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Now Open: BlackStack Brewing

Updated: May 8

Image of the front of BlackStack Brewing in St. Paul

For the Johnson family of St. Paul, it’s always been about the beer. In the 1990s, Scott Johnson owned All Saints Brands, Inc., a distribution company that helped bring European classics like La Trappe, Tripel Karmeliet, and Pauwel Kwak to Minnesota. Johnson eventually left that business, but he’s always loved beer. It’s a passion he shares with his wife, Shawne Murphy-Johnson, and his three children (at least the two who are over 21).

“I remember a family road trip in Washington, D.C.,” remembers Quinn, 16. We were walking through Georgetown, and Dad was talking about opening our own brewery.” She was eight years old then, and Minnesota’s taproom bill had yet to reshape the local industry. When the bill passed a few years later, it changed the financial picture of starting a brewery.

At that same time, Scott’s son Murphy was coming of age. They inspired one another’s thirst for craft beer, so much that Scott created a business plan, moved back to St. Paul, and began BlackStack Brewing in earnest. Shawne, his brother Cooper, and Quinn were also all on board.

This story originally appeared in Growler Magazine.

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