Dutch Girl Brewery files for bankruptcy

Becky Vargo • May 4, 2017 at 10:00 AM

SPRING LAKE TWP. — The owners of Dutch Girl Brewery have filed for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, less than two months after abruptly closing the doors of the local business.

Paperwork was filed Tuesday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Michigan on behalf of the brewery owners, Luke and Melissa Finchem of Spring Lake.

The brewery opened in October 2015 at 14964 Cleveland St. in Spring Lake Township. It closed this past March.

The owners did not respond to requests from a Tribune reporter for information.

The federal bankruptcy court filing noted that the brewery owes $333,567 to creditors — including Beer City Glass, Blue Label, Brark Industries LLC, Carbonic Systems Inc., Charter Communications, Consumers Energy, Ingraberg Farms, Internal Revenue Service, Michigan Department of Treasury, Michigan Gas Utilities, Michigan Unemployment Agency, PNC Bank, Republic Services, Victory Apparel, Village Baker, Scholten Fant, and several individuals.

The business’ total assets — listed at $157,406 — include 15 whiskey barrels, 100 kegs, assorted merchandise, a fire brewing system and related equipment, fermenters, lab and kitchen equipment, and dining furniture. 

A meeting of creditors is scheduled for Saturday, May 6.

In a Tribune story posted following the closing, Spring Lake Township Manager Gordon Gallagher said he was surprised that the business closed.

"It was completely out of left field for me," he said. "I had not heard any rumblings, not even a late water bill, nothing. This is one of those I'm trying to figure out, as well.

On their Facebook page, the Finchems thanked the community, friends and family for supporting their business.

“We met so many great people we now call friends,” they wrote. “We learned a lot about opening a small business and will forever be proud of our craft beers, unique dishes and warm atmosphere with great staff.”

The post also mentioned that the business is for sale, with an asking price of $350,000. If a buyer cannot be found, an auction would be scheduled in the coming weeks.

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