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Elk Rapids, Mich. – Family owned Short’s Brewing Company, known for producing fearlessly creative beers in the hinterlands of Northern, MI, has found themselves abreast a recent political scandal involving popular flagship IPA, Huma Lupa Licious®.

Over the past week, Short’s Brewing Company has received thousands of emails and phone calls about Huma’s involvement in the FBI investigation that led to the discovery of new emails potentially related to Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was Secretary of State.

Recent quotes from GOP candidate Donald Trump: “Thank you, Huma. Good job, Huma” have put Huma at the center of this heated political debacle.

scandal_v5.png

Short’s Brewing Co.’s CEO, Joe Short was available for comment, “The implication that Huma was involved in anything but tasting really good, is totally false. I totally see why Hillary picked Huma for her assistant though. Huma has assisted me for years, and I stand by it!”

Short’s also went on to add that it is a bipartisan company, and prefers to stay politically neutral, although highly encourages everyone to actively and thoughtfully participate in our elections.

The Real Huma®

Huma Lupa Licious® (7.7% ABV – 96 IBU) Huma Lupa Licious’ name derives from the hop plant, Humulus lupulus. It is brewed with five different hop varieties: Centennial, Columbus, Chinook, Cascade, and Palisade. Huma is known for having an intense bitterness that is balanced by a rich malty flavor. A citrus and floral aroma complements the unique qualities of Short’s flagship India Pale Ale.

Huma Lupa Licious is the product of Joe Short wanting to create the ultimate IPA experience. Originally, Huma Lupa Licious was named Humulus Lupulus Maximus, and went through several recipe changes before settling on the recipe we know and love today.

For more information regarding Huma® please visit www.shortsbrewing.com/HumaScandal

Elk Rapids, Mich. – Family owned Short’s Brewing Company, known for producing fearlessly creative beers in the hinterlands of Northern, MI, has found themselves abreast a recent political scandal involving popular flagship IPA, Huma Lupa Licious®.

Over the past week, Short’s Brewing Company has received thousands of emails and phone calls about Huma’s involvement in the FBI investigation that led to the discovery of new emails potentially related to Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was Secretary of State.

Recent quotes from GOP candidate Donald Trump: “Thank you, Huma. Good job, Huma” have put Huma at the center of this heated political debacle.

scandal_v5.png

Short’s Brewing Co.’s CEO, Joe Short was available for comment, “The implication that Huma was involved in anything but tasting really good, is totally false. I totally see why Hillary picked Huma for her assistant though. Huma has assisted me for years, and I stand by it!”

Short’s also went on to add that it is a bipartisan company, and prefers to stay politically neutral, although highly encourages everyone to actively and thoughtfully participate in our elections.

The Real Huma®

Huma Lupa Licious® (7.7% ABV – 96 IBU) Huma Lupa Licious’ name derives from the hop plant, Humulus lupulus. It is brewed with five different hop varieties: Centennial, Columbus, Chinook, Cascade, and Palisade. Huma is known for having an intense bitterness that is balanced by a rich malty flavor. A citrus and floral aroma complements the unique qualities of Short’s flagship India Pale Ale.

Huma Lupa Licious is the product of Joe Short wanting to create the ultimate IPA experience. Originally, Huma Lupa Licious was named Humulus Lupulus Maximus, and went through several recipe changes before settling on the recipe we know and love today.

For more information regarding Huma® please visit www.shortsbrewing.com/HumaScandal

Short’s Brewing Company’s parties are legendary in the state of Michigan, especially since they are never one and the same. While the anniversary party can be described as brilliant madness to kick off the spring and summer, Short’s Fest, which took place at the Short’s production facility, is the relaxing come-down from all of the mania.

Well, mostly.

There were still a lot of things to do, but the atmosphere was definitely one of kicking back with a good brew in hand. Short’s staff, marked in their blue festival t-shirts, were easy to spot, whether they were pouring beer, talking with festival goers or giving tours of the production facility.

“It’s about having a really good, relaxed time. A lot of people still working, but a lot of people out just talking and drinking, too,” said Scott Newman-Bale, Short’s partner and business developer.

“I was on the tour, and it was great—really thorough! But then I ran out of beer, so I came back outside,” said Peter Manthei, an attendee from Beards Brewery in Petoskey.

And of course, the drinking options were many. There were not only the usual summer favorites like Nicie Spicie and Space Rock, but also new releases specifically for Short’s Fest. Mega la Mucho, an Imperial Pilsner with lemon and orange zest, joins the summer series with some sweet and citrusy aromas and flavors. Blanco Suave is a Belgian Wit brewed with lime, agave, coriander, tangerine peel, and grains of paradise, another great complement to this celebration of summertime.

Alongside all of the beers were also concoctions from Short’s newest brand, Starcut Ciders. The appearance of Starcut Ciders at Short’s Fest begins the August countdown to the bottle release happening at the end of the month.

“We’ve had Starcut at a few festivals, and the response has just been great. We’re all getting ready for the launch coming August 30,” said Bridgett Beckwith, Director of Marketing at Short’s.

Short’s Fest also seemed to be the marker for Short’s employees to start thinking about the next year. According to Newman-Bale, the team has already begun discussions around the brewing schedule.

“There are a lot of opinions,” he said, laughing. “Over 300 recipes to choose from, and we’re looking back to some of our older recipes as well.”

He refused to get any more specific than that, but knowing the levels of creativity that Short’s normally delivers, it’s safe to say we can all be excited for next year’s mysteries and adventures.

Excellent performances from The Moxie Strings, Luke Winslow-King and Joe Hertler and The Rainbow Seekers provided fun and easy listening all evening, with fest-goers lounging on the green space or dancing in front of the stage, beer and cider in hand. Fireworks from the surrounding Harbor Days festivities added to the celebration atmosphere, making it truly a glorious night to drink Michigan craft.

https://player.vimeo.com/video/127611326
Short’s Brewing Company celebrated its 11th year of business in Bellaire during their anniversary party on Saturday. Ticket holders to the sold out event flooded the Bridge Street to partake in the festivities. Where last year’s party celebrated ten years of steady growth, this year’s celebration turned the focus back to the future, and what the brewery hopes to accomplish in the decade to follow.
“This day is just packed with a lot of emotion,” said owner Joe Short.
Along with the stresses that come with throwing a party for thousands of guests (which Short was grateful to say were allayed by the brewery’s dedicated staff), Short’s mind was on the weight of the brewery’s future endeavors. Short’s sights are shifting from growing the brewery to giving back to the communities of Bellaire and the state of Michigan.
“Once the growth part [of running the brewery] is done, I think the management of the company will be easier, and then we can put our energies not in growing the brewery, but in growing the community,” said Short.
Part of that effort began right with the anniversary party, which doubled as a fundraiser for the Bellaire Downtown Development Authority (DDA). Fifty percent of the profits from the party were donated to the DDA with the aim of improving the village’s infrastructure and growing businesses.
Those who attended contributed to this effort by enjoying 16-ounce pours of 20 different brews, seven of which were limited releases made especially for the anniversary party, as well as 10 different Starcut ciders. Attendees also had access to a bottled specialty release — an imperial gose called “The Creepster” brewed with apricot, orange, lemongrass, pink Himalayan sea salt and coriander. Food was available via a number of local food trucks as well as a special menu in the Short’s pub. All of the above boasted long lines of demanding attendees throughout the six-hour duration of the party.
Local bands The Accidentals, Vulfpeck and Greensky Bluegrass provided tunes. They performed on a colossal stage with dazzling lights, and could be heard throughout the entire grounds of the party, even over the roar of thousands of conversations.
In between the entertainment, Short delivered his State of the Brewery address. Short’s speech followed a video that riffed off of the 1985 film “Back to the Future.” After the video, Short came up on stage with his young son Simon, who adorably checked the mic before Short began his speech.
“He has no idea he’s in training right now,” joked Short.
Short went on to express gratitude for everyone who played an integral role in the success of the anniversary party (including a quick shout out to “planet earth and the milky way galaxy” for providing the day’s beautiful weather) as well as the success of the brewery over the last 11 years. Then he broke down the brewery’s success in numbers.
In the last eleven years, the brewery has experienced a 4,210 percent growth in sales, and a 2,083 percent growth in number of employees (making Short’s one of the top ten employers in Antrim County). Short’s has brewed 29 million pints of almost 400 different kinds of beer, 136 of which were made in the last year. Needless to say, in the last decade Short’s Brewing Company has experienced exponential growth internally, not to mention the numerous ways in which it has contributed to the surrounding community.
Short’s focus then shifted to the brewery’s goals for the future. The hope for the years to come is for the brewery to “stay awesome hungry.”
“Not only do I want to leave this place and planet earth in better shape than when we found it,” Short said, lifting his gaze from his notes to look deliberately at the audience. “I believe it is our responsibility.”
In the next years, Short’s will continue to increase the scope of its operations, including expanding its pub space and merchandise mart, while still remaining “Michigan only, Michigan forever.” As the company grows, its intent is to give back to the community and state which facilitated that growth.

https://player.vimeo.com/video/127611326

Short’s Brewing Company celebrated its 11th year of business in Bellaire during their anniversary party on Saturday. Ticket holders to the sold out event flooded the Bridge Street to partake in the festivities. Where last year’s party celebrated ten years of steady growth, this year’s celebration turned the focus back to the future, and what the brewery hopes to accomplish in the decade to follow.

“This day is just packed with a lot of emotion,” said owner Joe Short.

Along with the stresses that come with throwing a party for thousands of guests (which Short was grateful to say were allayed by the brewery’s dedicated staff), Short’s mind was on the weight of the brewery’s future endeavors. Short’s sights are shifting from growing the brewery to giving back to the communities of Bellaire and the state of Michigan.

“Once the growth part [of running the brewery] is done, I think the management of the company will be easier, and then we can put our energies not in growing the brewery, but in growing the community,” said Short.

Part of that effort began right with the anniversary party, which doubled as a fundraiser for the Bellaire Downtown Development Authority (DDA). Fifty percent of the profits from the party were donated to the DDA with the aim of improving the village’s infrastructure and growing businesses.

Those who attended contributed to this effort by enjoying 16-ounce pours of 20 different brews, seven of which were limited releases made especially for the anniversary party, as well as 10 different Starcut ciders. Attendees also had access to a bottled specialty release — an imperial gose called “The Creepster” brewed with apricot, orange, lemongrass, pink Himalayan sea salt and coriander. Food was available via a number of local food trucks as well as a special menu in the Short’s pub. All of the above boasted long lines of demanding attendees throughout the six-hour duration of the party.

Local bands The Accidentals, Vulfpeck and Greensky Bluegrass provided tunes. They performed on a colossal stage with dazzling lights, and could be heard throughout the entire grounds of the party, even over the roar of thousands of conversations.

In between the entertainment, Short delivered his State of the Brewery address. Short’s speech followed a video that riffed off of the 1985 film “Back to the Future.” After the video, Short came up on stage with his young son Simon, who adorably checked the mic before Short began his speech.

“He has no idea he’s in training right now,” joked Short.

Short went on to express gratitude for everyone who played an integral role in the success of the anniversary party (including a quick shout out to “planet earth and the milky way galaxy” for providing the day’s beautiful weather) as well as the success of the brewery over the last 11 years. Then he broke down the brewery’s success in numbers.

In the last eleven years, the brewery has experienced a 4,210 percent growth in sales, and a 2,083 percent growth in number of employees (making Short’s one of the top ten employers in Antrim County). Short’s has brewed 29 million pints of almost 400 different kinds of beer, 136 of which were made in the last year. Needless to say, in the last decade Short’s Brewing Company has experienced exponential growth internally, not to mention the numerous ways in which it has contributed to the surrounding community.

Short’s focus then shifted to the brewery’s goals for the future. The hope for the years to come is for the brewery to “stay awesome hungry.”

“Not only do I want to leave this place and planet earth in better shape than when we found it,” Short said, lifting his gaze from his notes to look deliberately at the audience. “I believe it is our responsibility.”

In the next years, Short’s will continue to increase the scope of its operations, including expanding its pub space and merchandise mart, while still remaining “Michigan only, Michigan forever.” As the company grows, its intent is to give back to the community and state which facilitated that growth.

Short’s Brewing Company announced its “$3 million band aid” on Wednesday. 

The company purchased two acres next to its existing production facility in Elk Rapids, which will help Short’s begin construction this summer on new brewing facilities. The brewery also bought a new water treatment system and bottling line.

Although there has been focus on the brewery’s recently announced $1.2 million expansion to its Bellaire pub, COO Matt Drake said the production facility upgrade will be crucial to the company’s growth.

“It’s part of a solution to the issue that we bumped into of maxing out our brewery,” Drake said. “We got as big as we could and we didn’t think we’d get to that point.” 

Even with their mission of distributing in Michigan, the demand keeps growing at a quick rate, Drake said. Last year, the company brewed roughly 30,000 barrels, a sharp incline from when the production facility opened in 2009, as production volume has grown more than 30 percent each of the past five years. The facility underwent a $2 million expansion in 2012. 

The new bottling line was designed by Krones, and will be an upgrade to its current “hodgepodge system.” It will fill 150 bottles a minute, a 300 percent improvement to the current filler. It’s been a $1.55 million project and will be operation on May 1.

The second addition is a 150,000 gallon aerobic wastewater pre-treatment system. The buy was to help ease the brewery’s effect on Elk Rapids, Drake said. 

“We’re making so much beer, the waste water has to go somewhere,” he said. “So, we’ll put it in a pre-treatment center and deliver clean water to our village here in Elk Rapids.”

That water reuse will add to the system already in place that send its beer byproducts to the Freemont Community Digester which converts it into useable fuel. “So what will be generated from our brewing is clean what that we deliver and energy,” Drake said.

The moves will ensure they can continue to provide Elk Rapids with jobs and a community-based manufacturing business.

“There’s been a decade or more of continued growth on that site,” he said. “This is a really exciting announcement because it means we can stay here. We can build a campus.

 GRAND RAPIDS — Thirty-five beers for 35 years.  Joe Short of Shorts Brewing celebrated his birthday — HopCat style — on Thursday.

Trevor Mapes, Captain of Beer R&D and Regional Beer Director for HopCat and Rick Martinez, Beer Research and Development, helped to coordinate the event from HopCat’s end.

“It’s been kind of a running tradition that the same week as Joe’s birthday we end up hosting this event and putting on as many Short’s taps as every year old Joe is turning. We’re not sure yet what we’re going to do when he turns 49, because we only have 48 taps,” Trevor jokes.

“The only thing I can remember is that I was turning 30. I’m not exactly sure why or how it happened here, but I’m glad it did,” Short shares as we sip and chat.

Remaining smiling and friendly during the frequent autographs and photo ops, Short was happy to talk and philosophize, explaining the background of Short’s and the evolution of its culture.

“I’m not sure if the general population knows about our culture and how we came to be. We are a very organic and homegrown sort of company. We really love that fact that we live in Northern Michigan. We live and die by being able to do the things that we want to do and being able to make a living doing it. We foster the idea that our company is our family, and if you aren’t part of the organization or culture up north, you might not know that about us.”

HopCat parallels this love and sense of community in the West Michigan area. Perhaps this is why Short’s and HopCat are such a perfect fit.

Martinez sips a Earl of Brixom, noting the chocolate undertones and medium body while considering this sense of place.

“I love working with beer, I love drinking beer. We are completely immersed in the beer culture, we love great craft beer-that’s the number one goal…we like to see that this is all growing — this craft movement — together.”

Together, we worked our way through some of the offerings from Short’s. While ambitious, I’m not crazy. Steph Harding and I tried 11 of the 35 selections offered, in generous five-ounce pours for between $3 and $4.  Short’s beers are too varied to try samples — you really need a few sips and a few minutes to appreciate the selections.

The Mmmkay, an American pale lager is more of hybrid IPA, with an amazing citrusy aroma, and an intensely hoppy finish. The Bloody Beer made me crave a Bloody Mary — which I’m normally not a fan of — and a BLT. It smelled like a meal, with a surprisingly delicious tomatoe-y finish. The Jitterbug Perfume had a strong Jasmine tea aroma, with a little bit of an earthy aftertaste from the beets added to the brew. OMGWTFBBQ belongs in some sort of marinade for meat. Vegetarian Steph said she always assumed this is what BBQ tastes like.

The Bim Bam Boom was fun, a spiced stout brewed with cocoa nibs, cayenne pepper and orange. Mild on the spice, with a strong cocoa finish, the orange lingered on your palate after your sip was gone.  I wish I would had a full pint of the Walking Red, an English-style red ale with vanilla and a malty caramel flavor.  The Pineapple Pilsner was advertised as mouth puckering, which was exactly what I tasted. The Raisin Apollo’s scent was reminiscent of dirt (in a good way), and the raisins in the brew reminded me of a port with a nice dry finish.  I’m a sucker for Brettanomyces and its funk,  and the Bourbon Pig Pen did not disappoint. The Sticky Icky Icky was a big seller for the evening, a nicely balanced IPA with a name too fun not to say.

My last beer of the evening was the Chocolate Giddy Up, a creamy stout made with cold brewed coffee and cocoa nibs.  After the obligatory photo-op with Joe for my own amusement, I ask him the quintessential question: “Out of all the beers you brought today, which one do you think is going to define your 35th year?”

“I automatically go straight to the Spruce Pilsner,” he said. “I think it’s a beer wiser than its years and I’m hoping that every year I get a little older, I get a little wiser. It’s also a beer that people don’t quite understand yet, and maybe I parallel with that a little bit, maybe we are not quite fully understood yet.

“So as we get a little older, and people get a little more acclimated, you know…there’s certain levels of evolution in life, and in beer, that you appreciate over time.”

I end the night with the most important question of the evening: “What mustache wax do you use?”

Short laughs. “Clubman’s. It’s in a little tube. I’m still on my first one.” 

COMSTOCK PARK — Preparations are under way for the Michigan Brewers Guild Winter Beer Festival at Fifth-Third Ballpark, just outside of Grand Rapids. And, like many of our readers, we’re anticipating some great beer.
We’ve looked over the beer list and we’ve selected our top five beers to try, and top five breweries to visit this year.

Top five beers to try

A record number of beers (625, to be exact) will be available to try at this year’s festival, and we couldn’t be more pleased with the lineup.
1) Bell’s Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout — Bell’s bourbon-aged beers are always good, but combine a cherry stout with some more booze? It can’t get much better than that.
2) Brewery Vivant Helen Wine Barrel Sour Ale — Vivant is widely known throughout the state for brewing some great beers. And that doesn’t stop with its sours — in fact, Vivant’s sour ales are some of the best around. Being such a limited brew, Helen won’t last long.
3) Kuhnhenn Raspberry Eisbock — BeerAdvocate ranks this as a 98, and with chocolate, raspberry and caramel notes, Raspberry Eisenbock will certainly impress. And the fact that it holds a captivating 13.5% ABV only adds to its anticipation.
4) New Holland Rum Barrel Aged Dragon’s Milk — New Holland’s signature stout gets a rum treatment that should make for a rich, tasty, boozy drink that’s perfect for those cold temperatures.
5) Dark Horse Brewing Co. — While we didn’t mention a specific beer to try, you should definitely make it to one of Dark Horse’s four tables during the festival. At least once. Or twice. You’ve probably heard of Plead the 5th? Well, that’s just the beginning.

Top five breweries worth checking out

There are 19 new breweries showcasing beer at the Winter Beer Fest this year. While no new brewery can match the tap list of a Bell’s or Dark Horse, new breweries bring something different to the table, and no doubt will be popular with attendees.
1) Pike 51 Brewing Company — In my recent visit to the new Hudsonville brewery, I was overly impressed with its beer. Former HopCat brewmaster Jeff Williams heads up a lineup of flavorful beer that will keep you coming back for more. Beers served: The Kush IPA; Sabotage Milk Stout with Coffee; Sinister Kid Imperial Porter; Weizenbock; Knight’s on Mastadons Imperial Brown Ale with Coffee; Batch 51 Rye Wine; Mojo Hand Single Hop Black IPA; Cherry Triple.
2) Greenbush Brewing Company — Greenbush and Dark Horse always seem to battle with which brewery can bring the most beer for each festival. This year, Greenbush is bringing a whopping 48 taps to the festival, many of which are barrel aged. On my list? Chai Life and Bourbon Barrel Vanderbush. Beers served: Too many to mention.
3) The Livery — Being that many brews are aged and brewed months before festivals, this may very well be the last chance you get to experience Steve Berthel’s influence at Benton Harbor’s top brewery. With three barrel aged brews being served, and a few other brews that sound quite tasty, The Livery is definitely on my list. Beers served: McGillan’s American IPA; Basket Case Imperial Chocolate, Rye, Oat, Milk Stout; Agent 99 Belgian Quad; SMaSH Summit American IPA; Double Paw Double IPA; Barrel Aged 33 1/3 Lager; Barrel Aged Verchousity Dark Trippel; Barrel Aged Bastard Cousin Stout.
4) Founders Brewing Co. — Founders always brings an A-list lineup to the Winter Beer Fest, and this year is no exception. Serving up all of its Backstage Series beers, in addition to some regular staples, Founders is a brewery you have to hit at least once. Chances are all of the Backstage Series beers will be timed releases, so keep an eye out, especially for when KBS and CBS is tapped. Beers served: Centennial IPA; All Day IPA; Red’s Rye PA; Dirty Bastard Scotch Ale; Porter; Spite Pepper Ale; Frangelic Mountain Brown; KBS Barrel Aged Imperial Stout; Blushing Monk Belgian Raspberry Ale; CBS Maple Barrel Aged Imperial Stout; Curmudgeon’s Better Half; Bolt Cutter Barley Wine.
5) Short’s and Bell’s — Let’s be honest, there’s no way I could limit this list to five. Two of the best breweries in the state — if not the country — again showcase some extraordinary beers. Bell’s brings out its Bourbon Barrel Aged Batch 9,000, probably one of the best beers I’ve ever had. Short’s, on the other hand, has a plethora of seasonal one-offs, including its Gingersnap English Brown Ale. Beers served: Too many to mention.

General Information

This year the Guild has changed the way beer tokens work, ever so slightly. A total of 39 beers are worth two or three tokens instead of the standard one token per pour. You can read more, and see the full beer list, at mbgmash.com. You can also download the festival program.
The Mash website also has information on bus schedules and hotel information.
This year’s festival sold out in a record 13 hours. Don’t have tickets for this year? Several local breweries and bars are participating in GR Beer Week, and will have events going on throughout and leading up to the weekend. Check out the GR Beer Week Facebook page for a full event listing.
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Alex Brown contributed to this article.