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Shorewood has beer garden fever

Amanda Pike serves up a free liter of HofbrŠuhaus beer at the Estabrook Beer Garden's keg tapping ceremony on Thursday.

Amanda Pike serves up a free liter of HofbrŠuhaus beer at the Estabrook Beer Garden's keg tapping ceremony on Thursday. Photo By Submitted

June 25, 2014

Shorewood — Five days after Estabrook Beer Garden celebrated its season opening, another beer garden tapped its first kegs at Hubbard Park.

The Hubbard Park Beer Garden is located between the Shorewood River Club and Hubbard Park Lodge, with beer, food and non-alcoholic drinks being served in a newly-created service area on the north side of the Shorewood River Club. Although Estabrook was the first to revive Wisconsin's Germanic beer garden tradition, Hubbard Park Lodge owner Russ Davis points out that Hubbard Park's beer garden origins date back to 1872. Davis doesn't think people in the area will complain about having another beer garden with a view of the river.

"This is definitely the direction the city is going," Davis said. "It's just a great family-friendly way to enjoy the warm weather and meet new people."

The beer gardens differ in that Estabrook offers a variety of Hofbrauhaus beers, while Hubbard offers mostly local craft beers with other German beer options in Spaten and Hacker-Pschorr. They both serve wine and serve beer in liter and half-liter steins. Both require a $5 refundable deposit for a beer stein and encourage conversation and community with large picnic benches.

Both beer gardens serve brats, hot dogs and prezels with cheese spread. Hubbard Park also serves a chicken and apple sausage and a Wisconsin cheese plate. Estabrook has a unique brat every week and a cold smoked sausage called a landjaeger.

Parking at Hubbard Park is limited, so Davis is encouraging biking, walking and public transportation. The beer garden is just a stone's throw from Shorewood's Summer Sounds concert series, which brings free musical performances to Hubbard Park. The free weekly concert series begins Wednesday, July 9, and starts at 6 p.m.

The Hubbard Park Beer Garden is open from 3-10 p.m. Monday through Friday and opens at noon on Saturdays and Sundays. Estabrook opens at noon, last call is at 9 p.m. and the park closes at 10 p.m.

The Estabrook Beer Garden has been a raging success since it opened two summers ago, and its partners at the Milwaukee County Parks Department have since capitalized on the idea by opening another location at Hoyt Park in Wauwatosa and offering "mobile beer gardens" to other county parks on a rotating basis. The mobile beer garden will visit six different parks or parkways, each for a two-week season between early June and late August.

The county's mobile beer garden will be in McKinley Park from through June 29; Doctors Park, near Picnic Area 3, from July 2 through July 13; the plaza at Red Arrow Park from July 16 through July 27; Greene Park, near the comfort station, from July 30 through Aug. 10; and Falk Park, near the pavilion, from Aug. 13 through Aug. 24. Hours are 4-10 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. The last beer is served at 9 p.m.

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