By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Sep 30, 2008 at 12:40 PM

Recently Julie Lawrence wrote about some of her favorite fall beers. For me, when the air starts to take on a chill, I reach for my well-stocked stash of grappa. Although Great Lakes Distllery hasn't yet launched its grappa -- which I tasted when there was snow on the ground outside the distillery, then in Riverwest -- it now launches Pumpkin Seasonal Spirit.

Produced in collaboration with Milwaukee's Lakefront Brewery, this 90 proof bevy is distilled from Lakefront's award-winning Pumpkin and Spice Lager beer, which is the only one of its kind made in the U.S.

Great Lakes has capped 1,068 bottles of its spirit distilled from a beer brewed to Thomas Jefferson's recipe, and aged in bourbon barrels. The bottles hare hand-dipped in orange wax and numbered and an attached tag has recipes for using the spirit in mixed drinks.

Enjoy this fall treat responsibly, folks!

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.