Musical Cheers: MKE Citrus Happy

Mike Eserkaln

mike eserkaln | musical cheers | may 2016


Guest Reviewer name/occupation:

Mike Eserkaln, improv comedian, writer, bar-owner, artist.

Currently listening to:

Styx “Paradise Theatre" (on vinyl)

Currently reading:

When You Are Engulfed in Flames" by David Sedaris

Beatles or Elvis:

Beatles for sure. No offense to the King.

Preferred Blue Collar Beer:


Preferred White Collar Beer:

Titletown Green 19


Name of Beer:

Milwaukee Brewing Company Citrus Happy

Type of Beer:

Grapefruit IPA


6 percent


Bought a choose-your-own-adventure six-pack from Festival Foods. Grabbed what caught my eye, and/or kinds of beers I'd heard about. I like IPAs and especially like the hint of grapefruit that they sometimes have. I'm originally from Milwaukee (Wauwatosa), so seeing the MKE on the label caught my eye. I'm not 100 percent sure what the name of this beer is. The label is cool looking with retro '50s fonts and a matter-a-fact kind of design work. It's either called Citrus or Citrus Happy or Happy or Grapefruit IPA … I'm going to guess Citrus Happy.

Pouring the beer has a distinct yeasty smell, which brought me back to riding in the car on I-94. If you lived in Milwaukee in the '80s (and before, I imagine) you know the smell I'm talking about.

A beautiful light caramel color, a little cloudy, but not weird cloudy like things are floating in it. Just before the actual sip I can smell the grapefruit. Sweet smelling. I'm expecting a zip of citrus (because that's in the name of the beer) and a sweet grapefruit taste.


I was wrong! Not sweet grapefruit! What was I thinking? Grapefruit isn't a sweet fruit. It's tart. Bitter and tart. It's the kind of fruit that you eat in the morning because it lures you into a false sense that this newborn day is going to be sweet and lovely, then reality hits you and it's a dry, bitter-tart day. That said, it's quite good. The citrus flavor it has comes in as an after taste. It's kinda like you've bitten a bit of the rind of a grapefruit. That sort of dryness lingers. It quenches your thirst, but immediately makes you thirsty … probably for more beer. Well played, Milwaukee Brewing Company.

You'll like this beer: If you're sitting on your front porch on a mild summer evening just around sunset. It's not going to be your last beer of the night. It's a better first beer.

You won't like this beer:

If you don't like that weird sensation of feeling thirsty after you finish a beer.



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