Last updated on July 3rd, 2019 at 07:23 pm
The Pabst Milwaukee Brewery is preparing to open on April 14.
Located at 1037 W. Juneau Ave. in the former First German Methodist Church at the former Pabst brewery complex, the building has been renovated to resemble a modern German beer hall. It will be a microbrewery, bar and restaurant with communal tables and will serve upscale gastropub fare with a focus on local, sustainable foods.
The brewery gave a sneak peek tour to the media on Monday. The restaurant can hold about 140 people in a main seating area, plus bar seating and a mezzanine that used to be a choir loft. The dining room decor is modern, with copper finishings, hanging Edison bulbs and a neon Pabst sign hanging from the ceiling. When the weather is warmer, a beer garden in the back will seat another 100 people. A cost estimate on the renovation and buildout was not available.
The brewery has 10 20-barrel fermenters, one 10-barrel fermenter and two 20-barrel bright beer tanks.
While the menu and beer selections have not been set yet, head of brewing John Kimes said he expects to brew six to eight beers per quarter. Among the first eight will be a couple of revivals of old Pabst recipes, the Andecker and Old Tankard Ale. Pabst Blue Ribbon will not be brewed in Milwaukee, though it will be served in the dining room. Other beers planned are a honey wheat, dunkelweiss and northeast IPA.
“Andecker, it was one of those beers people were really thirsty to have,” Kimes said. “We looked through our old recipes and our old files and we put together a beer that would be as close as possible to Andecker.”
The brewery will use craft malt and hops produced in Wisconsin and Michigan, said Greg Deuhs, master brewer for Pabst.
“I think it’s kind of the second or third generation of the emergence of craft, because you’ve got the craft breweries but now you’ve got the craft ingredients to go with it,” Deuhs said.
The restaurant will have 30 to 40 employees, and hiring is ongoing, said Rebecca Berkshire, experience manager. It will serve lunch and dinner seven days a week.
“We are hoping at some point to do some beer dinners together, where we pair food and beer,” she said. “I grew up in Milwaukee so I try to really do a nod to Milwaukee bar food.”