Patti Smith

Patti Smith

Patti “TeacherPatti” Smith lives in Ann Arbor with Boyfriend Ken, her dog Buddy and her stepcats Ali and Cyrus. She is a special education teacher by day, local history buff and brew drinker by night (see the hybrid history/beer blog at She also loves watching most Detroit sports on TV, boxing, brewing beer, storytelling, board games and recently wrote a middle grade/YA book that she hopes to convince a publisher to publish! Meantime, she is working on a book about the history of downtown Ann Arbor for Arcadia publishers. Her favorite beer styles include Russian Imperial Stout, pumpkin beers, Kolschs and most things with peppers in them.

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Great Lakes Trivia on Wednesday Evenings at The Corner Brewery

What is the size of the Connect Four board? What was the name of Norah Jones’ Grammy winning album? What is the most populated city that ends in the word “Falls”? What, huh? Who asks these kinds of questions?? Who DOES THIS??

2012 Winter Beer Festival

It’s coming. Five hours (six if you are an Enthusiast Member). 61 breweries. Over 450 beers. Cold. Ice. Chill. Beer. I’m talking, of course, about the 2012 Winter Beer Fest!!! It seems like we were just in Riverside Park, in the steamy, hot July weather…but here we are! To get you ready for this most excellent event, I present you with my five tips to check yourself before you wreck yourself!

Witch's Hat Brewing Company - Brewery Review

Two hours to get in on opening day? Lines around the block? Completely full even days after the opening? Wow! This place had better be good.

I am talking, of course, about the newest brewpub in Michigan: the Witches Hat Brewpub in South Lyon. Witches Hat opened for business on December 26 with, as mentioned above, crowds and lines and long waits to get in. Before we even talk about how good the place is--and it IS good--I want to mention how awesome this spectacular opening is for the state of Michigan and the state of craft beer. Other than midnight releases of Harry Potter, when is the last time you've heard of anything like this?! It was like an, err, "mash" mob (if you will allow me to rip off that term) descended upon the new brewpub and worked it.
Krampus, the Anti-Santa at Corner Brewery

Most years, I’ve been more naughty than nice; to that end, Santa rarely visits me (could be because I’m Jewish though). So it was kind of cool to hear that there exists an anti-Santa Claus called Krampus. You see, Krampus visits the children who haven’t been so nice and, well, messes with them.

I’d Tap That! Books On Tap at Liberty Street Brewing Company

As unlikely as this sounds, I have hobbies besides enjoying beer. Specifically, I really like reading. So it was like Liberty Street Brewing Company read my mind when they hooked up with the Plymouth District Library to host Books On Tap. The event takes place every other third Thursday of the month.

Corner Brewery Hosting: Growing Hopes Indoor Farmers' Markets

I have long pictured Great-Grandma Siegel, in the hereafter, cracking up over the “local” food movement. To her, it was just what it was. You grew it in the spring and summer, put it up in the fall, ate it in the winter. It was all local.

Back in the day, people gathered in pubs

to discuss the issues of the day--politics, fads, local news, gossip.... In fact, I have heard them say that our founding fathers met in brewpubs to discuss the problems with the British rulers. Yes, it all seemed to happen in a brewpub back then. Those were the DAYS, amigos.  The DAYS.

Last night, Michigan Radio sponsored an event at the Wolverine State Brewpub that recreated those magical days (albeit without the funny wigs). The event was part of a series called Issues & Ales (temporarily renamed Issues & Lagers, in honor of the featured style of this pub) which gathers folks together to discuss a variety of different issues. Last night's topic, titled How Michigan Learns, was on the state of public education in Michigan.

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