Some say history repeats itself, but it always leaves a trail of people, places and things that serve as the impetus for the stories we will tell next. Sometimes the story is a song. Or maybe a piece of art. And sometimes it’s a craft beer.
Wisconsin Brewing Company Brewmaster, Kirby Nelson, is a storyteller. His medium isn’t a canvas or lyrics penned to a tune, but rather Nelson tells his stories with his beer. And like his beers, his stories are inspired by the great state of Wisconsin. And his American I.P.A., Yankee Buzzard, is no exception.
Nestled in a serene and picturesque space on the outskirts of Verona, Wis., a few miles from the hustle and bustle of Madison, Nelson’s brewery is guarded under the watchful eye of an American bald eagle keeping perch nearby.
The sight of WBC’s resident eagle prompted Nelson to brew the story of Old Abe, an orphaned American bald eagle raised by a Wisconsin solider during the Civil War. As the mascot of the Eighth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry Regiment, Old Abe rallied Union troops while soaring over 30 battles. Loathed by Confederate soldiers, they set bounties on the bird and coined him with the spiteful nickname of Yankee Buzzard.
And like Old Abe, Nelson’s Yankee Buzzard boasts a quiet confidence. Columbus, Chinook, Centennial and Cascade hops form an artful blend of floral notes and bitterness that soar across a malty playground lending a Midwestern flair to this hoppy brew.
And while Old Abe may no longer soar the battlefield, his story and resilient spirit lives in every pint of Yankee Buzzard.