Winter Class 2016

Meet Our Winter Class of 2016

After over 60 applications our inaugural Barley To Barrel class consists of 18 participants ready to jump start he next chapter in Milwaukee’s Craft Beer Community.

Brook Meier

Brook grew up in North Dakota and lived for 5 years in Kolkata, India before settling in Milwaukee. He is a Senior Designer at Vetter Denk Architects, as well as an Adjunct Assistant Professor at UWM’s School of Architecture & Urban Planning where he teaches design studios. The marketing & business side of Craft Beer is of particular interest to Brook – though the Architect in him can’t help but be tempted by the possibilities for great brewery design and the potential impact on the City. He lives in Shorewood with his wife and 2 sons.


Theresa Kettner

The descendant of generations of Brewers Hill German Kettners, Theresa Catherine Kettner is an up and coming brewer in Milwaukee. She started in 2011, turning part of her lab space into a mini brewery, and is currently studying brewing at Siebel Institute, aiming at a Master Brewer title.

In another fermentation adventure, Theresa this past summer started test-marketing her Kombucha, much loved by friends and family, at the Westown Farmer’s market. After selling out every week, she was confident that expanding her production to commercial bottling may be a viable business.

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Greg Worzalla

With over a decade of brewing experience that has fueled my interest in the craft beer industry, I’m ready to make the leap of turning this passion into a career.  I lived in Madison during the burgeoning craft beer market, where the Angelic was the local craft brewer, and I am excited to bring the same revolution to the Milwaukee market.  Having three young boys and a forgiving wife, they have helped me pursue this dream knowing that it can be a success in this region.  I grew up in this area and moved back because I wanted to raise a family here, but now I see that there is a chance to form a new community with the center being a craft beer experience.


Chris Springer

Historically, I have been able to experience great work with great people.  The time has come for me to develop a world class product, within a very exciting industry, that can represent this great city and state.  The Barley to Barrel program is an opportunity that can help establish a rock solid foundation as I pursue my dream!

Brandon Simkowski

I am a graduate from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and a graduate of Northwest Lineman College. My schooling for the past 5 ½ years has led me to a job in construction, which is non-related to my schooling whatsoever. But during these 5 ½ years, my love for craft beer has grown to the point where I am now creating my own recipes and brewing my own beer. I am excited to be in this 10 week program and looking forward to one day being a part of the beer industry in this great state of Wisconsin.
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Justin A. Metzger

Justin is a marketing, communication, and PR professional working for a major Milwaukee non-profit downtown.  He’s also a recovering radio broadcaster, having appeared on-air in Milwaukee, Chicago, and southern Indiana; car nut; beer geek; and guy who has a nasty habit of saying, “I can do that.”  Justin has been brewing for more than three years now, creating a few more winners than losers.  His ultimate goal is to start a unique, estate brewery that grows as much as it can of what it brews.  Failing that, he won’t mind getting to meet a few new fellow beer geeks, brew a great beer, and have an amazing experience.  Justin lives on the south side of Milwaukee with his family and furballs.

Brady Simkowski

I have been brewing for 2 years now.  I am a welder by trade and brew on a tier system we welded up.  Our beer has turned out pretty good and we have entered some in a local contest.  I am hoping to learn how to scale up to brew bigger batches, and the ins and outs of starting a brewery so that i can start writing my business plan.



Martin Beaudoin

I have been in the service industry for over 30 years and have been self-employed for about 23 years. I opened my first restaurant, Red Dot on the eastside of Milwaukee in 2005. We opened the Wauwatosa location in 2013. Before that I had a satellite installation company for about 13 years. I love Milwaukee. I’ve traveled a lot and couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. I am totally psyched to participate in the Barley to Barrel program. I’ve been wanting to brew beer at our Wauwatosa location for over a year now and I’m hoping that this is the springboard for me to take the next step. Foe myself, my business and the Red Dot brand this is the next logical step.

Ryan Rantala

I have been part of the home brewing community for about 2 years. I am a welder by trade and brew as often as possible on the weekends. I am at a point where I would like to make brewing beer more of a lifestyle rather than a hobby. I am interested to learn about recipe configuration along with what it takes to start a brewery. This program seems to be a perfect fit for just that, setting a foundation to someday start a micro-brewery here in southeastern Wisconsin.


Beau Burlingame

By day I’m a mild mannered Quality Control Technician, by night, an all grain home brewer. I am extremely passionate about the rich history of brewing in Milwaukee and have been home brewing for about ten years. I enjoy experimenting with different techniques and styles of brewing. I grow hops and other herbs and use them in a variety of ways in my own recipes.  I am very excited to learn about the ins and outs of professional brewing first hand from some of my favorite brewers and hope this class can bring me one step closer to bringing my ideas and passion to the Milwaukee beer scene.

Jeff Warren

I believe in trying almost anything at least once. Traveling around trying new food and beer as well as visiting different baseball stadiums is something I love doing. When it comes to brewing beer, I enjoy coming up with new recipes by adding unique and unexpected ingredients. I would like to learn more on how to start up a brewery with the Barley to Barrel program.



Ben Jaeger

I am currently the general manager at Copper Rock Coffee in Appleton, WI. My background is in elementary education. My interests lie in both the coffee and microbrewery industries. I am hoping to implement the information from this workshop in a future brewery venture.

Jason Coterel

Jason Coterel is a seasoned home brewer with a passion for Milwaukee brewing history and beer culture.  A transplant from Ohio, Jason’s experience living, working, brewing and drinking in Milwaukee has shaped his desire to return this city to the beer destination it once was.  Currently brewing on a Blichmann electric system, Jason takes pride in sharing his batches with family, friends and co-workers.  His ultimate goal is to expand his homebrew operation to serve the city he loves with the beer he loves just as much.
Lee Pasbrig

Lee Pasbrig

My background is in corporate marketing and strategy and I have started two small businesses. Growing up in Milwaukee, I have always been proud of the city’s beer heritage and its resurgence led by craft brewers. My family has brewing ties to both Belgium and Milwaukee and I was attracted to the Barley to Barrel Incubator by not only the course offerings, but the excellent roster of mentors. I am looking forward to gaining a greater understanding of the mechanics of the craft beer business and turning my ideas into reality!


Robert H Yeo

I’ve been home brewing for 4 years and am a member of Brewligans, a HB club in Cedarburg. In 2014, I  joined several other club members to form a collective and we brew a wide range of styles on weekends. In 2015, I entered 8 BJCP-sanctioned competitions and placed 7th overall in the 13-state Midwestern Homebrewer of the Year competition. A highlight was winning Best of Show and the Schnapp Hans Cup, which led to ramping up a Maple Bock recipe to a 15-barrel batch at Delafield Brewhaus. The positive experience I had working with Brewmaster John Harrison encouraged me to apply to the initial Barley to Barrel incubator and I look forward to learning from other brewers and participants in the program.

Michael Kroeker

Michael Kroeker has encountered the meaning of good beer repeatedly throughout his time on this planet – First, in the Czech Republic in 1995, again during his travels throughout New Zealand in 2006, and once more via homebrewing in South Korea in 2007.  Michael’s notion of creating a fermentation-based establishment here in Milwaukee has long  steeped in his head, and he is eager to further foment it via this amazing Barley to Barrel Incubator.  Na zdravi!



Todd Pieper

IT Manager by Day, Wine Maker by Night and Weekends. Owner of Pieper Porch Winery & Vineyard in Mukwonago. Home Wine Maker turned commercial and started a Winery. Very Interested in learning about the Brewing Industry

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Gregg Mattek

Gregg Mattek is an IT professional by trade, and currently spends his days in the cloud with customers all over Wisconsin. He and a number of friends and family have purchased an existing brewery and restaurant in Green Bay, and are excited to take over operations once the Packers finish their work on the new stadium district. He is looking forward to meeting other likeminded beer drinkers and makers during this class!


Chad Ostram

I’ve been a homebrewer for 20 years and have dreamed about starting up a microbrewery. Recently, I came across a brew pub that was for sale in Oconomowoc and am in the process of purchasing that business.  I love the craft brewing space because even with my short time in it, existing brewers have been willing to share knowledge and experience with me.  My perception is that the craft brewing space is more of a collaborative community, which is pretty unique and exciting.  I look forward to this opportunity and to learn more about the ins and outs of the brewing industry from the mentors of this program.
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