Craft Beverage Boom Moves Beyond Beer and Liquor
As the craft beer market becomes more saturated, non-alcoholic craft beverages are moving into the spotlight. From coffees and teas to juices and sodas, favors have moved well beyond the traditional orange, apple, and French vanilla flavors to include salted caramel, lavender, and blackberry cucumber. By 2025, San Francisco-based Grand View Research predicts the global non-alcoholic beverage market will reach $1.6 trillion, with “functional” beverages—those touting a health benefit—as the fastest-growing product segment.
Here are three local craft beverage startups stirring interest in the Twin Cities and beyond:
So Good So You
Founded in 2014 by Rita Katona and Eric Hall, So Good So You is an organic food and beverage company based in Minneapolis that offers cold-press juice cleanses, coffees, and probiotic wellness shots. Its plant-based beverages are packed with protein and nutrients and are sold in 1,200 stores nationwide, including Target and Whole Foods. So Good So You also has two smoothie and juice bars in the Twin Cities, and earlier this year the company opened a cafÃ© in the skyway at Ninth and Nicollet.
Based in Minneapolis, Superior Switchel brews sparkling organic switchel, a ginger and apple-cider vinegar elixir from the 17th century. The beverage helps digestion and rehydration, and unlike kombucha, it is caffeine- and alcohol-free. Sold in more than 150 stores in the Midwest, Oregon, and Georgia, Superior Switchel was founded in 2015 by Melina Lamer and is the only certified woman-owned switchel company in the U.S.
Born out of Minneapolis-based Five Watt Coffee in 2014, Big Watt is a cold-press coffee beverage. To stand out in an increasingly crowded market, Big Watt offers unique flavors such as salted lavender grapefruit and toasted honey nut vanilla. The beverage is available in more than 16 states at grocery stores, co-ops, and restaurants, including Minneapolis’ Spoon and Stable. To keep up with production, Big Watt opened its own brewing facility in 2017.