. I really like the ambiance, and sitting outside on a warm summer evening was great.
Food was great, beer was great, and the service was great. That it was all made available in an exceedingly comfortable and casual setting made visiting The Happy Gnome a very enjoyable experience. Highly recommended.