Kalamazoo Beer FAQ
Learn more about our Best Brews or peruse our Kalamazoo Beer FAQ below.
What is a microbrew(craft) beer?
Even though it sounds like a miniature beer, a microbrew is actually a beer brewed in a small commercial brewery. In the U.S., it is a beer produced at a microbrewery that brews no more than 15,000 barrels of beer per year. Brewed and distributed on a regional basis, some of these beverages are also known as craft beers. The emphasis of a craft beer is the quality of the product rather than its mass production.
Why only Michigan Beers on tap?
Simply put, they are the best! With the top two cities of the “Beer City USA” poll being Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo, it’s no wonder why our selection of beer comes from the self proclaimed “Beer Region USA.”
How many different styles do you feature?
Potter’s always keeps up to date on the latest and greatest brews from the Michigan area. We feature six different styles of beer on tap so even the shy kind can enjoy our selection.
Can you tell me what the different styles mean?
I.P.A.- IPA stands for India Pale Ale which tells us how the beer was brewed. Traditional IPAs were brewed strong to survive long voyages. These beers are typically higher in alcoholic content and are bitterer and more hops than others.
Ale - Ale is a type of beer brewed from malted barley using a warm fermentation with a strain of brewers' yeast. The yeast will ferment the beer quickly, giving it a sweet, full bodied and fruity taste. Most ales contain hops, which help preserve the beer and impart a bitter herbal flavor that balances the sweetness of the malt. This type of beer is most commonly infused with fruit making “fruity” beers.
Stout/Porter – Stout/Porter is a dark beer made using roasted malt or roasted barley, hops, water and yeast. Stouts were traditionally the generic term for the strongest or stoutest porters, typically 7% or 8%, produced by a brewery.
Lager - is a type of beer that is fermented and conditioned at low temperatures. Pale lager is the most widely consumed and commercially available style of beer in the world. Bock, Pilsner and Märzen are all styles of lager. There are also dark lagers, such as Dunkel and Schwarzbier. The most common example would be Bud Light.
Rye - Rye beer refers to any beer in which rye (generally malted) is substituted for some portion of the barley malt.
Pale Ale - Pale ale is a beer made by warm fermentation using predominantly pale malt. The higher proportion of pale malts results in a lighter color. This is the second most typically brewed style of beer after the Lager.
Hard Cider - Made from apples, pears and occasionally quinces. Certain varieties of apples are used almost exclusively for cider, as they contain the necessary elements to make a good fermented drink. Most cider contains a blend of several different apples, to get a good balance between sugar content to promote fermentation, acid to give the brew bite and contrast, and tannins to create a slight bitterness.
Tripel - The name "Tripel" actually stems from part of the brewing process, in which brewers use up to three times the amount of malt than a standard Trappist "Simple." Traditionally, Tripels are bright yellow to gold in color, which is a shade or two darker than the average Pilsener. Head should be big, dense and creamy. Aroma and flavor runs along complex, spicy phenolic, powdery yeast, fruity/estery with a sweet finish. Sweetness comes from both the pale malts and the higher alcohol. Bitterness is up there for a beer with such a light body for its strength, but at times is barely perceived amongst the even balance of malts and hops. The lighter body comes from the use of Belgian candy sugar (up to 25% sucrose), which not only lightens the body, but also adds complex alcoholic aromas and flavors. Small amounts of spices are sometimes added as well.
What does the ABV and IBU stand for?
ABV stands for Alcohol By Volume and is the measure of the amount of space that the alcohol in a beer takes up as a percentage of total volume. This measurement is actually the worldwide standard for measuring the amount of alcohol in a beer.
IBU stands for the International bitterness units which is a measure of the bitterness in a beer. The more bitter beers can actually be over 100 IBU’s. Traditionally, IBU’s are relatively low in most beers although an India Pale Ale (IPA) such as Dogfish Heads’ insanely alcoholic and hoppy “120 Minute IPA” has 15-20% ABV and 120 IBUs!