Hops with #HeyLuke: Climbing the Dunes at Lost Art Brewhouse

Hops with Luke Laster

WALKER, Mich. (WOOD) — Hometown, a childhood friendship and a passion for beer culture.

Mike Smith said Walker was the perfect location for him and Brad Lawrence, with a shared entrepreneurial drive and love of beer, to open Lost Art Brewhouse.

“Brad and I ended up making the decision to move forward with it and wanted to do where we grew up in our backyard,” Smith said. “It was a perfect location for us to put our stamp in Beer City, USA.”

Lost Art Brewhouse co-founders Mike Smith and Brad Lawrence as children. (Courtesy Mike Smith)

Opening a business and pursuing a passion comes with its challenges. This project was many years in the making, and with a projected grand opening of March 2020, you can probably guess the adversity the two new brewery owners faced.

Aside from the Roaring ’20s branding and rhythm art found on the can labels, one of the first things that stuck out to me was something co-owner Brad Lawrence said. He mentioned that he doesn’t want to be “that brewery that opened during the pandemic” anymore. Yes, moving on from that title may take time. However, moving on (from anything really) is easier over a beer. And in our case, we do that over three of them.

On this episode of Hops with #HeyLuke, we sit down with Smith to discuss three beers unique to his brewhouse: the Dune Climber IPA, the Summershine IPA and the Black Currant Vanilla Milkshake fruit beer.

Up first, Lost Art’s flagship beer, Dune Climber.

Lost Art Brewhouse’s Dune Climber IPA. Mike Smith/Lost Art Brewhouse)

“This beer is a 7.2% IPA. It’s hazy beer that’s extremely juicy. We wanted it to be somewhat thirst quenching and we wanted it to be extremely easy to drink,” Smith said.

As a consumer, saying this beer is easy to drink is spot on. It’s taste hardly makes you realize you’re even drinking an IPA. The Dune Climber IPA gets the #HeyLuke Certified Story — the highlight beer of the episode thanks to its taste and can art.

Second, Summershine IPA.

Lost Art Brewhouse’s Summershine IPA. (Mike Smith/Lost Art Brewhouse)

This 6.8% IPA, Smith said, is slightly different from the Dune Climber.

“There’s a heavier malt backbone to this beer,” Smith explained. “It’s completely Citras forward: Citra hops and Cryo Citra in this one. We wanted this one to be flat out juice.”

With low IBUs, Smith said this beer is approachable and, like the Dune Climber, thirst quenching.

Last on this episode of Hops, we tried the Black Currant Vanilla Milkshake fruit beer, the newest member of Lost Art’s Milkshake Series.

Lost Art Brewhouse’s Black Currant Vanilla Milkshake Series fruit beer. (Mike Smith/Lost Art Brewhouse)

“We created this beer to fill a void in our portfolio,” Smith said. “We wanted to have something for that customer that was coming in for a more fruity experience.”

It’s also worth noting that this is the first beer in their milkshake series that does not include lactose (milk sugar).

As we dive headfirst into the summer months, Michigan is soon to see a post-COVID-19 restriction world once again. Smith said he’s over the “surprises” and is ready for his first taste of regularity as a business owner.

As seen on the wall art, the theme of this brewery is the Roaring ’20s. It was a time defined by prosperity — which we’re all looking forward to getting back to with a cold beer in our hand from a brewery that’s more than just its pandemic start.

Inside Lost Art Brewhouse. (Courtesy Mike Smith/Lost Art Brewhouse)

For more Hops with #HeyLuke, head over to WOODTV.com’s Live Desk page. Also be sure to follow our Instagram page (@woodtv) for exclusive clips. If you would like your brewery featured on an episode of “Hops with #HeyLuke,” you can reach out to Luke via email at luke.laster@woodtv.com or find him on Facebook or Twitter.

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