Sophie Bolich

Three New Beers For Brewers Opening Day

J. Leinenkugel's Barrel Yard will open April 3 with three exclusive beers.

By - Mar 28th, 2023 06:45 pm
J. Leinenkugel's Barrel Yard. Photo taken March 28, 2023 by Sophie Bolich.

J. Leinenkugel’s Barrel Yard. Photo taken March 28, 2023 by Sophie Bolich.

The team at J. Leinenkugel’s Barrel Yard is putting the final touches on the new brewery and restaurant ahead of its April 3 launch date.

The menu is finalized, decor is in place and, on Tuesday morning, representatives of the brewpub and partner Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company tapped the first of three exclusive beers that will be available on opening day next week.

“We are excited to offer beers available only here at American Family Field,” said Rick Schlesinger, president of business operations for the Milwaukee Brewers. “We at the Brewers think we know many things, but we don’t know how to brew beer. Fortunately, we have people in Wisconsin who know how to do that, and our partnership with Molson Coors (owner of Leinenkugel) stretches back decades.”

The new brews include Cherry Gose, a tart, pinkish beer featuring Door County cherries and pink Himalayan salt; Red Lager (remastered), containing Cluster and Mt. Hood kettle hops, as well as Cascade dry hops from Wisconsin; and a straightforward IPA with notes of resinous pine, tropical fruits and citrus.

Fans will also have the chance to score a free commemorative cup with the purchase of a beverage at The Barrel Yard on opening day. The 10-ounce, aluminum cup features the brewpub’s logo and “Opening Day 2023.” Supplies are limited.

Due to construction timelines, the opening day beers were not brewed onsite, though the brewpub’s three-barrel pilot brewing system — headed up by full-time brewer Corrine Georges — will soon be operating at full capacity. Instead, the brews were produced at Leinenkugel’s Chippewa Falls location.

“I am looking forward to the anticipation of welcoming new beers on an ongoing basis and getting feedback from fans on their favorites,” Schlesinger said.

Tony Bugher, president of Leinenkugel and John Leinenkugel, brand ambassador for the company, were also present for the first tap.

In tandem with the beer releases, chef Loren Rue, who heads up the kitchen at Barrel Yard, is set to debut a Midwestern-inspired comfort food menu including tavern wings, soft pretzels, maple black pepper bacon and more.

The house buttermilk biscuits — served with whipped butter and hot honey — are a must try, according to Rue, as is the crispy chicken entree, featuring air-chilled, local chicken coated in a spice blend and pressure-fried.

Construction of the restaurant space began in early October, following the conclusion of the Milwaukee Brewers 2022 season. The roughly six-month transformation yielded two newly-constructed bars, installation of a three-barrel brewing system and a garage door entrance.

A mural painted by Milwaukee’s David Zimmerman, also known as Bigshot Robot, melds seamlessly with the brewpub’s blue-and-coral color scheme. Zimmerman is also the artist behind the Bucks mural that formerly adorned a building facing the Reed Street Yards.

Starting April 3, J. Leinenkugel’s Barrel Yard will be open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on non-game days. For evening games, the restaurant will open to the public for lunch from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. On days with afternoon games, only ticketed guests are permitted in the restaurant. Reservations can be made on non-game days through Open Table.

The brewpub replaces the former Friday’s restaurant in the ballpark’s left field corner.


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