5-8 Club Begins Partnership Program With Local Breweries
Historic burger joint 5-8 Club, one of Minneapolis’ two burger joints that claims the Juicy Lucy as its own, is looking to highlight Minnesota’s burgeoning craft beer scene through beer-and-burger invention collaborations.
According to the restaurant’s managing partner Jill Skogheim, the only stipulation to the partnerships is that the breweries are “as local as possible.” She hopes the Brewer’s Burger program—which involves breweries concocting a new beer and 5-8 Club a new burger to pair with it—will foster a sense of support among Minnesota’s independently owned food businesses.
The idea originated about a year ago, Skogheim said, through a coincidental partnership with St. Paul-based Summit Brewing Company.
“When we did the pairing with Summit, we had released our Sunnyside of Lucy burger and were looking for a beer to pair it with,” she said. The restaurant’s new burger, with its signature topping being a sunny-side-up egg, balanced well with Summit’s Oatmeal Stout, Skogheim said, and the two together were received well with customers.
Starting this March, 5-8 Club is bringing the idea into full force and partnering with one local brewery every month for at least six months. However, given the complexities involved in the brewing process, this time around 5-8 Club said it would let brewers take the lead when it comes to concocting the burger-beer pair.
“Because we have access to all kinds of ingredients and options, we kind of start with what they are thinking for beers,” Skogheim said. “It’s really collaborative. We spend one afternoon together chatting about ideas and then spend another afternoon together trying out how different ideas play together. We make multiple concoctions and they make one concoction, but you have to play with it a bit to make it work just right.”
For 5-8 Club’s March partnership with St. Paul-based Bad Weather Brewing Company, the duo are plating a Shepherd’s Pie-themed burger called The Dubliner alongside the brewer’s Irish Cream Ale. As a play on St. Patrick’s Day, the burger is topped with Irish cheddar cheese, peas, carrots, mashed potatoes with chunks of corned beef and gravy made from Bad Weather’s beer.
“I’ve always enjoyed Shepherd’s Pie,” said Andy Ruhland, head brewer at Bad Weather. “5-8’s Brewer’s Burger program was the ideal opportunity to create what I consider the perfect pairing for our limited release Irish Cream Ale.”
Combinations from the Brewer’s Burgers program will be available at all four 5-8 Club locations.