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Lakefront Brewery: A Toast to Milwaukee’s Craft Beer Scene

by Ryan

During my recent visit to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, known for its rich brewing history, I had the pleasure of exploring Lakefront Brewery, a cornerstone of the city’s craft beer scene. Nestled along the banks of the Milwaukee River, Lakefront Brewery stands as a testament to quality brewing and innovative craftsmanship.

The Ambiance

As soon as I stepped into Lakefront Brewery, I was struck by its vibrant and welcoming atmosphere. The brewery, housed in a large, re-purposed power plant, beautifully blends rustic charm with a lively, modern vibe. The spacious beer hall, with its long communal tables, invites both locals and tourists to gather, sip, and socialize.

The Tour

Lakefront Brewery is renowned for its tours, and for a good reason. The tour I joined was not only informative but also entertaining. Our guide, armed with a great sense of humor, led us through the brewery’s history, the brewing process, and the sustainability practices that Lakefront is committed to. The highlight, of course, was the beer sampling, where we got to taste a variety of their brews.

The Beers

While being a staple in the Milwaukee’s craft beer scene, they offer an impressive range of beers that cater to a wide array of tastes. From bold IPAs to smooth lagers, each brew is a testament to the brewery’s commitment to quality and flavor. Here’s a roundup of my top 10 beers from Lakefront Brewery:

1. Riverwest Stein Beer (ABV: 5.6%)

  • This amber lager is Lakefront’s flagship beer. It’s known for its smooth, malty flavor with a well-balanced hop finish, making it a versatile and popular choice.

2. IPA (ABV: 6.9%)

  • A bold and hoppy IPA that delivers a citrusy punch. It’s a go-to for those who love a strong, flavorful brew with a crisp finish.

3. New Grist Pilsner (Gluten-Free) (ABV: 5.1%)

  • One of the first gluten-free beers in the U.S., this pilsner is light and refreshing with a subtle hop profile, making it an excellent choice for gluten-sensitive beer lovers.

4. Eastside Dark (ABV: 5.8%)

  • This Bavarian dark lager boasts a rich, chocolaty flavor with hints of coffee and caramel. It’s smooth and surprisingly light for a dark beer.

5. Fixed Gear American Red IPA (ABV: 6.8%)

  • A robust red IPA with a mix of caramel malt sweetness and aggressive citrus hoppiness. It’s a full-bodied beer for those who like their brews bold and flavorful.

6. Fuel Cafe Coffee Stout (ABV: 6.4%)

  • Brewed with locally sourced coffee, this stout is a delightful blend of rich coffee flavor with the deep, roasted characteristics of a stout.

7. Lakefront Pils (ABV: 4.7%)

  • A classic German-style pilsner that’s crisp, clean, and perfectly hoppy. It’s a refreshing choice, especially on a warm day.

8. Klisch Pilsner Lager (ABV: 5.4%)

  • A traditional Czech-style pilsner, Klisch is well-balanced with a floral hop aroma and a smooth, crisp finish.

9. My Turn Series (ABV varies)

  • This unique series features beers developed by Lakefront’s employees. The styles and ABV vary, but each brew showcases the creativity and passion of the Lakefront team.

10. Organic ESB (ABV: 5.8%)

  • This Extra Special Bitter (ESB) is brewed with 100% organic malt and hops. It’s known for its well-balanced malt sweetness and earthy hop bitterness.

Tasting Tips:

  • Sampling Variety: With such a diverse range of beers, consider a tasting flight to sample a little bit of everything.
  • Food Pairings: Lakefront beers pair wonderfully with various foods. Don’t hesitate to ask the brewery staff for recommendations.
  • Seasonal Offerings: Keep an eye out for seasonal and limited-edition brews that Lakefront Brewery releases throughout the year.

Whether you’re a local or a visitor, a stop at Lakefront Brewery is a must for any beer enthusiast. Their selection caters to all palates, from the beer novice to the connoisseur, making it a beloved part of Milwaukee’s beer culture.

The Food

The food at Lakefront Brewery is a delightful complement to their beers. The menu offers a range of options, from traditional Wisconsin cheese curds to more substantial fare like sandwiches and brats. The quality of the food is top-notch, making it more than just your average pub grub.

Sustainability Practices

What sets Lakefront Brewery apart is its commitment to sustainability. From solar panels to locally sourced ingredients and sustainable water practices, the brewery is dedicated to reducing its environmental footprint, which is both impressive and inspiring.

Final Thoughts

Lakefront Brewery encapsulates the spirit of Milwaukee’s brewing culture – a blend of tradition, innovation, and community. Whether you’re a beer aficionado or just looking for a great place to spend an evening, Lakefront Brewery is a must-visit. Its combination of excellent beers, engaging tours, delicious food, and commitment to sustainability makes it a standout in the bustling Milwaukee beer scene. I left not only with a satisfied palate but also with a deeper appreciation for craft brewing. Cheers to Lakefront Brewery!

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