I’m not sure why I went with “Day 1” lingo yesterday for Beercation since the whole trip was really only two days. It was Part 1 yesterday and here is Part 2!
From Bell’s Brewery we made our way to Jolly Pumpkin in Dexter Michigan. Of all of our stops, this was by far the most educational. Our host, Mike, explained that Jolly Pumpkin is the only brewery in the United States that barrel ages (mostly in bourbon barrels) all of its beers for a minimum of five years. What does this mean for you, the drinker? Well, it means you drink a flavorful beer that takes on some of the characteristics of the barrel – and you drink it in a 750ml bottle that has been bottled by hand (we saw the process ourselves!).
We also met owner and brewmaster Ron Jeffries, his wife, Laurie, and his son, Daemon, who all work at Jolly Pumpkin. Ron’s laid back (he loves Hawaii) attitude permeates throughout the brewery – everyone is working triple time but with a smile and not a sign of frenzy anywhere!
The stories of the beers (found on every bottle) add to the personal touch that makes Jolly Pumpkin so special. For example, the two Bam beers are named for the Jeffries’ dog, Bam, who, according to the bottle, survived being hit by a car. What is not on the bottle is that Bam has also survived an attack by a bigger dog who bit Bam in the throat and nearly electrocuting himself after chewing on a cord. Bam is appropriately named!
If you are near Dexter (which is about 5 miles from Ann Arbor), definitely stop in for a visit at Jolly Pumpkin. They are expanding and have opened a brew pub in Ann Arbor and are opening one next to the brewery later this fall. Ron is also going to start roasting coffee beans – oh, and he also shapes surfboards!
Can’t get to Dexter? No problem, Jolly Pumpkin is available in 42 states and if it’s not in your state, I’m sure it will be soon!
A big thanks to Mike, Ron, Laurie, Daemon and the whole Jolly Pumpkin crew for a great visit!
Thanks for Reading Bright-Yellow!