Friday evening I hit Miller Park to watch the Brewers beat the Reds in one of the best games I've seen all year.
Beforehand, I strolled the first base side of the club level concourse to sample Leinenkugel's range of brews and some great Wisconsin cheese, too.
Fifth-generation family brewers Jake and John Leinenkugel were on hand as members of the Miller Coors/Leinie's sales family manned five stations that wedded a specific Leinie's beer – Leinie's Red, Summer Shandy, Amber, Berry Weiss and Honey Weiss – with complementary cheeses.
Fans who purchased a $36 club outfield ticket got a wristband with five beer tickets attached. Each could be exchanged for a 4-ounce pour at one of the stations.
At the first table, for example, a pair of folks poured Honey Weiss and offered samples of buttery havarti and earthy muenster. At another, some creamy brie and mascarpone helped me better appreciate the sweet Berry Weiss that is usually not my favorite. Some aged mozzarella did the same for the Summer Shandy.
Although these pairings opened my eyes a bit to the shandy and the berry beer, my favorites from the Leinie's line remain the amber and the red.
I saw John and Jake Leinenkugel pressing the flesh at the event, but I'd be lying by omission if I didn't point out that the highlight of the evening for me was having my picture taken with that master slider and cheerleader, Bernie Brewer.
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.