The Mitten Brewing Co. is a Detroit Tigers-themed brewery in Engine House No. 9 — a decommissioned firehouse in Grand Rapids. Photo via fb.com
Editor's Note: Reporter Pat Evans works at The Mitten Brewing Co.
The Mitten Brewing Co. leads off the Major League Baseball season with an Opening Day celebration today at the brewery.
The brewery, at 527 Leonard St. NW, will open at noon, with the Detroit Tigers starting their season at 4:10 p.m. against the Minnesota Twins.
Until now, The Mitten had been closed Mondays, but co-owner Max Trieweiler said it was a no-brainer to open for the Tigers opener. The brewery will be open every Monday starting April 29.
“We promised we'd be the place to go watch the Tigers,” Trieweiler said. “Every time they're on TV, it's guaranteed they'll be on our five TVs. So we had to open.”
During the game, the bar will include raffle tickets with purchases for a variety of Detroit Tiger and Mitten Brewing Co. merchandise.
The pub offers various craft beers with baseball-related names, such as the Peanuts & Crackerjacks Porter, Triple Crown Brown, Country Strong IPA and the Eighty-Four Double IPA.
The menu includes hand-crafted pizzas with homemade dough and sauces. The brewery serves up pizza by the slice during lunch hours and offers a slice punch card for loyal customers.
Although there were struggles to keep the brewery's taps full, two recently installed seven-barrel fermenters and a solid brew schedule have helped turn it around and keep brews flowing.
There will be a rotating Mitten tap at Fifth Third Ballpark for Whitecaps games, beginning with Triple Crown Brown.
It will be the first distribution for the company besides a limited release at Vitale’s of Comstock Park.
"It was part of our business plan to be at Fifth Third Ballpark and to be able to realize that this quickly is amazing,” Trieweiler said. “I didn't think it would happen right away like this.”
The Mitten Brewing Co. is a Tigers-themed brewery in Engine House No. 9, a decommissioned firehouse.
The Mitten opened for eight days last October for the World Series, before closing and then hosting its official grand opening Nov. 19.
"It was going to busy right off the bat no matter what we did. It didn't hurt the production," Trieweiler said of last year’s World Series between the Tigers and San Francisco Giants. “It was too good of an opportunity. If we would have missed that chance, we would have kicked ourselves — doesn't happen all that often.”
Each month, the brewery also pairs with a different nonprofit from the area and donates a percentage of the month's profits to the cause, with a special night dedicated solely to the charity.
So far, Make-a-Wish, Michigan Blood and Miracle League have been paired with brewery. April's nonprofit is Autism Society of Kent County.
"We feel like giving back to the community is something everyone should do, and now that we're in the position to do it, we're more than happy to be active participants,” Trieweiler said.