For the past eight years, Milwaukee-based Lakefront Brewery has released its Black Friday beer. “In the world of independent craft, our Black Friday release has become the gold standard for special beer releases,” said Michael Stodola, brand Manager for Lakefront Brewery, in a statement. “Barrel-aged, imperial stouts have become ubiquitous in our little cosmos; however, our Black Friday release parties have transcended to pilgrimage level.”
On Nov. 23, Lakefront Brewery will release both the 2018 vintage of its famed, Black Friday beer, and the Black Friday XXX Vintage Reserve, created with 2015, 2016 and 2017 Black Friday. These beers will only be available to purchase Nov. 23 at Lakefront Brewery. Each and every year, Lakefront sells out its entire inventory of 6,000 total bottles around noon. “It’s a very special day — to have people come on down and share our beer, our food and avoid the hassle of Christmas shopping. Or at least put it off for a few more hours,” said Russ Klisch, president and owner of Lakefront Brewery.
The regular 2018 Black Friday is 13.32 percent alcohol by volume. It’s been bourbon barrel-aged for 10 months and promises notes of vanilla, chocolate, cherry and booze, the company says. “You’re not going to mow the lawn, wipe your forehead and down a Black Friday,” Stodola said. “These beers are the special occasion, sharing with friends, dinner party beers.”
The Black Friday XXX Vintage Reserve boasts a 13.82 percent alcohol by volume and double-downs on the flavor by age and mellowness of the liquid, it adds. Stodola added, “The XXX Vintage Reserve is the special occasion all by itself.”
Lakefront Brewery’s doors will open at 8 a.m. CST. Thousands of folks will walk through and many will begin lining up, outside the 1872 N. Commerce brewery, as early as the night before, according to the company. Customers can purchase up to three 22-ounce bottles of the 2018 Black Friday for $20 each, and one bottle of the Black Friday XXX Vintage Reserve, which features a large, blue retail tag graphic, for $30. A combo four-pack will be on sale for $90 while supplies last.
In addition to the special beers and Black Friday gear, food truck the Curd Wagon will be kicking out breakfast for all those in line. “It’s the largest early-morning party in Milwaukee. In November. On Black Friday. Ever.,” Stodola said.