Wednesday, 22 April 2009

I like Wisconsin

A couple of days into my trip and I've noticed this: Wisconsin has charm.

Rolling hills dotted with farmsteads. A seductively lilting accent and a bunch of friendly people. It's a side of America I've never seen before. My fault. I'm a city boy. I'd never paid rural USA any attention.

On the drive from Monroe to Madison this afternoon, the countryside looked eerily like Leicestershire. Apart from the silos. Though the conical fermenters of the New Glarus Brewery fitted seamlessly into the landscape.

Spotted Cow I'm beginning to like, too. Every pin tonight ub I've been in had it on draught. Which would certainly start to bore me of it, if I lived here. But It's an indicator of how far craft beer has come. The Irish pub we ate tonight had a surprisingly decent selection. I went for Capital Maibock. Dare I say it - pretty much true to style.

7 comments:

Lew Bryson said...

Eerie, that similarity in geography sometime. Driving out of Prague, I was struck by how much it looked like the country in Pennsylvania where I grew up, even some of the architecture.

I like Wisconsin too. You've noted the Spotted Cow phenomenon; that's the main reason NG has been able to grow to such a relatively large size while selling everything in-state. Every bar has Spotted Cow.

And Capital's been doing it right for years. Way underrated, under-publicized brewery. If you get any chance, get to their beer garden. Best one I've ever been to in America (although the Great Dane's isn't bad either).

Kristen England said...

Yup, everything Capital makes is great.

When you are in Madison make sure your make it to the Great Dane.
http://www.greatdanepub.com/

They usually have an interesting lineup of stuff.

Brendan said...

If you have the time or inclination, you should seek out one of the Great Dane Brewpub locations, they might be able to satisfy your interest in 'extreme' beer. I also think some of the Tyranena Brewers Gone Wild series might help you out.
Cheers,
Brendan

ZakAvery said...

I was lucky enough to try New Glarus Raspberry Tart and Belgian Red recently, and I thought they were both great beers, despite the bottles that I had being a tad aged. I bet the Belgian Red is spectacular when fresh.

In other news, I'm watching Alastair Darling giving a budget statement. It's chilling - he's justifying his actions (always a bad sign), and saying things like "I'm confident we're going to get through this". That's great Alastair, I'm glad you're confident, because what are the other options?

Lew Bryson said...

So...am I correct in assuming that when he says "I'm confident we're going to get through this," what he's really saying is "I'm confident that eventually you're going to give up, shut up, and let us collect these taxes without any more of this complaining"? Crap artist.

Anonymous said...

For the love of all things sacred you need to try as much of New Glarus's other beer as possible. For real craft beer drinkers Spotted Cow doesn't even scratch the surface!

Anonymous said...

Here's a list of the breweries in the area you should be trying:

New Glarus
http://www.newglarusbrewing.com/
http://www.newglarusbrewing.com/Beers.cfm?BeerCategoryID=1
Lake Louie
http://www.lakelouie.com/
Great Dane
http://www.greatdanepub.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=28&Itemid=42
Tyranena
http://www.tyranena.com/
Ale Asylum
http://www.aleasylum.com/cms/index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=1
Capital Brewery
http://www.capital-brewery.com/
Brewery Creek
http://www.brewerycreek.com/
Furthermore
http://www.furthermorebeer.com/
Grumpy Troll
http://www.thegrumpytroll.com/

In Madison there's several bars worth your time.
The Old Fashioned. They have a beer from almost every WI brewery.
http://www.theoldfashioned.com/
Brasserie V. Awesome tap beer and bottled beer. Great food.
http://www.brasseriev.com/home/welcome_.html
The Malt House.
http://www.madisonbeerreview.com/2008/06/malt-house.html
The Cabana Room.
http://www.thecabanaroom.com/pdf/cabana_on_tap_menu.pdf

And please, you can do so much better than Applebee's. Start here:
http://www.isthmus.com/eats/?sid=dd50652249354bb5b7be8da6863bf756

Enjoy your visit!