Michigan Brewery Asks Patrons to Drink Local, Think Global
Michigan brewery, HomeGrown Brewing Company, has joined an increasing number of businesses turning to their own backyard for ingredients. In both the brewing and dining components of the business, HomeGrown predominantly sources local supplies.
The locally-sourced movement has taken off – in the US and around the world – in the last ten years, offering an alternative to a global food model, which often sees food travel long distances before it reaches the consumer. “Locavores” aim to develop more self-reliant and resilient food networks and improve local economies by buying from nearby producers. According to the Michigan Farmers Market Association the number of farmers markets has more than tripled in the last 10 years.
“It’s so important to get our supplies close-to-home,” said co-owner Marie Powers.
“Our beers and our food taste better when we can get fresh ingredients, we are more connected with our community, and there’s less environmental impact by reducing transport and packaging,” Marie said.
HomeGrown sources vegetables from Oxford’s Simple Gift Farms, meats from Oxford’s East River Organic Farm, coffee from Lake Orion’s White Pine Coffee, honey from Oxford’s Golden Apiaries, malt from Motor City Malt House, hops from MI Hops in Traverse City, yeast strains from Craft Cultures in the Upper Peninsula, and wine from Old Mission peninsula’s Bowers Harbor. Completing the cycle, spent grain from the brewing process goes to a local cattle farmer to be used as feed and unsued food supplies go to a local charity.
Head Chef Adam DeMonaco embraces farm-to-table style fare and operates a “scratch” kitchen at the brewery, making their own bread, smoking their own meats, and sourcing as much as they can from nearby.
Taste the Local Difference partners with nearly 40 Michigan breweries to bring in local food, including HomeGrown. Local Foods Coordinator Kelly Wilson said people are increasingly looking for more transparency with their food and deeper connections to community.
“Purchasing local also means restaurants can have stronger relationships with their growers which creates opportunity for exciting innovation and collaboration,” Kelly said.
“Additionally, local food is picked at its peak freshness and you can, literally, taste the difference. Flavor, freshness, and quality and major benefits of local food.”
HomeGrown’s Head Brewer Joe Powers said the benefits are obvious when you compare beer quality.
“We got a great response to our seasonal Michigan IPA, which we made from all-Michigan ingredients,” he said.
“To be able to source everything from hops to yeast in our own state is incredible, and makes for a top-quality beer.”
HomeGrown runs monthly farm-to-table beer pairing dinners, with six courses perfectly paired with brews. Dishes are created by HGBC chefs using local, seasonal produce. The next date is February 22nd (Vegetarian), and March 29th, 7pm, sign up at firstname.lastname@example.org
Readers can get more details at www.homegrownbrewco.com and on FaceBook.
Company: HomeGrown Brewing Company
Contact: Kate Roff