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Monday, January 7, 2013

The Tuesday Review: Perrin Brewing Company

By Steve Siciliano

A pint at Perrin Brewing Co.
Apparently the oft repeated phrase “location, location, location” doesn’t pertain to brew pubs. At least not when the pub has solid beers, an inviting atmosphere, good eats, and friendly service—the winning combination that is keeping the taproom busy at the recently opened Perrin Brewing Company.

Perrin is located north of Grand Rapids on 7 Mile Road in an industrial park setting that seems more conducive to an apple processing plant or a Farm and Fleet store. Despite its somewhat incongruous locale, the pub has developed a cadre of loyal regulars. Since it opened, Barb and I have been making the twenty-minute drive to the taproom on a fairly regular basis.

We do so, of course, to enjoy the solid lineup of head brewer Nate Walser’s beer. But that’s not the only reason. If the lifeblood of a taproom is its beer then its heart is the staff, and tap room manager Kurt Schmiege and assistant manager Kelly Gustafson have assembled and trained a good one. It’s obvious that the emphasis here is on knowledge of the draught offerings and fast and friendly service; and if the continuously packed taproom is any indication, patrons are not being disappointed. The fact that you can get good burgers, sandwiches, sweet potato fries, zingy dipping sauces and excellent humus in the pub is a bonus.

Last Friday Barb and I made another trip to Perrin and we were lucky to find a parking spot. Inside, every seat was occupied so we squeezed in at the end of the bar. While I stood enjoying Nate’s brown ale I looked around the taproom—at the attentive wait staff buzzing around taking good care of the customers, at the continuous line of folks queuing up at the bar, at the crowd of people sharing the common denominator of the love of good beer.

We here at Siciliano’s lift a pint to Perrrin’s owners, to Nate and the brewers, and to Kurt, Kelly, and the wait staff for yet another solid contribution to West Michigan’s growing beer culture.

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