Brew City: Enlightened Brewing; and the Crafter Space Session II

A 2015 brewery opener that was ahead of the trend, a barley-to-barrel class beer-release party, pumpkin ale and more.

I’m Enlightened
Enlightened Brewing gets lost in all of the 2016 new brewery buzz – largely because Enlightened was ahead of the trend by having its beers hit local tap lines in 2015. I’ve sampled a few of their beers around town, but I finally made it to the taproom, which opened this summer at Lincoln Warehouse, 2018 S. First St. in Bay View. I apologize for the delay.

The cozy space is certainly an essential stop on a tour of Milwaukee’s new breweries. Founder Tommy Vandervort and brewer James Larson are making excellent beers, and it’s easy to enjoy them while sitting at one of six or seven barstools or the few small tables in the place.

Don’t forget about these guys when planning a new brewery tour.


The Crafter Space Session II
The Crafter Space announced that it’s hosting its Barley to Barrel fall class release party on Wednesday, November 16 at Company Brewing (735 E. Center St.). It’s the second such event for the outstanding Barley to Barrel program. I went to the first one last spring and I think that it’s worth checking out. Class participants have learned the ins and outs of brewery ownership and have also brewed three different beers. Hanal Pixan Mole Porter, Rowdy Night Inn Stout and Rust Belt Amber Rye will all be unveiled and ready for tasting at the event. Tickets are just $16.


Raised Grain Digging the Limelight
The guys at Raised Grain are downright giddy with their gold medal honor for Paradocs Red Imperial IPA at the Great American Beer Fest. And rightly so. There were a whopping 7,227 entries in 96 different categories at GABF.

“This is a very prestigious award and we’re extremely proud to bring home a gold medal to Wisconsin,” said brewmaster Dr. Scott Kelley in a press release. “Our success at the GABF mirrors the success we’re having in our first year. We’ve already expanded our facility to keep up with demand and we have a number of exciting growth plans in the works.”

I noted Paradocs as one of my favorite beers of 2015. I’m glad that Raised Grain is getting recognition from those with a lot more cache.


Barley of Pop the Week
I can generally take or leave pumpkin beers. But, I choose to have a few Lakefront Brandy Barrel-Aged Pumpkin Imperial Ales in the fall. It’s a spicy brew that that has a nice boozy and warming finish and is an ideal complement to autumn weather. The pumpkin flavor is fairly subtle, and the beer isn’t overly sweet — a problem with quite a few pumpkin ales. Well done, Lakefront.


Quick Taps
Champps (1240 S. Moorland Rd.) is hosting the 5th Annual Kaden’s Wish on November 5. But the gang there is collecting donations now. The event benefits Make A Wish Wisconsin. If you’ve got something great in your cellar, think about donating it. Contact Kim ( if you have something in mind.

Last week, Third Space Brewing (1505 W. St. Paul Ave.) began its weekly Brewmaster’s Toast by tapping the new Mocha Java Porter. Every Friday at 5:45 p.m., brewmaster Kevin Wright will lead a toast and tap a barrel. Each beer from that keg will cost just $1. Not a bad way to start the weekend.

Surly Darkness Russian Imperial Stout is shipping to Wisconsin today. Look for it on store shelves this week.


Events Brewing
Tuesday, Oct. 18: Erv’s Mug (130 W. Ryan Rd.) hosts a Hinterland beer dinner. Check out the menu.

Tuesday, Oct. 18: Third Space Brewing is the guest of honor at Draft & Vessel (4417 N. Oakland Ave.) starting at 6 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 18: Try five varieties of O’Fallon Pumpkin at Ray’s Growler Gallery (8930 W. North Ave.) starting at 5 p.m.

Wednesday, 19: Lakefront is having a few release parties for Citra SMaSH Ale, which sounds pretty awesome. Head to Jack’s American Pub (1323 E. Brady St.) from 6 to 8 p.m. to try some.

Wednesday, 19: Milwaukee Beer Society samples pumpkin beers from 6 to 9 p.m. at Best Place (901 W. Juneau Ave.). Cost is $10.

Thursday, Oct. 20: Bierklasse examines “pumpkin ales and other witchy brews” at Café Hollander (7677 W. State St.) starting at 7 p.m. The cost is $30. Reserve a spot at

Thursday, Oct. 20: Hooligan’s (2017 E. North Ave.) hands out samples of Lakefront’s Citra SMaSH Ale from 7 to 9 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 20: The Milwaukee Record Beer Club hosts its first meeting from 7 to 9 p.m. All it takes is an RSVP on the event’s Facebook page and for your to show up at the Cactus Club (2496 S. Wentworth Ave.). After that you get free beer courtesy of Lakefront. The proverbial “no brainer.”

Friday, Oct. 21: Delicious samples from The Fermentorium are available at Discount Liquor Milwaukee (5031 W. Oklahoma Ave.) from 4 to 7 p.m.

Friday, Oct. 21: The Malt Shoppe celebrates its second birthday all weekend long. Stop by for giveaways, rarities and the chance to win free beer for a year.

Saturday, Oct. 22: Stone is handing out samples at Discount Liquor Milwaukee from noon to 3 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 22: The Fermentorium comes to Discount Liquor Waukesha (919 N. Barstow Ave.) from 1 to 4 p.m.




Dan Murphy has been reviewing bars for Milwaukee Magazine for roughly 20 years. He’s been doing his own independent research in them for a few years more.