Apr 5, 2012

Schmohz Brewing, a little Brewery with a Big Heart!

Here is Roving Beer Czar Corespondant UNcle Gary's lasts visit to a Central Michigan Brewpub. This time,
it is Schmohz Brewing, so take a moment, and check it out......

Schmohz Brewery, Grand Rapids, MI
A Big Hearted Small Brewery

by Gary Morrison

Schmohz Brewery in Grand Rapids, Michigan is a small neighborhood brewery with good beer, a good reputation, and a big heart.

The brewery's stable of beers include Bone Crusher Stout (a robust aggressive ale built with five specialty malts), India Pale Ale, Zingiberene Ale (a light malt based ale using ginger rather than hops), and Kiss my Scottish Arse (a great ale guaranteed to lift your kilt).

There are several other beers they brew and keeping up with the needs of the people means that brewer Chas Thompson has more than a full time job keeping up with demand.

Schmohz Brew House
"We brew 20-barrel batches," he said. "We ferment in three 60-barrel and one 20-barrel fermenters."

Their beer is sold in about 1,000 bars and retail outlets in Michigan, Chas said. None of it is sold out of state.

“We also sell our own brand of root beer and cherry soda,” said Chas who has been a brewer for over 15 years.

Schmohz was originally the Robert Thomas Brewery before going out of business. It sat idle for several months before Jim and Laurie Schwerin bought the building and all of the equipment almost eight years ago.

Laurie (left), with customer Sarah Roberts
"I call this my husband's midlife crisis," Laurie said. "Most men go out and buy a Corvette; we bought a bar."

It then took Jim and Laurie about three months to get up to speed and open its doors to the public; which worked out because it took them three months to get their license.

"But we could make beer even though we couldn't sell it until we got our license," she said. "When we got our license we were ready to go.

"Jim is a home brewer so three of our beers are his home recipes," she said. "We have five beers on tap all of the time and have a reasonable amount of seasonals."

A very comfortable look!

The decor of the brewer can best described as "your buddy's basement rec room" equipped with a large screen TV, pool table, and dart boards. The brewer cannot sell food on premises, but people are allowed to bring in food or grill their own on an outside patio. Laurie and Jim won't have it any other way.

"We're not a yuppie bar," she said. "We don't want to be pretentious, just a laid back place where you feel like you’re at home."

That is one of the draws that attracted Sarah Roberts and here husband to Schmohz. They moved to the area from Kentucky over a year ago and felt that they would have trouble adjusting to a new life in the area.

"Then we found this place about a year ago and now we come here three to four times a week" Sarah said.

A friendly bar!

“We like it because you always find great people here, great beer, and always feel comfortable about coming here."

Now when she goes back to Kentucky it is mandatory that she brings bottles of Schmohz beer with her.

“When our relatives visit, this is the first place they like to come to,” she said. “They cannot get Schmohz in Kentucky, so they insist we bring them some when we go back home to visit.”

Chad Riley lives about twenty minutes away and can only stop in occasional, he said. However, he likes Schmohz's Scotch and pales ales and those are his beers of choice when he drops in.

Chad Riley and friend CJ Davis
"But I do drink quite a bit of their beer because it is available in bottles in a lot places in Michigan,” he said. “When I can’t get here, I don’t have to worry about getting my fill.”

And as for Schmohz's big heart; Jim and Laurie are a graduates of Michigan Technological University and both work closely on charity events with Michigan Tech's Alumni Association, Laurie said, as well as sponsor a 5K run every year for the Special Olympics.

“We’re also sponsors of Sammi Rae of Hope, an organization created to financially help families suffering with the possible loss of a family member,” Laurie said. “It helps those family members who are forced into making financial decisions while waiting for a medical miracle or for the inevitable.”

For more information on Schmohz's Charity work, check out Sammi Rae of Hope here  www.sammiraeofhope.org

For information on thier Charity race, the "Achillies Ale 5k, get more information here 

www.schmohz.com/race, or download a flyer here

Schomtz Brewery is located at

2600 Patterson S.E
Grand Rapids, MI 49546



No comments:

Post a Comment