This three part series will go over the different breweries throughout West Michigan. Part three ventures forth and takes us to Northern Michigan. Try out all the breweries and see why West Michigan is the beer capital of the United States! Be sure to check out parts one and two on Southern and Central Michigan.
The market for craft beer has been steadily increasing for well over a decade, and West Michigan is home to a plethora of fantastic breweries and each has a unique lineup of their signature craft beers. Having beer brewed so close to home gives West Michigan the luxury of drinking fresh and local.
So what is craft beer? According to the Brewers Association, craft beer is three things: small, independent, and local. These breweries are small in the sense that they make less than 6 million barrels of beer annually. They are independent if less than 25 percent of the company is owned by an alcohol industry member that is not a craft brewer and traditional if the majority of total beverage alcohol volume in the brews are traditional or innovative ingredients or fermentation methods.
What does West Michigan have to offer? Craft beer is brewed all over West Michigan. Make sure to check out one or all of these great breweries on the north end of town!
Northern Michigan Breweries
Brewery Terra Firma, is located on the historic 10-acre Dracka Farm just south of the Grand Traverse Mall. Brewmaster John Niedermaier grows most of the hops, herbs, fruits, vegetables, and honey that flavor his beers and ales.
Fun Fact: Brewery Terra Firma was Traverse City’s first “farm-to-mug” brewery when it opened in May of 2013.
Jolly Pumpkin Restaurant, Brewery & Distillery combines a brewery and small batch distillery to produce most of beers and all of the spirits served on premise. They are located on historic Old Mission Peninsula’s West Bay in a 19th century mansion.
Fun Fact: Don’t miss the artisan pizzas, unique sandwiches, house smoked ribs, and local fish at the restaurant when you visit this brewery/distillery combination!
Short’s Brewing Company is located near Shanty Creek Resorts in the village of Bellaire. Short’s has some of the most imaginative and adventurous brews on the market, from down-to-earth brews like Locals Light and Bellaire Brown to the intensely hopped Huma Lupa Licious.
Fun Fact: Short’s Brewing Company prides themselves on being a Michigan Only brewery distributing only in Michigan to ensure their investment in their local community!
Lake Charlevoix Brewing Company brews 8 flagship beers, with names hailing from iconic Northern Michigan sights, using the best water in the world from the Great Lakes. They also brew several seasonal and experimental beers for their guests to enjoy.
Fun Fact: The brewery is located in the former storage area for the 180 foot US Coast Guard vessel named the Acacia.
Stormcloud Brewing Company is a northern Michigan brewery crafting Belgian inspired beer and locally inspired food. They are located only two blocks from Lake Michigan in downtown Frankfort.
Fun Fact: Stormcloud Brewing Co. loves giving back to the community! Every month during the summer season and quarterly thereafter, they select one charitable organization that they believe is making a difference in northern Michigan to share its message with their Stormcloud network.
The Michigan BrewVine Passport is the best way to experience local wineries and breweries in Northern Michigan. 9&10 News and local businesses have teamed up to create this amazing passport that is full of deals. Each passport is valid for ONE person and costs just $25. This passport will give you access to 17 wineries and 16 breweries, each one offering unique deals and discounts.
Fun Fact: The Michigan BrewVine Passport is valid for the entire year so that you can relax and enjoy each location at your own pace.