Michigan Brewery Road Trip

Discussion in 'US - Midwest' started by zam216, Jan 5, 2016.

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  1. zam216

    zam216 Initiate (94) Oct 21, 2014 Pennsylvania

    Hello all,
    I am from PA and my Fiance surprised me today to an early birthday present by telling me we are taking a road trip to Michigan from Philly for a brewery road trip in February. So I think were pretty much staying in southern Michigan and going as north as grand rapids. As of right now our first stop is Kalamazoo on Friday then grand rapids for 2 nights and going home Monday. I have done some research on some of the bigger breweries and it looks like I would be missing some in the Detroit area if we don't go that way. So I am thinking of going to the east side of Michigan for the third night so we can hit some of them. So my question to you guys who are local is what are the BIG breweries I should be hitting on this trip? I have a list I will provide below feel free to tell me if any are a waste or if there is better options then what I found. I was thinking to leave Thursday night to have it set to arrive at the first brewery as soon as it opens. The goal is to get to as many breweries as possible. I also am looking to get some 3 Floyds while out that way. Do you think it would be worth driving straight to 3 Floyds from PA and then work our way back up the west coast of Michigan to hit greenbush on our way to Kalamazoo or will I be able to get a good supply of 3 Floyds at the bottle shop in grand rapids? I wouldn't mind going to the brewery but if I can get a good choice of bottles in Michigan that's fine with me. Also if you could add some good food places (brew pubs are good) in each area I will be in or any things I should stop and see that would be great.

    Friday: Kalamazoo
    ***Possible stop at 3 Floyds read above***
    Dark horse

    Saturday: Grand Rapids
    New Holland
    Odd Side
    Grand Rapids
    Sicilianos Bottle shop (will try to get shorts beers and right brain)

    Sunday: Detroit/Deerborn area
    Bad (on the way from grand rapids)
    Jolly pumpkin

    Monday: Drive home
    Looking for stuff to hit in northern ohio /pittsburgh area
  2. LambicPentameter

    LambicPentameter Initiate (0) Aug 29, 2012 Nebraska

    I'd recommend at least stopping by Witch's Hat in South Lyon between Bad and Kuhnhenn. It would only add about 20 minutes in driving time to your trip if you're coming down I-96. They usually have a pretty full tap list and you can get a couple of their howlers to take with you if you're so inclined. They also might have cans of Train Hopper and Portly Brown to go.
  3. BaseballNBeer

    BaseballNBeer Initiate (126) Apr 22, 2015 Michigan

    The first part is easy. 3 Floyds doesn't distribute to Michigan.

    It's a good list. I'll add a couple suggestions. I find that Perrin in Comstock Park (just north of GR) is solid. For your Metro Detroit Sunday, I would suggest hitting Kuhnhenn, Schramms, and Dragonmead first, maybe during the day, before hitting Arbor and JP during the evening. It's easily a 45 minute to 1 hour drive from the first three to the second two. You could even hit up a couple bottle shops in the area of the first three (Champane's, 8 Degrees, Holiday Market). Plus, staying Sunday night in AA will allow you an easy trip south US-23 to Ohio and home.
  4. tommyz

    tommyz Initiate (0) May 28, 2007 Michigan

    I agree with this..Also, I would skip BAD brewing and hit up Ellison Brewing Co instead..Better Beer..Its in east lansing on your way to Detroit area..
    Zaphog and LambicPentameter like this.
  5. Willtravelforbeer

    Willtravelforbeer Initiate (0) Jun 20, 2013 Michigan

    Perrin is much better than some of the other Grand Rapids breweries you have listed. And, yes, go to Three Floyds!
  6. Tmwright7

    Tmwright7 Initiate (117) Feb 3, 2015 Pennsylvania

    If you're traveling the turnpike home, you could stop by Fathead's in Cleveland
    CDBeerDisappear likes this.
  7. bassfishingguy

    bassfishingguy Initiate (0) Apr 19, 2014 Michigan

    FWIW, I'd cut Arcardia out of your Monday stop. If you're going to hit 3 Floyd's, I'd suggest stopping by The Livery (in Benton Harbor). While I have not personally been there, I've heard/read quite a bit of good things coming from them (and it's on your way from 3 Floyds to Kalamazoo depending on your route). The one time I went to Olde Peninsula in Kalamazoo, they had some really goofy shit on tap (see: Pancakes N' Hotpants - A maple-ish porter/stout mixed with an habanero ale and garnished with a slice of bacon - It was actually a damn good beer), and may be worth checking out.

    Regarding your 2nd day in Grand Rapids; I'd personally avoid Crankers... The one in Grand Rapids is like a satellite restaurant/bar (I believe the original Crankers brewery is in Mount Pleasant) - see: boring/dull. Having been there with my Wife, neither of us were impressed by their food or their drinks either. I'd also pass on New Holland as the majority of what you'll see on tap you'll be able to buy bottles of (and the majority of their stuff isn't really that awesome). Odd Side, however, is one of my favorite Michigan breweries. When you're heading out there, stop in Spring Lake @ The Corner Market. They have some amazing stuff in here, and I'd imagine that this store is picked over less than Sicilianos (or any other Grand Rapids area store). I would imagine that Grand Rapids Brewing is probably also worth skipping. Mitten Brewing puts out some interesting stuff and may be worth stopping at as an alternative. Another Grand Rapids-ish (about 20min SE of downtown) is Railtown Brewing in Dutton, MI. They've been putting some really good stuff out, especially considering they've only been around a year or 2 IIRC. I'll affirm the suggestions to stop at Perrin, as they put out some good beer.

    Bottom line, your fiance sounds like she's pretty cool. Try to enjoy your time in Michigan (and at the breweries); don't get hung up on trying to hit as many as possible. Realistically, there are only a handful of great breweries in SWest Michigan. Founders, Bells, Vivant, Odd Side, etc... are all worth enjoying rather than rushing off to grab a beer at the next ABC brewpub. If you're just looking to try as many different breweries as possible, you'll have no issues succeeding at this goal.
    CDBeerDisappear, zam216 and croush like this.
  8. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (3,634) May 30, 2005 Michigan

    I'm going to presume that you've looked at a map and decided that 'detours' are okay. If you didn't look yet, you need to know that neither Odd Side nor New Holland are in Grand Rapids, and you'll put on some extra miles to visit them. I'll guess that from GR to New Holland is about a 45 minute drive to get downtown and park, and then another 45 minutes from Holland to Grand Haven for Odd Side, also to get downtown and park. Dark Horse is the same kind of detour -- it's a 45 minute drive from downtown Kzoo to Marshall. If you don't want the extra drive times, I'd skip Odd Side and New Holland (unless you are coming from 3 Floyds then you can fairly conveniently go to New Holland by driving on I-196 to Holland and then GR).

    If you skip those two breweries, I agree with the recommendations above to go to Perrin. It's also a bit out of the way, but closer than Odd Side/New Holland. Another option is to go to HopCat. They do some brewing, but their fame is a great tap/bottle list, great food, and great vibe. They are a block from Grand Rapids Brewing, and about 4 blocks from Founders

    (For driving, keep in mind that the Kzoo/GR area gets lake effect snow which will likely cause you to have to slow down considerably.)

    If Short's beers are on your list of things to get, when in Kzoo you can go to Mega Bev on W. Main St. It's a quick drive off of Rt 131 and they will have a good selection. Drake Party Store is another good one in Kzoo. Short's specialty beers do sell quickly, so you can look there and still keep Siciliano's on your GR list of places to visit. Check the posted threads by HopHeadHerman in this forum for which Short's specialty beers are hitting the stores.
  9. archiebunkerjr

    archiebunkerjr Aspirant (232) Oct 25, 2010 Michigan

    Just my humble opinion - skip the east side of the state. I live near Lansing. When I get a free day to visit breweries, I go to the west side. The east side isn't even a consideration. But if you do visit the greater Detroit area, check out Griffin Claw. I would also second Witch's Hat.

    As stated earlier, 3 Floyds is not distributed to Michigan. If you want 3 Floyds, you need to visit 3 Floyds or stop at a bottle shop in Indiana or Ohio. However, if you wish to obtain Zombie Dust, it is my understanding that it is next to impossible to find it in bottle shops. Your best bet would be to visit 3 Floyds to get it there. It is also my understanding that 3 Floyds may or may not have it on certain days. And when they do have bottles for sale at 3 Floyds, they post it on their website in the morning and then it quickly sells out - sometimes within a few hours. If you do want to chase after Zombie Dust, make sure you know these details.

    For your Friday plan, I would only go to Greenbush only if you head to 3 Floyds that morning. Greenbush would be on your way from Munster, Indiana to Kalamazoo. However, if you skip 3 Floyds, then skip Greenbush.

    And if you do skip 3 Floyds, your best bet for a first stop on Friday would be Dark Horse, logistically speaking. From there, you can head to Kalamazoo. Definitely stop at Bell's. I would also stop at Arcadia although many people do not care for them. I believe they have a very nice facility, their beer is better than they are given credit for and they are only located about a third of a mile to the east of Bell's. I also like to recommend Ray Ray's in Kalamazoo for a bite to eat. His Chicago Beef is outstanding. Be sure to get there before 5:00PM if you can. He runs out of food sometime.

    I recommend starting your Saturday with a tour of Founders. The tours start only at 11:15AM and 11:45AM. It cost $10 for each person and you have to purchase a ticket online to make sure you can go on the tour. They will also give you a pint glass. They also have a tour and tasting at 12:30PM on Saturday as well but that cost $30 per person.

    From there it gets tricky. I would definitely visit Brewery Vivant as they are somewhat close to Founders. As stated earlier, Perrin's is 15 minutes north of downtown GR. Perrin's is a great brewery and great facility that is definitely worth checking out. If you head that way and time permits, I recommend going out of the way to Oddside Ales in Grand Haven. Their facility is rather ordinary but they always have a killer taplist. All this driving around is weather permitting, of course.

    I would rather spend another day in GR on Sunday having quality visits at GR's great breweries compared to heading to the east side of the state. But again, that's just my opinion. One last comment I would make is that all of these GR/Kalamazoo breweries are very good about using social media. Check them out on facebook and twitter shortly before you leaving on your trip and during your trip. There may be some special events that you may want to check out.

    mothergoose gave great bottle shop suggestions. When you go there, explain to them you are on beercation and you are looking for something special. You never know what they pull out from behind the counter.

    February on the west side of Michigan means bad snowstorms can occur at any time. Lake Michigan provides lake effect snow that can get pretty bad sometime. Always be aware of what the weather forecast is. Have fun!
  10. sculls65

    sculls65 Aspirant (251) Dec 15, 2008 Michigan

    If you are driving from Philly I would think you would want to minimize driving once you get here and start drinking. Bells and Arcadia are close in kzoo. Park your car once in grand rapids and walk or easily cab to numerous good places. Founders. Mitten and Harmony both have good pizza and solid beers. Its not that easy to drive up and around the west side after a few stops unless of course you are just gonna sample the water. Ellison to kuhnhenn to Detroit hopcat/Jolly pumpkin would be a nice way outta here.
  11. CB_Michigan

    CB_Michigan Zealot (519) Sep 4, 2014 Illinois
    Society Trader

    I'd think twice about going to 3F. That's going to add considerable drive time, an extra hour or so to Munster and 2 hrs back to Kzoo. Quite honestly, driving through the night and spending the following day drinking beer and doing more driving in a MI Feb (especially that stretch of 94) seems like a recipe for disaster. Stop at Dark Horse, head to Kzoo, stop at Mega Bev for bottles to take home, then walk/cab from your hotel to Bell's to Arcadia to Kalamazoo Beer Exchange to wherever else (gonzo's, latitude 42, etc).

    On Sat, head up to GR, do the Founders tour, drive to Perrin, then go back to GR and use the Beer City Runner (beercityrunner.com) to hit the other GR breweries (Mitten, Vivant, Elk, Founders again, Hopcat, GR Brewing Co). It's $15 and your ticket is good all day. Take an Uber back to your hotel.

    On Sun, head to Ellison in East Lansing, Witch's Hat, Kuhnhenn, then end the day in Ann Arbor. Walk between Arbor, Jolly Pumpkin, and Ashley's. There's probably a place or two between Kuhnhenn and AA, but I'm not too familiar with that side of the state.

    Skip the lakeshore. I like New Holland (10 min from my house), and Odd Side is awesome, but lake effect snow in Feb can be a total b**ch. Might be clear, but also might be a frickin swirling blizzard. It will almost certainly be slick/icy and not conducive to beer tasting.
    archiebunkerjr likes this.
  12. CB_Michigan

    CB_Michigan Zealot (519) Sep 4, 2014 Illinois
    Society Trader

    If you're dead set on hitting 3F, I'd do a lakeshore swing that day and head up I-196/US-31. That'd allow you to hit Greenbush, Tapistry, Livery, New Holland (and other smaller places nearby), and Odd Side. Holland and Grand Haven both have nice downtown areas to bum around in if you need a break. Spend the night in Grand Haven, do GR on Sat, hit the corner market in Spring Lake on the way in. Then do Kzoo/Dark Horse on Sun and skip the East side of the state. Again, I'd skip 3F, but it may be doable if the weather cooperates.
    archiebunkerjr likes this.
  13. zam216

    zam216 Initiate (94) Oct 21, 2014 Pennsylvania

    Thank you all very much this has all gave me food for thought. The 3 floyds and the west border will all be weather permitting. We will be driving an SUV but I have been up in buffalo in january which gets similar weather and I was not a fan of that. I will have to sit down and map out routes and my priority breweries. Right now my big ones I want to hit are bells, founders, Odd Side, Dark horse and Jolly pumpkin. The bottle shops are important as well as I want to bring as much michigan specific beer home as I can (Within reasonable cost of course). As far as driving goes I am aware some require detours but as far as drinking at the breweries we plan on sticking to beer flights and small glasses especially if the weather is not in out favor. Good thing is my saturday drive is not to long as kzoo to GR is only a 45 minute drive so that leaves me the ability to back track to dark horse if I do end up going to 3F. As far as commuting around the area is there no parking at most of the breweries or are the uber recommendations strictly to prevent driving under the influence? We plan on doing a lot of eating and hydrating in between breweries and if need be have no problem taking uber or taxi if we have a little too much fun especially if the weather is bad. Is 3F widely distributed across ohio? I could stop on the way home monday but surely don't want to miss getting some of their beer while out that way. If not leaving an hour early to hit there first would not be to big of a deal as we can hit some coastal breweries on the way back to kzoo.
  14. mmarks

    mmarks Initiate (0) Jun 16, 2014 Indiana

    if you go to three floyds, stop by 18th street brewery also.
    croush and aussiebeer like this.
  15. Robdiesel21

    Robdiesel21 Initiate (0) Aug 6, 2014 Michigan

    Plenty of parking around both Gr and Kzoo. but some may take you a little walk. Bells, Arcadia, beer Exchange (go after 6pm), Shakespeare's all have great taps in kzoo. plus some of the other local small breweries gonzos, Lat 42, ruperts , tibbs. Hit up Drakes and Mega Bev for bottles. depending on your trip and which way you go Kuhnhenn is a must on the east side (they dont distro anything), witches hat and schramms if you like killer meads. after that take I-94 over to Darkhorse and then to kzoo. New holland onsite taps are so-so so i would skip that, oddsides has a killer list all the time, founders, vivant, perrin. if you can shoot over to white flame or pike 51 small breweries just outside of GR but make some killer stuff! Good Luck. if you posibly want to set up a trade send me a message.

  16. craigo19

    craigo19 Initiate (187) Oct 12, 2009 Michigan

    For 3 Floyds I would stop at Gay's in Angola, IN if you are coming via the turnpike, if flies off the shelf here in Toledo. If you are planning on hitting Jolly Pumpkin in Ann Arbor, I would also hit Wolverine State Brewing there too.
    Robdiesel21 likes this.
  17. mcomben

    mcomben Initiate (0) Dec 2, 2008 Michigan

    Where do you plan on staying on Sunday night? In Ann Arbor? First stop in Metro Detroit should be Kuhnhenn, but I'm trying to mentally map out your route through the day and knowing where you plan on staying will help out here.
  18. zam216

    zam216 Initiate (94) Oct 21, 2014 Pennsylvania

    We have not decided the east stay yet. BaseballNbeer said AA would make my drive home Monday easier so that might be where we end up.
  19. wezzul

    wezzul Initiate (0) Dec 17, 2009 Michigan

    Which of the other breweries in GR are "great"? Founders is great, Perrin is definitely getting there, and Vivant is great if you like the style of beer they make. The rest of them seem really run of the mill, especially when compared to Jolly Pumpkin, Witch's Hat, Kuhnhenn, Schramms (not beer, but always worth a stop).
  20. mcomben

    mcomben Initiate (0) Dec 2, 2008 Michigan

    Not to over complicate your planning, but if you're interested in heading in to Detroit you could check out Batch Brewing in Corktown. Cool building in Detroit's oldest neighborhood and on-site parking!
    Jolly Pumpkin opened a location in midtown Detroit last year as well that I'm finding myself liking more than the Ann Arbor location nowadays.

    To be honest I'd skip Dragonmead altogether. That's not an indictment on the quality of their brew, as some of their offerings are really great, but you've got a lot packed in to the day already.

    With all that said, here's what I'm proposing...
    Kuhnhenn doesn't open till noon, so you've got some time to kill.

    11 am - Champane's Wine Cellar in Warren
    11:30 am - Kuhnhenn let's you bring food in, so maybe pick up food between the bottle shop & heading over. If you like pizza, might I suggest calling and placing a pick-up order from Buddy's Pizza when they open at 11, that way the pizza is ready before Kuhnhenn opens. It's basically Detroit's style of pizza and a personal favorite (others may disagree, but its just my opinion). No matter what you decide on, pick up lunch to eat at Kuhnhenn to save on time.
    12 noon - Kuhnhenn

    Then Schramms in Ferndale, Batch in Detroit and over to Ann Arbor for Jolly Pumpkin and Arbor.

    Google Maps route for reference.
    TypsiYpsi and zam216 like this.
  21. croush

    croush Champion (805) Mar 20, 2015 Illinois

    I'd definitely hit up Buddy's - a favorite of mine since I was young. I'd prefer to spend time at the west side breweries, but as others have mentioned, the weather can be downright brutal that time of year on the west side of the state. However, I've yet to make it to Witch's Hat, and that is one I really want to get to when I'm back in the area visiting familiy.
  22. CHI_Beer_Matt

    CHI_Beer_Matt Initiate (0) Dec 10, 2015 Illinois

    I'd second Griffin Claw and third Witch's Hat. Both great places!

    Also, if you're looking for a non-brewery restaurant with great food that has a ton of great craft beer and is near Griffin Claw, I'd make a stop at One Eyed Betty's in Ferndale.
  23. Smokesnotes

    Smokesnotes Initiate (171) Apr 26, 2014 Michigan

    I would also recommend setting up some IP trades while you're in GR. You may be able to land your FFF wants that way without having to trek over to Munster. Also there's a lot of hoarding in GR. Bring some fresh Nugget Nectar!

    If Black Flame is still on while you're in town, I'd recommend hitting up White Flame Brewing to check it out, but you may also be able to find it on somewhere in GR proper.

    For food outside of the breweries I recommend Graydons Crossing. Great menu and usually a lot of great taps.

    You'll have a great time.
    Robdiesel21 likes this.
  24. zam216

    zam216 Initiate (94) Oct 21, 2014 Pennsylvania

    Didn't even think to bring some stuff with me. How should I post that on the trade? I could probably bring some nugget nectar and tired hands with me and meet people in the area.
  25. mcomben

    mcomben Initiate (0) Dec 2, 2008 Michigan

    Just post on the In-Person trade forum (tagged Great Lakes) with the dates you'll be in the area, what you're offering up and what you're in search of.
    #25 mcomben, Jan 6, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2016
    Smokesnotes likes this.
  26. 98green

    98green Meyvn (1,086) Jun 13, 2014 Michigan

    I've done the Chicago/3F/W Mich/K'zoo/GR thing a couple times this year (originating from Metro Detroit). Lots of solid comments in this thread, so I will just add a couple observations:

    3F - their website is always up to date. So keep checking the site on a phone to make sure they have to-go stuff you are looking for before you commit the hour(s) for the detour. I've been able to catch ZD once, and missed it by 10 minutes one other time, and it wasn't on offer the other 3 times I was in the area. Also, the taproom is ALWAYS busy (like even 2PM on a weekday), so it isn't all that easy to do a pint and go

    Random Western Michigan Breweries - check their websites for hours. Lots of them don't open until 3PM, so they don't work for a mid-day stop off during a drive. I've missed a lot of cool stops because of that.

    Latitude 42 - Depending on your logistics, Latitude 42 is only a couple miles south of I-94 in the K'zoo area. They have a really nice space, solid tap offering, and canned to-go retail. They are also open for lunch 7 days a week (with a solid yet not upscale menu). I like them a lot and they are my go-to lunch spot when I head toward Chicago.

    Vivant - They have a couple Saturday tours in mid-afternoon. $10, you get a mini snifter and ~4 pours. If you've done one tour, you've done this one. But I enjoyed it.

    New Holland - They also have a Saturday (noon I believe) tour. This is at their production facility, not the taproom/grill. Again, $10 and ~4 pours, pint glass at the end. They distill there too, and they do tastings of those as well during the tour. I was able to do both the New Holland and Vivant tours the same day

    Elk Brewing - I highly recommend Elk Brewing in Grand Rapids. It is a small 3-barrel brew system and a small taproom, but they make good stuff (and have come a long way in the 6 months between my July and Dec visits). They are also within walking distance of Vivant, so easy to hit.

    Grand Rapids Brewing - I happen to like the place, but they aren't "cutting edge" in any way. I guess maybe I really just like the half price happy hour beers (and you won't be there on a weekday, so you will miss that).

    Hopcat - Mentioned above, but I also endorse the reco for Hopcat. The GR location is the original, and they actually brew here, so you can get some one-offs. Note that they tend to be busy all the time as well, so you may need to wait for a table or even a seat at the bar.

    Arbor Brewing - they have an Ann Arbor location and an Ypsilanti location. I've only been to the Ypsi location, but I can vouch that it is a cool space and easy in/out parking. Ann Arbor location my have more difficult parking

    Wolverine Brewing - Not worth going out of your way to stop there (certainly not over some of the other Detroit area ones you have pegged), but Wolverine is unique in doing all lager based beers. They also have easy parking and are relatively close to I-94 as you go past Ann Arbor (tho you may be on I-96)

    Metro Detroit Bottle Shop - My go-to place is Discount Drinks on Fort Street in Wayandotte. Easy access from I-75. They will have all of the full year and seasonal releases from the Michigan brewers (OddSide, Shorts, etc.). No whales on the shelf, but always 6+ different options from all the Michigan brewers. Bottle dates on all the Michigan 6-packs are usually good. But avoid the out of state bombers. Those sit there for months on end.

    Northern Ohio Bottle Shops - I recommend the Talmadge Road area in NW Toledo. Both Joeseph's Beverage Center and The Anderson's have very large craft beer sections. Neither are going to have whales on the shelves, but if it distros to Ohio, one or both will have it.
  27. Alodnar

    Alodnar Initiate (0) Sep 16, 2014 Michigan

    If you hit Kuhnhenn you will be very close to Falling Down Beer Co, highly recommended for lunch. They have great food, great beer. They usually have something barrel aged on tap, and their Ninja Chicken APA is awesome.
    landrewg likes this.
  28. zam216

    zam216 Initiate (94) Oct 21, 2014 Pennsylvania

    Here is the updated plan I have so far. This is based on location and time obviously. It looks like I may have some extra time in Kzoo but who knows how tired I will be after a long drive and some beers. As far as drinking goes we don't plan on full glasses of beer unless it is something really good. We will probably stick to flights and small glasses and just buy bottles/growlers to bring home if it is really good that way days like sunday are possible for us to go to all the breweries we can. We also will stop at a bottle shop in each city just to see if we find any whales or good prices on stuff we like. Let me know how this looks. This is also roughly the order we will go in.

    Friday (Kalamazoo):
    3 Floyds (weather dependent)
    Greenbush Brewing Co. (weather Dependent)
    Dark Horse Brewing Company
    Latitude 42
    Arcadia Brewing Company
    Bell's Brewery

    Saturday (Grand Rapids):
    Founders Brewing Co
    Odd Side Ales (weather dependent)
    Perrin Brewing Company
    Mitten Brewery
    Brewery Vivant
    Grand rapids
    Elk Brewing
    Hop Cat

    Sunday (Lansing/Detroit):
    BAD Brewing Company (time dependent)
    Witch's Hat Brewing
    Griffin Claw
    Dragonmead Microbrewery
    Batch Brewing
    Arbor Brewing Company microbrewery
    or Arbor Brewing company brewpub
    Jolly Pumpkin Brew pub

    Monday: Drive home
    Still looking for bottle shops/breweries on the way home.
    Robdiesel21 likes this.
  29. Robdiesel21

    Robdiesel21 Initiate (0) Aug 6, 2014 Michigan

    looks good as far as Kzoo and GR, Detroit wise i would try and sneak to schramms over Atwater and dragonmead. they are solid breweries but schramms is world class. let me know if you want to trade anything. also as i suggested before if your looking for other good taps keep an eye out on kalamazoo beer exchange website for their tap list and shakespears. all within walking distance to bells/arcadia. also depending on where you are staying burdicks has decent tap lists. all have lots of Local michigan stuff.
  30. tommyz

    tommyz Initiate (0) May 28, 2007 Michigan

    Everyone has their opinion and its totally respected..But your really cutting yourself short at some great breweries.. I put down breweries I personally would skip...But looking at your road trip, this is how I would HIt them in Order of how to get to them...

    96 to Ellison, then to Witch's Hat (a little bit off of 96), Then go to Ann Arbor (different ways to get there), Then go to Batch (down 94), Then head to Kuhnhenn, Lastly head to Griffin Claw.

    Also, Im sure we can all give recommendations on where to stay and eat too...Id also be happy to meet you at Witch's Hat if you would like....Cheers man..
  31. croush

    croush Champion (805) Mar 20, 2015 Illinois

    That seems like an aggressive amount of breweries in single days (especially Sunday). Hopefully you've got a list of which ones to prioritize in case you feel like sticking around one longer. If you really like something you're having at one (e.g. Founder's), then I think it'd be better off to stick around for the quality of beer you're enjoying there versus just trying to hit more quantity. You'll have a great time regardless, though, I'm sure.

    I have never done a full on beer trip like this, but I've done it with wineries, and I generally kept those to 3 per day.
  32. Beav42

    Beav42 Initiate (0) Sep 13, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Fellow Pennsylvanian here. Michigan is one of my favorite places for a beer vacation. Dark Horse is way cool with good people there. I never have had good service at Arcadia, but ymmv. In GR, Founder's, Grand Rapids and Hop Cat are literally only blocks from each other. Downtown Dank at GRBC is a super beer if it's on. If you're taking the OH/PA turnpike home, Fat Heads brewpub in North Olmstead, Brew Kettle in Strongsville and Fat Head's production brewery in Middleburg Heights (Cleve south suburbs) are all within a mile or so from a turnpike exit. Be sure to check operating hours. Fat Heads brewpub had reduced rates on growler fills during early part of week last time I was there. Vintage Estate package store in Boardman is maybe a 10 min detour from I76 when you are closer to PA line. Have a great time, and stay safe!
    craigo19 and zam216 like this.
  33. zam216

    zam216 Initiate (94) Oct 21, 2014 Pennsylvania

    Well the big breweries like founders, dark horse and bells are ones we get a lot of in PA so i'm more there to see the brewery and try some brewery specific beers rather than taste everything and be there all day. It is more the ones like odd side i'm worried about lol. Either way sunday I do plan on prioritizing in case things get out of hand but I already know places like jolly pumpkin will be short lived since their main brewery is closed sundays so it will only be the brew pub. Plus if I don't hit them all I can always just hit the bottle shops for the beer.
  34. tommyz

    tommyz Initiate (0) May 28, 2007 Michigan

    Jolly Pumpkins "Main" Brewery is in Dexter..The "bar" is called NULL...The Pub in A2 is still a great place to go with awesome food
    hopfenunmaltz likes this.
  35. zam216

    zam216 Initiate (94) Oct 21, 2014 Pennsylvania

    I do plan on making the pub in AA one of my last stops since we are staying in AA
  36. chicagogooner

    chicagogooner Initiate (0) Feb 5, 2014 Illinois

    Definitely worth the stop
    mmarks likes this.
  37. Boosully

    Boosully Initiate (139) Apr 8, 2014 Michigan

    I am pretty sure this is the same way the Biggie vs Tupac feud started.:grinning:
    mcomben, Robdiesel21, croush and 3 others like this.
  38. Beav42

    Beav42 Initiate (0) Sep 13, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Mr. Zam, Odd Side should be the least of your worries. Unless by worried you mean intrigued by. When I visited there the first time, it was an unknown to me as well. It was definitely one of the most pleasant surprises on my MI beer vacation. A nice town, cool location (I seem to remember something about it being an old piano factory. Don't quote me on that.) and unique, very good quality beers. As far as the "big" breweries, I'm pretty sure you will find quite a few brews that never make it out our way. Plus, Bell's is cool as hell, unless you don't care for African masks and stained glass of trout streams in the same place. You're gonna have a blast!
    Robdiesel21 and zam216 like this.
  39. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Poo-Bah (1,903) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    I found the lack of the Null location disturbing.

    Many of my friends in Ann Arbor go there for special JP beers.
    tommyz likes this.
  40. Beerdsley419

    Beerdsley419 Initiate (0) Dec 25, 2015 Ohio

    If you can swing through Toledo (about 40 miles south of a2) and hit up black cloister brew pub. Great beers and good people.
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