My account is shadowbanned and I almost got nuked for that Threes Brewing post, so let’s get back to some friendly midwest stout reviews.
Let’s head to Wauwatosa with Vennture Brrew Co. and see what America’s drunkest state is up to. The co-founder Rob Gustafson was running for alderman, and they are making J. Henry Bourbon barrel stouts. So far so good.
Four years in this weird little coffee roaster/brewery/café in Milwaukee continues to turn out hyperlocal offerings. Using J Henry barrels so it’s WI wood on WI juices is a nice touch but if we could have had the brewer mascot leave his tiny chalet in Lakefront and take a tip in the barrel covered in curds, the cliché trifecta would have been complete.
The beer itself is Midwest nice. Shovels your walkway with light whoppers and faint heat. As it warms, the genial snow capped plains of Wisconsin come into chocolatey focus. The long horizon level Kurasawa shot shows that this is serious but approachable. It has a sense of place with never being over bearing or presenting too much residual sugar, firmly in that Central Water pocket of modern “thin” execution. The amiable thigh slapping of a “WELP GUESS THAT’S IT” signaling a Milwaukee goodbye.
Swallow is succinct and deliberate, a hint of swiss miss and Ovaltine with a roasty drag that feels honestly more like a Baltic porter in its laconic, respectful tenancy in your mouth. So much of the modern stout world are total sugarbomb attention seekers. Oh good, that stout is wearing a captain’s hat nowhere near water, I am sure nothing completely irritating is about to happen.
I miss these softer outings, where a tightly wound stout is a single serving and not a sticky batter covered mastodon for the entire glucose cavetasting group to fell. So kick off your Wolverines, have some booyah stew, and drink an entirely calm and enjoyable stout with no resale value, only inherent taste value.
OPE, busted, I have never been to Wisconsin, but if it is anything like the little @vennturebrewco stout, I sure would like to visit and go around apologizing to everyone.