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women's day

Brewery Vivant is celebrating their tenth year in business and will be collaborating with a number of local and regional breweries throughout the year to commemorate this milestone.

 

The first collaboration is with Saugatuck-based Guardian Brewing and is a celebration of the growing presence of women in the craft beer industry. The breweries teamed up to produce Kween, dubbed a “femmehouse” ale, that will launch at both breweries on International Women’s Day, Sunday, March 8.

A majority of the ingredients for the beer were sourced from other women-owned businesses in Michigan, Empire Malting and Pure Mitten hopyard. The Jovaru yeast in the beer is a strain that was procured from the famed “Queen of Lithuanian farmhouse beer,” Aldona Udriene, by Omega Yeast in Chicago. The yeast provides a bit of complexity to the beer which complements notes of orange and a slight tartness, coming in at an ABV of 6.2%.

women's day“The idea for a women-sourced and brewed beer came to me a few years ago and once I met Kim from Guardian I knew I had a great values-aligned partner with which to make that dream a reality,” states Vivant President Kris Spaulding.

Kim Collins, Owner and Head Brewer of Guardian Brewing Company adds, “I have looked up to the team at Brewery Vivant as leaders in our industry since I began brewing in 2012. When I received the invitation from Kris to brew a beer for International Women’s Day 2020, I knew we had to make something exciting, unique, and approachable. Kris’ idea to couple the beer with food and intentional conversation surrounding women makes this collaboration something new to our industry. It’s really exciting!” 

A portion of proceeds from all sales of Kween at both locations will benefit local nonprofits that focus on empowering women. Vivant is partnering with Women’s Resource Center, a Grand Rapids based non-profit that works to eliminate the barriers often experienced by women to employment and financial independence. Guardian has partnered with the Women in Nature program at the Holland based Outdoor Discovery Center which is designed to motivate women to be more healthy, active and passionate about the natural world surrounding them.

There will be a launch event at Brewery Vivant from 3-5pm on March 8 where women leaders from both breweries and these nonprofit partners will lead a guided discussion about women empowerment. Tickets are $10 and include a Kween and light appetizers. They can be purchased at the Brewery Vivant pub or by calling 616-719-1604. 

 

About Brewery Vivant Brewery Vivant is the world’s first LEED® certified commercial microbrewery and one of a growing number of Certified B Corporations. We brew beer in the European tradition with the addition of American ingenuity. At our pub we strive to elevate the enjoyment of beer & food and the sense of community in everything we do. Brewery Vivant prides itself on being a destination brewery in the “Beer City” of Grand Rapids. We are in the list of top 30 largest brewpubs in the 

U.S. according to Brewer’s Association definitions and have limited distribution throughout the State of Michigan. 

About Guardian Brewing Guardian Brewing Company is an independent craft brewery located in Saugatuck, Michigan offering an eclectic menu of draft beer, hard cider, classic cocktails, and wine. We offer our community fresh food options that are both locally and regionally sourced. We take great pride in selecting excellent meat, foods fermented in-house, as well as vegetarian and vegan dish choices. In addition to providing phenomenal craft beer, drinks, and food, Guardian features weekly live music and events, monthly Certified Cicerone led Beer School, and a “must visit” destination for out-of-town visitors.

About Women’s Resource Center Since 1973, Women’s Resource Center has been empowering and equipping women to achieve financial stability through meaningful employment. Our gender responsive programs and services help women discover their strengths and talents while overcoming barriers to employment and economic independence. WRC serves over 600 women a year. 

About Outdoor Discovery Center The ODC Network is a non-profit organization with a mission to advance outdoor education and conservation in West Michigan. It’s made up of nine business lines including two nature centers, two river greenways, a nature-based preschool, an eco-tourism program, habitat and land management services, a water quality initiative, and an education network. In total, the ODC Network owns over 600 acres of land, manages an additional 2,000+ acres of property. Last year, over 100,000 children and families participated in ODC Network programming. 

 

The League of American Bicyclists recognized Brewery Vivant with a Gold Bicycle Friendly Business (BFBSM) award, joining more than 1,300 visionary businesses from across the country.

With the announcement of 34 new and renewing BFBs today, Brewery Vivant joins a cutting-edge group of 1,343 local businesses, government agencies, and Fortune 500 companies in every state in the US and Washington, D.C., that are transforming the American workplace.

brewery vivant

“As we celebrate National Bike Month and Bike to Work Week, the League of American Bicyclists is excited to recognize a new class of businesses that are making their communities safer, happier, healthier, and more sustainable through bicycling,” said Amelia Neptune, Director of the Bicycle Friendly America program. “We applaud this new round of Bicycle Friendly Businesses, including Brewery Vivant, for leading the charge in creating a more bicycle-friendly America for everyone.”

Brewery Vivant has been recognized on a national level for its sustainability efforts, including bicycle friendly practices by both industry trade groups and popular cultural magazines. Being a bicycle friendly business has helped to elevate its reputation. Brewery Vivant encourages bicycling as an easy option for transportation and provides amenities such as bicycle racks, employee shower & changing facilities, and maintenance supplies, and incentives such as subsidized off-site gym membership, helmet reimbursement, and active-pursuit related subsidies.

brewery vivant

“We know that our employees, guests, and community value bicycles as alternative transportation as well as recreation.” Says Kris Spaulding, owner & director of sustainability, “The BFB process is a great way to see where we are doing well and where there is opportunity for improvement. This certification also highlights our commitment to bicycles and alternative transportation in a public way.”

Moving forward, Brewery Vivant will have access to a variety of tools and technical assistance from the League to become even more bicycle-friendly. When our employees bike, great things happen: decreased carbon footprints, increased endorphins, and healthy, fun work culture.

To apply or learn more about the BFB program, visit the League online.

About the Bicycle Friendly America Program

To learn more about building a Bicycle Friendly America, including the Bicycle Friendly CommunitySM, Bicycle Friendly StateSM, Bicycle Friendly BusinessSM and Bicycle Friendly UniversitySM programs.visit www.bikeleague.org/BFA.

The League of American Bicyclists is leading the movement to create a Bicycle Friendly America for everyone. As leaders, our commitment is to listen and learn, define standards and share best practices to engage diverse communities and build a powerful, unified voice for change.

About Brewery Vivant

The brewery is located in the East Hills neighborhood of Grand Rapids, in a renovated funeral chapel built in the early 1900’s. Their staff of around 60 employees specialize in Belgian/French inspired beers and fare in a completely unique setting. Husband and wife partners Jason and Kris Spaulding opened the doors for business in December of 2010. Vivant beers are distributed throughout Michigan and the greater Chicago area. They are the first commercial brewery in the nation to receive Silver LEED Certification from the USGBC. Additionally they are 100% renewable powered, a silver-level Bicycle Friendly Business, and are a certified B Corporation.  Beer the Change®!

 

brewery vivant

Brewery Vivant will celebrate another milestone in sustainability efforts with their recent installation of a 192 solar panel array atop their production brewery and adjoining pub. A ribbon cutting is planned for “Monk Club” Tuesday, July 19 at 4pm at the Pub. Mayor Bliss and other public officials will join owners, staff, monk club members and the public at large for ribbon cutting and official toast.

Renewable energy has been a goal since opening in December 2010, with the hope of achieving 10% from onsite sources. This installation projects Brewery Vivant will be able to produce 20% of its energy needs using the sun, in addition to purchasing renewable energy through Consumers Power and its Green Generations program. The 54kw system covers the chapel (pub) roof and adjacent brewery facility. Brewery Vivant partnered with nonprofit Green Brewery Project and with Michigan based Renovo Energy, LLC for this project, who have also helped breweries like Short’s, Dark Horse, and Arbor reach sustainable energy solutions.

Brewery Vivant’s solar power sustainability measure comes in addition to its LEED silver certification, B­Corp certification, and Bicycle Friendly Business status. “It has been a process.” Owner & Sustainability Director, Kris Spaulding says, “With this most recent expansion, we felt ready and more able to invest in solar.” The brewery recently installed three new 60 ­barrel fermentation tanks at 925 Cherry Street which will bring their annual capacity from 5,000 barrels (31 gal/barrel) to 9,000. “We make craft beer [and from ­scratch cooking], but we also want to make a positive impact on our community.” Spaulding says, “Investing in our collective future with sustainable energy is one way we can do this.”

The announcement comes as a part of several major projects Brewery Vivant has been working toward and has achieved:

  • 192 Solar Panels Array on the roof, to produce 20% of energy needs onsite
  • Squeeze in a few more brew tanks, to increase capacity of neighborhood brewery from 5000 bbl to 9000 bbl;
  • Release sour & wood aged beers at a distributable scale via new Plein de Vie series (June 5th);
  • Source burger beef from local Michigan farm, family ­owned Wernette Beef (enough to supply the 10,000lbs of beef to grill up over 20,000 burgers annually at the pub);
  • Re-­certify as a B-­Corporation via Philadelphia ­based nonprofit B­Lab (In 2014 Brewery Vivant became the 4th West Michigan B­Corp with 86 points of the 80 necessary. After an onsite audit for re­certification, BV achieved a score of 110);
  • Partnering for the second year in a row with Kids Food Basket and neighboring Congress Elementary School to underwrite the Sack Suppers program (for each Brewery Vivant kids meal purchased, BV will donate 5 sack suppers)

The solar power ribbon cutting ceremony will take place next Tuesday July 19 at 4pm at Brewery Vivant, located in the East Hills neighborhood at 925 Cherry Street, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49506. All are welcome.