Crafting a legacy at Mickey Finn’s Brewery
The prime rib is sliced paper thin and topped with horsey mayo atop Mickey Finn's signature crustini ($4.95). | Lee A. Litas~Sun-Times Media
Mickey Finn’s Brewery
412 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Libertyville
11:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m., Mon - Thurs; 11:30 a.m. to 1:15 a.m. Fri. and Sat.; 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday
(847) 362-6688, www.mickeyfinnsbrewery.com
Updated: September 7, 2012 11:33AM
“Imports are down, domestics are flat. Craft has 5 percent of the whole beer market and it’s the only part that’s growing, that’s the exciting part,” said Brian Grano, the current owner of Mickey Finn’s, the oldest brew pub in Libertyville.
A working tavern since the mid-1930s, today Mickey Finn’s makes more of its own beer than any other entity in Lake County. In early 2012, Finn’s brewed its 1,500th batch of beer, bringing its total to more than 31,000 kegs of beer since 1994.
Mickey Finn’s brews and distributes its best-selling amber ale in 12-pack cans throughout Lake County, offers wine and liquors and dishes some serious pub grub such as the Mickey burger. Sourced locally from Dorfler’s meat market in Buffalo Grove, the hand-pattied burger is possibly entirely too pretty, said Grano. “We patty them so well, they look like they’re frozen,” he said.
Finn’s staff made up much of the stick-to-your-ribs fare for something to eat themselves — until others wanted a bite, that is. Take MF’s Buffalo Chicken Caesar salad, which features the traditionally dressed greens heightened by Finn’s signature spicy Cajun chicken strips ($10.95). Change to tuna ($6), salmon ($8) or keep it simple ($6.95).
The roast beef for Finn’s classic Reuben is corned and slow-cooked right in house. Lean and tender, it’s topped with Thousand Island dressing and traditional sauerkraut, then set atop thick slices of grilled, marbled rye ($9.95).
Grano attributes surviving and thriving for so long to a fairly simple formula, which includes offering something for everyone. “We look forward to being in Libertyville for a long time,” he said.
Next year Finn’s expands in a new place in Libertyville, so stay tuned …