Award Winning Chef Justin Aprahamian Finally Gets Chance to Brew Beer in Wisconsin

Persistence has paid off for award winning Chef Justin Aprahamian.

He finally will get the chance to brew beer in Wisconsin.

The owner of Sanford Restaurant plans to open a brewery that will offer beer and food pairings, hopefully at the end of May.

While a live guest on the CBS 58 News at 4 on Thursday, Aprahamian told viewers that the seven-barrel brewery and restaurant will be located at at 823 E. Hamilton Street on Milwaukee's lower east side.

"We're excited about the platform to do our combination of beer and food together." Aprahamian said. "There are some people who are convinced beer can be a better pairing because of the carbonation it can keep your palette fresh."

He was all smiles compared with the last time we saw him on CBS 58 News.

Back in August,  he expressed frustration in a CBS 58 News interview that  Wisconsin laws meant his request for a brewery license would be rejected since he also had a retail liquor license at Sanford.

"There are parts of that law that make sense," he said back then. "But there also parts of that law that need to be addressed."

Aprahamian and his partner of "Like Minds Brewing," John LaVelle, opened a brewery in Illinois instead.

That southern location will remain open. The new Milwaukee location will be an expansion of the brewing operation.

All the media attention brought about talks with state officials.

A second review determined the brewing license should be granted since the brewery would only have an indirect interest in the restaurant that has the liquor license.

"It's been a process," is all Aprahamian would say when asked if the approval was a long time coming.

Live on air, Aprahamian promised to bring back Like Minds' Cucumber Pilsner.

"Now that we have full control, we're excited to do some barrel aging and projects that bridge the gap bringing the kitchen and brewery together."

The James Beard Award Winner expressed a feeling of satisfaction with how the food and entertainment scene has come along in Milwaukee.

He praised fellow chefs, like himself, who are pushing the envelope while recognizing Milwaukee's history. 

"I think we're doing great. The history of the last ten years shows us we're heading in the right direction."


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