Tom and I made our second stop on our Brew Tour this past Sunday, on our way up to Montague where we were meeting some friends at a cabin for New Year's. We were going to make a pit stop in Spring Lake at the Old Boys' Brew House, but we missed our turn. Instead of turning around, we opted to keep going into Grand Haven to check out Odd Side Ales -- we figured we might as well save the other place for a time when we wanted some food to go with the beer, since Odd Side Ales didn't seem to have a food menu, and we were not yet hungry for dinner. Little did I know, however, that our side trip to the brewery was really just a ruse. That's right. The only reason Tom suggested stopping by one of the breweries was to keep us away from the cabin a little longer while, unbeknownst to me, our friends were getting ENGAGED! A proposal's not the sort of thing you want to rush, so Tom was in on the deal and just trying to buy some extra time for his friend.
Needless to say, it was a fun New Year's "weekend", and Odd Side Ales turned out to be a great place to start. The atmosphere very much reminded me of a coffee shop, with multiple styles of tables, chairs and couches; eclectic light fixtures; a cabinet full of old games (including Guess Who? -- unfortunately, somebody else was playing it!); and, yes, ceramic mugs hung on the wall. While not a "coffee person" per se, I do drink a lot more coffee than I do beer and have spent significantly more time in coffee shops than breweries, so the feel of this place was very familiar to me, and right up my alley. I told Tom that if I owned a brewery, it would be much like this place. I might skip the dart boards, though...somehow beer and darts don't seem like a good combination...
Tom ordered a sampler flight of six different beers. They had lots to choose from here, and some very unique sounding options. The ones he ended up choosing were as follows, with Tom's tasting notes included:
1. Albino Stout (he tried to get the Herbie Peppertop, but they were out) -- hoppy, light stout
2. Citra Pale Ale -- hoppy; citrus up front
3. Java Mint Stout -- smells like mint; mint taste throughout
4. Fat Bottom IPA -- bitter up front; smooth out back
5. Jackalope Amber -- hoppy amber
6. American Brown -- balanced notes of porter flavors
I'm not sure that Tom had a favorite among these. The Java Mint Stout was certainly the most unique, and seemed apropos for the theme of the place. It really did taste as much like a coffee drink as it did a beer. The Jackalope Amber was hoppier than expected -- though we decided that the "Jackalope" should have been indicative of that! I think the Fat Bottom IPA was the smoothest IPA I've tasted to date -- not that that tells you much. But usually an IPA leaves me with bitter notes on the end. As Tom put in his notes, this one really smoothed out.
All in all, I give this place two thumbs up. I'd like to come back in the summertime after a day at the beach or something. And next time, I want to play Guess Who?!
Hi there! My name is Dana and I live in West Michigan with my husband, Tom and our dog Happy Gilmore. I created this space as a place to share the things I learn along this journey I call life. I work in marketing and I'm a sort of Jane of All Trades, interested in all things nature, gardening, cooking, exploring and learning new things. This blog is a conglomeration of my interests, hobbies, life and life lessons. Thanks for stopping by!