Modist beer will be available in tallboy cans this week

Canning is a growing trend.
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Modist beer will soon be available in tallboy cans.

The Minneapolis brewery began distributing 32-ounce crowlers to some liquor stores last fall, and this week you'll be able to buy two of its most popular beers in slightly smaller, 16-ounce cans, the brewery announced.

"We decided to go with tallboys because it's our favorite way beer is packaged," Dan Wellendorf of Modist told GoMN. "Cans are great for keeping the beer fresh and protecting the beer from light and oxygen – and we love when beer can be enjoyed in a full pint, so the 16-ounce serving size fits the bill."

First Call, a coffee-flavored lager, and Dream Yard (formerly known as Deviation 002), an American IPA, will be available in special artist-designed cans starting Thursday. Here's a list of liquor stores, as well as bars and restaurants, where you can buy the four-packs.

Wellendorf says they plan to package another beer or two in cans in the next few months, but they haven't quite narrowed down which ones – it's between pHresh, a light ale; their new American wheat lager that'll be introduced in the taproom soon as part of their Deviation Series; or the new version of the now-retired Toats.

There's a release party at Pat's Tap in Minneapolis on Thursday from 5-10 p.m. to celebrate the new cans.

The canning trend

Craft brewers have long relied on two packaging formats – bottles and draught, the Brewers Association said in 2015.

Bottles are still the most popular option, the Brewers Association said in January. But over the past few years cans have become more common, thanks in part to the idea that they can be brought to more places than bottles can, as well as the diminishing stigma that canned beer is cheap and doesn't have much flavor.

Ryan Petz, the CEO and co-founder of Fulton Brewing in Minneapolis and a member of the Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild board, told GoMN last fall he’d guess probably about a quarter to maybe half of Minnesota’s more than 100 breweries offer at least some of their beer in a can.

But that hasn’t always been the case. Petz said back in 2009, when he started Fulton, only a couple of breweries were canning. Now, Petz said, it seems like the newer breweries are starting exclusively in cans – and the ones that have been around longer are canning at least a portion of their production.

The same trend is seen nationwide, with the Brewers Association reporting smaller craft breweries are canning more often than larger craft brewers, and are choosing to start out with a canning line instead of a bottling line. In 2011, the Brewers Association said about 2 percent of craft volume was in cans, but by 2014, it had increased to 10 percent of total craft volume.

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