When Pete Kirkwood set up shop—The Workshop—in Traverse City, Michigan, he and his hardworkin’ crew of craft brewers built their philosophy and aesthetic around a three noble tenets: Nature. Community. Craft.
Walk into the The Workshop Brewing Company and immediately you get a sense of all three. Nature, through their use of natural materials like wood, concrete, stone and steel. Community, through a thriving taproom full o’ thirsty comrades. And Craft, through a complete offering of solid brews and artisanal chews made with fresh, seasonal, and locally-sourced ingredients.
The beer is exceptional. With 10+ beers on tap at any given time, there’s the rich and flavorful “Pry Bar” Porter. The “10 lb. Sledge,” a hoppy, yet balanced, English-style IPA. And the true standout, the “Sickle,” a bright and fruity Saison farmhouse ale.
Equally exceptional is the space’s vibe and aesthetic. In the center of the taproom, a lengthy U-shaped Michigan Maple Butcher Block bar top stands up to The Workshop’s sturdy brews. A row of live-edge black walnut/butcher block tables in front of the bar supports drinking, dining and conversation. Near the back of the bar, up-cycled church pews have found a new home framing 12-foot long butcher block tables.
Pete explains, “I chose materials that felt sturdy, unpretentious, and comfortable. Butcher block is sustainable, longwearing, local and beautiful. It fit the bill—and our philosophy—perfectly.”
The butcher block adds warmth and balance to the cooler industrial materials used throughout the interior. Rounding out the space and adding a lively competitive spirit is a collection of classic bar games: foosball, darts, a pair of vintage pinball machines, and the pub-favorite ring and hook game.
Nature. Community. Craft. More than a motto, it’s a way of doing business that’s proving successful for the industrious folks The Workshop Brewing Company.
“I want The Workshop to be a Third Place. It’s not your home. It’s not where you work. It’s that other place you go, like the piazza in Florence, the café in Paris, where social interactions are inevitable and serendipitous,” Pete adds. “And it’s becoming that way.”
Nature. Community. Craft. It’s a philosophy that closely aligns with the Wood Welded Companies of Michigan Maple Block and Bally Block. So, we’re honored that Pete and Company chose to outfit their brewery with our butcher block tops.
“I’m hoping that 100-years from now my bright new bar top will have mellowed into a well-worn fixture—a neighborhood institution.”
Pour us another, Pete!
Visit The Workshop Brewing Company
in Traverse City’s Warehouse District.