By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Dec 16, 2022 at 1:25 PM

If you’re hoping to get a taste of Black Husky Brewing’s annual Christmas tree collab beer with the City of Milwaukee, you’d better hurry.

“Sales are going well,” says the brewery’s Toni Eichinger. “We’ve only got a little left in bottles/cans.”

But, she adds, reassuringly, there’s plenty on tap. The beer was officially released on Friday, Dec. 10.

The 8.9 percent ABV IIPA was made for the third year in a row with fronds from the City’s annual holiday tree, which this year was a 31-foot Colorado Blue Spruce donated by 93-year-old Erwin Boehme from his Washington Heights front yard.

That tree – harvested Nov. 1 – now stands, lit and decorated, in the Deer District.

You can and should read about Boehme – a Korean War veterans and retired Milwaukee Firefighter – here.

“We have not gotten beer to Mr. Boehme (yet), although we plan to,” says Eichinger. “I am told he’s not much of a drinker though.”

A dollar from the sale of each beer will benefit the Milwaukee Urban Forestry Fund, which helps fund tree plantings throughout the city.

According to Eichinger, the recipe is the same as in previous years, but each year’s batch varies in flavor depending on the tree.

“This is more than just brewing a beer; it is an opportunity to enhance the community through the Urban Forestry Fund and also display creative uses of the city’s resources in a sustainable manner,” says Black Husky’s brewer, Tim Eichinger.

“The bonus has been the story that each of the tree donors has.”

The beer is available in 22-ounce bombers to go, as well as (for now, while they last) in four-pack 16-ounce cans. It’s available only at the Black Husky taproom at 909 E. Locust St. in Riverwest.

“We are continuously looking for creative ways to fund initiatives that enhance the quality of life for Milwaukeeans,” says Commissioner of Public Works Jerrel Kruschke.

“Black Husky has been an excellent partner in contributing to the Urban Forestry Fund.”

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He has be heard on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories, in that station's most popular podcast.