Ben and Mark Hugus dreamt of owning and operating their own brewery someday. They didn’t realize that a brewery would be in their future during their trip to Italy. The two brothers decided to make their dreams a reality. Once they were back, Mark started working at a few breweries to learn about the business of crafting beer and four years later, Ursa Minor Brewery was born.
What’s in a Name?
The name for Ursa Minor Brewery is something special to the Hugus brothers. If you are up to date on your astrological signs, Ursa Minor is the constellation better known as the Little Dipper, which contains the North Star. “The North Star is the guiding light for people” said Ben, “That’s what craft beer and the craft beer community has been for us in our lives.” Ben, Mark, and their good friend Andrew Scrignoli (who will be the General Manager) will be the guiding light for Ursa Minor Brewery as construction has started to create the vision they had long dreamed of. The new brewery will be in Duluth’s Lincoln Park craft district, which seems fitting for the type of beer that will be served.
What’s on Tap?
This brewery is sure to be unlike others that are local to Duluth. With the ever-changing selection of craft beers combined with wood-fired pizza and a great place to sit outside and enjoy the sun, Ursa Minor Brewery is a place for everyone (even your dog!). “We want the brewery to be a very welcoming place” said Mark, who is the Director of Brewing Operations. There will be room for seating outside as well as a few tables inside for those who want to take in the smell of the wood-fire pizza. These are the magic ingredients that will make a taproom centric brewery.
With a five-barrel system the brewery will be able to turn over beer fast, which means that customers can look forward to a different selection of beer each time they visit. To start there will be twelve tap lines of hand crafted beer and in the future Mark would like to have about twenty tap lines. The variety of beer that will be produced includes IPA's, Porters, Stouts, Pales, and even Sour beers. What makes this brewery so special is that their mission is to create an unforgettable experience for customers that makes them feel almost like they’re at home. The thing that excites Andrew most about the brewery is "The community that will hopefully grow around it. We want to be a place that hosts community events.” Events such as a “group bike ride, a race, a Christmas party, or just a nice sunny day to meet with friends” is what excites all the three about opening Ursa Minor Brewery.
With construction underway Ben, Mark, and Andrew are planning to unveil their dream to the Duluth public by mid-July. You can run, ride your bike, walk, or drive down to 2415 W Superior St Suite B in Lincoln Park! While there will be a large media presence surrounding the new brewery, Ursa Minor will be searching for an intern that would like to do digital and social media marketing for them. This position would include taking video of their brewing operations and spreading awareness about the company through the Duluth community. Although it isn't paid, there is a good chance the intern will receive beer (must be 21+) and maybe even some pizza!