Winners for Bell's 4th Annual Homebrew Competition announced

Josh Smith | Bell's Brewery

4thAnnualHomebrewWinner.jpgTwelve homebrews made it to the final round for this year’s Bell’s Homebrew Competition.

But only one will go on tap at the Eccentric Café.

David Lyman of Kalamazoo (pictured at right with his wife), will brew his Citra and Simcoe hopped Pale Ale at Bell’s original brewery in downtown Kalamazoo.

Now in its fourth year, Lyman joins a growing list of those who have gotten to see their winning brew’s name listed on the Café’s draft board.

“This competition is a nod to our roots and we love the opportunity to give a little something back to the community that gave us our start,” said Laura Bell, Bell’s Vice President.

Last year’s winner, Nick Rodammer, took second place for his Double Rye IPA.

Third place went to Jay VanBuskirk for his IPA brewed with fresh hops, peaches and mangos.

Runners up are:

  • Jason Stasienko, IPA
  • Larry Yuhas, Cream Stout brewed with fresh mint and coffee
  • Eric Drews, an American hopped concoction
  • Aaron Hoffmann, Coffee IPA
  • Bret Wagner with Beau Preston, Butter Pecan Java Chocolate Stout
  • Drew Doster, Cafe con Leche Milk Stout
  • David DalPonte, Pale Ale with green tea and honey
  • Shannon Grossman, Vanilla Java Porter
  • Nathan Widener, Jalapeño Pepper Beer

More information about this year’s homebrew winner tapping will be released as it becomes available. Judges' comments for the winners above are available for pickup at the Bell's General Store.

Cheers and congratulations to all!

2013 All Stouts Day Tap list, specials menu

Josh Smith | Bell's Brewery


Our fifth annual All Stouts Day is Nov. 3 at the Eccentric Café. Twenty different stouts will be on tap.

Tickets are not required.

We will also announce the winners of this year’s Homebrew Competition at 3 p.m.

The winner will get to brew their recipe at our downtown Kalamazoo brewery to go on tap at the Café.

The tap list

Bourbon Barrel Aged Brett Stout

Bourbon Barrel Aged Dagger Stout

Black Note

Breakfast Blend Double Cream Stout

Chocolate Cherry Double Cream Stout

Special Double Cream Stout

Cherry Stout

Bear Hug Stout

Dagger Stout

Expedition Stout

Harry Magill’s Spiced Stout

Java Stout

Toasted Coconut Espresso Java Stout

Kalamazoo Stout

Oatmeal Stout

Sweet Potato Stout

Rye Stout

Milk Stout

Trumpeter’s Stout

Smoked Stout

And Trumpeter’s Stout on Nitro

From the kitchen (while supplies last)

Stout cheese bisque

Seafood stew

Pot roast with mashed potatoes and mushroom shallot-stout gravy

Lamb shepherd’s pie

Smoked turkey Leg with a stout glaze

Smoked Ribs with a Cherry Stout reduction

Veggie lentil loaf with mashed potatoes and gravy


Lance's Brewery Tour comes to Kalamazoo, Comstock

Josh Smith | Bell's Brewery


We were thrilled and honored to welcome Lance's Brewery Tour to Bell's this week.

Team stopped by for a tour and interview in Comstock then headed to the Eccentric Cafe afterward to sample the menu and beers on draft.

For those not familiar with this project, Lance Rice is a beer historian with autism who has been collecting beer memorabilia and memorizing beer history since 1974.

With the help of a small film crew, he has set out to fulfill his dream to write a book about the history and culture of American beer. The entire process is being captured in a documentary.

From Lance's website:

For Lance, his nationwide brewery tour is the first time he has left home without his mother or a guardian figure. In fact, it’s the first time he has faced his fears and abandoned the routines that help Lance cope with life. For anyone who understands autism, these feats are more than breakthroughs – they are miracles. What’s even more astonishing is Lance is doing all of this at 55 years-old.

At an age when most people give up on development, Lance is experiencing the most rapid period of emotional, cognitive and personal growth in his entire life. To fully understand Lance’s autism, as a child he wouldn’t leave his home, would not speak and was institutionalized. Now fast forward half a century. Lance began his brewery tour just over a month ago and in that time he tackled claustrophobia, a fear of heights, social phobias, initiated a conversation with a stranger for the first time and even addressed a crowd. For those touched by autism, Lance represents incredible hope. He is an adult who is embracing autism, achieving a dream most thought was impossible and inspiring countless people as he journeys – and he’s doing this one brewery at a time.

Lance and crew have traveled all over the country and are nearing the end of the first part of this project (the traveling, research and filming). For more on this inspired project, please visit their website.

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