Arbor Brewing Company Pub and Eatery
Award-winning brews draw in the crowds—the ridiculously good food focused on local and organic fare is just an added bonus. Nine to 14 beers are on tap daily; go for the Sacred Cow IPA, an Ann Arbor favorite that stays on tap year-round. Other options include a coffee brew: Espresso Love Breakfast Stout and a fall seasonal: Jackhammer Old Ale (734/213-1393; arborbrewing.com).
Green walls fitted with dartboards surround the large, cavernous space that gives the feel of an English pub. Large windows invite patrons to peer inside the factory where all the brews are canned. The Battle Creek brewery specializes in a range of flavors including, hoppy, dark and smoky, orange-spice and chocolate that pair well with a menu chock-full of pub grub—barbecue, sandwiches and wood-fired pizza (269/963-9520; arcadiaales.com).
The no-frills Detroit brewery sets its focus on German lagers. Twice a night and three times each Saturday, patrons grab a brew and follow the bartender on a 15–20 minute tour for a full view of the inner workings: brewing, bottling and packaging. Sample any of the dozen beers—dark ale, pale ale made from blueberries, dark lager or even a vanilla java porter—for just $1 (313/877-9205; atwaterbeer.com).
Blue Tractor BBQ and Brewery
Smoky barbecue combines with eight award-winning brews in the Ann Arbor industrial tavern. The smoky aroma from ribs, beef, brisket, chicken and pulled pork waft from the on-site smokers while beer brews in the cellar. Take a peek through a viewing window to see how it’s done (734/222-4095; bluetractor.net).
The authentic Italian restaurant has been serving delicious dishes of seafood, pasta and pizza in Kalamazoo for 25 years and now you can order a handcrafted brew. Pair the amber ale with a pizza or calamari and try the crème de la crème milk stout with beer battered whitefish or order the beer flight for a taste of four (269/344-7700; bravokalamazoo.com).
Founders Brewing Company
The buzz of a busy taproom echoes throughout the wide-open space where patrons toss their peanut shells on the floor. Although the Grand Rapids brewery dabbles in seasonal brews, the strong suit is the mainstay favorites like the Centennial IPA and the Dirty Bastard Scotch Ale. Pub fare including French bread pizzas, sandwiches and appetizers like beer cheese dip compliment the pints (616/776-1195; foundersbrewing.com).
Greenbush Brewing Company
Trial and error made this Sawyer brewery a great success. Finding the perfect porter to start the business became Distorter and is still a favorite. Red Bud Ale originated as a wheat beer gone wrong but ended up being something better. This kind of experimentation is still happening. Step into the taproom to try a mainstay, seasonal or lab beer, it may be the next great beer (269/405-1076; greenbushbrewing.com).
Grizzly Peak Brewing Company
The Ann Arbor landmark welcomes patrons with a cozy vibe that’s evident in the exposed red brick walls, wood floors and tin ceilings. Eight daily brews—including dark ales, Irish Stouts, pale ales, IPAs and more—wash down dinners made from-scratch with fresh, seasonal ingredients like the grilled salmon BLT served with arugula and pickled onion on rustic white bread (734/741-7325; grizzlypeak.net).
Great beer is the number one concern at this Grand Rapids beer bar. With 150 bottles and 48 taps, brews flow here, many from Michigan and four brewed in-house. Enjoy your drink with a sandwich, burger or other classic pub fare (616/451-4677; hopcat.com).
Keweenaw Brewing Company
An industrial taproom in downtown Houghton is home to the brewery’s best at an affordable price: $2.50 per pint. Although the venue doesn’t serve food to pair with the brews—named after the Keweenaw Peninsula’s mining history like the Pick Axe Blonde Ale and the Widow Maker Black Ale—patrons are welcome to order in from surrounding restaurants (906/482-5596; keweenawbrewing.com).
Lake Superior Brewing Company at The Dunes Saloon
Locals of Grand Marais simply refer to this brewery as “the bar.” Large windows overlook the harbor while windows in the back overlook the large vats where the light and smooth beers are brewed. The saloon also thrives in the kitchen with made-from-scratch pizzas, the signature Scotch Egg (hardboiled, rolled in Italian sausage and breadcrumbs then fried) and the addictive parmesan garlic popcorn (906/494-2337).
Michigan House Cafe and Brewpub
The Calumet vintage-style pub adorned with a heavy wooden bar, whimsical ceiling mural and taxidermy pieces has been serving beer with delicious food since 1905. Among taps full of classic ales, the Oatmeal Espress is a favorite, dark, smooth with a hint of coffee, that has even been used to make ice cream. Pair a brew with dishes like the New York strip served with grilled onions or the cedar plank trout (906/337-1910; michiganhousecafe.com).
Olde Peninsula Brewpub
No two visits to the Kalamazoo brewpub are alike! Among five permanent handcrafted beers on tap—including cream ale, raspberry wheat and midnight stout—seasonal brews are available. The robust menu full of brewpub favorites like cheddar ale soup, London broil, sandwiches and pizza features seasonal options as well (269/343-2739; oldepenkazoo.com).
For More Information, contact:
Ann Arbor Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (734/995-7281 or 800/888-9487; visitannarbor.org).
Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau (313/202-1800 or 800/338-7648; visitdetroit.com).
Experience Grand Rapids/Kent County Convention & Visitors Bureau (616/459-8287 or 800/678-9859; experiencegr.com).
Frankenmuth Convention & Visitors Bureau (989/652-6106 or 800/386-8696; frankenmuth.org).
Grand Haven Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (800/303-4092; visitgrandhaven.com).
Holland Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (800/506-1299 or 616/394-0000; holland.org).
Jackson County Convention & Visitors Bureau (517/764-4440 or 800/245-5282; visitjacksonmi.com).
Keweenaw Convention & Visitors Bureau (906/337-4579 or 800/338-7982; keweenaw.info).
Marquette Country Convention & Visitor Bureau (906/228-7749 or 800/544-4321; marquetecountry.org).
Saugatuck-Douglas Convention & Visitors Bureau (269/857-1701; saugatuck.com).
Traverse City Convention & Visitors Bureau (231/947-1120 or 800/872-8377; traversecity.com).