Thursday, September 10, 2015

Recap of the Inaugural sold-out Burning Foot Beer Fest in Muskegon

Written by  Dan VanderKooi
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recap burning foot article

With occasional light rain and cooler temperatures, this year’s Burning Foot Beer Festival may not have fully lived up to the name, but that’s o.k. because the thousands who attended the sold out beach festival had no complaints as it certainly delivered on the beer. Over 35 of the best lakeshore and surrounding breweries brought to Pere Marquette beach in Muskegon well over a hundred different beers including many new to the area. Add to the mix great local and national bands, amazing beer-influenced food, and the beautiful beach and the result is a success.
The brewery list encompassed the best of West Michigan with additional breweries traveling from north, east, south and even a couple west from Madison and Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Breweries making their first-ever beer fest debuts included Grand Armory of Grand Haven and Trail Point in Allendale. Muskegon’s own breweries all brought their A-game with highlights including Fetch Brewing featuring their new Angry Sky IPA, Pigeon Hill’s boosted Your Mom on French Toast Imperial Stout and Unruly’s randall-infused Orange Julius. Odd Side Ales featured their We Be Jammin’ Peanut Butter and Raspberry Wheat and fans of sours welcomed Jolly Pumpkin and were certainly thrilled with Pike 51’s options which included the Crimson Chin Cherry Sour and Bon Belle Saison.

Food options included a beer-influenced menu designed and cooked by Chef Jeremy Bonjernoor and Sous Chef Scott Spear who are best known for their work with Rebel Pies. These included a Stout Burger with an Unruly honey glaze and Saison Sausage grilled bratwurst with a Fetch beer finish. A great lineup of local bands featuring Dr. K's Medicine Show, King Crabapple, Keyser Soze, and Julia & The Greensides played through the afternoon and evening with national recording artist Tantric closing out the fest with a set including new music along with more familiar fare.

Burning Foot Beer Festival is the inaugural event of the recently formed Lakeshore’s Brewers Guild supporting breweries up and down Lake Michigan’s shoreline. Please check their website ( and Facebook page ( for information on future events as well as membership opportunities which will include an Enthusiast’s option.

Dan VanderKooi

Dan VanderKooi

Dan VK has been following the Michigan Craft Beer scene since before Oberon has been available in 6-packs. Besides making the rounds at all the local craft breweries and beer bars, Dan also supports the local music scene, reads crime fiction, and enjoys playing volleyball with his wife and friends.