If you want to get in on some of the rarest beers from one of the city’s best breweries, you can now it.
Gathering Place Brewing, 811 E. Vienna Ave. in Riverwest, is launching a Member’s Society that will be capped at 100 members.
Members will get access to unique, one-off beers made on the brewery’s new pilot system, recently wheeled down the street from Spike Brewing, 3866 N. Fratney St., where it was manufactured.
The system was acquired as part of Gathering Place’s planned expansion to Bay View next year.
The beers, which will start flowing out of the system in January will be neither packaged nor available on tap. Only society members will get the 500ml bottles.
There will be two brews per month and will be experimental in nature, with, according to the brewery, unique ingredients, barrel aging, mixed fermentation methods and often higher ABVs.
“Consider it our test kitchen, our own little incubator where we will be able to try out new recipes and brew more diverse styles,” said head brewer Corey Blodgett in a news release Thursday. “The new pilot system will be a game changer for us.”
The Member’s Society starts in January and will be available in six- and 12-month options. Prices range from $80 to $275 based on the number of bottles per month and the number of months.
Members also get a 10 percent discount on all taproom purchases, special glassware, tickets to Member’s Society Thank You events and other perks.
“We’re really excited to roll out this program and strengthen our engagement with supporters,” said Gathering Place founder Joe Yeado. “Corey has really strong experience as an innovation brewer and with the Member’s Society program he can express his creativity with these unique small-batch beers.”
Blodgett, who has been brewing professionally for 18 years, was most recently the Lead Innovation Brewer at Widmer Brothers Brewing in Portland, Oregon, where he helped develop the barrel aging and kettle souring programs. So you know these society beers will be interesting and good.
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 OnMilwaukee.com 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.