FOREWORD: Back in May and into June, I had the pleasure of helping the crew at Angry Catfish for a couple of weeks as their summer season began to pick up. The following is a series of entries from a journal I kept during my time there. My hope is that through these vignettes you will get a glimpse of what it’s like to not only work at one of the most successful bike shops in the country, but be a bicycle salesperson and mechanic in the city of Minneappolis. Think of this as an extended shop visit, one where I get my hands dirty and experience the area and community the way those at Angry Catfish and other locals do. All photos are film, shot on 35mm and 120mm. Enjoy!
If You Were Wondering, Frostbike’s Still the Best
Photos and words by Kyle Kelley
Especially for newcomers! It was really rad seeing Sean and Danny from Team Dream and the Cub House experience this unique event for the first time. It really got me thinking about a few of my first Frostbikes, and how a lot of my really good friends have actually spawned from this event. I’ve even seen other friendships flourish from introductions at Frostbike. Going to Minneapolis in the middle of winter as a cyclist probably seems like a bad idea, but when you actually think about it, it’s genius.
“A collaborative collective of businesses in Minneapolis, Minnesota go beyond retail and thrive in a community built by each other and those around them. In 2010 Angry Catfish Bicycle Shop + Coffee Bar(ACF) opened to accolades amongst its local patrons and followers across the country with a simple concept to provide the best bicycles, coffee, and environment to enjoy them possible. Not long after the launch of ACF Mend Provisions, a life style fly fishing, men’s apparel, and outdoor goods brand was created and opened around the corner from ACF. Mend was followed by Northern Frameworks the in house frame/bicycle company to Angry Catfish allowing a curated, tailor-made bicycle experience with in the brick and mortar retail establishment in South Minneapolis. Finally in 2017 Northern Coffeeworks took an already refined third wave coffee model offered and ACF and added locale sources food and beverage in a Minneapolis Downtown East setting. The teams of all four businesses not only work together, but also eat, drink, and play together and with their community at large. ”
These guys are the best. Smoochies, Josh!
We’ve got a bigger story on the way, but for now, I wanted to introduce Northern Frameworks, building bikes by hand for Angry Catfish. Head on over to their newly-launched website and drool over these custom builds.
With the growing popularity of events like the Tour Divide, more and more people are riding and sharing their stories from this memorable journey. This Saturday night, join the Angry Catfish team in Minneapolis for a Tour Divide Recap!
This bike, upon first glance, might just seem like a cross bike with some flashy paint and while that is mostly true, the thing that struck me the most about Parker’s A-Train all road is the drivetrain. Well, the drivetrain and that killer paint!
Knowing that he wanted to ride this bike on more dirt than sealed road and being a fan of Shimano, Parker mixed his Di2 with XTR and Dura Ace, relying on not only the clutch of the XTR rear mech, but its cage length, allowing him to wrap a big cassette around his chain. You don’t see this a whole lot, but it makes total sense, especially if you like the idea of SRAM’s 1x system but the feel or ergonomics of Shimano. Is it working out for Parker? You bet. While he was visiting Los Angeles from Minneapolis, where he works at Angry Catfish, he took full advantage of steep frontage and fire roads…
Up Nort’ With Angry Catfish
Words and Photos by Kyle Kelley
Every year QBP invites people from all over the world to visit Minnesota during the coldest part of winter for Frostbike. Why they chose this time of year I don’t know but I’ve gone twice and wouldn’t trade it for any other bicycle industry event or convention. The people at QBP, and everyone else I’ve met in Minneapolis for that matter, are exactly the kind of people you wanna be hanging out with when it’s below freezing. They want to keep you warm and comfortable and a bit liquored up and I am A-OK with that.
When I found out I was heading to Frostbike again this year, I put the feelers out to see if anyone wanted to do any partying after the event and Josh from Angry Catfish was the first to respond. All he told me was to bring warm stuff and he’d take care of the rest. So, the Monday after Frostbike Josh picked me up and we headed Up Nort’ to the Angry Cabin with Thomas and Parker, also from Angry Catfish. I made a quick assessment of the supplies packed in the truck and all I could see was loads of beer, tons of cured meat, a comically large flask full of Booker’s and four fat bikes!
While I was in Minneapolis for Frostbike, we spent some time at Angry Catfish, one of my favorite bike shops in the US. As I’m walking around looking at all the winter apparel (we don’t get a lot of that stuff in Texas), I noticed this stunning A-train Cycles road bike on display. It turns out, Alex from A-train is a part time mechanic at the shop and built this beaut to display in the store (and to sell).
Dura Ace, Thomson, ENVE, DT Swiss… what else could you ask for? Complete as shown, the bike will cost you $9,500. Holler at Angry Catfish for ordering information.
Oh and see more of this stunning road machine below!