Thursday, September 23, 2010

Celebrate Detroit's Rich Brewing History During Detroit Fall Beer Festival - Saturday, Oct 23 at Eastern Market

The Motor City has a rich brewing history, and in recent years it has been revitalized thanks to a growing interest in the craft beer movement. In recognition of this movement, the Michigan Brewers Guild – along with Metrotimes – presents the 2nd Annual Detroit Fall Beer Festival (formerly Harvest Beer Festival) on Saturday, October 23 at Eastern Market. This is one of four annual events sponsored by the Guild, and will feature more than 40 Michigan craft breweries offering over 200 different beers for sampling throughout the day.

Eastern Market is one of the nation’s oldest farm markets and the area is rife with brewing history. In its heyday, there were more than 40 breweries in the Market area and malt silos still stand as a testament to the rich brewing history – making it the perfect backdrop for the Detroit Fall Beer Festival.

Admission to the Detroit Fall Beer Festival is $35 in advance or $40 at the door and includes 15 drink tokens (each good for one 3-ounce beer sample). The festival runs from 1-6pm, with Guild Enthusiast Members being admitted at Noon. Membership is just $25 per year and includes one-hour early admission to all four Guild-sponsored festivals, first-pint discounts at participating Guild member breweries, special brewery tours and a membership t-shirt.

Enthusiast memberships and tickets to the Detroit Fall Beer Festival can be purchased online at A list of participating breweries, as well as retail outlets selling festival tickets, will be posted at

The Detroit Fall Beer Festival is held outside, rain or shine. Festival attendees must be 21 to enter and ID MUST BE SHOWN (no exceptions).

Throughout the week leading up to the Detroit Fall Beer festival, craft beer lovers can enjoy a variety of activities during the 2nd Annual Detroit Beer Week.

Last year, the passion and dedication of one local man sparked interest to lead the charge to organize the inaugural Detroit Beer Week. As “Chief Imaginationer of this now annual week-long celebration, Jon Piepenbrok rallied like-minded beer lovers, Michigan-beer friendly establishments and Metro-Detroit breweries together for a series of events that put the spotlight on the state’s overall beer scene. Produced by Liquid Table – the beverage events company founded by Jon Piepenbrok and partner Jason Peltier – Detroit Beer Week promises to be bigger and better than its inaugural year.

Detroit Beer Week kicks off on October 16 with “Tap:Detroit” – a charity beer event at St. Andrews Hall. Tap:Detroit will feature eight of Detroit’s best beer-friendly restaurants pairing dishes with Michigan Beer, a rare beer and cask ale sampling, live entertainment on all three floors, and a cocktail lounge showcasing Michigan-distilled spirits and meads. Tickets are $35 for the main event, and $55 for all-access. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster, as well as the St. Andrew’s Hall box office, and select participating breweries, bars and restaurants.

The week continues with a multitude of beer events at dozens of participating Beer Destinations throughout the City of Detroit. In addition, Liquid Table is producing an event each day throughout the week, including a Multi-Chef Beer Dinner, a Beer vs. Wine Cheese Pairing, a walking pub-crawl of the Foxtown district of Detroit, a beer-themed bike excursion called Bike-toberfest, tastings and more. Details about these and other events, as well as a listing of all Official Beer Destinations, will be posted online at

Michigan’s thriving brewing industry contributes over $24 million in wages with a total economic contribution of more than $133 million. In terms of overall number breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs, Michigan ranks #6 in the nation – thus supporting its claim as “The Great Beer State.”

The Michigan Brewers Guild exists to unify the Michigan brewing community; to increase sales of Michigan-brewed beer through promotions, marketing, public awareness and consumer education; and to monitor and assure a healthy beer industry within the state. For more information, including a list of Michigan microbreweries, log on to

St. Julian Promotes Nancie Corum to Head Winemaker

The harvest season has begun for St. Julian Winery in Paw Paw – and this year, that harvest is a little sweeter for Nancie Corum, who has just been promoted to head winemaker after nine seasons with Michigan’s oldest and longest-operating winery.

Corum, the first professional commercial female winemaker in Michigan, just graduated from Purdue University-Indiana University in West Lafayette, IN, with a Master of Science degree in Food and Agribusiness Management. In November, she will complete the MBA portion of her degree. The program awards a master of science in 21 months from the college of agriculture and an MBA from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. Aside from the five one-week residence sessions, Corum completed her courses online, allowing her to maintain her full-time position on the winemaking team at St. Julian.

Purdue’s long-standing strengths in agribusiness and food science, coupled with Indiana University’s expertise in management education, delivers the best of both worlds – an industry-specific focus on current issues and food and agriculture, paired with a general MBA. Both schools have international reputations and are highly regarded for their quality programs.

Corum was born in Bloomington, IL but grew up in Lafayette, IN, graduating from Purdue University in 2002 with a Bachelor of Science in Food Manufacturing Operations and double minors in Agribusiness Management and Organizational Leadership & Supervision. While at Purdue, Nancie was a member of several organizations, including Kappa Alpha Theta, Institute of Food Technologists and the American Wine Society.

During the course of her undergraduate studies, Corum assisted enologist Dr. Richard Vine in making wine as a part of Purdue’s grape and wine research program, as well as assisting in the coordination of the esteemed Indy International Wine Competition. She completed an internship at Geyser Peak Winery in California, under the tutelage of winemaker Daryl Groom. Although the experience of working in the famed Sonoma County provided great opportunities, Corum was passionate about getting back to the Midwest to join the growing wine industry here.

In August 2002, Corum joined St. Julian as a lab manager and enologist. Her contributions over the years have included making continued improvements to the winery’s Quality Assurance and Quality Control lab. She was promoted to Assistant Winemaker in May 2003 and to Associate Winemaker in August 2008.

Corum steps into the shoes of Dr. David Miller, who served 13 years as a winemaker at St. Julian. Earlier this summer, Miller stepped out on his own to open his own winery in Southwest Michigan.

As head winemaker, her responsibilities include managing all aspects of harvest, overseeing day-to-day activity in the wine cellar, development and implementation of the sensory evaluation program for St. Julian’s wholesalers and trade accounts, managing juice and wine sales to more than 250 bulk customer accounts, representing grocery-chain private-label accounts and serving as a judge in several international wine competitions each year.

In her free time, when she is not swirling wine, Corum enjoys boating, wakeboarding, cooking, spending time with her family and friends, and planning a January 1, 2011 wedding!

The family-owned St. Julian winery, Michigan’s oldest and longest-operating winery, was founded in 1921. It is one of 12 wineries to make up the Lake Michigan Shore Appellation – a designated American Viticultural Area (AVA) and is part of the Southwest Michigan Wine Trail. In 2011, St. Julian will proudly celebrate its 90th Anniversary.

St. Julian Winery

Monday, September 20, 2010

Michigan Brewers Guild Members Snag 10 Medals at 2010 Great American Beer Festival in Denver

It was another great showing for Michigan craft brewers at the 29th Annual Great American Beer Festival (GABF) Competition, going on this weekend in Denver, CO.

“Once again, Michigan has delivered the hardware to support what we all know – we’re making exceptional craft beer here in the Great Beer State,” says Scott Graham, Executive Director of the Michigan Brewers Guild. “This year’s winners are among a growing number in our industry who are putting Michigan on the map when it comes to producing consistently good, unique and exciting brews. Congratulations to them – and all our members who entered this esteemed competition.”

This year’s GABF competition attracted 151 beer judges from 10 countries. Award-winning brewers received prestigious gold, silver and bronze medals in 79 beer categories covering 133 beer styles, establishing the best examples of each style in the U.S.

Seven members of the Michigan Brewers Guild received honors this year, including:


• Nectar Des Dieux, Bastone Brewery, Royal Oak, MI
Belgian-Style Abbey Ale - 76 Entries

• Bellipago, Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales, Dexter, MI
Specialty Beer - 23 Entries

• Fourh Dementia Olde Ale, Kuhnhenn Brewing Co., Warren, MI
Old Ale or Strong Ale - 38 Entries

• Key Lime Pie, Short’s Brewing Co., Bellaire, MI
Experimental Beer - 43 Entries


• Go Figure, Big Rock Chop House & Brewery, Birmingham, MI
American-Style India Black Ale - 53 Entries

• Curmudgeon, Founders Brewing Co., Grand Rapids, MI
Old Ale or Strong Ale - 38 Entries

• Endurance IPA Jr., Founders Brewing Co., Grand Rapids, MI
Session Beer - 30 Entries

• Simcoe Silly, Kuhnhenn Brewing Co., Warren, MI
American-Belgo-Style Ale - 47 Entries


• American Brown Ale, Big Rock Chop House & Brewery, Birmingham, MI
57 American-Style Brown Ale - 47 Entries

• Bell’s Expedition Stout, 1995, Bell’s Brewery, Inc., Galesburg, MI
Aged Beer - 30 Entries

The Great American Beer Festival invites industry professionals from around the world to sit together in small groups and, without knowing the brand name, taste beers in each specified style category. The ultimate goal of the judging panel is to identify the three beers that best represent each beer-style category as described and adopted by the GABF.

Five different three-hour judging sessions take place over the three-day period during the week of the festival, with judges assigned to evaluate beers in their specific area of expertise. Breweries are awarded points, which are tabulated to arrive at the top three place medals in each category. The judging panel awards gold, silver or bronze medals that are recognized around the world as symbols of brewing excellence. These awards are among the most coveted in the industry and heralded by the winning brewers in their national advertising. Medal distinctions are as follows:

• GOLD: A world-class beer that accurately exemplifies the specified style, displaying the proper balance of taste, aroma and appearance.

• SILVER: An excellent beer that may vary slightly from style parameters while maintaining close adherence to the style and displaying excellent taste, aroma and appearance.

• BRONZE: A fine example of the style that may vary slightly from style parameters and/or have minor deviations in taste, aroma or appearance.

The Great American Beer Festival is the granddaddy of all U.S. beer festivals, offering the largest collection of U.S. beer ever assembled. Sponsored by The Brewers Association, the festival features more than 1900 different beers from 400 breweries throughout the country. A highlight of the festival is that many of the beers are served by their makers, allowing aficionados the chance to meet many of their beer heroes.

In addition to the individual brewery awards, Imperial Beverage of Kalamazoo – on of the Guild’s distributor partners -- was named the 2010 Craft Beer Distributor of the Year. The Fourth Annual Craft Beer Distributor of the Year Award recognizes an exceptional American beer distributor who actively markets, sells and promotes craft beer. Awarding parties are The National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) and the Brewers Association (BA), and the honor is bestowed each year during the GABF.

Michigan’s thriving brewing industry contributes over $24 million in wages with a total economic contribution of more than $133 million. In terms of overall number breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs, Michigan ranks #6 in the nation – thus supporting its claim as “The Great Beer State.”

The Michigan Brewers Guild exists to unify the Michigan brewing community; to increase sales of Michigan-brewed beer through promotions, marketing, public awareness and consumer education; and to monitor and assure a healthy beer industry within the state. Each year, the Guild hosts four annual craft beer festivals, with the next – Detroit Fall Beer Festival – scheduled for October 23 (1-6pm) at Eastern Market in Detroit.

For more information about the Michigan Brewers Guild, including a dates of upcoming events and a list of member micro-breweries, log on to

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Something New is Brewing at Arcadia Ales

2010 Shaping up to be a record year for the Cereal City Brewer

Just three-quarters of way through 2010 and Arcadia Ales in Battle Creek is reporting record growth, a trend that is expected to increase throughout the year.

According to Rick Suarez, Arcadia’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing, the brewery’s numbers are up 55% in Michigan and 39% collectively in nine states outside of Michigan. That number will only continue to rise as Arcadia adds two new 40-barrel fermenters to its current production line, says Head Brewer Josh Davies.

In 2009, Arcadia produced and sold over 7,091 barrels of beer throughout the Midwest, East Coast and Mid-Atlantic regions (up from 6,481 barrels in 2008). So far in 2010, more than 6,000 barrels have been produced and sold and it expected that Arcadia will reach a record 9,000 barrels overall for the year.

In addition to increasing its production output, Arcadia has introduced new packaging for beers including Angler’s Ale, Whitsun, Sky High Rye and IPA, as well as a Vintage Series of Imperial Stout, Cereal Killer Brandywine Ale and Big Dick’s Olde Ale. This fall, Arcadia will release its seasonal Nut Brown Ale, Loch Down (formerly known as Scotch Ale) and its Jaw Jacker harvest brew, in addition to its fall variety pack. All will sport the new, fresher packaging.

A Charter and proud member of the Michigan Brewers Guild, Arcadia Ales was established in Battle Creek in 1996 as a microbrewery and restaurant (TC’s Woodfire @ Arcadia) specializing in hand-crafted, British-inspired ales and wood-fired fare. Produced in small batches in an authentic British 25-barrel Peter Austin Brewhouse and open-fermentation cellar, the process at Arcadia represents over 250 years of world-class brewing heritage. The foundation of Arcadia has been its commitment to sourcing and using the finest raw materials available on the planet, including premium English two-row malted barley and Pacific Northwest hops. Arcadia’s passion is the crafting of unfiltered ales that are unfiltered, unpasteurized and uncompromised.

103 W. Michigan Avenue
Battle Creek, Michigan

(269) 963-9690

Michigan Brewers Guild fights for sampling in retail outlets

Would you like to be able to sample Michigan beer prior to making a purchase at retail stores?

If so, please contact your legislators and ask them to support adding craft beer to House Bill 6426. House Bill 6426 would permit liquor tasting at licensed retailers in Michigan such as grocery stores, party stores, etc. but would exclude both beer and wine.

The bill as written would put Michigan breweries at a competitive disadvantage to distilled spirits manufacturers. Please contact your local legislators and let them know how you feel. Your voice makes a huge difference!

To find your legislators and their contact information you can use the attached link and search by simply typing in your zip code.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Discover how Pure Michigan autumn is…on Beaver Island

The fall season is the perfect time to discover – or revisit – Beaver Island, Michigan’s largest, most-inhabited island. Hop aboard the Emerald Isle for a relaxing and colorful ride across Lake Michigan as you soak in the colors on the trees that shirt the lakeshore along Michigan’s lower peninsula.

Once on Beaver Island, its natural wonders await exploration, where a variety of eco-tour options are available. Whether it’s camping, paddling, pedaling or hiking, the crisp cool autumn air and the fresh breezes of the lake welcome you to slow down and relax, just for a bit. Bring your camera, because the colors and the wildlife this time of year are abundant. The contrast of the red, yellow and orange hues of the leaves set against the backdrop of the brilliant blue waters of Lake Michigan are sure to capture your eye. While taking a stroll along one of the back roads, you’re likely to see a fox or deer cross your path, or any number of birds soaring in the sky above.

The West Michigan Tourist Association even has a turn-by-turn color tour route mapped out at (#26) which starts at the ferry dock in downtown St. James and travels the perimeter of the island.

If your visit takes place the first weekend in October, you’ll enjoy the festivities of the Bite of Beaver Island and the Island Boodle 5k Run – which both take place October 2. With the Bite, see what the best professional and amateur chefs on the Island have to offer - sample a wide variety of treats. The Boodle, now in its 8th year, starts in scenic St. James and offering a fast, beautiful lakefront-and-trails course.

Beaver Island Boat Company has been providing the most relaxing, affordable transportation for people, pets, vehicles, and freight to Beaver Island for over 25 years. Reservations for passengers are never required. A trip to Beaver Island aboard the Emerald Isle or the Beaver Islander adds to the overall experience, reinforcing the adage that in life – it’s the journey as much as the destination!

For a complete schedule, rates and package tour details, call 888-446-4095 or log onto Become our FAN on Facebook:

For information on Beaver Island:

Veteran Actor Christian Slater Joins Playback Cast in Grand Rapids

Christian Slater – know for his roles in the 1980s hits The Legend of Billie Jean and Heathers – has just been signed to join the cast of Playback – a supernatural thriller written and directed by Michael A. Nickles and produced by John M. Bennett and Lawrence Robbins for Bennett-Robbins Productions LLC. Filming began in Grand Rapids on Tuesday, August 31 and runs through the end of September.

Slater, the son of well-known soap actor Michael Hawkins and Mary Jo Slater started in the industry at an early age – appearing in the soap opera The Edge of Night at the age of 7. He went on to star in many Broadway shows in the early 1980s and in 1985, rose to fame in Hollywood after landing the role of Binx
Davey in The Legend of Billie Jean. He’s also noted for a starring role in the cult hit Heathers (1989).

Recent credits for Slater include 17 episodes as Alex Donovan on The Forgotten (2009-2010) and 9 episodes on My Own Worst Enemy, (2008), as well as appearances in the award-winning drama The West Wing. In addition to “Playback,” Slater has four films in post production (Sacrifice, Soldiers of Fortune, Guns, Girls & Gambling and Shadows of the White Nights) and is wrapping up filming on the comedy Without Men, where he stars alongside Eva Longoria Parker.

His role in Playback will be that of Frank Lyons, a jaded and gritty cop who may not be who he appears. Playback follows a group of high school students who dig into their town’s infamous past and unwittingly unlock an Evil that corrupts and destroys them. Possessing its victims through video playback and using them for malevolent purposes, evil closes in on one specific soul – threatening to expose the town’s deepest, darkest secret.

The remaining cast for Playback includes (in alphabetical order):
• Ambyr Childers (Riley)
• Dorien Davies (Mrs. Milton)
• Toby Hemingway (Quinn)
• Jonathan Keltz (Nate)
• Jennifer Missoni (Dee Dee)
• Daryl "Chill" Mitchell (Wylie)
• Johnny Pacar (Julian) ** Born in Dearborn, Michigan (June 6, 1981)**
• Alessandra Torresani (Brianna)

In addition to the credited cast above, over 100 locals will serve as extras on the project, with over 15 locals hired for crew.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Record number of hotels participate in ‘Check In To Michigan Apples’ promotion

Hotel guests across the state will be offered free locally-grown apples at check in, courtesy of the Michigan Apple Committee (MAC) and the 900 growers the organization represents.

A basket of fresh apples along with copies of the 2010 Michigan Farm Market & Agricultural Tourism Directory will be delivered later this month to more than 400 lodging facilities across the state. It is part of the 5th annual “Check In To Michigan Apples,” a MAC promotion offered at no charge to lodging facilities with a minimum of 20 rooms.

“It’s not just about apples, it’s about raising the profile of Michigan agriculture,” said Denise Donohue, MAC executive director. “We’re the second most diverse agricultural state in the nation and have plenty to be proud of. The directories help tourists easily find farm markets and orchards where they can enjoy fresh, locally-grown produce and partake in the wonderfully unique fall traditions Michigan has to offer.”

MAC partnered with the Michigan Farm Market and Agri-Tourism Association, publisher of the farm market directory, in an effort to expand the “Check In” project this year. With funding through a USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant, the groups were able to nearly double participation from the previous year and even do some advertising to help increase farm market awareness.

Billboards along U.S. 31 from South Haven to Traverse City starting in mid-September will encourage passersby to visit a Michigan farm market. The billboard design was also made into a sign to display at the front desk of each participating hotel.

“We’re showcasing the many different types of fall traditions this state has to offer so we selected wine grapes, pumpkins, a corn maze and apples for the billboard design,” said Donohue.

Participating properties will receive an initial supply of apples and about a dozen directories following the Labor Day weekend. MAC has worked with several food service companies in the state to expand the selection of locally-grown apple varieties.

“Participating lodging facilities are encouraged to refill the baskets with Michigan Apples throughout the year – even after the promotion ends,” said Donohue. “Our hope is that they’re more aware of the quality and variety of Michigan Apples available for day-to-day services such as their continental breakfast, conference services or on-site restaurants.”

MAC has several other initiatives in place this fall to make consumers more aware of the importance of supporting local farmers.

“In fact, if every Michigan household spent just $10 a week on Michigan-produced food, it would generate $37 million each week,” said Donohue. “In these economic times, that’s a pretty compelling number to share with Michigan residents.”

Apples are the state’s largest and most valuable fruit crop with an estimated annual economic impact of $800 million. The entire agri-food system in Michigan is estimated to have a total annual economic impact of more than $60 billion and accounts for more than 1 million jobs.

Michigan Apple Committee is a grower-funded nonprofit organization devoted to promotion, education and research activities to distinguish the Michigan apple and encourage its consumption in Michigan and around the world.

For more information, visit