The much anticipated beer moment finally arrived on Monday, as New Belgium Brewing Co, located in Colorado, released its signature brew in Michigan for the first time.
Signs have been up for weeks, but Fat Tire Amber Ale is now available in 22-ounce bottles across the state.
"It has been one of those wild rumors and it finally came true," said Joshua Swift, Sales Associate for Martha's Vineyard, a wine and liquor store located on Union Avenue Northeast in Grand Rapids. They advertised the arrival in their storefront window.
"I saw the signs, I used to live in Colorado, it just brings back memories of when I was younger of earlier times," said customer Joe Richards, who remembers when he used to sneak the beer into the state.
"You had to hide it in your car under the seat," laughs Richards.
No more sneaking around. Fat Tire, which is one of the most popular U.S. craft beers in the U.S. was quickly selling at locations across West Michigan. It even had its own Facebook page for the debut where Michiganders posted the first sighting at a grocery store.
Over in the East Hills neighborhood in Grand Rapids, people could be spotted touting another newcomer beer, arriving in a blue 4-pack.
It's called Escoffier. The brew was launched on Monday to coincide with the Fat Tire debut. It is a collaboration between New Belgium and Grand Rapids-based Brewery Vivant .
The master brewers came up with idea when the New Belgium representatives came for a June visit.
"We just talked and said it would be cool to collaborate a beer, usually you get a few brewers at a table and friendships are born," said Jacob Derylo, head brewer at Brewery Vivant.
The new creation is being brewed on site and was on tap for Monday customers to guzzle.
The beer is named after the French master chef of the same name, and crafted to go hand in hand with the food-beer experience.
Although there was a lot of hype about the Colorado connection, insiders say it only adds to West Michigan's already stellar craft beer culture.