Beer Tours in Michigan

West Michigan Beer Tours might be something to put on the summer calendar. Plus: The Beer Mile, Milwaukee Brewing’s Litta Bitta, this week’s events, and more.

Some of the best breweries in America can be found in Michigan, and West Michigan Beer Tours is helping craft beer aficionados tour them. The group runs public and private tours of area breweries as well as a popular walking beer tour of Kalamazoo. It’s not too long of a drive from Milwaukee to partake in standout breweries like Bell’s, Founders, Arcadia and Dark Horse.

“I like to refer to Michigan craft beer, and craft beer in general, as a choose-your-own adventure book in liquid form,” says John Liberty, one of the founders of West Michigan Beer Tours. “The avenues for exploration and discovery are limitless. My favorite part of being involved in West Michigan Beer Tours is discovering where people are in their Michigan beer journey and helping them enhance it.”

Check out the two-day Chicago to West Michigan Brewery Tour, which runs from July 11 to July 12. The event starts at Half Acre Brewery in Chicago and hits Bell’s, Founders, Greenbush, New Holland, Paw Paw and Tapistry Brewing Company.

“Some of the best beer in the world is made within about a 30 to 45 minute drive of most communities in West Michigan,” added Liberty. “Our goal every tour is to offer a fun, safe and educational experience.”

West Michigan Beer Tours might be something to put on the summer calendar.

The Beer Mile Gets Big-Time Press

I was watching ESPN this weekend and was amused (and a little surprised) when I saw this short piece about the history and evolution of The Beer Mile. I’ve never attempted the task, and really don’t think I want to, but there are some brave souls out there that are the best beer milers in the world. Kudos to them.

LittaBitta_brewcity_webBarley Pop of the Week

I’ll talk much more about session beers next week. I’ve been trying a few lately, and last week I tried a Litta Bitta White IPA from Milwaukee Brewing. It has an ABV of just 4.8 percent and a decidedly bitter finish to satisfy hop lovers. It’s a crisp brew that is easy to drink on the warmest of days. Work it into your summer craft beer rotation.

Quick Taps

Madison gets a nod in Draft Magazine’s list of places to drink beer in May.

Start looking for the Lakefront/Tyranena Triple IPA collaboration in the next week. It won’t be around for long and when it’s gone it won’t be coming back.

It’s not beer, but it’s coming from one of our fine local breweries. Last week, Sprecher announced the release of Hard Apple Pie, a malt beverage that registers at 5 percent ABV.

Events Brewing

Tuesday, May 5: Deschutes is the brewery of the month at The Malt Shoppe (813 N. Mayfair Rd.). Try several Deschutes taps from 5 to 7 p.m.

Tuesday, May 5: Beer School at Comet Cafe examines (and tastes) 10 spring seasonal beers. The learning starts at 7 p.m. Call 414-273-7677 to make a reservation.

Wednesday, May 6: Bierklasse takes place at Cafe Centraal at 7 p.m. The topic is saisons. The cost is $30 and reservations can be made at

Thursday, May 7: Nick Cusatis from Milwaukee Craft Beer Exchange joins Barley’s Angels at Palermo’s Pizzeria 3301 (3301 W. Canal St.) for a bottle share. Angels are asked to bring a bomber or two or three smaller bottles to share. RSVP on the Barley’s Angels Facebook page.

Friday, May 8: Try samples from the Delafield Brewhaus at The Malt Shoppe from 5 to 7 p.m.

Saturday, May 9: Taste the perfect beers for mom at Three Cellars (7133 S. 76th St.) from 1 to 4 p.m.

Saturday, May 9: Champps Americana is hosting a fundraiser for Andrew Rocha, a seven-year old boy from Eagle who is battling Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Expect special brews on tap (including some Founders KBS according to a very reliable source). Call 262-797-6600 for more information about the event. Donations to the cause can be sent to Tony Lewanovich at Champps, 1240 S. Moorland Rd., Brookfield 53005.



Dan Murphy has been reviewing bars for Milwaukee Magazine for roughly 20 years. He’s been doing his own independent research in them for a few years more.