Dexter’s Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales is again hosting Day of Zwanze on Sept. 23rd. It is a celebration surrounding the release of Brasserie Cantillon’s Zwanze beer from Belgium, the Holy Grail of beers. Last year only 60 locations across the globe were chosen to receive a keg of the amber elixir including our own Jolly Pumpkin.
Jolly Pumpkin has made the event this year a fundraiser for the Dexter Area Historical Society (DAHS). Monies raised will go to the Society’s ongoing efforts to restore Gordon Hall. It’s a great support for the community and as DAHS stated in their August newsletter, “We are very excited that another organization in Dexter has chosen to join our campaign to restore Gordon Hall.”
The “Day of Zwanze” celebration is the brainchild of brewmaster Jean Van Roy who owns and operates Brasserie Cantillon in Belgium. Van Roy is a world renowned pioneer in the art of brewing sour beers and his creations, such as Zwanze, have become legendary.
Each year Van Roy blends a special batch of lambic brew and distributes it to select locations around the world. This is Jolly Pumpkin’s second year at being chosen. The tapping of the kegs is timed to occur simultaneously around the globe in an effort to unite people all over the world if even for just a moment, if even just over a beer.
The word “zwanze” itself is from the Brussels dialect and means a somewhat sarcastic style of humor, a little sour, like the brewing fermented beers. “Zwanze” denotes fun and playfulness and that is what this celebration is about – a somewhat lighthearted and non-traditional approach to life in general, not taking yourself too seriously. Again, like a good lambic beer.
Dexter’s own Jolly Pumpkin itself has received worldwide attention for their artisan sour beers and joined Michigan’s Northern United Brewing family of beers, wines, and spirits 10 years ago. Northern United Brewing is also located in Dexter and their Null Taphouse, located inside their brewery, has become the area’s favorite secret hotspot, but not so secret these days.
In addition to Jolly Pumpkin’s own selection of barrel-aged, award winning beers, there will be more than a score of elite craft brewers from all across the country sharing their libations. Burgers, pizza, and other pub food will be available to round out the afternoon’s experience.
Day of Zwanze will be held at Northern United Brewing / Jolly Pumpkin located at 2319 Bishop Cr E, Dexter. The fun begins at 2:12 and the worldwide Zwanze toast will be at 3pm. Tickets are limited.
So if all of this leaves you feeling good about a global event being distilled down into support for a local cause, then don’t hesitate to check out Jolly Pumpkin’s website or their Facebook page for ticket information and other important details.
In addition to Dexter’s City life, Doug enjoys writing about the wilderness. If you would like to read more by Doug you can find it on his website IntoTheWilderness.net