Off the Beaten Track: Breweries in Grand Rapids
We can’t talk about the communities that make up Grand Rapids, Michigan without mentioning the beer community.
2022 was the tenth year Grand Rapids has celebrated its title of ‘Beer City USA’. Since winning the title in a nationwide poll, the city has won America's Best Beer Town (2014), Best Beer Scene (2017) and Best Beer City (2022 & 2021).
Quantity and quality make Grand Rapids the top choice of beer lovers. With more than 40 craft breweries within a 30-minute drive and each of each other, Grand Rapids is a must for all beer lovers.
“You can travel far and wide and not find another city or region that embraces craft-beer culture, from top to bottom, like that of Michigan.” - Wes Kitten Beercation: Grand Rapids, Michigan | Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine
We are sure you’ve heard of the founding breweries that created the roots in Grand Rapids, such as Founders Brewing Co, Old Boys Brewhouse and New Holland Brewing Co. Yet, we want to put the spotlight on some off-the-beaten track breweries that have taken the beer community by storm. So whether you are a local or planning your next beercation make sure to try these community focused breweries out.
TwoGuys is set just south of Grand Rapids in Wyoming MI. It's a little off the beaten path but it is a real hidden gem that is well worth the visit. For more than a decade Tom ran TwoGuys homebrew club, a passion project supporting aspiring brewers while deepening his knowledge of the craft. So, if you’re looking for a brewery who really knows their stuff and is inspired by the craft of beer and great food - you’ve come to the right place. Their ingredients are intentionally sourced, from baking their own bread and smoking their own meats to even growing their own veggies. A must try is the TwoGuys IPA, which is the first beer they ever brewed!
Where craft beer meets nature. Third Nature is set north of Grand Rapids, MI technically in Rockford. Third Nature Brewing has an amazing outdoor biergarten, that is dog friendly, and even has igloo’s for the cold winters. This brewery really embraces nature and its rural setting. Third Nature also has an abundance of community events like weekly trivia nights, monthly beer runs and live music events, it's more than just a brewery.
Archival Brewing opened in July 2021, just north of Grand Rapids in Belmont, MI. With a focus on recreating historic fermented beverages while serving regional cuisines with a local twist. Archival adds a new dimension to the Grand Rapids brewery scene. Their approach is simple: utilizing local resources to craft both brews and menus in sustainable ways, by intentionally cultivating community in every aspect. For a history lesson through your taste buds, be sure to check them out for a unique tasting experience.
Speciation is a family owned company and one of the more unique breweries in Grand Rapids, with a focus on wild fermented sour beers. Nature’s creativity and diversity is central in Speciation’s ever-changing lineup of beers, ciders, and wines. Their drinks are inspired by the natural variations and drifting of species that can be found in nature. Using the finest Michigan grown ingredients, a love of science, a lot of patience, and the joy of experimentation every release is unique.
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