If you are looking for information about requesting donations from Back Channel, please see this page.
+ Where did the name Back Channel come from?
We are located on the west side of Lake Minnetonka, specifically Seton Channel, which is the furthest channel from Minnesota’s metropolitan area. Additionally, “backchanneling” is a secondary, or secretive, way to pass information around, so there is a double meaning to our name. Back Channel represents the area of the lake that we are located, and we use backchanneling to describe famous Minnesotans or people with significant ties to our great state through our beer names; our taproom beer boards and descriptions provide hints to the people behind the names.
Our “Co.” stands for Collective—Meaning: A group of people acting together towards a common goal.
+ Our Logo
We wanted to use something with navigation, since there are many different modes of travel to our brewery, such as: boat, bike (Dakota Bike Trail is across Shoreline Blvd.), foot, SUP, snowmobile, kayak, snowshoe, car, etc.
The Arrow shape – This is the directional symbol on a compass, aka “the direction to BCB”.
Depth lines – Actual depth lines from Lake Minnetonka, and they also illustrate that our beer has depth. Bonus points if you know which bay! Hops and barley are very key elements in beer, but the most important ingredient is water . And with our brewery being on the lake, it only made sense to utilize water as a prominent feature of our logo.
+ Beer Names
We wanted our beer to represent something more than their style, so there is never an option to call a beer simply, “Stout” or “IPA.” Each beer represents a famous Minnesotan, or someone/something with significant ties to Minnesota. There is a clue in the name itself, on our displayed beer boards, and in each individual description on our beer menus; visit our taproom and engage with one of our beertenders to figure out the beer names.
+ What is your brewing capacity?
We are a 7bbl brewery with 6 7bbl fermenters.
+ Crowlers/To-Go Beer
Crowlers are 25.4oz cans or 750ml intended for off-sale.
We fill crowlers every Tuesday to make sure the cooler is stocked with a weekly allotment of beer. This is to ensure that you are taking home fresh beer and we are maintaining a unique and versatile tap list each week.
A Crowler’s quality will maintain for at least a couple weeks but are best consumed fresh.
We do not sell or fill growlers.
+ The Bowl
We discovered the greatness of bowls during a beer trip to Asheville, NC. We ran out of clean glassware at our AirBnb, so we resorted to using bowls because we didn’t want to do an injustice to the beer that we had. After a few butterfly inducing sips, we realized that there was something magical about the bowl. The resulting aromatics were off the charts, and the deliberate attention that was needed to take a sip was something special as well.
As you approach a sip, breathe in through your nose with your mouth open, and it’s a sensory explosion as you literally get a face full of aroma. Plus the shape of the bowl allows for the beer to warm a bit easier, so the aromatics continue to pop as you drink the beer. Whether it be one-handed, or two, you’ll find your groove as to how to use the bowl.
Additionally, we did some research about bowls to make sure that we weren’t coming off like crazy assholes. Turns out that the Nordic people, ake the Vikings, used “Ale Bowls” during celebrations, and the word skål, (Skol), literally translates to, “bowl.” And being from Minnesota, it only came naturally for us to pay homage to our Viking heritage. Tying this all together is the fact that we love IPAs, so in true Viking fashion, we celebrate the first week of any IPA that we put on tap with bowls. The bowls are only an option, however, so please feel free to choose an IPA glass if that’s your preferred method.
Food Truck – We feature a rotating list of highly-regarded food trucks, as well as occasional inside catering. See EVENTS page for the latest food options at Back Channel.
Take a gander at our EVENTS page to scout the daily truck or to seek out a favorite for a future visit, or check out our Facebook page (listed under Events).
BYOF – Bring whatever your heart desires. You’re even welcome to plug in the crockpot at the bar and feast away.
The Minnetonka Drive-In is considered a local legend and they are conveniently located across the street. To place an order online for pick-up: http://www.minnetonkadrivein.com/ *Not available on Thursdays (Classic Car Night)
Joey Novas Pizzeria located in Tonka Bay will offer all deliveries to the BCB taproom a 10% discount on their order.
No outside beverages please.
+ Directions - Ride my bike/motorcycle to brewery
Dakota Trail – 44 miles of paved road for bicyclists, with the best part being the 9-mile section that follows Lake.
Minnetonka’s shores. As you ride along awe-inspiring views, you can roll right off the trail and across the street into our taproom. Bike Rack provided in front of brewery entrance.
Shoreline Drive – Enjoy the twists and turns through the gorgeous watery landscape on your motorcycle, and stop off for a quick glass of beer before you head into the country, or the city. Motorcycle parking provided in NE corner of lot.
BCB Bike jerseys, caps & lights available for purchases.
+ Directions - Boating/SUP/Kayak
Transient docks – We have four slips that are available during business hours in spring/summer/fall. You must be 34 feet or less to dock, and heed to the marina rules. There will be a dock attendant on duty to assist you.
SUP, kayak, canoe – You are more than welcome to visit Back Channel, but you must carry your vessel off of the dock, and place it on the landing area by the marina entrance. The dock attendant will assist you.
Green Flags – Green flags represent when one of the four slips is available. If you do not see a green flag flying, please wait at least 100 feet to the south of the dock system until a boat opens up, or continue on your way. You are not allowed to stop in the channel and impede boat traffic.
Safety – Please follow all Lake Minnetonka boating rules, as well as Back Channel Marina rules.
Be a safe boater, and you won’t become a floater.
We are a dog friendly brewery.
Dogs must be well-behaved in our high-sensory environment, as we want everyone to enjoy their Back Channel experience.
Dogs must be on a leash (less than 6 ft in length).
Dogs are not allowed on taproom furniture (benches, chairs, barstools).
If your dog makes a mess, the owner is responsible for cleaning it up.
Potty Time? - Please take your dog out to our dog waste station, located in the southeastern parking lot. *Not our front lawn...thank you!
Barking - If your dog has more than 3 barking episodes, please take them outside. If your dog is a distraction, you may be asked to leave. Back Channel, not Bark Channel.
Back Channel shall not be liable for any incident related to dogs in this facility.
We sell Dog Brew by the 12 fl oz bottle. It is a nutritional liquid dog teat! Ingredients include: Pumpkin Broth, Sweet Potato, Celery, Carrot, Clove, Flaxseed - Dog Bowls available upon request.
+ Private Events
Available during non business hours - Mondays & Tuesdays, or lunch time on Wednesday and Thursday.
*availability varies by season
+ Party Buses
Party buses are welcome at Back Channel. However, in order to better serve your group and our other customers, we do ask that you kindly give us a heads-up. Please email the following to firstname.lastname@example.org:
No outside beverage – we will not tolerate outside beverage on our property including parking lot, taproom, patio, restrooms. Any offenders will be asked to leave.
+ Artimer Market
Artimer is an outdoor market at Back Channel Brewing where you can sip a beer while you shop for products from local artists, farmers, and food vendors. All Artimer Markets this summer feature live music.
Dates: May 29, June 26, July 31, August 28 (5-8pm)
Interested vendors can contact Joe.
+ Forgot to close your tab?
All open tabs/credit cards left at Back Channel will be closed out at the end of the shift. There will be a 20% gratuity added to all open tabs not closed out by the end of the business day.
+ Can you reserve tables?
Reserving Tables - To be fair and consistent to all of our (wonderful) customers, we do not reserve tables or sections of our taproom. For large parties, we recommend arriving when we open to ensure adequate space for your group. Otherwise, having someone from you group arrive before everyone to scope out an area, push tables together, etc.
+ Do we have WiFI?
Yes! We offer complimentary guest Wi-Fi. Password is "GreatBeer!"
+ Do we have games?
Summer – Bags
Winter – Shufflepuck
BOYG – Bring Your Own Game
We also sell our own cribbage boards. And...decks of cards!
+ Live Music Inquiries
If you're interested in performing at an upcoming Back Channel event, please inquire here.
*we are not a live music venue, but book artists/bands on occasions for special events
Have questions about availability? Inquire here
+ How can I Purchase Back Channel Merch?
Back Channel merch is currently only available in the taproom.
*stay tuned for our online store, coming soon!
+ Food Trucks
Are you a vendor interested in serving our customers at Back Channel? Please contact Joe.