I had witnessed the brewing industry evolve from the late 80’s, when the U.S. had hit a low of 44 brewing companies in the entire country, as a few small operators began to sprinkle the landscape. By the time I had become involved in brewing professionally in Germany in 1994, there were a handful of breweries in Michigan. I knew the proprietor at Kalamazoo Brewing, now Bell’s Brewery, and a few others had started by the time I moved “home” from the state of Bavaria, in Germany, in 1996. I had thought about starting a brewery in those days, but was often told “it would never work in West Michigan” at the time and I figured someone would open a German or Bavarian themed brewery in the area. By 2013, despite the local reputation as “Beer City, USA,” no one had done so.