The Black Friday beer release tradition is back, with a handful of Milwaukee area-breweries releasing special brews on the day after Thanksgiving, this year Nov. 25. Plus this year a couple free shuttles will offer designated rides between more than a dozen breweries. Here’s your guide to those releases, in alphabetical order, and the shuttles.
1840 Brewing Co.
This Bay View brewery plans to release BA Hawaiian Drinking Chocolate, an imperial stout aged in 19-year-old Heaven Hill bourbon barrels, and Plumpy-Black, an oat cream ale loaded with blackberry, black currant and black cherry. Trouble Makers Cocina will serve up Mexican cuisine from noon to 4 p.m.
The brewery, 342 E. Ward St., will be open from noon to 10 p.m. For more information, see the brewery’s Facebook page.
Amorphic, 3700 N. Fratney St., plans to release Major Particles, a bourbon-barrel aged imperial stout, at 9 a.m. Nov. 25. The beer is available for preorder now at amorphicbeer.com ($14 for two 16-ounce cans) for pickup beginning on Black Friday. The beer also will be available on tap, and the brewery will have doughnuts from Donut Squad to pair with the beer.
Biloba Brewing Co.
Brookfield’s Biloba, 2970 N. Brookfield Road, will release six beers on Black Friday: Night Out Bourbon Barrel Stout ($5 for 12 ounce can or a case of 12 for $50); Old John Barley Corn, a barley wine aged three years in a 14-year-old Fitzgerald bourbon barrel ($6 for 12 ounce bottle or four for $20); Strawberry Rhubarb Lambic; Cherry Lambic; Raspberry Lambic ($12 for 750 ml bottle of each lambic, or all three for $30); and Impossible American Stronger Ale, aged three years in a 14-year-old Fitzgerald bourbon barrel ($30 on Black Friday, then $40 after).
The brewery will be open from 1 to 9 p.m. Nov. 25. For more information, see bilobabrewing.com.
Black Husky Brewing
Black Husky, 909 E. Locust St., will release its gin barrel-aged Sparkly Eyes “Ahead of the Pack” at 4 p.m. Nov. 23, the day before Thanksgiving. On Black Friday the brewery is hosting F**k’ed up Friday Flight from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., offering flights of 2015 Twelve Dog Imperial Stout, 2016 Howler Imperial Pale Ale, 2018 Howler Imperial Pale Ale and 2019 Great Yamkin Imperial Sweet Potato beer, plus raffle tickets for a chance to win a 2015 Headbutter, a bourbon barrel-aged barleywine (the winner will be pulled on Nov. 27). The fun continues from noon to 5 p.m. Nov. 26 with a Makers Market for Small Business Saturday. See the brewery’s Facebook page for more information.
Central Waters Brewing Co.
This Amherst-based brewery has three beers lined up for release at its Milwaukee taproom: Windy Treat, a partial barrel-aged burnt marshmallow s’more stout ($25 for a four-pack of 16-ounce cans); Peach Brandy Barrel Aged Barleywine, an English-style barleywine made at the Milwaukee brewery ($25 for a four-pack of 16-ounce cans); and Black Gold 2022, a bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout that was first released in October ($20 for a 22-ounce bottle). The first two also will be available on tap. Doors to the taproom, 1037 W. Juneau Ave., open at 10 a.m., and Trouble Makers Cocina will serve breakfast and coffee beginning at 7 a.m. See the brewery’s Facebook page for more information.
Component Brewing Co.
Component, 2018 S. First St., plans to release Stampede – Black Current, a fruited kettle sour, along with regular and barrel-aged versions of Ho Ho Hold My Beer, a Christmas ale. Rot’s Hots food truck will be onsite, too. The brewery will be open from noon to 10 p.m. See the brewery’s Facebook page for more information.
Dead Bird Brewing
Dead Bird, 1726 N. Fifth St., will have three special barrel-aged brews on tap on Black Friday: a whiskey barrel dark wheat, a scotch barrel imperial red and a bourbon barrel gingerbread brown ale. The brewery will be open from noon to 5 p.m. Nov. 25; the kitchen will be closed.
Eagle Park Brewing & Distilling
Eagle Park has three beers lined up for release around Thanksgiving at both of its locations: DDH Bowie’s Space Suit: Cashmere, a New England IPA with galaxy and citra hops; Double Barrel Fly By Night, a 19-month-old imperial stout aged in Willet bourbon barrels, finished in Eagle Park’s own bourbon barrels and conditioned on Madagascar vanilla beans; and BBA Koko Kleiber, an imperial stout brewed in collaboration with Horus Aged Ales that features maple syrup and coconut and was aged for two years — making it the oldest beer the brewery has released.
DDH Bowie’s Space Suit will be available in four-packs of 16-ounce cans; the other two will be available in single 12-ounce cans. Members can purchase the beers the day before Thanksgiving, Nov. 23, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. in Muskego and 3 to 10 p.m. in Milwaukee. The beers will be available to the general public from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Nov. 25 in Muskego and Milwaukee. All of the releases will be available on tap at both locations beginning Nov. 23. The brewery will be closed on Thanksgiving. See their Facebook page for more information.
Eagle Park’s locations are S64 W15640 Commerce Center Parkway in Muskego and 823 E. Hamilton St. in Milwaukee.
The Explorium Brewpub
Explorium’s two locations will be hopping all day with the release of four variants of Milwaukee County Stout (limit two cans per variant per person), a breakfast buffet ($12), fire pits, live music, and other beverages including Bloody Marys and beermosas.
The Greendale location, 5300 S. 76th St., opens at 6 a.m., with the buffet available from 6:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.; the full pub menu will be available from 11 a.m. to close. The Third Ward location, 143 W. St. Paul Ave., opens at 11 a.m. with the buffet; the full brewpub menu will be available from 1 p.m. to close. For more information, see exploriumbrew.com.
Faklandia, 3807 S. Packard Ave., will release Mantaycore, a Russian imperial stout, beginning at noon Nov. 25. The brewery also will have the beer on tap for the first time alongside Gargoyle Pumpkin Pie Stout. The first 100 bottles include signed labels.
The brewery is also hosting its annual Thanksgiving food drive this week, with free meals to anyone who needs one from 4 to 8 p.m. Nov. 23. They’re accepting donations of any kind and looking for help packaging meals beginning at noon Nov. 22.
See the brewery’s Facebook page for more information.
Sweater Weather is back at Fermentorium, which plans to release four variants of its imperial milk stout — Mashmallow, Toasted Coconut, Mexican Chocolate and the regular Sweater Weather — on Nov. 23, the day before Thanksgiving. Both locations — 7481 Highway 60 in Cedarburg, and 6933 W. North Ave. in Wauwatosa — will be open from noon to 10 p.m. Nov. 23. See their Facebook pages for more information.
Gathering Place Brewing Co.
Riverwest-based Gathering Place, which recently opened a second location in Wauwatosa, will release two Wisconsin cocktail-inspired beers on Nov. 25. Both beers use an imperial blond milk stout as a base. Grasshopper mimics the classic supper club ice cream drink with mint, vanilla and chocolate, while the Brandy Alexander variant features brandy-soaked oak chips and cacao nibs. This year’s release comes paired with a playlist of classic hits from the ’50s and ’60s.
Both locations — 811 E. Vienna Ave., Milwaukee, and 7208 W. North Ave., Wauwatosa — will have limited bottles and both beers on tap. Online presale is live now at gatheringplacebrewing.com; a bundle of both beers costs $18. On Nov. 25, the Milwaukee location will be open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and the Wauwatosa location will be open from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Good City Brewing
Good City will release three rye beers at each of its four locations on Black Friday: Almost Midnight, a rye milk stout; Better Off Rye, a rye DIPA; and Tenacity, a barrel-aged rye whiskey imperial stout. Each beer will be available on tap and in cans to-go. The brewery also will be serving brunch at its east side (2108 N. Farwell Ave.) and Wauwatosa (11200 W. Burleigh St.) locations from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Good City has two other locations that will open at 11 a.m. Nov. 25: in the Deer District at 333 W. Juneau Ave., and in the Mequon Public Market at 6300 W. Mequon Road.
Hacienda Beer Co.
This Door County-based brewery has four beers ready to release on Black Friday: Velvet Bulldozer, an imperial stout conditioned on cacao nibs, Madagascar and Ugandan vanilla beans, and espresso from Isely Coffee ($21.99 for two 16-ounce cans); BBA Velvet Bulldozer, a bourbon barrel-aged version of the 2021 beer ($21.99 for two 16-ounce cans); BBA Velvet Bulldozer 2022: Coconut + Vanilla, a variant with toasted and raw coconut and Ugandan vanilla beans available to members only (any remaining cans will be available for purchase onsite on Black Friday); and Entitled to Mingle, a barrel fermented saison conditioned on Wisconsin honey ($10.99 for a 500-ml bottle). All are available for preorder at haciendabeerco.com with pickup during normal hours on Nov. 25 (12-10 p.m.) at the east side taproom, 2018 E. North Ave.
Indeed Brewing Co.
The Minneapolis-based brewery plans to release Milwaukee Honey Barleywine at its Walker’s Point brewery on Nov. 25. The 750 ml bottles cost $15 and are available for presale at toasttab.com/indeed-milw-to-go. The beer will be available for pickup and will be on tap at at the Milwaukee taproom, 530 S. Second St., from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Nov. 25. The brewery will have the World Cup on TVs and food from Cedar Teeth pizza and Milwaukee Pretzel Co. available for purchase. See Indeed’s Facebook page for more information.
The pioneer of Black Friday beer releases in Milwaukee, Lakefront is offering four variants this year: Black Friday, an imperial stout aged in bourbon barrels ($20); Christmas Cookie, an imperial stout aged in rum barrels ($20); Black Friday 5, an imperial stout aged for five years in rye barrels ($30); and Double Barrel, a barleywine aged in Great Lakes Distillery bourbon and rye barrels clocking in at a whopping 16.3% ABV ($30).
The beers will be released at 8 a.m. at the brewery, 1872 N. Commerce St. For more information, see lakefrontbrewery.com.
Lion’s Tail Brewing Co.
This Neenah-based brewery will release its Black Friday brews at its new Wauwatosa taproom, 8520 W. North Ave., too. The lineup includes Bourbon Trail 01: Willet Single Barrel, an imperial stout aged in Willet bourbon barrels ($13 for two 12-ounce cans); Bourbon Trail 02: Buffalo Trace Single Barrel, an imperial stout aged in Buffalo Trace bourbon barrels ($13 for two 12-ounce cans); Peanut Butter Porter ($17 for four pack of 16-ounce cans); and Big Mama’s Imperial Cherry Pie, an imperial sour ($17 for four pack of 16-ounce cans).
The latter two will be available on tap beginning at 2 p.m. Wednesday, and the Bourbon Trail brews will be available on tap beginning at noon Friday. All four will be available to-go on Wednesday for members and on Friday for the general public. The taproom is closed on Thanksgiving. See the brewery’s Facebook page for more information.
New Barons Brewing Coop
New Barons, 2018 S. First St., is releasing Q, a rum barrel-aged Belgian quadrupel, available only by preorder (through 6 p.m. Thanksgiving, $18 for 500 ml bottle) for pickup beginning at 9 a.m. Nov. 25. Coffee from Jamaican Fair Trade and vegan baked goods from Cake Bandit also will be available at 9 a.m., along with fire pits for staying warm and live music from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. See their Facebook page or website for more information.
Ope! Brewing Co.
Ope!, 6751 W. National Ave., West Allis, will release Barrel Aged Full Send, an English-style barleywine aged in whiskey barrels from Castle & Key and Baraboo’s Driftless Glen. The 17% beast will be available in 500 ml bottles for $15 at the brewery and The Bottle Shop of Grafton (limit two per person), plus on tap at the brewery in limited four-ounce pours. Ope! opens at 9 a.m. Nov. 25.
Pieper Porch Winery
Pieper Porch, S67-W28435 River Road, Waukesha, will release Winter Orange, Winter Razz and Winter Mocha wines on Nov. 25. The winery is open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday through Dec. 30. For more information, see pieperporchwines.com.
Raised Grain Brewing Co.
Raised Grain, 1725 Dolphin Drive, Waukesha, has three brews slated for release on Black Friday: Santa’s Sack, a Christmas ale; Doc’s Brandy Old-Fashioned, a barrel-aged imperial red ale; and Forgotten 1620, a bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout. The former two will be available in four packs of 16-ounce cans, and the Forgotten 1620 will be available in 22-ounce bombers. All will be available on tap.
Third Space Brewing
Third Space, 1505 W. St. Paul Ave., will release the third and fourth of its six Deconstructed Dessert barrel-aged beers on Nov. 25. This year’s “dessert” is a mudslide, with a bourbon-barrel-aged Russian imperial stout serving as the base beer. Each of the six variants features mudslide ingredients.
On Nov. 25 the brewery will release The Chocolate and The Vanilla Ice Cream variants from the series along with Cellar Stash, a bourbon barrel-aged Russian imperial stout that came from a single reserve barrel and therefore is available in “extremely limited” quantities of 16 ounce-cans, according to Third Space.
The brewery released the first Deconstructed Dessert variants, The Beer and The Peanut Butter, on Oct. 29, and will release the final variants, The Coffee and The Mudslide, on Dec. 17.
Each Deconstructed Dessert variant will be available in four-packs of 12-ounce cans for $25. The Black Friday variants and Cellar Stash ($14 per 16-ounce can), are available for preorder at shopthirdspace.com/inthespirit.
Third Space will be open from noon to 10 p.m. Nov. 25, with food available for purchase from Twisted Plants.
Torzala Brewing Co.
Torzala, 2018 S. First St., will release Cream City Calling, a cran-orange cream ale made with Wisconsin honey, cherries and cranberries, inspired by Mark di Suvero’s orange sunburst artwork (officially called The Calling) at the end of Wisconsin Ave. The brewery opens at noon. See its Facebook page for more information.
Urban Harvest Brewing Co.
Urban Harvest, 1024 S. Fifth St., has six 2020 beers slated for release on Nov. 25: Two Naught Naught, a chocolate bourbon espresso amber; The Brown Mumbler, a bourbon brown ale; WhiScotchsin, a whiskey scotch ale; Whiskey Porter; Big Ring Bourbon Red; and Imperial Chocolate Whiskey Stout. The brewery also will tap a keg of Deux Stappen at noon for taproom sales only.
All of the 2020 beers will be available for preorder online at 9 a.m., with pickup starting at 11 a.m. at the brewery. For more information, see the brewery’s Facebook event.
Vennture Brew Co.
This Washington Heights brewery at 5519 W. North Ave. will release its special brews at 1 p.m. Nov. 23, the day before Thanksgiving. Slated for release are Barrel Aged Cascara Quad, a bourbon barrel-aged Belgian quad brewed in collaboration with Indeed; Second Helping, a dark saison aged in barrels that formerly held Doughnut Don and re-fermented on Chambourcin grape juice from Wollersheim Winery; The Heights: Orange and Cranberry, a saison made with orange juice and cranberry puree; and Leg Work, a double NEIPA. See the Facebook event for more information.
Water Street Brewery / The Brewery
Water Street Brewery, which reopened its downtown location with a new look and name (The Brewery) in October, will release Imperial Black Forest Cake Pastry Stout on Nov. 25. The stout is a stronger version of the Black Forest Cake that is released at German Fest every year, aged on chocolate and cherries.
One keg will be tapped at each of Water Street’s four locations: 1101 N. Water St.; 1251 Gateway Drive, Grafton; 3191 Golf Road, Delafield; and 140 West Town Square Way, Oak Creek. The Brewery opens at 4 p.m.; the satellite locations open at 11 a.m.
Westallion Brewing Co.
Westallion plans to release Schwarzer Freitag, a Bavarian-style weizenbock, available in 22-ounce bottles for $16 or on tap ($8 per pour or $30 for a growler). The brewery, 1825 S. 72nd St. West Allis, opens at noon. See the Facebook page for more information.
Free Black Friday brewery shuttles
City Tours MKE will run free shuttles between a dozen breweries from noon to 5 p.m. Nov. 25. One shuttle will run between Good City (east side), Eagle Park (Hamilton), Dead Bird, Pilot Project and Explorium (Third Ward), and another will run between 1840, Component, New Barons Brewing Coop, Torzala, Indeed, Broken Bat, Wizard Works and Explorium. The shuttles will run every 15 to 30 minutes. See the Facebook event for more information.
The Five Three Brew One Two shuttle, which began offering free rides between five Riverwest breweries on Saturdays in October, will offer those rides on Black Friday as well. The shuttle will run every 35 minutes from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. between Lakefront, Company, Black Husky, Amorphic and Gathering Place.
Is your brewery hosting a Black Friday release and not on this list? Send your information to Chelsey Lewis at email@example.com.