If this week’s warmer weather makes you want to hit up a beer garden ASAP, you’re in luck.
The South Shore Terrace Kitchen and Beer Garden in Milwaukee, which is operated by Milwaukee County Parks, opens Thursday for the 2022 season.
“We have the best view in town, we’re right on the beach just steps from Lake Michigan, and we’re giving back to the parks,” said John Wasilowski, unit coordinator in the parks food and beverage department.
All 20 taps will feature MillerCoors offerings, he said, including those from Leinenkugel’s, Terrapin and Atwater Brewery.
“As we transition more into our late spring, early summer fashion, we’ll start to get some special releases that we’re really excited about,” he said.
For the first part of the season, a light menu highlighting the essentials of the South Shore will be served. It will include cheese curds; a Munich burger consisting of a 6-ounce beef patty topped with a brat, cabbage, cheese and mustard on a pretzel bun; a Hoan Bridge burger, which is a standard and customizable burger; a pretzel; and a Friday fish fry.
The full food menu will roll out around mid-May, Wasilowski said.
Milwaukee County Parks Beer Gardens will return to their glassware program this year from the single-use plastic cups used during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Wasilowski.
People can bring their own pint or liter mug to refill. Or, people can buy a pint glass for $2 or a liter pint glass for $5 at the beer garden. People who buy glassware get a discounted refill price, Wasilowski said.
The beer garden will be “ebb and flow” when it comes to COVID guidelines. He will start the season with some measures that people have grown accustomed to over the past two years, he said, including the use of green bricks to indicate a clean table and red to show it’s dirty.
“As things change – as they have every week, it looks like we’re going to change with them,” he said.
Depending on sunset times, the beer garden will initially be open from 4-7pm on Thursday and Friday and 12-7pm on Saturday and Sunday.
In late April or early May, hours will be extended to 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Tentative opening dates have been set for other beer gardens in the area, including April 22 for Estabrook Beer Garden and Whitnall Beer Garden, and May 26 for The Vine Humboldt, according to a press release issued Tuesday by Milwaukee County Parks.
Also on the horizon is the Traveling Beer Gardens, a pair of concurrent tours that travel to different Milwaukee County parks throughout the summer.
Those dates, locations and changes will be announced Friday morning, according to the press release.