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Monday, July 22, 2013

World of Beers, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Usually I’m not too impressed with chain-type bars, especially ones that purport to be all about beers.  It was with this sentiment in mind that I dragged myself into one of Ann Arbor’s newest beer-bars after an hour of Ann Arbor Art fair in 95 degree weather.  The bar was called World of Beers and is part of a 50 plus chain of bars.  Here's the URL:

My shirt was soaked with sweat and I was really thirsty.  The first thing I noticed was a collection of tap handles and the walls covered with brewery-related advertisements.  Behind the bar were two racks of wall coolers stocked with bottled beer.  My wife and I were met by a perky blonde waitress who sat us at a table and quickly brought us glasses of cold waters and a collection of menus.  One of the menus was for the 40 or so beers on tap, one was for the 500 plus beers in bottles, and a third was for local restaurants that would deliver food.

Our server was very knowledgeable about beer and offered to bring small tastes of any of the draft beers to help us decide.  Another waiter happened by and also talked with us about the beer selections.  I decided on a Brewery Vivant Zaison (my current favorite that I had never had on draft) and my wife decided on a hefeweisen.   

The bar has several television showing sports, so we enjoyed the British Open and finished our beers.  We then decided to have our next beers at the bar because the bar had chairs with backs and I wanted to get a closer look at the bottled beer.  The waiter behind the bar started chatting with us. I was delighted to discover that he was a treasure trove of knowledge about beer. It was fun talking about beers while also enjoying some of the best beers in the world.  Perhaps it was the excellent staff or perhaps it was the much-needed relief from the outdoor heat wave, but I did not get the “corporate” feeling from this establishment.  Well done.


Monday, July 8, 2013

Biercamp, Ann Arbor, Michigan

I visited Ann Arbor’s newest brewery.  The brewery is called Biercamp, which is an artisan meat shop that has been operating in the city for about 2 years.  A few months ago, they decided to start making small batches of craft brew and sell them in growlers.  The store sells all kinds of tasty things—specialty sausages/brats, jerky, dips, sandwiches, pickles, and other assorted deli-type items.  They usually only have one or two beers available, so check their website before going.  If you’re going for the beer, it is important to check the website, as I notice they are currently sold out of beer.

If you visit early enough, they have brats and dogs available to eat at the tables out front.  You can taste the beer, but cannot drink it on premise with your brat.  I hope they can change this in the future.  The place is small and functional and the Vienna IPA was really quite good.  I’ll be sure to come back when they have other beer offerings.