Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Julie and Ben get married, Part 2: The Essence of Wisconsin

Ben and Julie's wedding was in Milwaukee and no trip to Wisconsin would be complete without paying homage to the state's two pillars: beer and cheese. We of course did our duty with great fervor and deference. Our first stop was the Sprecher Brewery. They are famous for their root beer, which apparently the owner developed so that he wouldn't have to buy somebody else's soda products to give to kids after brewery tours. The tour guide pointed out that you can get quarter kegs of the rootbeer for kids' birthday parties--and that it was a great way to get them used to the tap concept early. I didn't take notes or anything during the tour, but I think you make beer by taking some of this:

And then putting it through things that look like this:

Then adding some of this:

And voila! You have beer. I really like the idea of a yeast room. I imagine that to be much like a living room or a dining room as in, there's two bedrooms on your left and on your right you'll find our yeast room.

On our way back, we also stopped at the Mars Cheese Castle. With a name like that, how could you not? I find the name to be very coercive--so much so that it should probably be illegal. I'm not sure it's possible to see the name and continue driving. I'm sure some people have attempted it. I just don't know how they lived with themselves afterwards. We bought some smoked string cheese, white cheddar cheese that is older than Jack, and cheddar bratwurst. The brats were made by Klement's and probably due to the fact Kenny lived in Wisconsin for 11 years, he is not capable of just saying Klement's. He has to say, "Klement's, easily the best." Sometimes he tries to just say Klement's, but invariably 15 seconds later he has to add, "easily the best." You may notice the Mars Cheese Castle looks oddly like an amusement park. That's because it is.

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