In addition to sating stomachs with pulled-pork sandwiches and entertaining ears with live music, Cellar Brewing Company's dedicated staff fills glasses with libations fresh from its microbrewery, winery, and artisan distillery. The restaurant's plush, leather sofas sit beneath its rust-hued ceiling, and at a blond-wood bar, bartenders serve house brews and a variety of wraps and sandwiches. A glass of stout awakens taste buds craving a darker brew, and the cellar's servers pluck bottles of Michigan Apple Delight wine directly from in-house wine trees to complement sun-dried tomato and turkey sandwiches and soft pretzels.
Equipped with an in-house brewing system, Old Hat Brewery churns out a medley of homegrown suds to pair with an extensive menu of hearty pub fare. Whistles receive a thorough wetting with a bevy of brews ($4–$5), such as the house-brewed alt ale, which glows with a ruby hue and creates a bitter balance of malt and hops; and the pub’s original gluten-free brew, a sudsy beverage that gives sippers with vendettas against whole grains the opportunity to quench thirsts. Old Hat Brewery fills in the nooks and crannies left in the stomach after a brew-dousing with noshables such as the prime-rib french dip sandwich, a mound of meat marinated in homemade stout and resting atop billowy bread ($6.99); or a half-pound burger cooked to order ($5.99). Burritos, nachos, and quesadillas satisfy southwestern appetites ($5.99–$7.99), and an array of hand-tossed dough disks come adorned with your choice of fixings or inspirational quotes penned in marinara sauce ($8.99–$12.99).
With 24 synthetic lanes, automatic scoring, and a full stock of rental bowling balls and shoes make Lowell Lanes an ideal alley for all manner of casual and competitive bowling. The alley offers both league and open-bowling hours seven days a week, with tournaments held on Saturdays. Between rounds, bowlers can refuel with burgers and fries from the snack counter or relax in the lounge with a drink from the full-service bar.
After Prohibition, many American home brewers had lost the threads connecting them to the nation’s long history of home brewing, opting instead to hang up their brew kettles in favor of the big brand lagers. The knowledgeable staff members roaming the floor of HomeBrew & Hydroponics Hobby Shop are working to ensure that the art of home brewing flourishes again, supplying at-home brewers with the skills and supplies necessary to conjure their own suds. The shelves showcase a variety of easy introductory kits that invite guests to try their hand at brewing beer, making wine, or growing hydroponic vegetables to save valuable soil for dad's morning mud mask. For serious enthusiasts, the shop curates a comprehensive menu of the equipment, soil systems, and supplies needed to set up full-scale brewing endeavors and indoor gardens at home.:
Jaden James Brewery isn't the Bonga family's first foray into the world of sippable fermentation. In the same space where they now create specialty beers, they've spent years crafting wines from the fruits of Michigan's bountiful vineyards and orchards.
"So many people come for the wine, but we often get one half of a couple who says, 'I like beer,'" says Bob Bonga. The brewery's current selection includes a creamy ale to be savored between bites of pretzels, a Russian Imperial Stout, and an oatmeal porter that Bob characterizes as "wonderfully dark, with roasted tones of chocolate and coffee hops." The juice of apples harvested in northwest Grand Rapids goes into hard ciders.
The family also prepares a short list of snacks for visitors. In the future, the Bongas may grow their menu further by distilling their own liquors.
Once each new batch of beer has passed through The Hideout Brewing Company's 155-gallon system, brewers transfer it from fermentation drums into kegs one by one. The hands-on process takes time, but brewmasters still manage to keep The Hideout's 25 taps filled. Drafts like the Promiscuous Pilsner and the Gangster IPA are available year-round, thought most of the bar's selection rotates among specialty and seasonal beers, as well as occasional hard ciders and meads. The brewers are often playful with different styles of beer, steeping chocolate and jalapeños or using wild yeasts that build a complex maze of flavors.
Along with food from outside vendors, The Hideout's pours pair well with a modest menu of bar snacks such as mini tacos, corn dogs, and soft pretzels. Drinking and dining commences on the main floor, where Prohibition-era photographs surround weekly rounds of trivia, board games, and chess. Competitive shouts drift from shuffleboard and dartboards, and there’s also a horseshoe pit in The Hideout's backyard garden, where steeds respectfully leave their hoofwear before coming inside for a drink.
From malt extract to fermenters and cappers, the art of home brewing involves lots of ingredients and tools to wrap one's head around. That's why Ben, Nick, and Andrew, the three resident experts at O'Connor's Home Brew Supply, offer their expertise to customers crafting their first batches. The trio happily walks beginners through every step of the process and even hosts a seminar that reviews the fundamentals of home brewing. O'Connor's stock of starter beer- and winemaking kits likewise caters to first-timers. Once they're ready to graduate to more advanced equipment, brewers can browse O'Connor's extensive selection of products, which ranges from yeast and hops to bottling equipment and corks.