Music (and beer) fans went wild last week when Goose Island Brewery announced it would debut a new beer at this weekend's Pitchfork Music Festival inspired by Sunday headliner Chance the Rapper. The collaboration is not the first time Goose Island has brewed some special suds for Pitchfork—last year the company paired with Sharon Van Etten for a new drink.
The Tribune reported last week that Chance, 22, and Goose Island would be making a 5.3 percent Helles-style lager called No Collar. Chance wasn't too involved in the recipe, but, according to the Tribune, did tell brewmaster Jared Jankowski that he wanted a beer "for the hardworking people of Chicago … exactly what you want to drink after a long day of work."
Turns out you don't need to sneak into Pitchfork to try the new concoction. Goose Island Brewpub (1800 N. Clybourn, gooseislandbrewpubs.com) is offering it on its menu right now, which is how we were able to taste test it days before the festival actually starts (also, while reported at 5.3, the brewpub's draft was 5.1).
The main reaction from our dining team? Underwhelming, but kind of perfect for a main brew at a music festival. It was "a standard beer," said one staffer, and "a little breadier than your average Budweiser." Our waiter declared it closest to Goose Island SPF, for those who know their suds (we tried the SPF as well; the likeness was there, though SPF was a bit lighter than No Collar).
In a way, though, this makes sense. This is a beer meant for mass consumption, both by number of people and per person throughout a day. It's affordable ($5 for a glass at the brewpub, $6 at the fest) and could sustain you all day when you don't care too much about great flavor.
No Collar will be available for the time being at Goose Island Brewpub, and of course at Pitchfork Festival this weekend. You can bet at the very least that Chance will be having one.