Friday, August 17, 2012

12 Michigan Beers to Seek Out in 2012

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By Doctor

Earlier this week I had a friend contact me to inquire what beers I would recommend to beer enthusiasts in Chicago to seek out to introduce them to the Michigan craft beer industry. It was such a fun exercise that I wanted to share it with our followers here at Michigan Expats with a slightly different take.

For the Chicago list I kept it limited to Michigan brews that I felt confident were widely available in the Chicago market. I choose one beer from each brewery and tried to mix it up and include different styles instead of recommending six IPA’s.

Here I’m going to go along the same line by suggesting twelve beers from twelve different Michigan breweries representing different regions and styles that I would recommend Michigan Expats, Michiganders, and beer enthusiasts to seek out to discover why Michigan is the Great Beer State.

This list was a little more difficult than I thought it would be, especially since I wanted to limit myself to one beer from each brewery and wanted to branch out and include different styles. I also choose Michigan beers that are distributed in at least parts of the state, so that visitors can look for them at bars and stores anywhere in Michigan. There were over 60 breweries and over 500 beers at the Michigan Brewers Guild Summer Beer Festival alone, so I definitely can’t capture everything. Did I miss your favorite? Let us know in the comments.

Arcadia Ales (Battle Creek) – Whitsun
Some might be surprise at the omission of Bell’s Oberon from this list below since it has been the standard bearer of American wheat beers in Michigan for years and unofficially marks the end of winter and sunshine to come, but Arcadia Ales Whitsun Ale is just as refreshing and likewise tastes like a beautiful Michigan summer day. 
Honorable Mention: Sky High Rye
I love porters with a vanilla finish and this Detroit brewery makes the best in the state. 
Honorable Mention: Double Down Imperial Amber Ale and Grand Circus IPA
I discovered this delicious stout at the 2012 Winter Music and Microbrew Festival in Traverse City and have a sixer of it in my fridge at the moment. Rich and flavorful, this stout is delicious any time of the day.
Honorable Mention: Sacred Cow IPA
The IPA has been at the cornerstone of the craft beer movement in the United States and Bell’s, Michigan’s largest brewery, has been at the center of the Michigan craft beer industry. It’s no surprise that Bell’s Two Hearted Ale is as good as IPA’s come. Hoppy yet very drinkable at 7% ABV, it is not to be missed. 
Honorable Mention: Amber, Hopslam,Kalamazoo Stout, Oberon, and Pale Ale.

(more after the jump)