It's hard to miss a sign with a giant, curly beard on it. Once you step through the door from the street, however, you may be wondering where exactly it is. Just keep walking. Beards Brewery is located at the end of a very long hallway decorated with posters that give a heads up on what is going on around town, like afternoon tea Sundays at Dripworks, the C. S. Lewis Festival, or the paranormal weekend at the nearby Terrace Inn.
Now (and frequent readers probably already know this), I am not into beer. I like the home-brewing fever that is sweeping America - and especially Michigan! - because I like people who do or craft things themselves and I like the relaxed, homey (and home-built) atmosphere that small, local breweries provide. Beards definitely stands out in this department. Sure, most places play music in the background while you chat with your friends and drink your beverage of choice (I got a bottle of Northwoods black cherry cream soda while Greg enjoyed the Pomegalactic Pale), but at Beards, it isn't just any music. They play vinyl! Their record collection reminded me of my parents', complete with wooden crate storage.
Beards does not serve food (minus on select taco nights), but we were told we could order food from elsewhere and have it delivered, which I think was very cool of them. We opted to leave, get a pizza from Mighty Fine Pizza (because everywhere else we tried had stopped serving food or was closed at 9pm) and bring it back. Pizza is a most excellent accompaniment to beer, locally crafted soda, and vintage records.
It looks like Beards hosts a lot of events even in the off-season (Petoskey is a resort town in Northern Michigan along the shores of Lake Michigan). They don't cater to tourists, but that doesn't mean tourists can't stop by and enjoy some of the finer, off the beaten path things that Petoskey - a great town in any season - has to offer.
Side note about Mighty Fine Pizza: It was delicious. If you are in the Petoskey region and find yourself in the midst of a pizza craving, order from Mighty Fine. We watched the guy hand-toss the dough and build our pizza from scratch, pepperoni and mushroom. The result was, indeed, mighty fine. (Man, now I want pizza.)