Jeremy and Roger's Most Excellent Pub Crawl



In 2016 Jeremy and Roger decided to drink beer in every pub and bar in Kalamazoo County. So far we have visited 81 of these establishments. We have at least 13 more to go and are working hard to complete this valuable and satisfying project. At the urging of friends we have written below some brief comments and our beer rating for each bar and pub. You can contact us at jeremyw@kzopubcrawl.net

 

Pub Name

Date Visited

Rating
A,B or C

Comments

600

Jan 2018

B

Small selection of craft brews. The coffee stout was excellent. Small serving sizes are at regular prices, though. The place is a beautiful conversion from a steel fabrication building and still has that new bar smell.

Airways

Nov 2018

A

23 beers on tap of which 20 are craft beers. A really good selection of some unusual brews along with old favorites from Bells and Founders. Nick the barkeep really knows his beer. Highly recommended.

Arcadia

Jun 2017

A

Brew pub. 24 beers on tap or keg. Big doors open to the outside. Plenty of activity on the lawn and river front plus there is often live music.  It's a great place to go on a summer evening and you can bring your dog!

Applebees
(Gull Road)

May 2018

B

A good selection of 12 beers on tap, most of them craft beers. Good atmosphere for a corporate chain. Appetizers are recommended.

Applebees
(S.Westnedge)

Oct 2018

B

11 beers on tap, 4 of them local craft brews, 3 Founders and 1 Bells. A couple of Sam Adams brews and Blue Moon also. Good atmosphere for a corporate chain. Appetizers are recommended.

Bar 242  (Wings)

Dec 2018

C

Warning - no beer on tap. Five beers in cans, all Bud or Miller except for one Goose Island. Only open when there are events in the main Wings arena.

Beer Exchange

2016

A

28 beers on tap or keg. This is the place for the most adventurous beer drinker. They always have some unusual brews on tap and the bar staff are very knowledgeable. Close to downtown and nearby summer activities.

Bells

2016

A

Nationally know brew pub. This is the big attraction of brew pubs in Kalamazoo. It lives up to its reputation as a great place to go and get a top quality beer. There’s a brew for everybody at Bells.

Black Rock

 

Aug 2018

A

24 taps and 20 of those are a great selection of local craft brews. Ultra modern decor. You can cook your own steak on a flat rock that is 755 degrees (careful with those fingers). Worth a visit.

Boatyard

 

2016

A

Brew pub. A small selection of 12 beers but they are good brews. Friendly staff and owners. They serve food now. Owner will gladly give tour of the brewery. Fun place to go to.

Bowmans (Climax)

May 2018

A

A real surprise far out in the country. 6 beers on tap, of which 5 were excellent craft brews plus a big freezer full of interesting and unusual beers. A friendly place with great beer.  

Bravos

2016

B

A small selection of excellent beers brewed specifically for them. Bar area is small but enjoyable.

Brewster’s
  

Jul 2017

C

Airport theme gives character.

Bright Eyes

2016

A

Brew pub. A small selection of excellent beers. The hazel nut brown and coffee stout are particularly recommended. Friendly place with good beer. They now serve food all day including breakfast.

Bud's
(Schoolcraft)

May 2018

A

14 beers on tap of which 6 were craft beers. A historic building in beautiful shape. Excellent service and the fried mushrooms were amazing. A nice surprise.

Canal St Cafe
(Augusta)

Mar 2018

C

Usually 3 beers on tap but only 2 available when we were there. Nice bar and friendly staff but not enough beer on tap.

Capones - The Grotto

Nov 2018

C

12 beers on tap of which 6 are craft beers. Great happy hour prices thru 7:30pm. A college hangout with zero character. Depressing place.

Chili's

Apr 2018

B

8 beers on tap, including Stella, Oberon and Blue Moon. The queso is excellent.  Not many local craft beers but still a good place to spend some time.

CJ’s Pub

Jan 2018

C

The only bright spot on beer was they had Latitude 42 Powerline Porter on tap. Bring earplugs. Has a regular group of patrons and they are pleasant…just loud.

Craftsman Chop House

Feb 2018

A

A big surprise - 19 taps and an excellent selection of lesser known craft beers.  If you’re looking for an easy-to-get-to place for a drink after shopping in Portage, this is it. Relaxed atmosphere and a friendly staff.

Distant Whistle

Jun 2017

B

Brew pub that was just starting out when we visited. A small selection of brews that will improve over time. It's THE place for a craft beer if you’re in Vicksburg.

Duck Inn Waddle Out

Sep 2017

C

Warning - they only have Bud, Bud Lite and Miller Lite on tap. Like the sign out front says, imperfect people are in good company. Inner-city neighborhood bar.

Fieldstone Grill

Apr 2017

B

12 beers on tap. Bells beers are ½ price on Tuesdays. Great atmosphere and beautiful nature view through a big glass wall or from the deck.

Final Gravity

Jun 2018

B

Brew pub based in Decator. 13 beers and 3 ciders on tap. The beers are most interesting and flavorful. They've made a good start in Kalamazoo.  

Fletchers Pub (Oakland Drive)

Oct 2017

B

Out of sight, literally. If you didn’t know it was there you might just miss it. Around the corner from Sawall’s, nothing fancy but it’s worth stopping in for a beer.

Fletchers Pub (Texas Corners)

Nov 2017

B

Modern décor and very clean. Pleasant and knowledgeable staff.

Fuze

Jun 2018

B

10 beers on tap, all craft beers and a great selection. My 5% ABV beer came in a small (6 or 8 oz?) glass and cost $6.50. The food was fantastic and friendly staff.

Gonzo’s Bigg Dogg

Mar 2017

A

Brew pub, 14 beers on tap. Vanilla Porter and Shoddy Lock (it's a stout) highly recommended. Downtown Kazoo location with big bar area and plenty of variety. A friendly place.

Green Top

Dec 2017

C

Warning - no craft brews here. We had to drink PBR. A friend asked me if it had changed since the 70’s - I said it still has that 1976 feel. Nostalgic is a good word for it.

Harvey's

Mar 2018

B

12 craft beers on tap and some unusual ones. A small but historic place that's perfect for a drink before or after a show at the State Theater.

Hop Cat

2016

A

100 beers on tap including many local favorites. Obviously there's something for everyone. For a new pub in the heart of great pubs it holds its own. Great beer in a fun setting.

Jac's Cekola's

Dec 2018

A

An impressive number of taps - 23 craft beers plus Stella, Sam Adams and Blue Moon. A warm and friendly bar on a cold December night. Definitely worth a vist.

Kelsey Block Brewing Co.  (Three Rivers)

Aug 2018

B+

Brew pub -7 beers on tap. The cask ESP was smooth and tasty. The blonde ale was excellent too. Attractive building and great service. Combine a show at the Riviera with a stop here.

Lamplighter  (Comstock)

Jul 2018

C

Warning - no beer on tap, only bottles from an ice chest. The building started in 1889 as a celery warehouse. It became a bar in 1951 and at one time it was one of the top dining spots in town.

Latitude 42 (Portage)

2016

A

Brew pub. A dozen excellent beers on tap with some specialty brews and ciders available too. The beer club is great value. Nice atmosphere, great food and great service. The Hop Garden is the perfect place for summer evenings.

Latitude 42 (West Main)

2018

A

Brew pub. 16 beers on tap and all of them are excellent. Decor is striking and the new beer garden is impressive. It includes an outdoor bar and a pool table. Highly recommended.

Lindbergh's Landing

Apr 2018

TBD

We stopped in during the soft opening so they weren't yet into the groove. It's an upstart/restart bar with 9 beers on tap, half of which are craft brews. In time it will be a good place if they can give it some real character.

Long Lake Tavern

 

Nov 2017

C

Warning - no craft brews here. A good-ole-boys neighborhood bar. Nothing fancy but friendly people.

Louie's

Feb 2018

B

A good selection of beers. Friendly staff and a lot of history (it's 100 years old). They are known for great live music. 

Main St Pub (Gull Road)

Jul 2018

C

14 beers on tap of which 6 are craft beers. No porters or stouts and no beer list. The bar staff wouldn't list what they had on tap. Good atmosphere.

Main St Pub (Portage)

Mar 2018

B

No beer list but seems to have a good selection, including Gonzo's Vanilla Porter. Good atmosphere and pub food.

Main St Pub (Vicksburg)

Jun 2018

C

No beer list but 10 beers on tap with 4 craft brews. Country music playing continually, the TV showing killing of elephants and lions plus a video game called "Big Buck Hunter". It's a redneck paradise.

Main St Pub (West Main)

Oct 2018

B

10 beers on tap with 5 craft brews, including a couple of good local brown ales. No beer list. Located in a shopping center but it's got some character. Good service.

McGonigle's

Nov 2017

B

6 beers on tap, of which 3 are local craft beers. Guinness on tap too. It's a Eastside local hangout, homely but not fancy. We had a good time there.

Monelli’s

Feb 2017

B

Over 50 beers on tap. Excellent selection of craft brews from across the country. It does get loud when full of people. The lunch buffet is highly  recommended.

Nob Hill

 

Jan 2017

B

The only place in town that has Point Beer. It was a favorite spot of the GM crowd back in the day but it’s quiet now except on Friday and Saturday nights. Great prices, a super-efficient staff and good food plus pool, darts, music and dancing.

North 11

 

Jul 2018

A

Wow! 20 beers on tap and an amazing selection. The beer list was detailed and very helpful. The bar itself is striking and spacious. North 11 is an impressive place.

O’Duffy’s

 

Feb 2017

B

A classic neighborhood bar in the student ghetto. Beautiful ambience (oak bar, tin ceiling, etc.). A really nice place to have a beer.

Old Burdick’s

 

Aug 2017

B

Good location for the 5 o’clock crowd or a guest at the Radisson. Atmospheric and easy to get to.

Old Burdick’s at Wings West

 

Jul 2018

A

30 beers on tap of which 26 are a great selection of craft beers. You get to watch hockey from the bar and the food looked really good. This one was a big surprise.

Old Chicago

 

Aug 2018

A

25 beers on tap which includes 12 local craft brews plus Guiness, Newcastle Brown, Stella and other great national beers. Also a wide selection of beers in cans and bottles. Good happy hour specials too.

Old Dog

 

2016

A

A good selection of a dozen craft beers in a historic industrial setting. Nestled in the heart of downtown beer district, it has good entertainment and friendly people - not just the staff but everyone. They have a lot of live music.

Old Goat Tavern

 

Jul 2018

A

An impressive selection of 25 Michigan microbrews on draft. Clean and modern decor, plus the service was great.  Quote from a young co-ed at the bar to the barman: "Give me another of those shots and don't worry - I've got a liver of steel". This bar is definitely worth a visit if you like great beer! 

Olde Peninsula

 

Apr 2017

B

Old time atmosphere with modern amenities. Another 5 o’clock pub in the heart of downtown Kalamazoo.

One Well

2016

A

Brew pub. Great selection of craft beers and games. You can’t go wrong here. Great people and a newly expanded space helps fit everyone in. Put this one on your list.

Outback Steakhouse

Oct 2018

B

8 beers on tap including Fosters and Stella but only 1 local craft beer, Bells Best Brown. Great service and atmosphere.

Players Grill (Augusta)

Jun 2018

B

8 beers on tap including some craft beers. Good food and classic rock from Sirius XM makes for an enjoyable time at a sports bar.

Potter's Lounge at the Four Seasons

Oct 2018

A

Only 6 beers on tap but a great selection of local brews. On a Wednesday night it was $3 a beer, a free BBQ buffet and really good live music. What's not to like?

Richland Pub

Apr 2018

B

Only 8 beers on tap but a reasonable selection. We had Fat Tire. Great atmosphere and a good family pub.

RJ’s

 

Dec 2017

C

Sports bar. No craft beers on tap but a good atmosphere. Patrons tend to be long time customers.

Rupert’s

 

2016

B

Brew pub. A small but good selection of craft brews. It's a casual atmosphere in a familiar spot - the old Boogie Records building. Say Hi to Rupert the Great Dane when you’re in there.

Shakespeare’s

 

Sep 2017

A

Over 50 craft beers on tap and located in the heart of Downtown Kalamazoo brew pubs. Friendly knowledgeable bartenders. Tends to draw the younger local and college crowd during the school year.

Sugar Bowl

Apr 2018

C

Warning - only Bud, Bud Light and Miller Lite on tap. Xmas lights were still up in April. It's an inner-city neighborhood bar full of friendly people.

Tap House (Downtown)

2016

B

29 beers on tap including some intereresting and unusual ones. Great atmosphere with cozy and comfortable surroundings. Have a couple of beers and some popcorn schrimp here before a show at the State Theater.

Tap House (Portage)

Jul 2017

B

29 beers on tap including some really interesting ones. Great food. Out of the way but worth a trip.

Tap House (Sprinkle Rd)

Mar 2017

B

29 beers on tap including some really interesting ones.  Good place to grab a brew while trying to decide which bike or ATV you want to buy. A brand new pub but with Tap House friendliness.

Texas Corners Brewery

2016

B

Brew pub. Holy cow, we're drinking in a former church! The atmosphere is still like a church but with different holy water. A small selection of craft brews but some good ones.

The Cove

 

Feb 2018

B

A dozen craft beers on tap. Some good ones. Up to date décor and a great view of West Lake from the bar.

The Dock at Bayview (Richland)

Jun 2018

B

12 beers on tap and a really good selection, including Guiness. The bar has basic decor but has great service and atmosphere. The perfect place to drink in Richland.

The Hanger

Aug 2018

B

Decor is aircraft-sports in a hanger-like building. 16 interesting beers on tap.  Great service and a mouth-watering menu. Worth a visit.

The Library

Oct 2018

A

27 beers on tap, most of which are a great selection of craft beers. Really good music and service too. A college hangout but you can't argue with 27 beers!

Tibbs

 

May 2017

B

Brew pub. A small selection but you can find something that tastes great. The Ben Jonesin’ stout is delightful. Convenient to Downtown and the State Theater. Pleasant people.

Time Out Lounge
(Galesburg)

 

July 2018

C

Warning - 6 beers on tap but only Bud, Miller and PBR. Craft brews in bottles. The deck on the river and a stage for music means that you could have a great time here. The food was really good.

Vickers
(Vicksburg)

Jun 2018

A

19 beers on tap, 16 of them craft beers. The outdoor bar in a beautiful water setting is amazing. Great service and 1960s/70s music. A little piece of heaven on earth!

Village Hideaway (Vicksburg)

Jun 2018

B

6 beers on tap of which 2 were craft brews. Hometown sports bar in a nicely restored old building. Good atmosphere. The neon sign outside is shown below.

Waldos

Mar 2018

C

THE campus hangout. Only six beers on tap and we had to drink PBR. The music was good, though.

Up and Under

Oct 2017

C

Large bar area. Close to campus for a quick brew.

Wax Wings

Sep 2018

C

New brew pub. 5 beers on tap, 3 of which were over 7.5% alcohol. Small glasses of the lower alcohol beers and what we drank tasted good but was cloudy (no filtration?). Hmmm.

Wild Bull
  

Jul 2018

C

Only Miller Lite on tap. No beer in bottles, only in small cans at six bucks. At least they have a reasonable selection of beer in cans and fun shows.

Y Bar
  

Nov 2018

B

22 beers of which 10 are craft beers. Great service and ultramodern decor. It's a college hangout but worth a visit.

Zebs (Texas Corners)

Apr 2018

A

15 beers on tap and a great selection. The White Blonde is exceptional and the food is great too. Definitely recommended.

Note on above ratings - anytime you have ratings, not everyone can get the top grade. That's life, right? You can safely go into all the pubs and bars above, enjoy a beer and have a good time. However, there are some that stand out for their draft beer selection. It's all about the beer! We wanted to let people know which pubs and bars we were most impressed with.  

 

 


Kalamazoo Pubs/Bars Yet to Come

Applebee’s (W Main)
Lodo's
Logan’s Roadhouse
Monaco Bay
Pilsen Club
Red Lobster
Shifters
Skydeck
Texas Corral
Texas Roadhouse
University Roadhouse
Upper Deck
Websters Prime