*This is the twenty-ninth post in an on-going chronicle dubbed the Great Wisconsin Brewery Tour. Follow the journey here.*

Courthouse Pub. All photos by Joe Powell.

Courthouse Pub. All photos by Joe Powell.

Courthouse Pub
1001 South 8th St
Manitowoc, WI 54220
(920) 686-1166
Visit date: 10/16/15

Quick Hits:
1) How many different beers?
5 on tap, ~300 total brewed. “I have ADD; I’ve never brewed the same beer twice.”

2) How long operational?
15 years

3) Why? (here, this, etc)
Owner had a factory, wanted a “place to bring his clients.”

4) Distribution?
Growlers to go, 2 x 4 barrel system.

5) What sets you apart?
“We’re in Manitowoc, so we’re serving you a pint.”

6) How did you get your name?
Manitowoc County Courthouse across the street.

29 Courthouse Pub (5)

The word “pub” in the US makes me think fried food, domestic beers, bar games, and Uncle Larry manning the jukebox. As our server, Todd, and brewmaster, Brock, told us, using the term “pub” for them is “kind of a bait & switch”: Courthouse Pub is a fine restaurant and bar more than anything else. To say we were surprised by the cloth napkins, gleaming surfaces, bright lights, well-dressed servers, and downright attractiveness of the space would be an understatement. Manitowoc’s blue collar has been shined a bit.

29 Courthouse Pub (6)

We bellied-up at the bar like most of the crowd, just across from the brew kettles kept in “The Jury Box”. With five of their own creations on tap, we were eager to try what Brock dubbed “total uniqueness” in his ever-changing lineup. Our samples were large, and despite the upscale surroundings the sampler was a steal: 6 beers for $6.

Stumbling distance during extended court recesses.

Stumbling distance during extended court recesses.

Marzen Octoberfest
Tangy, malty fall ale.

Litigator Pilsner
Super bready, like drinking a boozy bakery.

Ransom
Tasty apple & squash notes in this ale.

Raspberry Wheat
Like a raspberry cider; sweet but not overpowering.

Bondsman Eisbock
The winner: subtle caramel with hidden alcohol.

The sampler.

The sampler.

The 6th sampler was from a much larger regional brewer, but next to Courthouse’s unique and well-crafted choices this other beer fell flat. The quality of the beer and the wonderful impression we got from the space is a testament to the workers and brewmaster: they were all just as polished as the glasses and some of the nicest, easiest people to talk to on our entire journey. It was a sincere pleasure drinking at Courthouse Pub; fitting for a place that aims to be “a cornerstone for Manitowoc.”

Sustained.

Sustained.