As the title says. It will actually be a year-round, all-weather fun-and-commute machine. Some starting points:
1) It will have an Alfine 8 and disc brakes.
2) It will need to sport fenders and a rack, when necessary.
3) I will change the tires based on need and season. As thin as 28mm, as large as I can go.
Two front runners are Soma Wolverine, and Soma Juice (or similar 29er.)
Wolverine pros are the drop-bar, cx-like ride geometry, plus some good tire clearances. Negatives could be the upper tire limit, and perhaps drop-bars in a Minneapolis winter. (I've read that drops aren't the best for serious winter riding.)
Juice (or similar) pros are the upper tire limit, and the ability to do fun things like, say, run a Lefty fork or other suspension. I was planning to get a Jones Loop H Bar; I'm normally not a big fan of flat bars, but I tried trekking/butterfly bars once and they were pretty much the worst at everything. Hoping the Jones bar is as good as people say, because they're being touted for 29er touring.
Thoughts? I'll probably end up building on a Wolverine, but seriously considering all options.