Traverse City Beer Boogie

 

Its Time for a Beer!

Bonafide Legit - a thing of beauty at Shorts

After our snowshoe adventure at the Bigfoot Boogie, Brenda and I refueled our tanks with a fantastic lunch at Poppycocks.  Rain had started to fall and after a little bit of shopping (Brenda couldn’t resist 50% off!), it was time to start our afternoon beer extravaganza!

Go Get Your Shorts On!

Shorts Brewery, Bellaire Mi

Our first stop is a favorite of ours, Short’s Brewing Company in beautiful Bellaire, Michigan.  Flat out, Short’s makes great beer!  They also are not afraid to push the boundaries (check out Bloody Beer, sort of a Bloody Mary beer or India Spruce Lager made with spruce tips!).  I started out with Honey Badger, a double black IPA fermented with orange blossom honey.  Brenda opted for Dirty Sturks, a double chocolate stout that is nitrogen infused.  Both of these beers were winners in our book!

Dirty Sturks and Honey Badger at Shorts Brewery, Bellaire Mi

The pub at Short’s is a warm and inviting space, with lots of room to relax and enjoy a beer.  While we weren’t hungry, the food is pretty damn good too!  Go ahead and check out the menu and see for yourself.

The main room at Shorts with lots of thirsty patrons

There was a full house as we hit them up around lunch time.  I’m thinking other snowshoers from the Bigfoot Boogie had the same idea we did, as I recognized a few faces from the race.

The busy and friendly staff taking orders at the bar at Shorts

Short’s also promotes local music with a nice stage in the room across from the bar area.

Great ambience at Shorts

Little did we know that the stage would provide us with some impromptu entertainment as a young woman played a couple of tunes on her ukelele.

Impromptu ukelele music at Shorts

I’m a big hops fan and had to try the Bonafide Legit which is made with Michigan hops and barley.  This was an excellent IPA with a big hoppy nose and crisp finish.

Rock on at Shorts Brewery, Bellaire, MI

As much as we would have liked to have stayed and hung out at Short’s, it was time to head closer to our home away from home and see what other good beers we could find.

 

My Right Brain is tingling

Mad scientists abound at Right Brain

We journey back to Traverse City and our Garmin (with Yoda providing directions) got us to Right Brain Brewery.  Right Brain had actually just moved from a compact location over on the NorthWest side of Traverse, to a much larger space on South side (16th Street).

Wide open festive space at Right Brain

The new space showcases some fun and funky local art.

Lots of local art at Right Brain

The general vibe is one of an indoor beer garden with plenty of open space to hang out with friends.

Happy patrons at Right Brain

Enough about the space, lets get a beer!  I tried the Looping Owl, which was a bourbon barrel aged amber ale.  The Dirty Girl Stout had Brenda intrigued.

Looping Owl and Naught Girl Stout

Brenda at Right Brain

As the afternoon was waning, it was time to mosey on over our final stop.

 

Filling up at the Station

The Filling Station Microbrewery

The Filling Station Microbrewery has a great location in a former train station right on the tracks a couple of blocks South of 8th Street in Traverse City.

Brenda checks out the tracks outside The Filling Station

The folks at the bar were very friendly and helpful.  In addition to wanting to try their beer, we were hungry.  An added bonus at the Filling Station was that they had  a vegan flatbread pizza offering!

Happy staff at The Filling Station

The pub itself is a very nice space with lots of windows and a cozy interior.

Nice inviting space at The Filling Station

For this round, I opted for the Huntington IPA which had nice hop aroma and full body.  The London Porter was calling Brenda’s name.  Very nice roasted flavor.  With our bellies full, we thought it was time to head back to the Park Place Hotel.

How about a night cap?

We arrived back at the hotel and thought we’d stop in at the bar to one more beverage for the evening.  We sat down and I ordered a beer (Bell’s Two-Hearted) while Brenda got a glass of wine.  As we waited for our beverages, a guy about my age with dreadlocks and a big beard started to chat us up.  We shared some travel stories, talked about Traverse City (he was from Suttons Bay visiting family) and ended up spending the next two hours talking.  This included capping things off with some huge pours of some very nice Scotch (Cragganmore 12 year).  I can’t remember our companion’s name, which is a bummer, but he was great to chat with.  We enjoyed our unexpected detour.  It was a great way to cap off our day!

If you’d like to see all the photos from the tour, check them out here.

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