114 E. Washington St.
Ann Arbor Michigan 48104United States
Arbor Brewing Company's charming pub atmosphere--and the beer to back it up--is worth a visit.
Arbor Brewing Company is a labor of love for its owners, who chucked corporate jobs in the mid 1990s to pursue a passion to make beer and sell it in their own brewpub. The couple converted an old storefront with an 1800s pedigree into a warm, charming gathering place known as Arbor Brewing Company Pub and Eatery. It opened in 1995 and, despite the novice bar owners' rocky start, has earned a well-deserved niche among downtown Ann Arbor's myriad bars and restaurants. The food's good here--appetizers, burgers, salads and so on, with an emphasis on local and organic--but it's the brew that draws the crowds. Arbor Brewing makes 50,000 31-gallon barrels a year, and at any given time you'll find anywhere from nine to 14 on tap. The crowd favorite is Sacred Cow I.P.A., which is brewed all year long, as is Tree Fort and Espresso Love Breakfast Stout (yep, it's steeped in coffee). But there are lots of others, including seasonal varieties such as Strawberry Blonde, available May through July, and Jackhammer Old Ale, available September through November. You can purchase beer for carryout by the bottle, six-pack or keg. At their sister business, Cornerstone Brewery in nearby Ypsilanti, they make Arbor Brewing beer for distribution to bars and stores around Michigan. The old factory location, with a huge bar/restaurant area and beer garden, is a lovely place to while away an afternoon or evening.