Michigan Brewers Guild Honors Traverse City Craft Beer Pioneer

By Craig Manning | January 31, 2023

At its annual conference held in Kalamazoo earlier this month, the Michigan Brewers Guild recognized Jack Archiable, Traverse City’s first modern craft beer pioneer. At the event, held January 12 at the Radisson Plaza Hotel in Kalamazoo, Archiable received the Tom Burns Award, one of the top three awards presented each year by the Michigan Brewers Guild. This award joins Archiable in a list of previous honorees that includes other Michigan beer luminaries such as Larry Bell (founder of Bell’s Brewery) and Ron Jeffries (co-founder and brewmaster of Northern United Brewing Company, which also includes Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales and North Peak include) includes Brewing Company) and more.

Each year, the Michigan Brewers Guild presents the Tom Burns Award to someone “who embodies the pioneering spirit of Michigan’s brewing industry” and “whose hard work, passion and perseverance has been a leading force in the creation of the Great Beer State while supporting all craft.” -Beer industry in Michigan.” Archiable qualified as the founder of Traverse Brewing Company, one of the first craft breweries in the state of Michigan (he received brewing license #007) and the first ever to be incorporated in northern Michigan.

In January 2021, The ticker took a look back at the Traverse Brewing Company and Archiable’s contributions to building the foundations of Traverse City’s craft beer scene. Archiable, an Ohio transplant with extensive homebrewing experience, moved to northern Michigan in the mid-1990s and opened Traverse Brewing Company at 11550 US-31 South in Williamsburg. It was there that Archiable had the distinction of brewing northern Michigan’s first commercial beer since Prohibition, Manitou Amber Ale. He also employed and mentored numerous people who went on to start their own influential breweries in northern Michigan, including Joe Short of Short’s Brewing Company, Russell Springsteen of Right Brain Brewery, and Jon Niedermaier of Brewery Terra Firma. Speak with The ticker In 2021, Springsteen called Archiable “the godfather of brewing in northern Michigan.”

Many of Archiable’s recipes are still in circulation in northern Michigan. After the Traverse Brewing Company closed its doors in 2008, Niedermaier bought the equipment and intellectual property, including the Manitou Amber recipes. Some of these beers are still sold today under the Terra Firma label.

Learn more about Archiable’s recognition of the Michigan Brewers Guild here.

Pictured: Jack Archiable and Michigan Brewers Guild Executive Director Scott Graham at this month’s Brewers Guild Conference.


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