DUTTON, Mich. (WOOD) The middle of nowhere and in the center of everything, WOTV 4 Women viewers voted Railtown Brewing Company in Dutton the best brewery in West Michigan.
A railroad themed bar, Railtown pays homage to Dutton’s roots while still keeping the atmosphere funky and fun. We took a trip out to see what all the buzz was about and we were not disappointed.
Meet the owners
Gim Lee and Justin Buiter met at their former corporate job, bonding over golf and home brewing. During one particular project, stress was high and the two of them decided to follow their passion and open a brewery. Eventually, moving from Justin’s basement into their location, the guys are still concocting some of the best beer in town. Their passion for what they do is contagious. It makes Railtown an exciting place to be, and you know you are trying some of the most unique beers in West Michigan (dare I say, the world?!). Gim and Justin explained that they have been passionate about good quality beer since day one and that will never change. The entire staff sets Railtown apart from the rest. With 4 full time employees and 3 part time, the staff members are all passionate about beer and making Railtown a must-go destination. This is the kind of bar where ‘everyone knows your name’, and if they don’t they sure will work hard to learn it!
This is what it’s all about, right? I’m no home brewer, but I am a beer girl. I frequent almost all of the breweries around West Michigan. From Grand Rapids to Kalamazoo, no brewery is safe from me. That’s why it was such a pleasure to go to Railtown for the first time, a place that is all about the beer. You can taste how much Gim and Justin love beer in the concoctions that they make. Even the heaviest ones had a light, creamy taste.
Citra Warrior Imperial IPA is hoppy but has a light bite, a huge ‘yes!’ for every IPA lover. I foresee sipping this beer on the porch in the sunshine. In the month of May, Citra Warrior is their bottle of the month. There are 298 available, get one before they’re all gone!
My favorite beer at Railtown was the Good Mooed Milk Stout (which is also Justin’s fave!). It was dark and looked like coffee. It had that great creamy stout consistency and a deep flavor. Absolutely loved it! For those wondering what Gim’s favorite beer is, it’s Prairie Wolf Black Rye IPA. A deep IPA with roasty black rye flavor, yum!
Firkin Firday is the place to be in West Michigan! Every week, they do a specialty Firkin brew that is sure to make your brain explode. In fact, one week they made the actual brew tank explode…with flavor! It’s a cool weekly event that gets the community involved. Their craziest concoction has been Mexican hot chocolate, flavors of spicy peppers and deep chocolate was definitely out of the box. Other creations have been, Citra Warrior with blood orange and Nitpicker ESP with earl grey tea. They have a full list of upcoming events on their Facebook page.
Events and special happenings
Like your beer with a side of entertainment? Every Saturday at 8 p.m., there is live music at Railtown! Enjoy local bands in a cool and relaxed atmosphere. The last Saturday of the month is reserved for open mic night, so don’t miss out! Don’t worry about going hungry, the delicious food truck, Patty Matters is out every Wednesday and Friday. Plus, Daddy Pete’s BBQ has even made a few appearances. Also, if you have a Brewsader passport, don’t forget to get it stamped at Railtown.
If you don’t have one, it’s a cool little book that you can get stamped around town to earn prizes. You can also pick one up at Railtown!
If you’re wondering what’s next for Railtown, the answer is expansion! They are in the works of adding 30 more seats and stage to their current location. I took a walk through the space being renovated and it will still keep the same open floor plan, just a lot more room to roam around.
Bottom line, Railtown is a brewery doing things right in the golden age of specialty brews. Every time you go, you are sure to find something new that you love. The staff is awesome, the atmosphere is cool and homey, and the beer is something to keep coming back for.