#128 – Wiseacre Brewing Co in Memphis, TN

DSC08717

DSC08716

(1) OUR EXPERIENCE

After spending time in Nashville, we made our way down to Memphis in order to visit with the owners of Wiseacre, brothers Kellan and Davin Bartosch. They were not open to the public that day, so we spent some time chatting with them about their brewery and their different beers. Following that, Davin walked us around the facility and told us all about his previous experiences with brewing (including stints at the Siebel Institute of Technology in Chicago, IL & Doemen’s Academy in Munich, Germany) as well as the current methods he uses at Wiseacre. The brewery has amazing artwork on the walls and keeps things fun by hosting activities like karaoke, foosball, and an Oktoberfest. Their beer can only be found in Memphis currently, so if you want to pick up some cans, bottles, or growlers, you’ll need to visit the area to do so (and we recommend you do). Ananda IPA and Tiny Bomb American Pilsner are the two staples that can be found year-round, but they offer a ton of other specialty beers throughout the year that you won’t want to miss out on!

DSC08658

DSC08664

(2) VITAL INFORMATION

Date of our visit: Wednesday, 4/30/14
Open since: August 2013
Projected bbl Output 2014: 3,000 – 4,000 bbl
Brewhouse size: 20 bbl
Owner(s): Davin Bartosch, Kellan Bartosch
Head Brewer: Davin Bartosch
Packaging: Kegs/ cans/ large bottles
Distribution: Memphis only

DSC08671

DSC08693>

Other things we learned:

* Have a high gravity license which is required in TN to make beer over 6.25% ABV
* Artwork is done by Rachel Briggs
* First brewery taproom in the city
* Have their own canning line
* Davin and Kellan are brothers and are just one and a half years apart
* Their grandmother used to call them ‘Wiseacres’ when they would smart off
* Do something out of the ordinary once a month, like karaoke night, polka bands, DJs, &/or foosball or other game tournaments
* Held an Oktoberfest party at the brewery last year and hope to again this year

DSC08659

DSC08657

(3) BEERS WE TASTED DURING OUR VISIT

* Lightning Rod British Bitter
* Tiny Bomb American Pilsner
* Dr. Gibbler Smoked Helles
* Schweinhelmüt Berliner Weisse
* Avast! Pirate Porter
* Neon Brown
* Try Double IPA
* Snowbeard Barleywine
* Ananda IPA
* Complete listing of beers

DSC08677

DSC08678

What we learned about their beer during our visit:

* Ananda IPA and Tiny Bomb American Pilsner are the two staples that can be found year-round
* As of the time of our visit, they had made 18 different beers, including a coffee milk stout, a Belgian dubbel with figs, and some barrel-aged beers
* Told us about Unicornucopia Grand Cru, which is a Saison with blueberries & grains of paradise (available now, but only in bottles)
* Focus on Belgians and Lagers but don’t limit themselves to those
* Most of the beers are very dry and drinkable; tend to steer away from big bodied, meaty, chewy beer
* Have a hoppy session beer brewed with multiple experimental hops on the horizon
* Did a collaboration with Half Acre that was a popcorn beer called King Puff
* Did other collaborations, including Try Double IPA with Haymarket out of Chicago
* Have a barrel aging program, use Sherry, Wild Turkey, Woodford Reserve, Old Forrester barrels
* Pirate Porter used all spice, coriander, orange peel, and molasses
* Snowbeard Barleywine used only Marris Otter malts

(4) BACKGROUND OF PEOPLE WE SPOKE TO

DSC08713

DSC08712
[Me, Davin, Kellan, Haggis]

Name: Davin Bartosch
Title: Co-owner/ Brewmaster
Been with company since: The beginning
Previous Brewing Experience: Rock Bottom Chicago / World Brewing Academy (Siebel Institute of Technology – Chicago, IL & Doemen’s Academy – Munich, Germany)
Previous Occupation(s): Substitute teacher/ insurance underwriter
Favorite Superhero: The Punisher

Name: Kellan Bartosch
Title: Co-owner/ Captain of Industry/ Teller of Tales
Been with company since: The beginning
Previous Occupation(s): Worked for Sierra Nevada and a beer distributor; Certified Cicerone®; beer magazine columnist for multiple publications
Favorite Superhero: Falkor the Luck Dragon

(5) MORE LINKS ABOUT BREWERY

* Main Website
* Wiseacre’s journey – map
* Events Calendar

(6) You can find the rest of our photos here

Author: Michael Roberts

DSC08655

DSC08654

DSC08653

Talk to us

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s