Public beer gardens are all the rage. Our list doesn’t include some great outdoor drinking spaces at breweries and bars like the massive outdoor area at Third Space, Gathering Place’s Vienna Avenue Biergarten, the rooftop at Cafe Benelux or the Zen experience at The Baree. There are far too many outdoor drinking options to list here, and that’s a good thing.
OPEN NOW | 1133 N. OLD WORLD THIRD ST.
As long as Giannis is in town, the heart of the Deer District is as good a place as any to have a beer garden. The vibrant and massive space is open on weekends and during Bucks games and other events. More than two dozen tap and can options mix locals with macros.
Hours: Fri.-Sat. noon to 8 p.m.; varying hours during special events.
OPENS MAY 21 | N96 W15791 COUNTY LINE RD., MENOMONEE FALLS
If you kill a keg this summer at the Depot Beer Garden you get a “I Killed A Keg” t-shirt, which is reason enough to go. Those kegs are a mix between Brewfinity Brewing and other standouts from Wisconsin. The spot opens up with a Revolutionary War reenactment and isn’t short on events over the summer.
Hours: Sat. 3 to 9 p.m., open earlier for special events.
OPENS APRIL 27 | 13600 JUNEAU BLVD., ELM GROVE
Find your Happy Place on weekend nights at Elm Grove Village Park, where Third Space Brewing pours a few of its outstanding beers. Expect food trucks, live music, and events like Friday Flicks where the kids can take in a movie while the adults unwind.
Hours: Hours: Fri. 4 to 9 p.m.; Sat. noon to 9 p.m.; Sun. noon to 6 p.m.; varying hours during special events.
OPENS APRIL 22 | 4600 ESTABROOK DR.
The beer garden here opened in 2012 as the first public beer garden in the U.S. since Prohibition. It’s the OG (original garden) in the Milwaukee area. The theme is decidedly German, with patrons drinking Hofbräu brews while eating sausages and pretzels at a multitude of communal tables.
Hours: Daily, noon to 9 p.m.
OPENS MAY 19 | 9100 S. 76TH ST.
Did someone say ćevapčići? You don’t find the delicious Croatian sausages everywhere. Nor do you find Croatian imports or a Bambus (a mix of red wine and cola) at other local beer gardens. Head to Franklin to enjoy this hidden gem and know that from 5 to 6 p.m. it’s happy hour and taps are just $2.
Hours: Thurs. 5 to 10 p.m.
OPEN YEAR ROUND | 3565 N. MORRIS BLVD.
This woodsy getaway is tucked just south of busy Capitol Drive, but it’s hard to not feel nicely secluded here. Removal from the madding crowd is even better with a liter of Hacker-Pschorr Weisse or the nine other options on tap (or wine and cocktails if beer’s not your thing). Usinger’s provides an ample sausage menu.
Hours: Mon.-Thu. 3 to 9 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. noon to 10 p.m.
OPENS MAY 13 | 1800 N. SWAN BLVD.
The swanky digs in Wauwatosa are welcoming on a sunny day. So are the variety of beer choices that include plenty of Wisconsin craft beers from the likes of New Glarus, Third Space, Good City, City Lights, etc. A few wine options are also available. Pizza, pretzels and brats provide a nice base for your brews.
Hours: Wed.-Fri. 3 to 9 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. noon to 9 p.m.
OPENS JULY 8 | MALONE PARK, 16400 W. AL STIGLER PKWY.
Beer from City Lights Brewing is the highlight at a few summer beer garden events taking place in New Berlin. Expect food and music to go along with a tasty City Lights Hazy IPA. The limited dates at Malone Park are July 8–10, July 29–31 and August 12–14.
Hours: Fri. 3 to 8 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. noon to 8 p.m.
OPEN NOW | 2900 S. SHORE DR.
They were itching to open at South Shore Terrace, and kicked the season off on March 17. Head there for all sorts of Miller products (or Hamm’s if your inclined) at the Miller 1855 Bar, and a picturesque beer drinking space just a stein’s throw (not recommended) from Lake Michigan.
Hours: Thu.-Fri. 4 to 7 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. noon to 7 p.m.
OPENS MAY 4 | MULTIPLE LOCATIONS
The Tap Yard concept is expanding in 2022, but all four locations still cater to craft beer fans. Excellent tap lists, frequent tap takeovers and other events (the Waukesha location will have a weekly Sunday farmers market) provide plenty of chances to sample great beer all summer. The Tap Yard is located in Waukesha (1150 W. Sunset Dr.), Brookfield (2925 N. Barker Rd.), Milwaukee Schlitz Park (1555 N. River Center Dr.) and West Bend (4875 County Highway Z).
Hours: Wed.-Fri. 4 to 9 p.m.; Sat. noon to 9 p.m.; Sun. noon to 7 p.m.
Waukesha Hours: Wed.-Thu. 4 to 9 p.m.; Fri. 4 to 10 p.m.; Sat. noon to 10 p.m.; Sun. noon to 7 p.m.
OPENS MAY 27 | 750 N. LINCOLN MEMORIAL DR.
It’s hard to beat the lakefront views from this beer drinking spot run by Kegel’s Inn. Expect Hofbrau beers pouring from the tap truck and a food menu with an extensive list of sausages. All that, and Lake Michigan too.
Hours: Tues.-Sun. 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
OPENS MAY 26 | 3000 S. HOWELL AVE.
Choose from more than a dozen draft and canned beer, cider and seltzer options as well as a few wines on tap. The beer garden has a prime location on Tuesday nights, it’s adjacent to the Chill on the Hill weekly concert series.
Hours: Tues.-Fri. 4 to 9 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
OPENS APRIL 22 | 8831 N. ROOT RIVER PKWY.
Twenty-four tap handles provide more beer variety than most beer gardens. That’s good news for everyone, especially when the focus is mainly Wisconsin craft beers. Whitnall Park provides a low-key spot to enjoy good beer, and there are food specials worth showing up for too. Every Friday night is a fish fry and there are four pig roasts scheduled (June 12 and 19, July 19 and Aug. 20).
Hours: Mon.-Fri. 4 to 9 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Traveling Beer Gardens
OPENS MAY 11 | MULTIPLE LOCATIONS
This is the ninth year that Sprecher Brewery has partnered with Milwaukee County, a match that has resulted in nearly $250,000 for local park improvements. A pair of tap trucks will be making the rounds with Sprecher beers and sodas.
Roll Out the Barrel Tour
Juneau Park | May 11–30
Cooper Park | June 1–19
Grant Park | June 22–July 10
Lake Park | July 13–31
Greenfield Park | Aug. 3–21
Hours: Mon.-Fri. 5 to 9 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Pass Me a Pint Tour
Froemming Park | May 25–June 12
Juneau Park | June 15–July 4
McCarty Park | July 6–24
Doctors Park | July 27–Aug. 14
Juneau Park | Aug. 17–Sept. 5
Hours: Mon.-Fri. 5 to 9 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
OPENS MAY 27 | MULTIPLE LOCATIONS
Raised Grain has got quite a few of the Waukesha County Parks covered. Sip on the award-winning Paradocs Imperial Red IPA and six other Raised Grain brews, or Diamond Head Seltzer, at a park nearest you. A few local food trucks will also be in the mix.
Minooka Park | May 27–29
Fox River Park | June 3–4
Menomonee Park | June 10–11
Muskego Park | June 24–25
Mukwonago Park | July 1–2
Retzer Nature Center | July 8–9
Hours: Fri. 4 to 9 p.m.; Sat. 3 to 9 p.m.