17 09 2009
  • 402 S. Washington Square
  • Lansing, MI 48933
  • (517) 977-1349
  • Website
  • Menu
MBC on Washington Square in downtown Lansing.

MBC on Washington Square in downtown Lansing.

The wait is over.  The Michigan Brewing Company put the “Coming Soon” sign on their building in downtown Lansing over a year ago.  I would drive  by every now and then to see if there was any progress.  I would periodically send e-mails to the marketing department in Webberville to see if they would give me anything, but never could get a solid answer.  All of a sudden, a few weeks ago, I saw a Tweet from Lansing PSD that MBC was opening.

The plan all along was to run some errands this morning then head downtown for lunch.  Of course, City Pulse beat me to the punch with an article in this week’s edition. 

MBC is near the corner of Washington Square and Kalamazoo Street.  The parking available is in front of the building in angled street parking.  There are a few spaces directly in front of the building, but more than likely, you’ll have to park and walk.  Not a big deal as there is plenty of parking spaces along Washington Square.

The building is dominated by windows that let in a lot of natural light.  When you first walk in, there’s a little lounge area off to the left with comfy red chairs and some bar stools.  Right in front of you is a hostess station that divides the remaining space into two distinct areas.  On the left is the bar area.  They have a beautiful bar along the far left wall as well as a couple pub tables.  The chairs at these pub tables are made of wood and have a ring around the bottom that looks like it was once part of a wooden barrel.  The rest of the bar area is filled in with regular tables that run along a half wall that separates the bar from the dining room.  The whole space has a somewhat industrial feel to it with high ceilings and low ambient lighting.  A majority of the light comes from the natural light that floods in through the large windows that make up the facade. Read the rest of this entry »


Brickstone Brewery – Bourbonnais, IL

5 10 2008
  • 557 William Latham Dr.
  • Bourbonnais, IL 60914
  • (815) 936-9277
  • Website
  • Menu
Brickstone Brewery on William Lathan Dr. in Bourbonnais, IL

Brickstone Brewery on William Lathan Dr. in Bourbonnais, IL

After a couple long days at the hospital, I needed some real food.  I grabbed my mom and we headed to Bourbonnais (home of the Chicago Bears training camp) for some grub.  Brickstone Brewery is still one of the hottest places in the Kankakee area.  We went to dinner on a Friday night knowing we could be heading into a wait.  You see, if you get there after 5:00 on a weekend, you will probably have a wait.  We got there about ten minutes before 5:00 and were lucky enough to get a table without a wait.

Brickstone is located where the former Greenbriar Restaurant used to be.  Brickstone is a total overhaul.  Having lived in a couple different cities over the last decade, I’ve gotten used to finding restaurants like this, but Kankakee has never seen any place like this.  Brickstone is a brew pub.  They brew their own brews, but they’re smart enough to have the domestic staples on hand.  In a place like Lansing, you could get away with just having your beers.  Not in Kankakee.  They’d be out of business if they tried that.

That night was also Game 2 of the ALDS featuring the Chicago White Sox.  When we were seated in the dining room, I made sure I sat where I could see one of the LCD TV’s in the corner.  Yes, they had TV’s in the dining room.  The interior design is, again, nothing like anything else in Kankakee.  It’s got the same feel as most brew pubs which is the exposed, dark woods.  We were seated at a booth along the wall.  We were pretty close to the bar, so there was a lot of noise from the game that carried over which was ok with me.  That way, I knew when to look up at the TV. Read the rest of this entry »

Grizzly Peak Brewing Company

14 09 2008
  • 120 W. Washington
  • Ann Arbor, MI 48104
  • (734) 741-7325
  • Website
  • Menu
Grizzly Peak Brewing Company in downtown Ann Arbor.

Grizzly Peak Brewing Company in downtown Ann Arbor.

Our day in Ann Arbor was coming to an end and I was starting to get really hungry again.  Earlier in the week, I asked for suggestions on where to eat dinner and there was no shortage of recommendations.  Since we had spent a pretty good chunk of money on lunch and shopping, I didn’t want to hit up one of fancier restaurants on Main Street even though they were quit tempting.

What we settled on was the Grizzly Peak Brewing Company which was a suggestion from Amy.  Grizzly Peak is located just off of Main Street in a big corner building.  We parked across the street in a public lot and walked over to the brewery.  When we walked in, we found the hostess station.  There was a lady bent over the stand and I just assumed she was the hostess.  Nope.  She was waiting for her husband or something.  A waiter saw us standing there and came over to seat us.  Here was my big complaint about the meal.  I probably should have asked to be seated in the bar so I could watch the football game, but I didn’t.  Outside of the bar, there was one other couple eating and one large group.  The dining rooms at Grizzly Peak are huge and there are several options.  They seated both us and the other couple right next to the large group in a cramped dining room near the back of the space.  Come on now.  Why would you seat a couple next to a group in an empty restaurant.  We just wanted to enjoy a nice dinner, but the group wanted to catch up and you know how people get when they haven’t seen each other in a while.  Grandpa at one end of the table is yelling to his grandson at the other end of the table.  Doesn’t make a good dining experience for anyone around them and we were right next to the table.  Read the rest of this entry »

Olde Peninsula Brew Pub

20 07 2008
  • 200 E. Michigan Ave.
  • Kalamazoo, MI 49007
  • (269) 343-2739
  • Website
  • Menu
The sign for Olde Peninsula Brew Pub in downtown Kalamazoo

The sign for Olde Peninsula Brew Pub in downtown Kalamazoo

After a weekend in Chicago, I had to drop my girlfriend off in Kalamazoo for work.  Before we parted ways for the afternoon, we thought it’d be nice to check out what Kalamazoo has to offer in terms of restaurants.  I saw a recommendation for Olde Peninsula on chow.com, so that’s what I went looking for.

Olde Peninsula is located on the corner of Michigan and Portage in what used to be known as the Big Corner.  The first brew pub opened on St. Patrick’s day in 1896.  The current incarnation opened after the 1980 tornado that almost destroyed the building.  We walked into the building and found the hostess station near the door as an extension of the bar.  The building is divided into two dining rooms.  The smoking section also has the bar.  The distillers are visible through a glass wall opposite the bar.  The non-smoking section is divided by a wall that serves as the bar’s back wall.  We were seated in a booth which was on a raised platform on this back wall.

The waitress came over for drinks and we stopped her from leaving to place our order right away.  While there were several options that looked good, we were both in the mood for our usual sandwiches.  I went with the Olde Smokey burger.  The 1/2 lb burger was topped with cheddar cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato and a bbq sauce.  The sandwich is served with a side of beer-battered fries.  The sandwich was big.  I had a hard time getting it in my mouth.  The bacon was nice and crispy and the burger was just slightly pink which lended itself to a good flavor.  I didn’t really notice the bbq sauce until the last couple bites where it had soaked into the bun.  The fries were interesting.  Beer-batterd fries aren’t usually my favorite, but the breading was not overpowering which made these better than normal. Read the rest of this entry »

Michigan Brewing Company – Coming Soon! – UPDATED!

25 06 2008

Michigan Brewing CompanyI was in downtown Lansing tonight and noticed that sign you see off to the right.  This seems to be a search engine search that brings a lot of people this site, so I figured some of you might be interested in seeing that work is happening at the building located at 402 S Washington Sq.  I’ve sent an e-mail to the folks at the Michigan Brewing Company in Webberville to see if there’s any progress and when they are expectin to open.  If and when I get a reply, I’ll let you know.

UPDATE – I got an e-mail back from Stan Thornbury who is the marketing manager for the Michigan Brewing Company.  He said the store is progressing slowly because they are waiting on state licensing.  They’re hoping for an opening in the third or fourth quarter of this year.

Michigan Brewing Company

Harper’s Restaurant & Brewpub

19 06 2008
  • 131 Albert Ave.Harper's Restaurant and Brewpub
  • East Lansing, MI 48823
  • (517) 333-4040
  • No Known Website
  • Menu

I noticed Harper’s one night while driving around East Lansing pretty late looking for a pizza-by-the-slice place.  We didn’t stop because we weren’t looking for a bar and especially not a college bar, but I put that info in the back of my head for future use.  Today, my girlfriend and I were making a run to the Grand Traverse Pie Company to get pie’s for the weekend, but weren’t in the mood to eat there.  After driving around with my head cut off, my girlfriend mentioned that brew pub I was telling her about, so we headed down Grand River to downtown East Lansing.

The building for Harper’s is massive.  When we drove by, we weren’t sure if it was even open.  It looked dark, so we drove around the block again.  The parking is across the street in the public pay lot, so we went through the gate and found a place to park.  It was just starting to rain as we got out of the car, so we hustled across the street hoping they were open.  I got to the top of the steps and pulled on the big wood double doors and they opened up right into the bar.  Read the rest of this entry »

Michigan Brewing Company in Downtown Lansing?

12 05 2008

I missed this when I read the on-line edition of Noise this past week, but I noticed it in the print copy.  The Michigan Brewing Company based in Webberville, MI is looking to open a micro-brewery in Downtown Lansing.

The Michigan Brewing Company plans to open another microbrewery and pub at 402 Washington Square in downtown Lansing this year. Owner Bobby Mason said a microbrewery license is “in the works” and plans to lease the building that housed the former Greenhouse Bistro.

We ate the Michigan Brewing Company (review HERE) back on April 12 on our way to Howell to shop at the Tanger Outlets.  The food was alright, the beer was good, but the atmosphere wasn’t all that great.  A Downtown Lansing location would really add a lot the micro-brew.


Michigan Brewing Company

12 04 2008

We were on our way to the Tanger Outlets in Howell on a Saturday afternoon, but both my girlfriend and I were really hungry, so we decided to stop before we got there. A sign along the highway advertised the Michigan Brewing Company. After a quick conference with her, I hopped off I-96 and went looking for the pub. Our first attempt was met with disappointment. We pulled up to a building that had for sale or lease signs on it. Thinking it was closed, we almost left, but she noticed a sign tha said “Visit us at our new location. Turn at McDonalds.” So, we went up the road and took a right at the McDonald’s into a business park.

After a short drive down the road, we pull up to a building that looks more like an office building than a restaurant and only a sign in the parking lot marks the place as the Michigan Brewing Company. We both kind of look at each other and wonder if this is the right place. Then, we notice people sitting at some tables through the window.

When you walk in, again, it looks more like an office than a restaurant. There’s a small shopping area off to the left then you walk through a big empty room to get to the first dining room. The pub is split up into a bar area which you get to by walking through a dining room area. We walked into the bar and found a table near the back of the space. The tables were the high pub tables with high back chairs. The decor was very rustic and really what you look for in a brew pub. The bartender came over with menus and gave us a few minutes to look over the beer menu. They only serve their beers and root beer…didn’t even have soda.

We both went for the Sunset Amber Lager, which according to their menu is “A refreshing, crisp and clean amber colored lager. Made in a Vienna-style with distinct caramel malt flavor and aroma.” It was a little bitter for my taste and a very heavy, filling beer. Both of us had a little trouble finishing.

For lunch, I had the Hog’s Heaven Sandwich. The sandwich is a shredded pork sandwich which tasted like it came from a can served on a ciabatta roll with a pickle spear and kettle chips. The sandwich was alright, but like I said, it wasn’t fresh made on site. It was a litltle small and not incredibly filling.

My date got the Twisted Turkey sandwich which was turkey, provlone, lettuce, tomato, bacon, and mustard served on a pretzel roll. She really liked her sandwich commenting more than once that it was tasty. For her, the portion was just right as she had a few extra chips for me.

The Michigan Brewing Company seemed like a place where beer lovers gather. We stopped in around 1 on a Saturday and there were quite a few guys there enjoying a cold one. There are no TV’s, so it’s not a place to go watch a game and have a beer. It’s more of a gathering spot for good converstaion. A lot of guys were coming in with pony kegs to get refilled and most everyone had a jug that they were getting refilled.

The atmosphere was interesting adn the food was alright. For those that like micro-brews, this would definately be a stop. I’m not a huge micro-brew fan myself, but it was a good meal just off the highway.