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Goose Island, mado Team Up for Special Beer

By Chuck Sudo in Food on Dec 7, 2009 7:20PM

2009_12_mado_beer.jpg One of the biggest things happening in the world of brewing these days is collaborative brewing. Bell's and De Proef just released their team-up. Three Floyds has worked with both Mikkeller and Dogfish Head. Tomorrow night Life & Limb, the collaborative beer effort between Dogfish Head and Sierra Nevada, will be given a proper launch at Sheffield's. Chefs are even making beer with craft breweries. Chris Pandel of the Bristol brewed a sahti with Goose Island, and need we remind you about Paul Kahan's trip to New Holland?

Add Rob and Allie Levitt to the mix. The husband-and-wife team of mado recently left their indelible stamp on Goose Island's Willow Street Wit, one of the more popular beers brewed at their Clybourn brewpub. We spoke with Jared Rouben, one of the brewers at Goose Island Clybourn, about the collaboration. Rouben said that he and the Levitts started with some Willow Street Wit as the foundation for the beer, which was then spiced with fresh herbs and other fruit and spices by the Levitts. "Few chefs in town have as deep a knowledge about spices as Rob and Allie," Rouben said, "so we let them test out six different batches of Willow Street to come up with their beer."

Of those six batches, the one that won out was spiced with orange zest, toasted fennel, rosemary and green coriander. Samples of the Goose Island/mado Imperial wit were passed out at last night's beef dinner. The beer had a prominent, but not cloying, citrus note, with some top notes of spice reminiscent of Turkish coffee imparted from the coriander. mado's Imperial wit is currently available on draft at Goose Island Clybourn. Brewmaster Greg Hall and the Levitts will be on hand tomorrow night at 7 p.m. to officially launch the release of the beer, paired along with some mado charcuterie and tastings of the other batches with which they experimented..