I had never been to Milwaukee until Saturday. Heck, I had never wanted to visit Milwaukee until this trip. I imagined it to be drab, industrial, gray. I imagined the population to be older, more serious.
I was wrong.
Milwaukee has a lot going for it. A city of nearly 700,000 (I know, it surprised me, too), it is home to some great cultural landmarks, a thriving food scene, and a refurbished downtown. It is a pretty nice place! But there are two reasons that stand above all of those things as to why you should include Milwaukee on your next trip: the architecture and the beer.
First, architecture. Milwaukee is home to one of those old, lakefront downtown areas that just asks to be explored. It is the way Chicago used to be, before all of the new glass mega-buildings. But there are also new incredible exciting designs, like the Milwaukee Art Museum.
In addition, check out the Basilica of St. Josephat, south of downtown.
So what do you do in Milwaukee after seeing the incredible buildings? You drink beer. Beer is at the heart of what Milwaukee offers, with large historic breweries, smaller micro-breweries, and even kitchen home brews. Down by the Milwaukee River, I witnessed hundreds of young joggers stopping by the Lakefront Brewery while on their Saturday morning jogs, having a cold brew and a pretzel before jogging on. Sounds pretty awesome to me!
If you are going to experience one brewery in Milwaukee, Lakefront is the way to go. The beer is good, really good. The tour guides are hilarious, and the tour is a great value at only $10 – including 24 ounces of beer tasting and a souvenir pint glass. Seriously, check it out.