Michigan may be the mecca of craft beer, but that doesn’t mean that other states don’t have skin in the game too. Whenever we travel out of state my husband (and my boss) have to find the local breweries and try as many beers as possible.
We began one of our beer adventure nights at Yazoo Brewing Company. All beer tried was mediocre and the service was bad. They must be doing something right though as they’re available at almost every restaurant in Nashville. Unimpressed, we took our little adventure a short walk down the road to Jackalope Brewing Company.
Here’s one brewery you definitely do not want to miss when you hit Nashville. It had a great laid back atmosphere. The staff was incredibly friendly and made us feel welcome. The most important component being, they had great beer. Mastering good merch for people to take home is almost a different trade all in itself. Jackalope mastered that too. We took home several stickers for our own in-home bar.
Another great thing that we noticed Jackalope doing; promoting charities. At the time we went, a portion of the proceeds of their beer, Lovebird, went to charity.
You can find Jackalope canned at a few restaurants in the area as well. Also tried and approved of; Thunder Ann (American Pale Ale) and Bearwalker (Maple Brown).
If we could have found a way to bring beer home on the plane, something from this brewery would have made it’s way back to Michigan.
It’s been a hot minute since my husband has done a beer review, so while we were in the great, white Northern Lower Michigan we stopped at a couple of breweries. Why not rate the entire experience? (Note: 1 of the 2 breweries we were so excited about we didn’t remember to take pictures or rate anything.)
Now we had only heard mediocre things about Snowbelt and thus went in not expecting too much. Maybe a decent beer and some half way decent food. Turns out, it was much better than expected. (Always a pleasant surprise!) They had pretty damn good beer and pretty damn good food.
The atmosphere was laid back with classic rock and 80’s ballads playing on a Friday night. It wasn’t packed but it deserved to be. This will be a new must-go-to stop when we are in the area from now on.
Here is a small introduction to the world of beer styles. These are among the more popular and for any that we come across in our brew review adventures that are not included on this list, I’ll explain on that specific review.
Ale – Sweet, full-bodied, fruity in taste. Brewed using a warm fermentation process. (Brown, black, red, and cream are just a few examples of the variations of ale.)
Pale Ale – Amber-gold beer with fruity, fresh citrus aromas. Relatively low alcohol.
India Pale Ale (IPA) – Hoppy beer style within the category of pale ale. (Double, triple and black being a few variations.)
Sour – Acidic, tart or sour taste.
Stout – Dark beer using roasted malt or barley, hops, water and yeast.
Lager – Conditioned at lower temperatures than ale. Pale, golden, amber or dark.
Porter – Dark beer developed in London from well-hopped beers made from brown malt.
Pilsner – Light straw to golden in color, it is a type of pale lager.
That’s right. The long awaited new section of the blog is finally ready to begin posting.
I’ve mentioned once or twice or three times that craft beer is HUGE in Michigan. I swear I read somewhere recently that said we have 444 breweries in Michigan, now that I’m googling it again it’s saying 122 craft breweries. We’ll go with 122 but that was from 2012, five years later and we can probably safely round up to the 200 marker. Practically every city is sporting it’s own personal brewery. The city I live in has two and Ann Arbor right next to us has six. I should notate that I’m only counting actual breweries, not brew pubs, tap houses or taverns. As our friend from New York who is in town as we speak says, “You Michigan people take your beer seriously.”
It’s true. In fact, it is so true that no one I know even drinks anything else besides craft beer. I personally do not drink beer, carbonation hurts my tongue, I’m weird. However, as someone who doesn’t drink beer, I know far too much about craft beer. My husband loves it, my uncle brews his own, and if you bring Coors, Miller or Pabst to a party, well you’re a dick. You’ve just become the pariah of the party.
We have craft beer festivals, home brew competitions, beer guilds and beer guides.
All of that being said, my husband will be providing beer reviews. Mostly Michigan craft beers, but you know, one or two other states hit the nail on the head when it comes to beer too. Each review will be of a specific beer, and once in a while, when we actually go to the brewery itself, we’ll review our experience as well.
To gear you up for future reviews, the next post in this section will be a beginner’s guide to styles of beer. Yes you heard me right, styles. IPAs, stouts, lagers, we’ll learn the differences between them all. Not every style is for everyone, just likes genres with books.
Do you see how much I care about you dear readers? Not only do I guide you to awesome reads and awesome eats, now I’ll guide you to awesome (and warn you away from not so awesome) beers as well.