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Old 06-22-2010, 04:58 PM   #1
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Default Let's Talk Chicago And/Or Midwestern Beer

So I'm in Champaign, IL. And since I'm doing a little celebrating, I decided to hit up a liquor store. Asked for local or regional stuff, and they told me to try this Domaine DuPage French Style Country Ale, which is brewed by the Two Brothers Brewing Co. out of Warrenville, IL. It's not bad. I'm enjoying.

Since I'm going to be here until Sunday, I need more beer recommendations. Like I told the guys at the liquor store, I'm looking for local/regional ****. Stuff I probably wouldn't get at home. Beer from IL or the surrounding areas.

I generally drink dark stuff, Newcastle, Smithwick's, etc. BUT I will try any beer once. So anybody got any ideas? Again, from the IL region. If you have a great unknown German beer that's fantastic, but not what I want right now.
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Old 06-22-2010, 05:04 PM   #2
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When I went to Chicago, I tried to find microbrews. What I found was that most places didn't carry them. The best I could get was Sam Adams light.

That was about 5 years ago.
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Old 06-22-2010, 05:05 PM   #3
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As someone mentioned in the last thread, Bell's (SW Michigan) is excellent quality and should be available in that area. My personal favorites are Oberon, Amber, and Third Coast Ale. They also make a fantastic Oktoberfest, but you'll have to wait until September for it.
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Old 06-22-2010, 05:08 PM   #4
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Thanks houghtam.

I'm getting back into Chicago (thank God) on Friday night and spending two nights. I haven't ventured out into Champaign because I have a car and well, you know. In Chicago I'm staying on Michigan Ave. and hope to find a nice bar one night to get nice and toasted and be able to walk wherever.
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Old 06-22-2010, 05:12 PM   #5
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Goose Island (Chicago) has a really good IPA. Most of the microbrews around here though come out of Wisconsin or Michigan. A lot of bars do have their own though. I would recommend.

There is a place called Blind Pig Brewery downtown which is alright. The locals call it the Piglet so you you will be up on the lingo. I think it is trendy enough that a lot of good looking tail shows up there as well.

There is a couple others that I can't think of right off the top of my head. Here is a pretty good site showing where a lot of the breweries are.
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Old 06-22-2010, 05:14 PM   #6
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Nice, gracias.
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Old 06-22-2010, 05:18 PM   #7
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Goose Island

http://www.gooseisland.com/pages/our_beers/3.php
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Old 06-22-2010, 05:20 PM   #8
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Two Brothers and Bell's, which have already been mentioned, are pretty solid choices. Right now, Three Floyd's beers are pretty popular, especially their Gumball Head--it's pretty hoppy, and people either love it or hate it (I like it). Half Acre is another one that's popular right now, but I haven't tried it. Other good local options are New Glarus (WI) and Great Lakes (OH). Probably the best beer I've had in the region, by far, though, is Matilda from Goose Island. Most of their beers are pretty average (Honkers, 312), but this one is very good--it's a belgian style beer, and pretty expensive...
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Old 06-22-2010, 05:25 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RhymesayersDU View Post
So I'm in Champaign, IL. And since I'm doing a little celebrating, I decided to hit up a liquor store. Asked for local or regional stuff, and they told me to try this Domaine DuPage French Style Country Ale, which is brewed by the Two Brothers Brewing Co. out of Warrenville, IL. It's not bad. I'm enjoying.

Since I'm going to be here until Sunday, I need more beer recommendations. Like I told the guys at the liquor store, I'm looking for local/regional ****. Stuff I probably wouldn't get at home. Beer from IL or the surrounding areas.

I generally drink dark stuff, Newcastle, Smithwick's, etc. BUT I will try any beer once. So anybody got any ideas? Again, from the IL region. If you have a great unknown German beer that's fantastic, but not what I want right now.
Good luck finding anything that far down state. I don't drink much anymore and if I do it I like Corona or ML. Around me in the Suburbs there are a ton of Microbrew/resturants but I doubt you find much of that down in a college town.

I bet you find a lot of really cheap pitchers of Bud but if you do find a good liquor store like Binnys that far down there then ask for anything brewed by Walter Paytons Round house in Aurora IL. They had a honey wheat 10+ years ago that was excellent. I haven't been back recently and last time I was there I was liquored up on whiskey.
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Old 06-22-2010, 06:10 PM   #10
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I don't know if they have it there but damnit I wish Yuengling was distributed further west
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Old 06-22-2010, 06:22 PM   #11
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New Glarus Spotted Cow
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Old 06-22-2010, 07:39 PM   #12
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peoples champ is the name and old style is the game
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Old 06-22-2010, 07:50 PM   #13
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hah, nice.
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Old 06-22-2010, 09:17 PM   #14
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If you were closer to WI I would make a bunch of recomendations for you. I am in SE WI and there are a ton of good locals around. Bell's Oberon is in IL and it is awesome. Try a 312 and or a Honker's Ale for the heck of it. If you get anywhere even close to WI a Spotted Cow from New Glarus, a Capitol Ale from Capitol Brewery, East Side Dark From the Lake Front Brewery, Totally Naked form New Glarus. I am pretty sure Leinenkugel's is all over the country, but a bunch I've seen a lot of the seasonals around here that I haven't seen in other parts of the country. I enjoy the Sunset Wheat. Hit up the biggest liquor store you can find and look there. There are way too many micro brews around for most bars to carry very many.
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Old 06-23-2010, 11:03 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RhymesayersDU View Post
Thanks houghtam.

I'm getting back into Chicago (thank God) on Friday night and spending two nights. I haven't ventured out into Champaign because I have a car and well, you know. In Chicago I'm staying on Michigan Ave. and hope to find a nice bar one night to get nice and toasted and be able to walk wherever.
If you are on the Mile, one of the best beer bars in that area is Clark Street Ale house at 724 N Clark (South of Chicago, on Clark) Cool laid back spot, very unusual for River North, with a good beer and Whisky selection.

If you are into stouts, see if you can find some Goose Island Bourbon County Stout around. It is a BIG barrel aged imperial stout and one of my favorites in the style.

SSDD
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Old 06-23-2010, 11:21 AM   #16
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Thanks for the bar recommendation.

I may hit up that bar for Saturday's USA World Cup match.
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Old 06-23-2010, 03:55 PM   #17
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Here are a few really good darker beers from Midwestern breweries.

New Holland Dragon's Milk, from New Holland, MI.



Bell's Double Cream Stout, from Kalamazoo, MI.



Great Lakes Brewing's Edmund Fitzgerald Porter, from Cleveland, OH.




And if you can get any of Southern Tier's Blackwater Stout series, they are all freakin' amazing. They're also from New York, but more than worth venturing outside your regional theme if you want to drink a kick-ass beer that probably isn't available much further west than Chicago.
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Old 06-23-2010, 03:58 PM   #18
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illinois sucks doesnt it.

cant wait to get out, florida in 6 weeks!
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Old 06-23-2010, 04:20 PM   #19
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I think the guys hit on the all the big ones. Goose Island, New Holland and Bells are all great selections. Stay away from Atwater's stuff it freaking bad.
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Old 06-23-2010, 07:33 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsiguy96 View Post
illinois sucks doesnt it.

cant wait to get out, florida in 6 weeks!
Hey Now!!! We have great.....




























































....Corn!!!
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Old 06-24-2010, 04:01 AM   #21
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Boulevard Brewery in Kansas City is one of my favorites.
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Old 06-24-2010, 08:45 AM   #22
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Quote:
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Boulevard Brewery in Kansas City is one of my favorites.


I have some Boulevard in my fridge right now.

Also,

Not sure if they have Indiana beer there, but Upland Brewery is great. Their wheat is awesome. Its from Bloomington, IND and it has won a ton of awards at the American beer festival in Denver.
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Old 06-24-2010, 09:32 AM   #23
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I'll echo some other recommendations.

Goose Island, almost anything they put out is top notch
Bell's, this brewery's in my town, so I drink too much of it, but Oberon is a special brew
Short's, always something sophisticated and complicated with their beers, but good
Point, simpler but good
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Old 06-24-2010, 09:55 AM   #24
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Quote:
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Hey Now!!! We have great.....

....Corn!!!
You need to make your way East. Chicago is a great city but the IL college towns do smell of cow**** and corn.
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Old 06-24-2010, 01:24 PM   #25
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I'm in central IL and feel your pain regarding good micro brew. I believe a microbrewery restaurant named Destihl was opening up soon in Champaign may want to check it out if it is open....
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