Friday, February 22, 2013

DIY Michigan Beer Fest

Michigan Expats - Commentary - See All Commentary
By Doctor

Probably not going to be you tomorrow.
The Eighth Annual Michigan Brewers Guild Winter Beer Fest is tomorrow at Fifth Third Ballpark in Comstock Park, MI (home of the Tigers Class A affiliate White Caps just north of Grand Rapids). Now, I don’t have tickets to tomorrow’s Winter Beer Fest (admitted disappointment), but this blog is intended for Michigan Expats so most of you probably don’t have tickets either. However it is an awesome event highlighting one of Michigan’s booming markets, craft beer, and an excellent opportunity to talk about the industry (and drive blog traffic).

This was going to be a post on the Top Ten beers I would like to seek out at the festival tomorrow. I replaced that idea as soon as I started looking at the list (635 beers!) and realized that it isn’t much fun to come out with a festival beer bucket list when I’m not even going to the festival. Instead I’m going to write again on the great Michigan beers available outside of Michigan that Expats can seek out and enjoy their own Michigan Beer Fest/Party. Don't worry, there's Winter Beer Fest links at the bottom.
  • Arcadia Ales (Battle Creek): Arcadia Ales are available across the Mid-West. Whitsun is primed to surpass Oberon as the unofficial beer of Michigan summer. Also check out Sky High Rye and the Cocoa Locoa Stout. Distributors list.
  • Atwater Brewery (Detroit): I really enjoy the Vanilla Java Porter, but keep an eye out for the Grand Circus IPA now available in cans. For something different, try the VooDoo Vator Doppelbock. Find it near you.
  • Bell’s Brewery (Kalamazoo): Bell’s does IPA’s as well as anyone. You may have to beg, borrow, and steal to get your hands on Hopslam outside of the Mitten, but it’s worth it for one of Michigan’s most hype beers. Of course, Two Hearted IPA is pretty damn good too if you miss out on Hopslam. Oh yeah, the 2013 Oberon release is less than a month away. Bell’s offers a Beer Finder to help you track down their beer and they also host events across the country which allows you to try some of their specialty brews.
  • Brewery Vivant (Grand Rapids): Congratulations, Chi-Towners, Beer City USA’s unique Belgium style brewery is now available in the Windy City. Seek out Farmhand, a French Style Farmhouse Ale, and go from there. Events.
  • Founders Brewing Co. (Grand Rapids): I cannot emphasize to you enough to become best-buddies with your local beer store/distributor to have them knock down doors to get you a bottle of the soon-to-be released Kentucky Breakfast Stout. This past week, beer enthusiasts crashed a server to buy tickets to have the opportunity to purchase a limited quantity. Is it that good? Pretty much. Their Porter and Breakfast Stout are also fantastic and may be easier to find.  Be sure to check out if Founders is going to be at an event near you.
  • New Holland Brewing Co. (Holland): If you try one beer from NHBC, it must be the Dragons Milk Bourbon Barrel Stout. Fortunately, it is brewed year round and readily available. If NHBC released Dragons Milk on a limited basis, it would be just as hyped and in demand as Founders KBS and Bell’s Hopslam. Not into hoppy or heavy beers, go with the Full Circle, a refreshing and session kolsch-style. Beer Finder and Events page.


More Beer Fest Links
NHBC Elvis and I had fun last year.

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