From the beginnings of Paw Paw Brewing, I have been the making mugs for their mug club. And with the exception of about 30 mugs (made by a friend of mine while my kiln was being rebuilt), they are all Eric Strader Pottery mugs. This past Wednesday, mug number 600 was added to the wall.
While I was there, I got the chance to catch up with Paw Paw brewer Trevor Klimek. He has been busy creating in their ever expanding brewhouse. His most recent project has been his Belgian series, including Antwerp Abbey Ale which will be a Belgian blonde (5.2% ABV). Trevor used an Antwerp yeast strain (which is appropriate since the brewery is located adjacent to Antwerp Township), and Saazer hops from Hop Head Farms, located nearby in Hickory Corners, MI. The other three beers in this series will include a dubble, triple, and the mother of all Belgian styles, a Grand Cru. Hallmelon hops, a new hop variatal which is a cross between Cascade and Hallertauer hops and grown locally at Hop Head Farms, will be used in the Grand Cru. Hopefully, these will be ready for the public mid February or early March.
I did sample some of the beers from Trevor’s black beer series. These were originally released at the Black Friday party (the day after Thanksgiving).
These included: Chocolate Cherry Cordial (5.5% ABAV, I missed the chocolate orange, which was one of Trevor’s favorites). Plenty of big malty chocolate and cherry in this beer. If you like cherry cordials, then this is a beer for you.
Cafe 237 Coffee Stout (6.0% ABV). This beer is in memory of a beloved local named Bill, who owned a coffee shop in the very location that the brewery now sits. He passed away this past year, but is remembered fondly by the community. One pound of Sumatra coffee was used in each barrel of this beer providing a huge coffee aroma, and nice bitter espresso flavor.
Festivus (5.4% ABV) is their spiced holiday ale. This is a nice session ale that fits into the lower ABV end of the winter warmer category. Behind the big malt backbone, you can enjoy ginger, cinnamon, cloves, allspice,and nutmeg.
Trevor, being a huge sour fan, surprised another local and I by bringing out a sample of one of his sour series. The series consists of Bluegrass Blonde Sour, Sour James, their flagship sour Flanders Red, and we tasted his Free Range Sour Stout. This is a big bold stout with some bold souring that is enjoyable to a sour fan, however, this is not a beer for everyone.
Before heading home, I ordered the chicken fajita/tamale plate, and in keeping with my black beer theme, ordered one of my favorite 2 Paws Beer, Black River Oatmeal Stout.
The brewery has been expanding their production facility on the other side of town and now houses a general store there as well. Home brew supplies, T-shirts, bottled beer, and other swag, as well as kegged beer can be purchased here. And while you are there, you can check out the brew house and take a tour.
Paw Paw Brewing is located about an hour north of my home in Goshen, at 929 E. Michigan St, Paw Paw , MI. You will find plenty of parking both in their lot and on the street nearby. Hours are Mon – Thu: 12:00 pm – 10:00 pm, Fri – Sat: 12:00 pm – 12:00 am, Sun: 1:00 pm – 8:00 pm.