Grand Rapids

Craft Beer Tour 2022 – Grand Rapids Area

These photos were taken Tuesday, October 11, day seven of my Craft Beer Tour 2022. As I mentioned in the last article, we headed back towards Ruth’s home in Grand Rapids so that I could hit up a few breweries in the area before I headed back to California. We visited Railtown Brewing Company in Dutton, Broad Leaf Brewery + Spirits in Kentwood, and City Built Brewing in Grand Rapids.

We started off the day by driving south a ways to Dutton, where we visited Railtown Brewing Company, a brewpub that opened in December 2014.

They have a 7bbl system, which offered 15 beers, a hard seltzer, and a cider on the day of our visit, with a nice variety of styles available. Being a creature of habit, I went with their Citra Warrior IIPA, Hophikers Guide to the Galaxy, and Harvest Smash ’22 their wet hopped harvest ale. All were solid, but I have to give the nod to the Citra Warrior as my favorite.

It is a nice space with friendly staff and customers; you will have a good time if you stop by.

Railtown Brewing Company is located at 3595 68th Street SE, Dutton/Caledonia. They open at 11:30 AM, Monday through Saturday. They have a nice food menu featuring munchies like cheese curds, salads, burgers, hoagies, and chicken sandwiches. They have cans available to-go.

After saying our goodbyes, we headed about 10 minutes north to Broad Leaf Brewery + Spirits in Kentwood, a brewpub that opened in 2019.

Broad Leaf is a nice, spacious location that is another brewery that includes a video arcade; I am guessing the arcade is a nice draw in the winter for those with kids.

On the day of our visit they had about 15 beers available on tap, as well as a wide variety of house cocktails, because, well they brew beer and distill their own vodka and gin. We were not going to be there long, so I had their Magnetic Nebula and Ruth had the Chromatic Shatter, both were solid pale ales.

The Broad Leaf Brewery + Spirits location we visited (they have two) is located at 2885 Lake Eastbrook Blvd. in Kentwood. They are open seven days a week, and offer cans to-go. Their food menu ranges from nachos and chicken tenders, to egg rolls, various chicken dishes and more.

As my brother-in-law was unable to join us on our adventure, I wanted to take him to dinner with us, so the three of us jumped in a car and headed over to City Built Brewing, a brewpub that opened in 2017.

The location is a renovated 19th-century building that had over $1 million put into it to install their 10bbl brew house and kitchen, along with seating for 180. The food menu is Puerto Rican cuisine and features things like tacos, shrimp, and braised beef, but with a Puerto Rican flair. I had the tacos.

They had about 20 beers on tap, as well as some hard seltzer, mead, and cider. I tried their Harvest Lager (wet hopped) and the Skull ‘n Bones IPA. I definitely enjoyed them.

City Built Brewing is located at 820 Monroe Avenue NW, in Grand Rapids. They are open daily until 10:00 PM and offer cans and food to go. We had a good time there, even if it felt a little classier than I expected.

And then it happened; the reason I am writing this three weeks after the fact. I woke up in the middle of the night feeling like crap. It is a good thing I was at my sister’s house, because she was in the medical field and later that afternoon I was in an urgent clinic.

If it was not for my photos and my Instagram posts I would not have been able to write about this trip because I was way out of it for what seemed like a week. Anyway, thanks Ruth for not letting me die.

So, while we were only able to go out for a week, we did manage to discover 13 new breweries, and an excellent craft beer bar. A downside of flying versus driving, besides the increase cost when you have to reschedule last minute, is that you cannot bring any beer home with you. Oh well, I have the photos. Cheers!

Back to Photos from Railtown Brewing, Broad Leaf Brewery, and City Built Brewing

Back to Photos from Railtown Brewing, Broad Leaf Brewery, and City Built Brewing

Craft Beer Tour 2022 – Right Brain Brewery and Hop Lot Brewing

These photos were taken Friday and Saturday, October 7 and 8, days three and four of my Craft Beer Tour 2022. As I mentioned early on, my sister (Ruth) was in a major train accident back in June and was pretty jacked up, so Friday, before we did anything else, I had to take her to get more x-rays. After that we headed up to her cabin in Dublin. On Saturday we visited Right Brain Brewery in Traverse City and Hop Lot Brewing Company in Suttons Bay.

Ruth’s appointment was around noon, and she knew there was a craft beer bar fairly close to the medical center that I could hang out at while she did her thing. She sent me to HopCat, a craft beer bar with numerous locations, this one in Grand Rapids and only sold beer brewed in Michigan. Okay, that is not exactly true; they also sell a wide variety of food, and some hard seltzers. They had about 40 options available.

I have to admit, I was a little bummed that Ruth’s doctor visit only lasted an hour, because I could have had a great time there. I had just finished my Hoplicated Imperial Pale Ale from Odd Side Ales when I was trying to decide between the Bark Lord Imperial Stout from Transient Artisan Ales and a 2018 Founders CBS, when I got the message it was time to pick her up. Bark Lord was phenomenal, but my server offered me a small crowler of the Founders to-go, so that is what I took with me. Continue reading

Craft Beer Tour 2022 – The Mitten Brewing Co

These photos were taken Wednesday afternoon in Grand Rapids, Michigan as I started my annual craft beer tour. Wednesday found me at The Mitten Brewing Company, a microbrewery/pizzeria that opened in November 2012.

For over a year now, my sister Ruth and I have been planning a fall craft beer tour through the northeast as I have very little experience there and it would be cool to visit breweries and watch the leaves change colors. Unfortunately, my sister happened to be a participant in the Amtrak train derailment in Missouri this past June. To say she got jacked up in it would be an understatement (26 broken bones above the waist), but she wanted me to come visit, so we decided we would venture around the state for a week or so. Continue reading

Craft Beer Tour 2017: West Michigan

These photos are of the breweries I visited in Michigan; in order, they were Founders Brewing (two visits), Bell’s Brewery, New Holland Brewing, Our Brewing, Rockford Brewing, Perrin Brewing, Elk Brewing, and Greyline Brewing Company.

After driving back and forth between Grand Rapids and Detroit, in the pouring rain, and another four hours of technical work, I was ready for Craft Beer Tour 2017 to get back on course. First stop would be the Founders Brewing taproom.

As we were pulling off the freeway it was easy to spot the huge red brick building with “Founders Brewing” emblazoned with yellow letters. As we were parking I could not but help notice the fermenters in the windows; they appeared to be three stories tall, but I could not see clearly enough to see where their feet were. I hoped I would have a good view of the brewhouse, because it looked a little too busy for me to ask for a quick personal tour like I do at the smaller breweries. Continue reading

Founders Brewing Company 20th Anniversary Photos

These photos were taken at the Founders Brewing Company 20 Anniversary party.

Sorry about the delay, but the days have been long and the Internet has been flaky at best. Just to ensure I get one update done tonight, I am going to go out of order for this article and present you photos from the Founders 20th anniversary party.

When I left off, Craft Beer Tour 2017 landed at Three Floyds; I would have loved to visit other places, but I had a real world appointment in Detroit on Wednesday morning, so I had to get to Grand Rapids that night; especially because my sister wanted to take me to dinner at Founders, I was too late to do it that night, so they would have to wait until I got back from Detroit that night. Continue reading

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