People typically feel one of two ways about Jeppson’s Malört. They either hate it, or they absolutely love it…as something to buy for someone who’s never tried it before. Despite being the textbook definition of an “acquired taste,” the daunting Chicago spirit—that, by its own admission, “is not for the faint of heart”—has become a lip-puckering point of pride in the Windy City and, in recent years, has established something of a presence behind the pine at watering holes here in Milwaukee.
With the Cubs—and an abundance of their fans—making their way to town for a series at the end of July, Jeppson’s and Ray’s Growler Gallery are banding together and “creating a safe space for Chicago and Milwaukee baseball fans to tailgate like old drinking buddies” with an event that’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen (or tasted) before.
On Saturday, July 27, the Rayborhood will play host to the something called Malört Fest. According to Rob Zellermayer of Ray’s, the inaugural affair will highlight the incomparable liquor, and will also involve breweries from both Milwaukee and Chicago. Apparently, there will be a Malört-incorporating “Chicago Citrus Slushie” offered at the micro-fest, as well as something called “Uncle Carl’s Happy Boilermaker” (which we’re told is a shot of Malört dropped into a pint of Third Space’s Happy Place).
If having the…distinct spirit in ways you’ve never dreamed of isn’t enough to convince you to give Malört another try, “Jeppson’s Malört Ambassador” Matthew Roy will be offering up free Chicago-style hot dogs and Jeppson’s merchandise beginning at 3 p.m. Between the top-notch beer, the festival’s unique (and deeply polarizing) focal point, the friendly atmosphere that will hopefully bring rivals together for an afternoon, Malört Fest actually sounds pretty fun. Bring a friend…especially if they’ve never tried Malört before.