United States > Wisconsin > Chilton
Beer Available At Rowland’s Calumet Brewery (arranged by most recent)
emerge077 (103) RIP Johnnies, Chicago, Illinois | September 13, 2013
80 AMBIANCE 5/5 SERVICE 8/10 SELECTION 12/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 10/10 OVERALL 15/20
This is a really unique place, quirky and anachronistic. If this doesn’t interest you, stop reading here. For the intrepid seekers of one-of-a-kind experiences, read on...
We made a detour here from Green Bay, en route to Door county, despite the protests of a few locals based on the overall quality of the beers (more on that later). The building itself appeared to be well over 100 years old, with a cool mural of the Calumet Brewery logo. The front door was a unique copper plated design, heavy and rustic. Brewing equipment was visible though the windows. Inside it was dark and a little divey, high ceilings and a tv above the bar playing dr. phil. If you’re a breweriana fan, the collection here is worth the visit alone. Plenty of old trays and piles of crates high above on the walls, many from the old Calumet Brewery (closed 1937) and from collection of the bar owner/brewer’s mother. She was tending the bar, and had plenty of great stories to tell, a real salt of the earth lady who cared about the place, the beer, and it’s history.
About the beer itself... let’s get the quality issues out of the way. They brew with a house yeast, and there was diacetyl in a few of the beer samples, so some of the less interesting beers tended to all run together. Don’t know if this is a tap line sanitation issue or what. However, there were a few that were solid, the Calumet Dark, Mortimer’s Ale, and "Kirby" a test batch brewed with Kirby Nelson (formerly of Capital). The root beer wasn’t bad either.
There’s something to be said for upholding local brewing history, reviving a lost brewery, and maintaining it for over 20 years in this tiny, quiet town. It’s worth a visit, especially if quirky, off-the-beaten-path places are your cup of tea.
MPalecek (22) Racine, Wisconsin | May 6, 2012
60 AMBIANCE 3/5 SERVICE 10/10 SELECTION 7/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 10/10 OVERALL 10/20
Was interesting to see a brew operation in a Wisconsin small-town local tavern. Brewing equipment right in the front when you walk in. Not a fancy place but very authentic Wisconsin old time bar. Beers were so-so. A little hard to find, I had to circle around the block, too. They sponsor a big beer festival every year in the local park.
BVery (371) Burnsville, Minnesota | September 3, 2011
62 AMBIANCE 3/5 SERVICE 7/10 SELECTION 8/15 FOOD 4/10 VALUE 9/10 OVERALL 13/20
The building is an old fire hall from the 1800s that was turned into a bar in the early 20th century. Found out that they are only on the 3rd owners since this became a bar! Kind of a dive bar, but it has style. 1 pool table, 1 dart machine, 1 high def TV. Food is limited to frozen pizza. Server/owner seemed very matter of fact - nothing flashy, here’s your beer. 8 beer sampler for $6, great value. Decent root beer as well.
esjaygee (262) Oak Creek, Wisconsin | May 14, 2011
72 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 9/10 SELECTION 11/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 8/10 OVERALL 12/20
Finally made it to Rowland’s in middle of nowhere Chilton. They had 11 house beers on tap on this visit. Service was good, I’m pretty sure it was one of the owners. Nice wall décor with articles about brewing and old tap handles and other assorted brewania abound. The beer was fairly disappointing. I see lots of high reviews on here but tried many flawed samples. Food was limited so I went around the corner to eat.
Scubatrip (36) Annandale, Virginia | August 30, 2010
74 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 6/10 SELECTION 12/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 8/10 OVERALL 15/20
"Moe, you ain’t thinking about getting rid of the dank, are you? Oh but Moe! The dank!" This quote from Carl Carlson pretty much sums up this bar. It’s on a main street in the center of town, small, smaller inside. There’s a pool table, a couple TVs, half a dozen high tables, and a 20-seat bar. A couple locals drowning their sorrows on the Sunday afternoon I stopped in. And yes, the music did abruptly stop when we out-of-towners stepped in the door. The bartender was friendly enough, but said "I don’t believe in those things" when I tried to pay with a credit card. CASH ONLY, FYI. 11 beers in the sampler, plus their root beer. If I lived in Chilton, I’d be a regular. Beers were generally good, really nothing about the place to actually complain about. It’s worth the scenic route around Lake Winnebago if you have the chance.
kmeves (100) Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin | July 29, 2009
58 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 8/10 SELECTION 5/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 7/10 OVERALL 12/20
This is a great little place in a small town. Too bad the beers are a shadow of what they once were, full of diacytel.
Ughsmash (138) Pewaukee, Wisconsin | January 8, 2008
78 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 9/10 SELECTION 11/15 FOOD N/A VALUE N/A OVERALL 15/20
I’ve only been there once, but it’s a cool stop if you’re in the right place in the middle of nowhere in Wisconsin! They have a really cool bar area, great beers, and will talk your ear off about ’em if you’ll let ’em. I haven’t been back since Bob passed away, but I wouldn’t hesitate to stop in if I was anywhere close.
Jabswitch (16) Green Bay, Wisconsin | January 24, 2006| Updated July 2, 2006
76 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 9/10 SELECTION 9/15 FOOD N/A VALUE N/A OVERALL 16/20
I wish this was my neighborhood bar. I live about 30 miles away and paid my first visit to Rowland’s on a beautiful winter Saturday in Jan 06. Tried the Irish Red, Amber and Rye and was not disappointed! Walked into the place and big Bob was behind the bar. A biker and his babe (both hippie burnouts) were shooting pool. Didn’t know what to expect. Soon we were talking about the great pyramids of Egypt, who discovered the concept of Pi, and most importantly, beer festivals. Give this place a visit if you can. Quaint old Wisconsin town, no traffic, no crowds, not much hops, but some excellent lagers!
TheEnemy (44) Chicago, | October 10, 2005| Updated October 12, 2005
60 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 3/10 SELECTION 11/15 FOOD N/A VALUE N/A OVERALL 12/20
Ambiance-wise, this is what a brewpub should be, especially one in a small town in upper Wisconsin. Basically a Northwoods small-town tavern with the ambiance to match, though more tidy than your average backwoods cheesehead watering hole. The difference is this tavern also happens to brew and serve only its own beers. I wasn’t as overwhelmed by the beers as most other reviewers, but with the exception of a painfully salty glass of liquid diacetyl described as a bock, I didn’t get a bad beer either. (How the hell did the bock get so highly rated here anyway? Was mine just from a bad batch??) The server, however, was rude and had no qualms about insulting someone who had just driven some 250 miles for the express purpose of trying their beer. Some would write it off as the non-PC attitude of the place/owner/staff, or their bewilderment at beer geeks, or whatever. Maybe others who read the reviews here before visiting will be better prepared for the attitude than I was. In hindsight I suppose it was all in good fun, but at the time I wasn’t expecting it and was simply taken aback. I’m glad other reviewers here were able to get samplers. When I asked for one, they refused. (Maybe it wasn’t all in good fun after all??) I might stop in again if I’m in the area on other business but I won’t make any special trips back.
DavidP (58) Milwaukee, Wisconsin | August 9, 2005
68 AMBIANCE 3/5 SERVICE 8/10 SELECTION 11/15 FOOD N/A VALUE N/A OVERALL 12/20
Nothing new to add just another positive experience!
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