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Right Bauer Brewing

Sun Prairie, WI


Crusin’ Rating: B+

Booze Rating: C+

Crusin' For Booze- Wisconsin Travel Blogger- Right Bauer Brewing- Exterior

This Crusin' For Booze stop is close to home, only a 25 minute drive from our place in Madison. Right in the heart of Sun Prairie and quite literally right off of Main Street lies Right Bauer Brewing Company. We’ve been to Right Bauer a couple times out of convenience of location alone and before the blog was started. It’s within walking distance of several restaurants, a few bars, and is less than a hundred yards from Sun Prairie’s other brewery, Full Mile Beer Company and Kitchen.

What is a Right Bauer you ask? Well, a “Bower” is another name for the Jack in a deck of cards with the German spelling being “Bauer” which translates to farmer. Now, specifically in the game of Euchre, the highest trump card is the Jack in the trump suit, often referred to as the “right bower”. So there you have it, the small bit of card-playing trivia you never know you needed. I always appreciate a good story behind the name of a brewery; a little history behind the name is just as good as well!

I always picture the space as being cozy for some reason. Perhaps it’s the, admittedly, small space, or perhaps the sand-colored brick that makes up the walls of this restored building. The space does not feature a fireplace, and, honestly, it’s even a little drafty so it’s not actually that cozy but the illusion of cozy remains! It has the air of a good hangout spot, without blaring music, tables and booths of varying sizes, and food available. The tables are made out of old bowling alley floors which is a fantastic upcycling of materials. Right Bauer Brewing, by it’s claim, is known as a Southern BBQ joint but we have not tried it. We have tried the cheese curds which are serviceable for sure. There are board games available and a table of merchandise off to one side. Not only does Right Bauer feature some of their own beer, but, interestingly, beer from a handful of other local breweries. While we would have liked to see more of their own stuff on the menu, it was a neat way for them to fill the gaps in their taps. Along with food and beer, wine is also available and they have a handful of local spirits so I’d say they are a full bar.

One of the neatest aspects about our trip that was present this time was the bartender. She was earnest to learn all about what we did, engaging, and incredibly friendly. I thought it was refreshing just how eager to hear any critiques we had and our honest thoughts on the beer. It’s tough being put on the spot, especially if our thoughts on the beer weren’t all positive. However, she seemed completely honest when she said she would take any criticism to heart and pass them along to the brewer in order to improve the experience. I think that’s a pretty unique attitude for a space to have and it’s a cool response to turn our visit into an experience geared toward improvement. We didn't quite catch her name but if you’re reading this Ms. Right Bauer, you were awesome to interact with!

Crusin' For Booze- Wisconsin Travel Blogger- Right Bauer Brewing- Beer Flight

Flights run you $10 for four standard pours (I believe 4 oz). They are right along the average pour to price at Right Bauer.

Mosaic Queen (7.8% ABV) - This double IPA had medium clarity with a golden color. It kind of had the aroma of some funk you get from an old gym bag, with sweetness of pineapple and mango. Think Spongebob’s house. Musty pineapple. The taste was much better with some tropical flower notes, maybe hibiscus but then almost astringent with sharp pine resin. It was crisp and light and was definitely my first experience with an IPA featuring only Mosaic hops, much less a double IPA and I think it’s a good example of why we so often see Mosaic paired with hops that balances out that sharp pine flavor. It was an eye-opener for sure wherein we suddenly understood why so often you see Mosaic in a trifecta of hop medleys rather than a solo act.

Pompous Jack (5.2% ABV) - This Pomegranate IPA with vanilla and lactose (for added sourness) was a cloudy, pale gold color. I thought this beer tasted almost like a fruited creme you might find on a fancy summer dessert. Something about the vanilla and general fruitiness to form a smooth, cool flavor. I actually thought this beer could do without the lactose addition as it was plenty sweet already. For some reason I got this idea in my head that the lactose wasn’t playing nice with the hops used and left a metallic aftertaste that both Hannah and I picked up on. That’s entirely theoretical on my part, but it was a good enough explanation for us. Hannah also got notes of orange juice for flavor. Maybe that was what I was tasting. Orange juice sometimes has a metallic tang to it. As for smell, we picked up on notes of strawberry, orange, vanilla, and, of course, lactose (yes it has a sort of distinct milky sweet smell to it). If anyone is wondering, lactose is a milk sugar used to sweeten during fermentation.

Screw the Dealer (10% ABV) - This Belgian Tripel was yellow-gold with low clarity but not to the point of cloudiness. I believe I nailed the taste down in saying “liquefied honey nut cheerios soaked in beer”. Hannah pointed out that it smelled like sweet wort with the definite herbal-sweetness of honey. While it was a pleasant beer I think calling it a Belgian Tripel was a little bit of a stretch. A Belgian Tripel should definitely have a spice character, amber color, and a dry finish. I didn’t pick up on any of that and neither did Hannah. I think this could pass as some sort of Blonde Ale, but the Belgian Tripel characteristics simply weren't there.

Table Talk (4.6% ABV) - Speaking of blondes, this Blonde Ale was a cloudy banana-yellow. There was a light orange-fruitiness in the aroma, along with some hops that weren’t too forward. This beer was mellow, especially so after the previous entries. It had a slight biscuity-sweet front, a sprinkle of hops in the finish that give an impression of a sudden, crisp finish that was wholly pleasant. It was an easy-enough drinker but as I sat and went back for other tastes there was a light sourness that seemed out of place, understated, but still didn’t really belong. I only got this after trying a pint of this one specifically since it was the one I enjoyed most out of the bunch.

Crusin' For Booze- Wisconsin Travel Blogger- Right Bauer Brewing- Bar

If you noticed, all of their beers are playing card themed which I give them major points for. I don’t believe we’ve seen all beer names fit into a specific theme and I got a kick out of that bit of creativity. The beer definitely has some work that can be done. While I appreciate the fact that they stay local, I would have really liked more than five choices (we skipped one in favor of a single flight) on the menu. My understanding is more are in the works and they hope to one day have a majority of the beers on their menu made in-house.

Crusin' For Booze- Wisconsin Travel Blogger- Right Bauer Brewing- Beer in glass

The real winner here was the engagement from staff. You know, it would have been a pretty standard visit for us had Ms. Right Bauer not started talking with us and asking all sorts of questions with genuine interest. I know it may seem self-flattering to give points to a place because they showed interest but we do this job because we love it and we love talking about beer. Hell, we obviously love writing about it so for someone to show interest that was just a neat interaction to have since we so rarely get the chance to talk face-to face to people about what we love. So, the vibe checks out, and we were told that the Brew Master wanted feedback so there you have it. We hope some notes are taken to heart (we still aren’t experts though) and we will definitely be back in the hopes of seeing improvement.

If you’re in the Madison area, or Sun Prairie, I’d say stop on in to this one as you tour around Madison’s drinking scene. Who knows, maybe one day we will mark this down on our must-stop list.

Crusin' For Booze- Wisconsin Travel Blogger- Right Bauer Brewing- Signage

Until next time, keep on Crusin’, don’t stop boozin’.

To learn more about Right Bauer Brewing, please visit their website at: or on Facebook: @RightBauer or on Instagram: @RightBauerBrewing

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