Game Day Wings

Here’s a game day chicken wing recipe adapted from Lucy Saunders which uses Sprecher Pub Ale and is deee-lish. Since we found this in the Chicago Tribune archives, we had to edit it because the beer pairing selection didn’t exhibit enough respect for Wisconsin beers.  Our suggestion: Pair with your favorite Sprecher beer and yell GOPACKGO!!! while you enjoy these during Super Bowl XLV.

Posted by Carol Mighton Haddix and Josh Noel

For the wings, try this recipe from the Tribune’s archives, originally adapted by cookbook author Lucy Saunders from a grilled version (hey, if you want to brave the frigid outdoors, go ahead and grill ’em). She suggested using Sprecher Pub Brown Ale for the brine.

Ale-brined chili wings

Prep: 25 minutes
Marinate: 4 hours
Cook: 30 minutes
Makes: 6 servings

2 bottles (12 ounces each) brown ale
1/2 cup each: brown sugar, coarse salt
5 pounds chicken wings, tips removed, cut into two sections
2 sticks (1 cup) butter
4 each, minced: garlic cloves, jalapenos
1/2 cup each: Asian sweet hot chili sauce, hot pepper sauce or more to taste
1 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons black or white sesame seeds, optional

1. Reserve 1/4 cup ale for chili sauce. Whisk together brown sugar, salt and the remaining ale in a large bowl until dissolved. Add wings, stirring to coat. (You may need to put a plate over the bowl so that the chicken is completely submerged in brine.) Cover; refrigerate 4-8 hours.
2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over low heat; add the garlic and jalapenos. Cook, stirring, until jalapenos are tender, about 2 minutes. Stir in the chili sauce, hot pepper sauce, black pepper and cinnamon. Heat to a simmer; cook 3 minutes. Transfer to a blender; add reserved ale. Puree until smooth; reserve.
3. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Drain wings from brine; place on shallow baking pans. Cook, turning once, until brown and crispy, about 30 minutes. Arrange wings on platter; sprinkle with black sesame seeds. Serve chili sauce in ramekins for dipping.

Sprecher Brewings & Doings

Not that we hibernate 3/4 of the year, but it’s true — Milwaukee comes alive during the summer.  Today is the 34th Annual Locust Street Days, always a fun, neighborhood festival with great bands, kids activities, and lots of people out for a good time in the sun.   Can’t find Sprecher on the street?  Stop into the Tracks or Linnemans.  If you’re not down at the Lakefront but you like really amazing aerial feats, you might want to get yourself there quickly because the truly mind (and ear) blowing Air and Water Show is happening as I type.  Check out the website, and then go see it for yourself:

Now I need to step back in time.  On Friday night Randy and I attended the annual Greg (GB #85) and Nicole Jennings  party benefiting Habitat for Humanity at Merrill Hills Country Club.  ( I’m proud to say Sprecher was the official beer that evening. )  Several hundred party guests along with 50 or so Green Bay Packers such as Jennings, Jermichael Finley, AJ Hawk, Nick Barnett, Nick Collins, Aaron Rogers, Josh Sitton, Patrick Williams, etc., appeared to really enjoy the event which included dinner, a live auction, music and fireworks.

Far from being aloof, all the Packers I spoke with were really gracious.  Honestly, if you’re a Packer fan, the $100 ticket price is a small fee, especially since 100% of the proceeds are donated to Habitat.  I took a few photos, most of which look better on my phone, but here are a couple:

Randy and Greg Jennings
Randy and Nick Collins

I’m always struck by how different football players look w/o their gear on.  Jermichael Finley is very tall; it would be hard to mistake him for anything but a professional athlete.  Same with Josh Sitton who’s not exceptionally tall, but he’s certainly solid. But that’s not always the case. From the photos above you can tell Jennings and Collins are about the same height as Randy.  In fact, it would be easy to mistake them for just another party guest.  Quick Quiz — if the photos weren’t labeled, could you figure out who is the brewmaster and who the pro football player 😉 ?



Sprecher Brewings & Doings – Football 101

On Saturday the Green Bay Packers held Football 101 “for the ladies.”  Or, technically, “An NFL Workcamp for Women.” This annual ritual takes place on the first day of deer hunting season in Wisconsin.  From what I understand, the training camp has taken place for a few years with variations on the theme: introduce women to life in pro football so they gain a greater appreciation for the game.  The largest attendance ever, more than 400 women showed up to get some inside tips.  In terms of fashion, it was a sea of Packer gear. Ka-ching — royalties galore.

The afternoon started with host Jesse Garcia (WTMJ 4) warming up the crowd before linebacker Brady Poppinga conducted Q & A with wives of some of the players and coaches.  Qs included: What is the most romantic thing your husband’s ever done? Does your husband help around the house?  How did you meet your husband?  Standard girl chat, really, but interesting not only because of the public forum, but also because Poppinga’s wife was one of the respondents.  We learned that these big guys are pretty much like guys.  Mason Crosby said “I love you” in Chinese at the end of his wedding vows, which blew his wife away because she had no idea how he learned it and she majored in Chinese in college.  We also learned that there are a few things these guys won’t do around the house, like take the laundry upstairs, because they “can’t risk injury,” wink, wink.

Harry Sydney, who played with San Fran and GB and has 3 Super Bowl rings, came and gave a very sophisticated Xs and Os talk.  But he did so in response to audience questions, e.g., What’s the difference between a skinny post and a rail post?

Finally, all 400+ attendees marched off to the Don Hutson Center for indoor drills — running through obstacles, throwing, kicking, causing and recovering a fumble — much like the NFL combine, wink, wink.  Several Packers were on hand to coach the gals: Brett Swain #16,  Jeremy Kampinos #7, Jeremy Thompson #99,  Korey Hall #35, Josh Sitton #71, and LB Coach Kevin Greene.  Big thumbs up to all for their patience and their  encouraging words such as, “Pretty Good,” and “Alright.”

In between all my huffing and puffing (yeah, right),  I took a few photos of the guys but they’re a bit large so I need to work on scaling them down.  Stay tuned.  They’ll either appear here or on Sprecher’s facebook page.

Sprecher Brewings and Doings

The weekend is fast approaching, so we must cheer: High School playoffs; the Badgers (On Wisconsin!); and the Packers (dunh, dunh, da…Go Pack Go!).   Our friends at ESPN 540 are covering all the Homestead Highlanders Division 1 playoff games (with a little support from Sprecher) since Homestead won’t be able to play any games on their home field (paperwork snafu).  For those of you not near a radio during game time, here’s a hint:  you can get the playoff Sprecher tour special (buy 1 get 1 free) by calling 414.964.2739 and saying the magic words: “Division 1 Playoffs!” when you make your tour reservations.

Indeed, it’s Halloween weekend.  Ghosts and goblins of all ages are welcome to take the extra scary tours, full of treats; no tricks.  Sprecher is a Halloween Safe Spot again this year. P.S. It’s officially trick or treat in Glendale 1-4pm on Saturday so you can score some extra candy from the neighbors when you visit the brewery.

Football, Halloween, Fall…its time for some great beers that compliment the sports, weather, foods and smells of the season.  Recently bottled: Sprecher Dopple Bock.  If you like a smooth lager with suggestions of caramel and dark roasted malts, try this divine beverage in a snifter or wine glass.  At 8.0% ABV, this is a great beer for lingering over.  Serve it at 50-60 degrees for maximum aromatics and flavor.  Great match for steaks and stews, or after dinner dark chocolates.  Also available: Bourbon Barrel Aged Dopple Bock…total treat.

Not seen since the 90s, but back in the bottle now: Sprecher Dunkle Weizen.  Note the intriguing spelling.  That’s the only thing that’s a wee bit different.  That and the fact it’s available in a 12oz bottle in the Sprecher Gift Shop.  This is the same classic dark roasted malt ale that is the ultimate session beer for this time of year.  4.65% ABV, serve at 45-50 degrees.  Drink with good friends and great food.

Jason Wilde Rocks!

Jason Wilde was the kick-off speaker for Sprecher’s 2nd annual pre-season football and craft beer mini-camp, and he rocked.  Those attending were treated to a brewery tour by Randy Sprecher, and then an hour and a half person to person discussion with Jason, who spoke about the state of the team, flip flop Farve, Ted Thompson, and many other subjects.  Gracious and well informed, Jason was a star, as was his lovely and expectant wife, Paula.

Everyone found the evening to be beyond expectations.  Three sessions remain.  Next week it’s Bill Carollo, former  NFL ref (#63), and current head of the Big Ten officials.  If you want to know what officiating’s all about, come to Sprecher next Wednesday at 6pm. Visit to pre-register.

Football and Sprecher Beer Mini-Camp Starts Tomorrow!

Jason Wilde kicks of the 2nd annual Football and Sprecher Beer mini-camp tomorrow evening at 6:00pm.  If anyone has the inside scoop, it’s Packers beat reporter and WKLH personality, Jason Wilde.  Cost: $15.  A portion of the proceeds goes to Milwaukee Achiever Literacy Services.

Other Speakers: NFL and Big Ten Referee Bill Carollo (8/26), TBA (9/2), and Grilling expert Lucy Saunders (9/9).

Mini-Camp takes place at Sprecher Brewing Company, 701 W. Glendale Ave, Glendale, WI.

Learn more and pre-register at: