Big Rapids’ Cranker’s is undergoing massive construction with the addition of its new microbrewery. Scheduled to open at 213 S. State St. in early March, the $815,000 project will be the first brewery addition to the restaurant’s three locations.
Jim Crank, FSU graduate and owner of Cranker’s Coney Island, said the decision to create a microbrewery in Big Rapids came from a desire to expand the local culture in the community.
“We want people to enjoy the microbrewery culture. This will be a very unique place,” Crank said.
He said original plans to open the microbrewery in August were rescheduled in order to ensure that spacing would benefit the restaurant’s additional services.
“We wanted to make sure we made the brewery big enough to accommodate our original goal,” Crank said.
Ferris State University pre-dentistry major Rachel Mockaitis said the calm setting of a brewery would be a different experience than most local bars.
“It would seem like a more chill atmosphere than a regular bar,” Mockaitis said. “If I wanted a more relaxed atmosphere I would consider going there.”
Crank said he plans to employ between 16-24 new employees for the microbrewery expansion project. Construction on Cranker’s Coney Island and Brewpub expansion project began in October. An approximately 6,200 square foot renovation, the brewery will seat about 150 patrons.
Six beers will be on tap including “Bulldog Red” Irish ale, “Torchlight” Munich blonde, “Professor” India pale ale, “Dambreaker” brown ale, “Strong Arm” stout and “The Local” marzen. Four seasonal beers will be added throughout the year such as the “Crankenstein” Oktoberfest, “Old Siberian” winter ale, “Ploughshare” maibock and “Ambrosia” honey Kolsch.
The regular Cranker’s menu will be available throughout the day with a pub menu available from 3 p.m.-11 p.m.
Cranker’s Brewery is also allowing FSU students a $10 discounted membership into its Mug Club. Limited to 300 members per year, Crank said Mug Club membership is $60 per mug and offers discounted pricing for Cranker’s merchandise and events such as tastings.
Depending on the success of the Big Rapids’ microbrewery, Crank said additional breweries would be constructed at other restaurant locations. For more information on Cranker’s Brewery, visit crankersbrewery.com.