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Chicagoist's Beer Of The Week: O'So Brewing Co.'s Convenient Distraction

By Staff in Food on Jun 26, 2015 7:35PM

(Photo by Jenni Spinner)
When most Chicago citizens return from a pilgrimage to Wisconsin, there’s one stop they’re bound to make when they cross back over the Cheddar Curtain: Mars Cheese Castle. The once-modest array of goudas and gruyeres has exploded and they've also added a well-populated beer section. Prices amount to a king’s ransom, but the stellar selection makes being gouged worthwhile. It’s a treasure trove of Wisconsin-brewed libations— much of it rare and not available back home.

Among the two cases of bottles I recently loaded in my car: this beauty from O’So Brewing Co. in Plover, Wisconsin. This hits a few key marks for me— pretty bottle, imperial porter (my favorite style), product of a collaboration (always leads to beer that’s interesting, for better or worse) and brewed with coffee (therefore acceptable to drink at breakfast). With the champagne bottle and coffee content, I couldn’t decide if I should drink from a flute or a mug. I opted for both.

The pour is a treat for the eyes and nose. It’s dark. Thickish. SEXY. Head the color of latte. The aroma leaves no mistaking the Aquacate beans from Ruby Coffee Roasters, or the bourbon vanilla beans going up your nostrils. The beer’s richness and coffee’s bitterness announce, “HEY, TASTE BUDS! WE’RE COMIN’ TO GETCHA!” but the vanilla says, “Whoa-hold back a minute, fellas,” and evens the intensity out. If you go the breakfast route, this beer would pair well with a stack of hotcakes. Saved for an evening repast, it’d couple nicely with something beefy-a steak or a burger, perhaps.

This libation is hard to find in the Land of Lincoln, but it’s been spotted at Brixie’s in Brookfield and the Geneva Ale House, according to Untappd. If you head up to Wisconsin for a long weekend, stop off 94 at The Castle on your way back and get a bottle there.

This month we are featuring four guest writers for our Beer Of The Week column. Today's comes from Jenni Spinner.