Leinenkugel’s Wisconsin Red Pale Ale
Thanks for stopping by “Tim’s Blog.” It’s hard to believe that January has come and gone and we are in February, what we hope will be the last month that Winter will hold its death-grip on our great state of Wisconsin. We actually have had a pretty mild winter and any complaining might upset Mother Nature, so I won’t. From what I have heard, that little rodent in Pennsylvania did not see his shadow, so an early spring is on the way. I will believe it only when I don’t need to wear a parka to Opening Day and I’m mowing my grass in early April. I’m pretty confident one or the other won’t happen. We can always hope.
Last week we were invited downtown to Turner Hall by the Miller-Coors Brewery to celebrate the launching of a new beer, Leinenkugel’s Wisconsin Red Pale Ale. It was a big shindig, with hundreds of people from the brewery, distributorships and retail accounts in the ballroom above the restaurant. Turner Hall was built in 1883 by German immigrants, and in 1996 was designated a National Historic Landmark, making it a perfect venue for a party announcing a new beer from one of Wisconsin’s historic breweries. As we entered the ballroom there was a huge Leinenkugel’s banner with bright, multicolored lights shining on it. There you could get your picture taken with Dick Leinenkugel and of course I took the opportunity. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out what I did next. Yep, I grabbed a bottle of Leinenkugel’s Wisconsin Red Pale Ale. (Or two or three) Being touted as “A beer brewed just for Wisconsin with ingredients and packaging from Wisconsin,” Leine’s WRPA is just that. This amber ale is made from quality products from all over the state, like oats from Antigo, barley from Chilton, hops from Mazomanie and yeast from Chippewa Falls. As for the “just for Wisconsin” statement? Yes, this little dandy can only be purchased here. It goes against everything we were taught as kids, but this time we don’t have to share.
While this beer was not designed to impress the hop-head or beer geek, I do think it will not disappoint anyone looking for a solid, medium bodied ale with toasty malt flavors balanced by a firm hopiness. The brew master combines Vienna, Pale and Crimson Malts and Wisconsin oats with Azzacca, Citra and Wisconsin Northern Brewer hops and creates a beer he can be proud of. With an ABV of 5.9% and 34 IBUs, this is not an “in your face” or “over the top” kind of beer. It’s easy-drinking, yet flavorful. I’m pretty sure that’s what he was aiming for and he nailed it
It’s always fun to go to events like this and not just to eat good food and drink a few beers. I was able to see many friends, former and current reps from Miller-Coors and Beer Capitol, co-workers from other Otto’s locations and acquaintances that I have made over the last 30 years. It is kind of like a class reunion without any of the painful memories of high school. Thanks for the invite and putting on a great event.
I think Leinenkugel’s Wisconsin Red Pale Ale is going to be a very successful brand extension and all our neighboring states that can’t get it will be envious. You will have to decide for yourself. Stop in at your favorite Otto’s and pick up a 6 or 12 pack. You will probably be back for more. Until next time, blog you later!