Craft Beer ‘Think Tank’ Launches in Minnesota


Duluth, MN — In today’s increasingly competitive beer landscape, knowledge and experience are evermore critical to confidently launch a craft beer brand. Lead by veterans of the craft brewing industry, Bev-Craft is incubating and consulting breweries with a four-pronged approach that encompasses development assistance, brewhouse planning, recipe formulation, ingredient selection, brand creation, and sales strategy.

The company is spearheaded by CEO and director of development, Tim Nelson, a transformative figure in Minnesota’s craft beer scene. Fresh out of college in 1995 with his MBA, he co-founded Fitger’s Brewhouse, now one of Minnesota’s oldest craft breweries and most-decorated brewpubs. Nelson led the company for 20 years, driving growth of five successful beer venues in Duluth. Nelson was also an establishing member of the Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild.

Brewer and longtime collaborator with Nelson, Dave Hoops, has been tapped to lead brewery operations. Hoops has nearly three decades of industry experience. He was brewmaster at Fitger’s Brewhouse for 17 of those years, was a founding member of the Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild, is a beer columnist, serves as a beer judge for the Brewers Association, and has won multiple medals at the Great American Beer Festival. After studying brewing at both the University of California at Davis and the Siebel Institute in Chicago, Hoops worked as lead brewer at Pyramid before relocating to Minnesota.

Sales programs are headed by Paul Christensen who has years of experience with sales, marketing and managing food-related businesses he owned in Duluth, MN and Superior, WI. Christensen last worked in the brewery at Fitger’s Brewhouse where he cut his teeth in beer culture and its production.

Brad Nelson, the director of brands, is the former marketing manager at Just Take Action where he was charged with beer and restaurant brand development, overseeing the marketing department, and creating events for Fitger’s Brewhouse, Burrito Union, Redstar Lounge, Tycoon’s Alehouse & Eatery, Zenith Rathskeller, and Endion Station Public House.

Currently Bev-Craft clients include breweries in northern Minnesota and Wisconsin.