Sunday, February 24, 2013

A Winter Beer Festival Hail Mary Play

Michigan Expats - Commentary - See All Commentary
By Doctor

Time was running out. The Eighth Annual Michigan Brewers Guild Winter Beer Fest was that afternoon. I was so close. Fifth Third Ballpark in Comstock Park was only a 20 minute drive away. Alas, no ticket.

What do you do when time’s running out and you need a miracle? You run a Hail Mary play.

It was a Pure Michigan day for a beer festival
It was a long shot, but I sent out a note on the Michigan Craft Beer Yahoo! Group Saturday morning that I was looking for one ticket.


Just like Kirk Cousins to Keith Nichol, my Hail Mary came through. Less than five minutes after my call went out, I received a text from someone with an extra ticket. I went from bummed to giddy like a school boy (how many Indiana Jones references can I toss in this post?) in mere minutes. We met up in line at the festival. Thanks, Joe. Hope you had a good time.

The last minute desperation play prevented me from following all of my own Beer Festival guidelines. I may not have had time to make a pretzel necklace or have a wingman (no Goose, to my Maverick), but I still had an awesome time. How could I not? It was WINTER BEER FEST.

The Ice Guru's Winter Beer Festival Ice Bar
Featuring 74 breweries pouring over 600 different beers and 6000 craft beer enthusiasts all outside on a Michigan winter day complete with snow and temperatures in the low 30’s, it is a fun filled event. Throw in live music, ice sculptures, good food, and creative outfits and it’s definitely a Pure Michigan event that’s not to be missed.

The beer is the draw, but I also love the Winter Beer Festival because of the people you meet. The Michigan craft beer community is a filled with fun and friendly people and it’s always a pleasure to meet new people and re-connect with others at the beer festival.

I finally got to meet the gals of!
It was great chatting with “Ice Guru” Randy Finch who was kind enough to take my picture with his Ice Brigade team ice sculptures including an ice bar complete with ice mugs. Of course, Chaz from Schmohz was there sporting his coyote skin hat and massive flask filled with Bone Crusher Stout. Joel, NewHolland Brewing Company’s “Beer Doctor” is always fun to catch up with and did me well by recommending the MI Nightmare Sour Ale. Kevin Peil, the Founder of Tri City Brewing is one of the nicest guys in the business; it was great chatting with Kevin and Tri City’s Mon Tressor Belgian Lavender Tripel was the beer of the festival for me.

The Filling Station gals rocked it out in Pink wigs
Having grown up in Traverse City, I had to check in with Russ and the Right Brain Brewery team who represented with the CEO Stout and Steve the Imperial Brown. This was the first Winter Beer Fest for The Filling Station Microbrewery which impressed on my visit last fall. They came in style with all the gals sporting matching pink wigs and Amanda celebrating a birthday and had as much fun as any brewery at the festival.

Speaking of beer lovin’ girls, I finally got to meet the gals behind after years of conversing on social media. It was also good to catch up with Andrew from after meeting him earlier this month at the Pistons Craft Beer Night.

I didn’t go through the entire beer list prior to the festival, so I basically ended up going with the flow of the festival which was a lot of fun and I still managed to discover plenty of new and interesting brews. I won’t delve into all of them here, but I will highlight my top three beers from the festival:
  • Death to Flying Things Bourbon Imperial Stout – The MittenBrewing Company: There were a lot of bourbon barrel aged beers served up yesterday and I definitely tried my share, but this entry from the new Grand Rapids brewery stood out and earns this spot. It also deserves recognition for having an awesome name.
  • Mayan Midnight Chocolate Stout – 57 Brewpub: I’m not sure how many patrons sought out the booth of this new small Greenville brewpub, but those that did were rewarded this delicious smooth hot chocolate flavored milk stout. It was the surprise of the festival for me and it’s only heightened my need to make a trip up to Greenville.
  • Mon Tressor Belgian Lavender Tripel – Tri City Brewing: As I mentioned above, this was my beer of the day. On a day I spent drinking mostly bourbon barrel aged stouts, this unique lavender infused Belgian Tripel blew me away.
Be safe. Always have a designated driver.
My Hail Mary paid off Saturday and had an awesome day with fellow Michigan craft beer enthusiasts. Congrats to the Michigan Brewers Guild and Fifth Third Ballpark for another fantastic festival. 

Were you there? What were your favorite beers? Best outfits? Let us know.

See more festival photos on Google + or on Facebook. And follow us on Twitter @MichiganExpats


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Winter beer that interesting ideas to create a special festival. Thanks for sharing the article
    Kizi | A10 | 4223 Games | Hopy Games

  3. I just want to say thanks for your wonderful post, it is contain a lot of knowledge and information that i needed right now. You really help me out my friend, thanks!
    halloween| animal jam| happy wheels| cool math games| 8 ball pool| sudoku| yoob| friv| tetris| friv4school| monster high

  4. We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. Great work.

    Such a very useful article. Very interesting to read this article.I would like to thank you for the efforts you had made for writing this awesome article.
    Sign in to Gmail to access to all Gooogle services. Log in to your account or sign up to create a new account
    gmail sign in

    gmail log in

    what's gmail?


    Tank trouble

    happy wheels

    Strike Force Heroes

    tank trouble 2

    In this game, you start at the cavern men's age, then evolve! There is a total of 5 ages, each with its units and turrets. Take control of 16 different units and 15 different turrets to defend your base and destroy your enemy.
    age of war

    We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. Great work.
    happy wheels

    strike force heroes

    earn to die

    Fireboy and Watergirl arrived again to the temple in the forest. 2 players together can help them to find their way out.
    fire boy and water girl

  5. Thank you very much for your post, it makes us have more and more discs in our life, So kind for you, I also hope you will make more and more excellent post and let’s more and more talk, thank you very much, dear.
    friv 100 | Friv 10 | | twizl games

  6. I enjoyed over read your blog post. Your blog have nice information, I got good ideas from this amazing blog. I am always searching like this type blog post. I hope I will see again.
    friv 3
    friv4school 2017
    kizi 2
    zoxy games

  7. Thank you both for sharing Holy Mass with us each day FNAF Sister Location FNAF Sister Location Minijuegos Friv 2018 to make yourselves available Friv Twizl Jeux De Twizl Juegos De FNAF Sister Location when we were called out late at night and any other time and for your support and encouragement in every respect. Juegos Friv 2021 Juegos Gratis Juegos De Twizl

  8. Wir danken Ihnen Friv4school 2018 Gry Friv 2 Gry Friv 5 dass Sie diese Hoffnung mit uns teilen und diesen Schritt auf dem Pilgerweg des Vertrauens Gry Friv Juegos Friv 100 Juegos Friv 1000 mit uns gegangen sind. Juegos Friv 5 Juegos De Friv 2 Juegos Friv 250 wir danken Ihnen für das Interesse an unseren Produkten und hoffe

  9. I like your post. It really useful with me. Thanks for sharing these useful information!

  10. great article, I was very impressed about it, wish you would have stayed next share

  11. I was very impressed by this post, this site has always been pleasant news. Thank you very much for such an interesting post. Keep working, great job! In my free time, I like play game: What about you?

  12. Thanks for sharing such a nice article. It is really useful to me and all people. One think in my mind came while reading that it is not wasting of time. Kizi 4 the aim of the game is to get the block to fall into the square hole at the end of each stage. Get ready for this lovely game on Jet Fighter

  13. Thank you for such a sweet tutorial - all this time later, I've found it and love the end result. I appreciate the time you spent sharing your skills.

  14. It seems I'm on the right track, I hope I can do well. The result was something I did and was doing to implement it.

  15. Alot of blogs I see these days don't really provide anything that I'm interested in, but I'm most definately interested in this one. Just thought that I would post and let you know. Nice! thank you so much! Thank you for sharing.

  16. The blog or and best that is extremely useful to keep I can share the ideas of the future as this is really what I was looking for, I am very comfortable and pleased to come here. Thank you very much.

  17. Very nice article. I enjoyed reading your post. very nice share. I want to twit this to my followers. Thanks !. responsive wordpress theme

  18. I have read your article, the information you give is very interesting.

  19. prześcignąć konkurencję z tych sztuczek Friv 2018 Jogos Friv Gry Friv napisał w Gry Gry Friv Jogos Friv Gry Friv Gry Friv Pobierz demo gry przed zakupem Friv4school 2018 Gry Friv Podgląd gry może pomóc zobaczyć, jeśli chcesz kupić pełną wersję, czy nie

  20. Great ideas. First time I am visiting this blog. I found many entertaining stuffs in this blog. I like your writing style and language. Your presentation is also good. Thank you so much for sharing these ideas.
    Dress Up Games
    Minecraft Games
    Girl Games

  21. I like this website - its so usefull and helpfull.
    Friv 5/
    Friv 4/
    Friv 3/
    Happy wheels

  22. This is the best application on the drop today. There access to enjoy great moments of relaxation . Great! Thanks for sharing the information.
    Friv 2

  23. This post is so helpful,it give me much help,thanks!

  24. Awesome blog. I enjoyed reading your articles. This is truly a great read for me. I have bookmarked it and I am looking forward to reading new articles.
    Friv 2019
    Didi Games
    Friv 1

  25. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.
    Hooda Math
    Didi Games

  26. Thanks for offering many of these terrific subject material.

  27. Thanks for offering many of these terrific subject material.

  28. This is my first time visit here. From the tons of comments on your articles,I guess I am not only one having all the enjoyment right here! instagram liker and followers app

  29. You can associate Spotify ready and stream the tunes into any room of your home! spotify playlist promotion