By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published May 11, 2021 at 2:01 PM

Among the early pioneers of doughnut-influenced beer, Vennture Brew Co. has announced the return of Doughnut Don Imperial Stout with four variations, including a pastry sour.

The new brews will release on Saturday, May 29 at 11 a.m. on tap and an hour later in bottles at the Uptown Crossing taproom, 5519 W. North Ave.

“This is the third year that we have teamed up with Cranky Al’s who makes the best doughnuts in Milwaukee, to make the best doughnut beer in Milwaukee,” says Vennture’s Simon McConico.

Doughnut DonX

“We will have four variations on our Doughnut Don Imperial Doughnut Stout to satisfy any breakfast craving and one pastry sour if dark beer isn’t your thing!”

The original Doughnut Don, at a weighty 10.5 percent ABV, is like a big, delectable cruller, with hints of vanilla and coffee. A breakfast treat perhaps best enjoyed a tad later in the day!

Doughnut Don with Maple – also 10.5 – adds a hefty dose of maple flavor to up the Saturday morning breakfast vibe!

Doughnut Don with Barrel Aged Coffee, at 11 percent, adds Ethiopian coffee aged in J. Henry Bourbon barrels. The coffee beans were barrel-aged green and then roasted before spending a few days in the stout, where they melded to conjure dark fruit and fig flavors in addition to the expected coffee, vanilla, bourbon and donuts.

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Doughnut Don with Barrel Aged Coffee and Bittercube Cherry Bark Vanilla Mash – 11 percent – adds Bittercube's bark vanilla mash to the barrel aged coffee variant creating an even more explosive flavor bomb.

Finally, for those who don’t groove on stout, the Jelly Filled Pastry Sour with Raspberry and Lemon are like the jelly-filled doughnuts of beer.

“We packed this beer with Paczki’s in the mash and so much raspberry it will make your head implode,” says McConico. “Four hundred pounds of puree and lemon peels are packed into this beer so that when you take a sip, there's bound to be some that spills out.”

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"I love the collaboration with Cranky’s and Vennture," says the original Doughnut Don, Joey Carioti of Cranky Al's in East Tosa. "It’s a blast working with those guys. Another reason why we love Wauwatosa/Milwaukee.

"They are slowly becoming a staple on North Avenue. I am happy we are able to team up and produce an amazing product."

Heaven's Table and Tusk will have food available for purchase at the May 29 release and Pete’s Pops will be there too with sweet treats.

In order to keep everyone safe on release day, masks will be required and social distancing is a must in the taproom. The nearby pocket park and the sidewalk will be used to help allow folks to spread out. Beer will be served in recyclable cups.

Complete event details are here.

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 can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.