“Handmade by people who care in Northern Michigan” – it’s a simple statement, but it says everything about our mission. Here at SBC, we’re proud of who we are, what we do, and where we live. We live by our commitment to be Michigan Only, Michigan Forever, and we strive to exemplify this motto in our beers, at our pub, and through the organizations we support. Our latest specialty release might be one of the most spectacular examples of our motto to date (the ingredients of this beer are literally passed through the hands of many Short’s family members), and it’s available for your enjoyment right now!
Spruce Pilsner, released each summer, is truly a labor of love. A member of our original Imperial Beer Series, Spruce Pilsner is not just a Short’s specialty release, but a prime example of field to fermenter brewing. In late spring each year, Joe Short leads a group of SBC family members to a secret Rapid City location to pick only the freshest (and dare we say luckiest) of blue spruce tips. Suited up with gloves, boots, and clippers we hand pick spruce tips that are then used within 24 hours to brew this coveted beer.
Each year we’ve seen an increase in the number of hops we are able to source from within the mitten state. We’re thrilled to continue to source more and more of this pivotal ingredient from our home. And in doing so, this year we were able to brew Spruce Pilsner using all Michigan hops from our friends at Michigan Hop Alliance. Michigan spruce tips + Michigan hops + crystal clear Michigan water = a pretty amazing beer. And in the future, we’ll be looking to source malt made from barley grown right here in Northern Michigan. Stay tuned to our website and social media accounts for more info coming soon.
But our mission for true craftsmanship doesn’t end at the doors of our brewery – we are constantly looking for ways in which we can support other local craftsmen and artisans. This spring we visited Moomers Creamery and Boss Mouse Cheese in an effort to learn about the art of cheese making (and in order to eat our way through a mountain of delicious dairy products). Sue Kurta of Boss Mouse Cheese makes small batch, artisan cheeses by hand in Kingsley, Michigan from cream that comes from what must be the happiest cows we’ve ever seen (no seriously, California cows have nothing on these Northern Michigan beauties).
Utilizing inventive ingredients (even our beer, think Uber Goober Ice Cream and cheese made using Good Humans), both Moomers and Boss Mouse Cheese provide the highest quality cheeses and ice creams to the residents and visitors of Northern Michigan. Their products are not only the best of their kind, but exemplify the spirit of artisan craftsmanship we try to impart in every beer brewed.
Not only do we count ourselves lucky to be able to do what we do best (brewing craft beer in Northern Michigan), but we find ourselves to be incredibly fortunate to share our space and what we do with our Northern Michigan craftsmen and artisan friends. And that’s what we plan to do for many years to come in our beer, at our pub, and at Short’s Mart.
Want to learn more about the brewing of Spruce Pilsner or hear sounds straight from the cheese making process? Listen to Short’s Cast, specifically the episodes Short’s On Site at Boss Mouse Cheese and Behind the Brew . . . Spurce Pilsner. Short’s Cast episodes are available on iTunes, Stitcher Radio and at shortsbrewing.com/shortscast.