Friday, October 10, 2014

River’s Edge Brewing Company- A Community Brewery

Written by  Erik Smith
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For many years, through all the rapid growth of microbreweries in Michigan, the far northwestern suburbs of Detroit had long been an area in need of a microbrewery. They finally have one, and it is located in one of the area’s best loved communities, Milford. River’s Edge Brewery opened on June 22nd to big crowds and rave reviews.
The opening proved to be so popular, that the brewery actually had to cut back their opening hours shortly after to make sure they could produce enough beer to honor the commitments they had made to festivals, as well as keeping a good selection on tap in the brewpub itself.

The brewery is located on the southern banks of the Huron River, at the point where Main Street crosses the river. The handsome interior of the pub features a wide-open, space, with a rustic woody feel and high ceilings. There is also comfortable seating on the terrace overlooking the river and Milford’s Central Park. The brewing equipment is on display through a large opening next to the bar.

Kim Schnieder is the head brewer. Her experience comes from other respected names in the state’s microbrew scene: North Peak, Dragonmead and Bastone. Talking with the bar manager, Eric, I was told that their most popular beer so far has been the IPA, a ‘extensively-hopped’, floral beer with good balance. The Milford Pub Ale, another of their mainstays, is an ESB (Extra Special Bitter) brewed with English malts, and is another beer that has proven to be quite popular. There is always one beer available on cask as well.

On top of producing good beer, many of the beers at River’s Edge also have great names. At the time of my visit, of the 10 beers available, there was MacGuyver Scottish Amber, The Great Hambino (a robust English Porter), and Roggenbeir called The Six Fingered Man. Eric took great pride in their names, which he helped provide, since they all include references to the beer’s character- not just random ‘unrelated’ names.

For now, River’s Edge beers will be available at the brewpub in Milford, as well as certain festivals like Brewed in Michigan. There will also be some limited distribution of kegs to local restaurants.

Erik Smith

Erik Smith

Erik Smith is a relative newcomer to craft beer, having first been turned on to the scene by a chance encounter with "The End of The World" (Unibroue's La Fin du Monde) during the summer of 2011. Since then, he has increased that love of beer by serving as the 'un-official' photographer for the many beer events at Ashley's in Westland, MI. His goal is to visit every Michigan brewery. An avid traveler, beer tourism has played a prominent role in his travels since 2012. 

Find him on Untapped at eriksmithdotcom and at his blog at