12th Annual Siciliano’s Homebrew Contest

It's that time of year again, fire up your systems and get your brew on! The 12th Annual Siciliano's Homebrew Contest has been announced. There is a limit of 250 entries this year so there's no excuse for missing this one. It's time for another Mobster to get their name on this cup!

General registration for the competition will open this year on Monday, March 9, at 8 a.m. and will close Sunday, April 12, at 10 p.m. Complete competition details as well as bottle label printing can be found on the competition site. Please note that the registration for judging and stewarding is open now. Anyone who is interested in volunteering as a judge or a steward for the competition can find pertinent information under Volunteer Info.

The 12th Annual Siciliano’s Homebrew Party is returning to the popular Johnson Park on Saturday, May 16, 2015. Tickets will be $40.00 per person and will go on sale Monday, March 23. Tickets are limited and must be purchased in advance.

Big Brew Day at the Calder Plaza

On Saturday, May 2, 2015 Siciliano’s Market will once again be sponsoring an American Homebrewers Association Big Brew Day at the Calder Plaza in downtown Grand Rapids.

As the sponsor for the Big Brew at the Calder, Siciliano’s Market will be donating and providing the following:

  • The ingredients for forty-eight all grain batches of Calder Red Ale.
  • Bottled water for brewing. 
  • A chilling station capable of simultaneously cooling six kettles of wort.
  • Platform hand carts for moving brewing equipment to and from vehicles and transporting kettles of wort to and from the chilling station. 
If you are interested in being the captain of a team or participating on a team, click here for more information.

10th Annual Winter Beer Festival

Fifth Third Ball Park, Comstock Park (just north of Grand Rapids)

Friday, February 27 (3pm to 7pm) TICKETS ON SALE NOW
& Saturday, February 28, 2015 (1pm to 6pm) SOLD OUT!

Tickets: $45 in advance, $50 at gate if available (Saturday is SOLD OUT)

About the Event:

The 2015 Winter Beer Festival featured more than 100 Michigan breweries and over 1000 different craft beers. Guests will enjoy fine music from local bands and other fun entertainment to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of this popular event. A selection of tasty food will be available for purchase at the festival.

2015 Winter Beer Festival - Beer List

The Michigan Brewers Guild is happy to be celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the Winter Beer Festival  in Grand Rapids. And as fate would have it, just as the festival turns 10 we're also hitting a couple other milestones - this will be our first event to feature more than 100 Michigan breweries, and our first event to offer over 1,000 craft beers (103 and 1,035 respectively, for those of you who are curious). All the more reason to celebrate!

Michigan Craft Beer Crawl

The 1st Annual Michigan Craft Beer Crawl is happening in downtown Grand Haven on Saturday, February 21st, from 2 - 9pm. Nine craft breweries from around Michigan will be offering thier beers at nine different restaurants in Grand Haven.

Here's the pairings:

  • Founders Brewing at the Kirby House
  • Right Brain at Porto Bello
  • Latitude 42 at Joe's Wooden Nickel
  • Bell's Brewery at the DeeLite
  • Brewery Vivant at The Theater Bar
  • Blackrocks Brewery at The Pavillion
  • Arbor Brewing at Tip-A-Few
  • Pigeon Hill at 22 Below
  • Dark Horse Brewing Co. at Snug Harbor
I know it's cold outside but it's time to suck it up and get out there. This should be an excellent event and I hope to see you there.

Apply to Register for AHA National Homebrewers Conference

Registration Application Window: February 18-24, 2015

American Homebrewers Association members may now apply to register for the 2015 AHA National Homebrewers Conference in San Diego, Calif., June 11-13.

No need to rush! The registration application system invites members to apply for a chance to register during the application window, February 18-24. Here are a few important reminders:

Members can apply to register at anytime during the February 18–24 application window. Time of application has no impact on chances for registering for the conference.

A valid 9-digit AHA member number for each registrant and guest is required (e.g. one number for yourself, a separate unique number for your guest).

Conference registration is open only to AHA members 21 years or older.

Read the details of the registration process for more information regarding membership requirements, bringing a guest, applying to register and more.

March MOB Meeting - Bell's Brewery Takeover

There is no disputing that Bell’s Brewery is one of the preeminent breweries in the country…and it is right here in west Michigan. Its about time The MOB takes it over.

On Saturday, March 7, 2015 we're chartering a bus and riding in style. It's about a 200 mile round trip so let's let the professionals watch the road while we share some home brew and visit. The brewery tour itself will start at 10:30 am and go for about 1-1/2 hours. Afterwards, we can visit Bell's Eccentric Cafe and hit other brewpubs in beautiful downtown Kalamazoo.

The bus ride will be $20 per person. We'd like to open it up to made and paid Mobsters first, then to friends up to 50 passengers. Expecting to be back between 7-9 pm.

Bell’s Brewery Take-Over Itinerary:

9:00 am - Leaving the I-96 Exit 16 Park & Ride via Great Lakes Motorcoach 55 passenger bus. Plenty of room for small coolers full of homebrew.

10:30 am - Arrive at Bell’s Brewery, 8938 Krum Avenue, Galesburg, MI 49053. Luke Hutchings, Bell’s Brand Ambassador to lead the tour of Bell’s Production Facility.

12:30 pm - Load up and ride to Bell’s Eccentric CafĂ© and check out their pub beers. I will see if we can tour the pub brewery too.

While there, shop in Bell’s General Store and browse their large selection of brewing supplies.

Shakespeare's Pub, 241 E Kalamazoo Ave is also nearby and has a good selection of craft beers.

Olde Peninsula Brewpub and Restaurant, 200 E. Michigan Avenue, has an extensive menu and a large dining room.

Arcadia has a Brewpub about a ½ mile east at 701 E Michigan Ave. Good food and great beer there as well.

Tibbs Brewing Company, 402 South Burdick Street is a small batch brewery worth checking out. Open at 2 pm on Saturday.

Gonzos Biggdogg Brewing is a bit of a walk west, at 140 South Westnedge Avenue. A Righteous Brew, Born and Bottled in Kalamazoo.

Boatyard Brewing, 0.6 miles north on 432 E. Paterson St. Kalamazoo, MI 49009. Nice selection of beers.

Kalamazoo Beer Exchange is highly rated craft beer bar with a unique twist: Stock market style pricing starting at 6:00 pm. If we’re lucky, there will be a market crash!
211 East Water Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49007

Plenty of other things to do and see in downtown Kalamazoo, too. Much of it is within walking distance.

7:00 pm - Meet back at the bus for the ride back north to Exit 16.

9:00 pm - Arrive at our cars. You don’t have to go home, but you do have to wake up and get off the bus.

Hoping to keep the bus centrally located at or near the Eccentric Cafe. If you know of other points of interest, post on!

Fetch Invaded by The MOB

Last Sunday, February 8th 2015, the monthly club meeting was held at Fetch Brewing Company in Whitehall. Dan Hain and his awesome staff spoke with the group, gave us tours of the facility and treated us very well.

Dan Hain talking to a house full of Mobsters
25,000 pennies on the vault floor!
There was abundant home brew available as well as the excellent beers brewed by Fetch. The brewery is a beautiful old bank building with tons of character and charm. You can even sit inside of the old bank vault and enjoy your beers.The floor of the vault is covered with 25,000 pennies which were hand laid, face up, by the brewery employees.

Old dairy tank mash tun, works like a charm.
As you all probably know, starting a brewery is expensive, that's why Dan had to get creative when building the brew house. The mash tun they use is an old dairy tank with a home made copper manifold.

We had a great turnout for the meeting and signed up a few new members as well. Overall I would say that this was one of our best meetings yet.

Thanks to Dan and Fetch Brewing Company for being such gracious hosts, we will definitely be back.