Overlooking picturesque Round Lake in Charlevoix, Lake Charlevoix Brewing Company offers great Northern Michigan beer, food and views. Just a quick jaunt away from Lake Charlevoix and a 7-minute walk to the sandy shores of Lake Michigan, the concept of Lake Charlevoix Brewing is rooted in and inspired by Northern Michigan.
“I’ve been coming up here since I was a little kid,” says Managing Partner Rich Bergmann. “I’ve lived all over the world, and I always come back here. I think our lakes are the most beautiful. Lake Charlevoix was voted No. 3 in the world. I’ve known that since I was 5 years old.”
The brewery has eight flagship beers on tap, which are named after local waterways, beaches and other iconic attractions in the area. The Michigan Beach Blondie is a customer favorite along with the Round Lake Red and Pine River Porter.
“The Up North Pale Ale is my favorite,” Rich says. “Its signature is Michigan hops, which gives it a unique flavor.”
The pub is 1,200 square feet with 60 indoor seats and 50 more outside in the beer garden, which offers guests views of Round Lake and the Round Lake Channel.
The food menu offers a creative take on old staples with items such as the brisket taco, customizable quesadillas and paninis and the Spicy Swine— a grilled cheese with bacon, jalapeños, sriracha aioli and provolone.
Out on the grill, the habanero mango bratwurst from Plath’s Meats is the perfect combination of spicy and sweet, and the burgers are phenomenal.
“I think when you smell the grill and see your food being prepared it’s just a fun, backyard barbecue,” Rich says. “And you get to watch the boating world go by on Round Lake.”
This summer, customers can try the grapefruit saison, which was brewed in collaboration with Our Brewing Company in Holland, Michigan. The team of brewers is also planning to do a lemon saison soon.
“It keeps the camaraderie of this industry together,” Rich says. “When other brewers come up on vacation it’s fun to have them come to our place and share experiences, insights and how things have been going. That’s one thing I love about the craft beer industry, the very collegial work-together relationship that everybody has shown us.”
The brewpub was founded by Rich, Adam Engelman, Aaron Hagen and Phil Parr, who also own the Bridge Street Tap Room down the street. The group already has plans underway to open another facility in the Charlevoix area next year.