The southwest corner of Michigan has long been the playground for Chicagoans looking to escape the concrete jungle for a slice of natural beauty. At the same time, that region of the Mitten has developed a craft beverage scene that fights well above its weight — or what its local population might suggest. Enticed by this notion, the Revue team rallied for a road trip to Southwest Michigan — specifically, Berrien County — to sample the wares. Here’s what we found out.
When Grand Rapids tied Asheville, North Carolina in a 2012 online poll to determine the best beer city in the country, lots of local beer enthusiasts cheered. A few raised an eyebrow.
We get it: Beer drinkers like hazy IPAs.
Craft beer fanatics don’t have to be from New England to enjoy the IPA style first popularized by breweries in that region. We have plenty of breweries in West Michigan and across the state that will sell you a 16-ounce can of OJ-inspired IPA.
Tucked away in a nondescript strip mall in Holland’s Beechwood neighborhood, Brewery 4 Two 4 takes experimentation to the max. That’s somewhat out of necessity, since the brewery produces its beer on a tiny half-barrel system at its 321 Douglas Ave. taproom.
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