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Hi.

My name is Gary Zidek. Welcome to The Arts Section. Tune into the radio program every Sunday morning on WDCB 90.9 & 90.7 FM or listen to it online here. I'll be showcasing a variety of arts & entertainment, as well as.highlighting some creative ideas.

Chicago Brewery Strives To Do More Than Make Great Beer

Chicago Brewery Strives To Do More Than Make Great Beer

WDCB’s Gary Zidek caught up with Middle Brow Beer Company co-founder Pete Ternes.

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“We thought, there seems to be so much profit in these things, that we’re going to do it differently. We’re going to put our money where our mouths are and we’re going to take this total luxury item, and we’re going to try to leverage it in favor of the community. The community that it’s being made in, the community it’s being consumed in. It really was that simple.” - Pete Ternes talking about the thought-process behind Middle Brow.

Pete Ternes, co-founder of Middle Brow Beer Company

Pete Ternes, co-founder of Middle Brow Beer Company

The origins of Middle Brow Beer Company can be traced back to 2011. Pete Ternes and Nick Burica were inspired by an idea, that can best be described as an attempt to tip the scales of economic justice with beer. The two friends came up with an idea to start a brewery where half the profits would be given to charity.

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Middle Brow donates half its gross profits from beers brewed off-site to a variety of local non-profit organizations. The company’s commitment to community service doesn’t stop there, Middle Brow is working on a job training program aimed at people considered at-risk for gun violence and has rolled out a weekend breakfast  program at its new brewpub, Bungalow.

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It’s been a long journey for Ternes and his partners, they began Middle Brow as a contract brewing operation. The company would make beer at six breweries all over the Chicago metro area. In 2017, Ternes found an ideal location (2840 W. Armitage Avenue) to open a brewpub Middle Brow could call home. This past January, Bungalow opened its doors to the public.

A look inside Bugnalow, where the bar surrounds an open kitchen.

A look inside Bugnalow, where the bar surrounds an open kitchen.

Pizza and bread are the stars of Bungalow’s food menu.

Pizza and bread are the stars of Bungalow’s food menu.

Giant foeders filled with beer inside Bungalow

Giant foeders filled with beer inside Bungalow

Unlike most local brewpubs, Bungalow opens bright and early at 7 am, serving coffee and breakfast. It’s menu, created by head chef Mickey Neely and head baker Jess Galli, is built around seasonal pizzas and breads. Ternes says the brewpub’s name was inspired by a couple things. The space itself is reminiscent of a bungalow, long and filled with windows. But the name goes deeper than that, Ternes wanted to evoke the idea of starting something and liked the idea of referencing bungalows, which have been starter homes for generations of Chicago-area residents.

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Bungalow is located at 2840 W. Armitage Avenue in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood. You can learn more about Middle Brow by clicking here.

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