Milwaukee’s Riverwest neighborhood will be getting a third craft brewery with the addition of Gathering Place Brewing Company.
Joe Yeado, a senior researcher with the Public Policy Forum, is leasing 4,100 square feet within a warehouse at 811 E. Vienna Ave. The 32,991-square-foot building located west of Humboldt Boulevard, south of Capitol Drive, is also the home of Flux Design.
Yeado has been designing his own recipes and brewing beer for about 10 years. In 2013 and 2014 he won third place awards in a competition sponsored by Sam Adams for his Saison and Belgian Trippel beers.
“It has long been a dream of mine to open a brewery,” Yeado said. “After winning those medals, in competitions, my wife and I thought maybe I could move my hobby into a profession.”
More accolades have followed. Over the last year, Yeado has won 14 more awards for his beer, including three first place ribbons at the Wisconsin State Fair.
Gathering Place will include a tasting room and a seven barrel production facility. Yeado will brew five beers to start, including a seasonal and the awarding winning Trippel.
Yeado is hoping to open in the spring of 2017. He plans on keeping his day job at the Public Policy Forum and hiring two full time employees and several part-time people. The brewery will be open in the evenings on Thursdays and Fridays and from about 10 a.m. to 8 a.m. on weekends.
The Gathering Place will join Company Brewing, 735 E. Center St. and Black Husky Brewing, 909 E. Locust St. in the Riverwest neighborhood.
In just the last year, nearly a dozen craft breweries have opened or are planned in or near the city including Urban Harvest Brewing Company, 1024 South 5th St., Third Space Brewing, 1505 W St. Paul Ave.; Good City Brewing, 2108 N. Farwell Ave.; MobCraft, 505 S. 5th St.; City Lights Brewing Company, 2200 W. Mt. Vernon Ave.; and The Explorium Brewpub at Southridge Mall.
Yeado said the style of beer he will be making is not currently found in the market. Also, the ability to offer a tasting room and tours will set him apart, he says.
But besides that, Yeado believes that despite the number of craft breweries that have opened in Milwaukee in recent years, the city is still underserved.
He pointed to cities like Portland, Oregon or Grand Rapids, Michigan, which has nearly 50 craft breweries, and said Milwaukee could support many more breweries.
“Milwaukee has had a lot of new people coming into the market, and more to follow, but there is defiantly capacity here,” Yeado said. “People in Milwaukee like their beer.”