Craftsmen Interviews are designed to introduce you to dedicated, hard-working local makers that are cultivating local culture. Short, easy reads that impart valuable knowledge and inspire you to explore and support authentic endeavors.  Stay ahead of upcoming trends and get recommendations from those helping to build their community.  (-Learn more) 

You’ve landed on one of our favorite breweries in Duluth, Ursa Minor Brewing, one of the coolest and newest editions to the Duluth’s Lincoln Park Craft District.

Ursa Minor Brewing’s Head Brewer Ben Hugus started a brewery where he could perfect the making of all the things he loved; Pizza, Beer, and New Friends.

Their focus on making comfort beers that take local-sourcing to the next level using 100% MN-grown Hops, Malts, and Lake Superior water.  Their commitment to sustainability and quality ingredients inspires us to eat and drink better.

Check out our short interview and recommendations from the man who brought it all together, Ben Hugus.

What inspired you to start your own brewery? Why was sustainability so important to you? 

Our mission at Ursa Minor Brewing is to unite people through incredible craft beer and give people genuine experiences, meaningful connection, and a chance to give back to the community around them. The ability craft beer has to bring people together to grow and inspire communities is what inspired us to open our own brewery. Craft beer is our vehicle for creating positive change in the world. We love people, people love beer, and beer loves us!

Since the beginning we have also held a close focus on running a sustainable business wherever we can. Our primary way of doing this is though supporting other local industries and small businesses. A dollar spent in our community, stays in the community, and does far more good for our neighbors. We take great pride in supporting our local businesses wherever we are able and we believe we are able to make a higher quality product because of it.

We want to leave this world better than we found it and it starts by making conscious decisions about how we make our products and where those products come from.

Your space is pretty amazing and we love the patio. What’s your favorite part?

Other than our beer? The people. We do this because we love our community. We love meeting new people each and every day, sharing a pint, and having real conversations. In an era of impersonal communication, we are trying to give people the opportunity to reconnect and share real experiences.

We wanted a space that could bring together both regulars and tourists which is why we’ve made flow and comfort such a focus here. We always host live music (Thursday – Sunday) and our Mug Club program has been a great way to better connect to our neighbors.

(Fun Fact: The Ursa Minor Mug Club currently has 284 members, each with their own hand-made mug from local potter and friend of the brewery Bob Husby

You’re part of the revitalization of Duluth by being here in the Lincoln Park Craft District. Is there anyone you work with or just love that we have to see here in the area before we leave?

This neighborhood has been truly inspiring to work and play in. Many of these buildings were inches away from being condemned or permanently abandoned and over the past five or so years, true artists and makers have begun investing and taking on the risk of rebuilding this part of town. These investments are being made by normal people, not mega developers, but real and passionate people. We are all passionate about our crafts and want the opportunity to show you what we do. That passion shows through the rougher edges and is creating an amazing and authentic community to be a part of and help to grow.

If you haven’t spent time down in the Lincoln Park Craft district before, I would recommend you make an afternoon out of it. Park at one end and walk the whole way, stopping at all the shops, cafes, breweries, and cideries as you go. You can’t go wrong and I promise you’ll leave with a new appreciation for what Duluth has to offer!

Ursa Minor Brewing

Est. 2018 by Ben Hugus
Visit: 2415 West Superior Street, Duluth, MN 55806
Recommendations (from Ben): Bear Hop IPA / Cream Ale  (current fav is the Seasonal Agate Hunter Sour)

Ursa Minor Brewing was 1st featured in our “Leaders in Sustainability” Passport and is also a proud MN Guild member that is committed to Health & Safety – MN Craft Brewers Guild Passport L-Z, and on our Mobile App. Additional photos and video tour on instagram.

Visit Ursa Minor Brewing in Duluth, MN, and enjoy a pizza, beer, and live show — you’ll love it!