Traverse City Breweries


Thirsty Thursday – Travel Edition!


When Rob and I were in Michigan visiting his parents this summer, we planned an overnight up to Traverse City

Traverse City

Traverse City is a beautiful tourist town located on Lake Michigan, known for cherries and wineries. It’s about a two-hour drive from Rob’s parents’ place. Our original plan was to get up early, leave the pups with Grandma and go hike the Sleeping Bear Sand Dunes first. However, the summer cold that I’d been hanging on to for weeks prevented us from doing so. There was no way I was going to do any physical activity with that kind of cough. Luckily, I could mostly contain it in public.

Our hotel reservation was non-refundable. So instead, we decided to go to Traverse City anyway explore the little town to see what it had to offer. We’d recently learned that some new breweries were popping up in the area, too!

I pulled up a map and counted eight.

There was no way we were going to hit them all. We learned six breweries was probably two many when we were in Temecula. Before setting off, we took a look at the brewery websites to find the ones that would appeal to us. Then we created a route based on opening times and starting with the ones we would have to drive to on our way into the city.

Truth be told, we only ended up checking out two.


Right Brain Brewery


Right Brain Brewery is located more on the outskirts of town. It isn’t walkable from the downtown area lined with shops and restaurants. {That is, unless you are in the mood for a 3 mile round-trip walk!} It is worth a stop, though; so I recommend you do so on your way in to Traverse City, like we did.

What surprised me most upon stepping into Right Brain Brewery taproom was how big the space is!


We arrived around noon on Tuesday {cue Cheryl Crow song here}; but I could just imagine this place being filled on a Friday night!

The menu intrigued me…


There were so many choices…


And many of them unique, highly creative concoctions; hence, the Right Brain…


Decision-making was tough. So we just had to do some sampling. We made our list.


Is it strange that I find flights of beer like this beautiful?


Those are some big flight pours! In any case, Rob and I did what we normally do. After sampling, we made our draft picks…


My lineup – any team needs some diversity!

None of these beers really stands out to me now that a month or so has passed. However we each did try another beer on the menu.


You know I had to try that Barrel Aged Fat Lad! But Rob went the top Super Premium Beer on this menu:


The Mangalista Pig Porter is one that should not be missed. Just read the description! It’s also only served once per year; so there was no way Rob was passing it up when it was available. The smokiness is not really my style, but it was subtle enough that I enjoyed one or two sips of Rob’s.

We weren’t really that hungry upon arrival; but we also knew that we needed to get some food in our bellies before stopping at another brewery. Luckily, Right Brain Brewery serves food, too!


Rob was leaning towards the Brainfood {love that name!}. And you’d think with how rarely Rob agrees to order a cheese plate with me that I would have taken him up on that offer. However, I was curious about those waffle sandwiches. The waffles are made with their own Northern Hawk Owl beer. I convinced Rob to split one with me.


Ham ‘N Gouda Waffle Sandwich

We were both so glad we did. And for $7, we’d call it a steal. Thank you, Right Brain Brewery!

Our next stop was in town…


The Workshop Brewing Company


Parking and finding the entrance was a little challenging, but anything for a good brew, right?


Then, the most difficult part of all – decision-making…


I really wanted to try the Friday Shaker Flemish Style-Brown because it was oak-aged with local cherries. But it was only available in a bomber bottle.


After a little deliberation, Rob went with the Wrecking Bar Imperial Porter and I tried the Pipe Wrench Belgian Tripel.


In short, we were pleased. We opted for a snack here, too.


Seriously, this menu is serious. Ha! I mean, the food at the Workshop is no joke.

Workshop Nachos - with pulled pork and black beans

Workshop Nachos – with pulled pork and black beans

We could have planned dinner at The Workshop Brewing Company, but we desired to check a lot of boxes in the 24 hours we were in Traverse City.

Why did we only visit two breweries? Well, you’ll need to come back tomorrow to read what we did next! In the meantime, here’s a link to the other breweries in Traverse City, should they interest you!

I’m a poor decision maker, but I seem to be able to plan things better once I get them mapped out. Now choosing a beer is a different story…

How do you make decisions while traveling?



3 responses »

  1. Pingback: Traverse City Cider House | Season It Already!

  2. Pingback: Morsels | Season It Already!

  3. Pingback: Four Leaf Brewing Company – Clare, MI | Season It Already!

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