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OXFORD, Mich. — A family-run brewery in small-town Oxford, Michigan, has won gold medals in two international beer competitions. HomeGrown Brewing Company received a gold medal in the World Expo of Beer and a gold medal, bronze medal and the title of Michigan IPA Brewery of the Year at the New York International Beer Competition 2019.

The micro-brewery in Oxford received the top award this week for their Oxford Ale at the World Expo of Beer competition, and last month were awarded gold at the New York-based competition for their Zephyros, a hazy India Pale Ale (IPA) beer, as well as bronze for their Ruck-a-chuk American IPA.

 

Owner and master brewer John Powers says he is extremely proud to have his beer recognized on such a scale. “It’s a tremendous honor,” says Powers. “Our Oxford Ale is one of our flagship brews and our Hazy IPA is one of our most popular seasonalswe might have to make it a permanent feature on our beer menu now.”

Oxford DDA executive director Glenn Pape says the recognition shows the brewery’s dedication to their craft and that the village is proud to be the home of an award-winning brewery.

“Those of us who enjoy the outstanding beer from HomeGrown Brewing Company are very happy to see them getting the recognition they deserve for their outstanding products,” Pape says. “It is businesses like HomeGrown that help to put Oxford on the map.”

The World Expo of Beer, Michigan’s only international competitive beer event, awarded other Michigan stalwarts like Bell’s Brewery, Ellison Brewery and Griffin Claw. With 600 entries, from 14 countries, the NYIBC competition also acknowledged well-known Michigan icon Founders Brewing Co. for several awards and as Michigan Brewery of the Year. For a small, new micro-brewery to claim medals and titles alongside such renowned names is a big deal, says Powers.

“We love that the playing field is level enough for us to compete with established names in the industry,” he says.

HomeGrown’s unique Zephyros brew has a floral aroma, grapefruit notes and uses heavy, late-addition hops (including Galaxy hops from Australia) and is described by the brewery as “Cloudy, with a chance of blowing your mind”. The downside, for the brewers, is that the Zephyros is their most labor-intensive brew, adding up to a 12-hour brew day for each batch.

“It’s a good problem to have,” says Powers.

 

women in beer

Hear the stories of several women as they lead three distinctive businesses in West Michigan

 

KALAMAZOO, Mich. — In celebration of women in Michigan beer, West Michigan Beer Tours is holding its Women of West Michigan Beer Tour.

The bus tour will be held from noon to 6 p.m. on Saturday, May 18, and feature women in leadership roles at a trio relatively new breweries. The tour will be led by our longtime Michigan beer advocates, Andrea Wilson and Bonnie Steinman, a groundbreaking hop farmer in the state.

Bonnie Steinman

 

The tour begins with registration at Paw Paw Brewing Co.’s new location on Gremps St. and heads west to Cognito Brewing Co., located in the historic grain elevator in Bangor. Brewer Jennifer Goodrich, a graduate of Kalamazoo Valley Community College’s Sustainable Brewing Program, will lead a tour of the building and share samples with the group. The trip then heads to Saugatuck to see Kim Collins, co-owner and brewer at Guardian Brewing Co., which opened in early 2019. Our tour then finishes the afternoon with a stop at Three Blondes Brewing Co. Fronted by sisters Amanda Johnson, Carrie Troyer and Megan Zernicke, this South Haven brewery opened in the summer of 2018.

Three Blondes Brewing

 

The tour includes a pint or samples at each location, as well as production tours and meet-and-greets with the women behind these emerging breweries. Tickets are $69 per person and include a seat on the bus, complimentary bottled water and snacks on the bus, as well as three samples or a pint at each of the three breweries.

Itinerary Origination: Paw Paw Brewing Co., noon registration with 1 p.m. departure

Stop 1: Cognito Brewing Co., samples, tour with brewer Jennifer Goodrich, 1:30-2:30 p.m.

Stop 2: Guardian Brewing Co., samples, tour with owner/brewer Kim Collins, 3-4 p.m.

Stop 3: Three Blondes Brewing Co., samples, meet-and-greet with owners, 4:30-5:30 p.m.

Termination: Paw Paw Brewing Co., 6 p.m.

 

 

fermenta

Grand Rapids, Mich. — March is Women’s History Month. International Women’s Day lands on March 8th annually, and since 2013, this day has also marked International Women’s Collaboration Brew Day, or IWCBD. IWCBD was founded by a female group of brewers in the U.K. who came together to collaborate and brew in their local communities. Led by Sophie de Ronde, these ladies decided to take a local idea and make it global to celebrate women and craft across the world.

To spread word of the event across the pond, de Ronde reached out to the Pink Boots Society, a U.S. organization with chapters in many of the 50 states. Denise Ratfield, head of Pink Boots Society’s social media at the time, helped launch IWCBD here in the U.S.

Since then, IWCBD has grown every year, and every year a new brewing theme is announced to challenge brew teams to get creative with ingredients and processes. In past years, recipes have been made to follow such themes as “Unite Exotic” and “Unite Local.” This year’s theme is “Unite Forage,” encouraging the use of wild yeast or local fruit, spices or herbs.

According to the official IWCBD map, over 80 breweries across the world have registered their collaboration brew days. They are joined by social groups, non-profits, local businesses and other craft companies who support the brews and the women making them.

Here in Michigan, there are 18 registered brew days on the official IWCBD calendar, and that’s not including breweries who did not register! These breweries are joined by local non-profits, craft ingredient companies, women’s social groups and more.

This year, one Michigan non-profit is actively promoting more emphasis, encouragement and support into IWCBD: Fermenta: A Women’s Craft Collective. Fermenta has made growing education and awareness for women in the fermented food and beverage industry its mission since the group was founded in 2014.

fermenta

Fermenta’s membership and executive board started reaching out months in advance to breweries and organizations to encourage more participation in 2019’s “Unite Forage’ IWCBD. Most brew days are open to everyone, allowing a chance to learn the brewing process, meet craft industry professionals and network with others. IWCBD encourages participating breweries to invite employees and community members to brew at the facility, bringing women together who are passionate about beer.

Following the footsteps of Pink Boots Society and working alongside other Michigan social groups and networking organizations, Fermenta has confirmed collaboration brew dates at the following breweries*:  

Batch Brewing Company, Beards Brewery, EagleMonk Pub and Brewery, Earthen Ales, Our Brewing Company, Perrin Brewing Company, Rare Bird Brewpub, Saugatuck Brewing Company, Short’s Brewing Company, Witch’s Hat Brewing Company, HomeGrown Brewing Company, Waypost Brewing Company, Bell’s Brewery, Grand Armory Brewing Company, Redline Brewing Company, Silver Spruce Brewing Company, Bier Distillery, Fillmore 13 and Cultivate Coffee & Taphouse.

Michigan organizations, businesses and groups who are also participating include: Girls Pint Out-Holland, Girls Pint Out-Ann Arbor & Ypsilanti, Girls Pint Out-Petoskey, Flint Area Brewers, Mushroom Head Malt Company, Pink Boot Society-Grand Rapids and Craft Cultures.

To find registered brew days around the world, check the IWCBD map online at www.unitebrew.org.

To get more information on Michigan IWCBD, follow Fermenta on Facebook or ask your local brewery.

 

brewing passion

Michigan Author to Read & Sign Novels at Craft Beer Bar

Ferndale, Mich.—Liz Crowe, an Ann Arbor-based author of over twenty romance novels, will be reading and selling/signing books from the Brewing Passion series at M-Brew in Ferndale on Thursday, February 28 from 6-9 p.m.

 

Tickets for the event are $35 and include:

Pizza, pasta and salad

Six Flight-sized drink tickets

Meet and Greet with Liz

Raffle with beer swag baskets (including some of Liz’s books)

 

M-Brew has organized an entire evening around the theme of “love and craft beer” and will be donating a portion of the proceeds from ticket sales to Planned Parenthood of Ferndale. Beers from the following breweries will be included in the flights:

Shorts Brewing

Petoskey Brewing

Odd Side Ales

Drafting Table Brewing Company

Austin Bros Beer Company

Brewery Vivant

Cranker’s Brewery

Atwater Brewing

 

Liz is a brewery founder and former owner. She’s spent years as a craft beer marketing, social media, and sales consultant, and now provides beer and wine consulting for local bars, restaurants and stores in Washtenaw and Livingston Counties on behalf of Arbor Beverage. The majority of her successful romance novels are set in and around the craft beer world. The Brewing Passion series includes five novels, all of which will be available for purchase at the event for $12 each.

 

Purchase tickets here.

Learn more about the event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/2271377346518976/

 

brewers grove

Tree Beer Release kicks off on Feb. 15

Grand Rapids, Mich. — From Feb. 15-Mar. 15, many of your favorite Grand Rapids breweries will be serving tree-themed beers to support increasing the city’s urban forest and tree canopy. Brewers Grove is an annual collaboration between Friends of Grand Rapids Parks and Beer City Brewers Guild that raises funds for a tree planting and tree-beer party in the fall.

Participating breweries, distilleries and cider houses have created tree-themed beers to sell during Experience GR’s Beer Month GR. When the month wraps up, they’ll make a donation to Friends of Grand Rapids Parks, a nonprofit organization working to empower people to cultivate vibrant parks, green spaces and trees in the city.

The funds raised from tree beer sales will be used for a community tree planting and tree-beer party where the public can chat with brewers, plant trees and enjoy music and yard games. The trees planted will improve tree diversity in the city, provide a source of food to wildlife and park users and replace removed ash trees lost due to the Emerald Ash Borer epidemic.

“Everyone can agree that we need great green spaces and parks and that planting trees is a good thing,” said Jackson VanDyke, president of Beer City Brewers Guild. “Planting trees is also a concrete way that we can all participate in giving back to our city and the citizens who support us.”

Tree Beer Month will kick off with a celebration at Harmony Hall on Feb. 15.

brewers groveThroughout the month, fans will be able to find tree beer at 26 participating brewers. Harmony Brewing Company will offer DePeach Mode: Peach Gose a traditional Gose brewed with coriander and salt, and fermented on fresh peaches. Brewery Vivant’s feature is Nordhouse IPA brewed with juniper berries, MI-grown Chinook hops, and their farmhouse yeast. It is made in homage to the sprawling juniper trees in the Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness Area. Elk Brewing will offer Black Trumpet Ale brewed with wild harvested mushrooms that mainly grow on Beech, Oak or other broad leaved trees. Black Trumpet mushrooms tend to leech a blackish color and will give a nice earthiness to the beer.

Brewers Grove started in 2013 when local brewers with the Beer City Brewers Guild asked Friends of Grand Rapids Parks how they could give back to parks and public spaces. Since its inception, 159 trees have been planted and over $30,000 have been raised for Friends of Grand Rapids Parks.

The event helps the City of Grand Rapids get closer to its goal of 40 percent tree cover, adopted in 2011 Green Grand Rapids plan on the recommendation of the City’s Urban Forestry Committee.

“In addition to helping achieve the City’s tree canopy goal, we also want to increase the city’s tree canopy because of all the health, economic, safety and energy benefits trees bring to our community,” said Tori Power, development coordinator at Friends of Grand Rapids Parks.

Learn all about Brewers Grove on the Friends of Grand Rapids Parks website.

About Beer City Brewers Guild

As a group of greater Grand Rapids area brewers, in collaboration with beer-centric businesses, the Beer City Brewers Guild works to celebrate, promote and raise awareness of the craft brewing culture in the Grand Rapids community. The nonprofit guild was founded in 2016 to function as a vehicle for collaborations, charitable giving and knowledge sharing around the subject of craft brewing.

About Friends of Grand Rapids Parks

Friends of Grand Rapids Parks is an independent, citizen led, nonprofit organization founded in 2008, working closely with but separate from the City of Grand Rapids. Their mission is to empower people to cultivate vibrant parks, trees and green spaces in the Grand Rapids community. The organization envisions thriving parks and a sustainable urban forest that actively supports the community’s economic, environmental and cultural health.

resilience ipa

Every brewery in America invited to brew fundraiser beer and donate 100% of sales.

Chico, CA—Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. announced today that the company will brew Resilience Butte County Proud IPA to raise funds for those impacted by the Camp Fire. Sierra Nevada will donate 100 percent of Resilience IPA sales to Camp Fire relief, and is asking every other brewery in the country to brew the beer and do the same.

Sierra Nevada will brew Resilience IPA on Giving Tuesday, November 27. The company has asked other breweries to create their own versions of Resilience on that day and donate 100 percent of the sales to Camp Fire relief. Sierra Nevada is working with hop and malt suppliers to secure ingredient donations to participating breweries nationwide.

“Although Chico and the Sierra Nevada brewery were spared, the Camp Fire has devastated neighboring communities where many of our friends, families and employees live,” said Sierra Nevada founder and owner, Ken Grossman. “This community has supported us for 38 years and we’re going to do everything we can to support them back.”

The Camp Fire, now the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California history, started on November 8 in the hills above the brewery’s Chico facility. At the time of this release, the fire had burned 142,000 acres, killed more than 60 people and left hundreds missing, destroyed more than 9,700 homes, and displaced nearly 14 percent of Sierra Nevada’s Chico employees.

Days after the fire, the brewery established the Sierra Nevada Camp Fire Relief fund, which will provide much-needed long-term support for community rebuilding efforts. All donations from Resilience IPA will go to this fund. Additional donations towards this effort can be made here.

Sierra Nevada will release their version of Resilience IPA in early January with limited distribution in cans and on draught.

 

long road

 

New distillery Tasting Room to open in the heart of Downtown Boyne City retail district

Grand Rapids, Mich – Grand Rapids-based Long Road Distillers announced on Wednesday that they will be opening a new distillery tasting room in Boyne City, Michigan. The northern Michigan outlet will be the company’s first offsite tasting room apart from their headquarters on the West Side of Grand Rapids where they house their production facility, cocktail bar and restaurant. Visitors to the new Boyne City location will be able to sample Long Road’s line-up of handcrafted spirits, participate in special tasting events, and purchase merchandise and bottles to-go.

“The Long Road team is thrilled to join the Boyne City community,” said Kyle VanStrien, Long Road Distillers Co-Founder and Co-Owner. “It’s a beautiful town with a thriving retail district, engaged business community, and countless activities for residents and visitors to enjoy throughout the year.”

The Long Road Tasting Room will be located at 118 Water Street in the heart of the Central Business District in Downtown Boyne City. It will share a storefront with The Outdoor Beerdsman, a befitting partnership considering the handcrafted nature of the retailer who designs and prints their own apparel, and creates custom jewelry, all in-house.

“We’re excited to have Long Road Distillers join our downtown business community,” said Ashley Cousens, Executive Director of the Boyne Area Chamber of Commerce. “We think they’ll be a great compliment to the many options we have for residents and visitors to enjoy – our retail shops, brewpubs, restaurants, wineries and bars. This will add another unique attraction and a line of handcrafted products that help highlight the agricultural bounty of Michigan.”

Northern Michigan has become a vital part of the Long Road story and holds a special place in the hearts of VanStrien and fellow Co-Owner and Co-Founder Jon O’Connor.

“We are committed to using Michigan-grown ingredients in our spirits whenever possible,” said O’Connor. “MICHIGIN, our 100% Michigan ingredient gin, depends on ingredients grown in Northern Michigan. Our team spends several days each fall harvesting juniper on nearby Beaver Island, and we’ve incorporated galena hops from the Michigan Hop Alliance in Northport to add a citrus component to the gin’s botanical makeup.”

“As we’ve done in West Michigan, we’re excited to build partnerships with Boyne area farmers to develop new products that highlight the unique terroir of the region,” adds O’Connor.

While an official open date has not been announced, Long Road Distillers is actively seeking applicants for a Tasting Room Manager and Retail Associate team members.

To learn more about employment opportunities or to stay up to date on the Long Road – Boyne City location, visit fb.me/LongRoadBoyneCity.

 

 

expansion pack

Detroit, Mich. —  Batch Brewing Company, located in the Corktown neighborhood of Detroit, is rolling out its first beer subscription called the Batch Brewing Company Expansion Pack. The Expansion Pack will include an exclusive 4-pack of beer per month, only available to subscribers. In addition, the subscription includes other perks such as the ability to prepay for bottle releases.

Batch Brewing Company is in the midst of growth, adding its second location ‘The Funk Room’ at 2841 E Grand Boulevard, where they recently started canning beer and expanding distribution. “Growing a small business is a balancing act,” says co-owner Stephen Roginson. “You’ve got to rely on subcontractors and vendors to honor their commitments, deliver on time, and care about your business.”

 

 

With a goal of opening The Funk Room, the brewery has found itself short of funding after a vendor vanished with a $95,000 equipment deposit. “We’re hoping the additional revenue from the Expansion Pack will help us bridge the financial gap and get our second tap room open to serving the North End and Milwaukee Junction communities,” added Roginson.

The first installment of the Expansion Pack will be available to subscribers in February as Batch Brewing Company celebrates its 4th anniversary. More information about the Expansion Pack can be found at their website.

 

About
Batch Brewing Company has been voted as Best Microbrewery / Brewpub by both Metro Times and Hour Detroit, Best Brewery in Michigan according to Yelp, and was chosen as the #3 Best New Brewery in Michigan by MLive in 2016. Winners of Hatch Detroit in 2013, Batch Brewing Company opened their doors in early 2015. Batch Brewing Company’s original location is at 1400 Porter Street in the Corktown neighborhood of Detroit, and recently launched the Batch Brewing Company Funk Room at 2841 East Grand Boulevard.