Why Grand Rapids is Still ‘Beer City, USA’ Over Kalamazoo
(photo Johnnie Walker)
My friend down in KZoo, John Mason, would have you think that Kalamazoo is REALLY Beer City USA, through some faulty, beer goggle logic. I have to hand it to him, he really tried to use a legit argument, that whole "Percent By Volume" thing. And, if you were to look at life only as a college freshman, that would be winning math.
Luckily, most of us have outgrown that mindset, and our beer preferences aren't based solely on how messed up we can get, and how cheaply. It's about the quality of the experience, the flavor of the brew; the best beer, not the most alcoholic.
Granted, Bell's has great beer, there's no denying that. So do all the other breweries in Kalamazoo. I'm not saying their beer is inferior, at all.
What I'm saying is that by equating "best" with "Percent By Volume", you're basically saying that Steel Reserve is one of the best beers out there.
And no one would ever say that. "Wasted for under $3", maybe, but not one of the best.
So, yes, Kalamazoo does have a slightly higher BBV (Brewery By Volume) than Grand Rapids, we will grant you that. But the overall quality is the thing that Grand Rapids has a bit of an edge with. We have more breweries of great quality, and THAT's why we're "Beer City USA".
And, going back to your article, John, you sort of defeat yourself. When you brought up Grand Rapids' population, that number you cited includes Holland in the tally. Which means, unfortunately for you, that the Grand Rapids area then has TWO breweries in the Michigan.org blog about the Five Best Breweries in Michigan. Founders and New Holland.