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A Toast to Big Doors:

There are many craft beer companies with cool breweries, restaurants, and taprooms, but Surly Brewing Co. of Minneapolis, Minnesota has distinguished itself from the crowd.

In December 2014, the 10-year-old brewer opened its gates to the upper Midwest’s first destination brewery. Set in the Prospect Park neighborhood of Minneapolis, an area defined by train yards and towering grain silos, the 8.3-acre campus has created new life in the Twin Cities.

The campus comes with all of the expected features – a wood-paneled taproom, full-service restaurant, beer garden and the brewery – but it’s also packed with surprises, beginning with a 400 square foot sliding glass door to symbolize the brand’s connective spirit. At 10 feet high and 40 feet long, the door opens the large festive beer hall to the outdoor deck, beer garden and amphitheater beyond.

Steven Dwyer, the project’s architect, said choosing the door was a matter of simplicity. After taking a trip to Warroad, Minn., to visit the home of Marvin Windows and Doors, he knew he’d found the brand with the right product for the job.

“We saw a door that was, I want to say, 12 feet tall. It was very impressive. But was what really remarkable was how easy it was to slide open or close,” explained Dwyer. He was talking about the Marvin Ultimate Lift and Slide door, a product that presents designers with scale and style options to address any design vision.

Having worked with Marvin before, Dwyer was quick to entrust them with his business, explaining “They’re always very responsive and supportive. They’re a good company. I think Marvin has one of the best products around.”

Dwyer has been involved in many noteworthy building projects across the arts, higher education and community. However, he called this one a “career-defining project,” going on to explain, “There’s nothing like Surly Brewing in the area. The project has made a real impact on the culture of the Twin Cities. I’m very fortunate.”

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