ABOUT PEOPLE. PLANET. PROFIT. ABOUT US | PHILOSOPHY | THE OWNERS | BREWERY STAFF | PUB STAFF Brewery Vivant is the realization of years of dreaming and much discussion of what a great brewery can be. What makes our brewery different from the rest is the way we approach our craft and operate our business. The core of Brewery Vivant can be found at the crossroads of three passions: Our love of the tradition and artistic approach of European beer styles, with some emphasis on Belgian & French styles Devotion to using local sources for ingredients and running our business according to the three pillars of sustainability; Environmental Integrity, Social Equity, and Economic Viability Sharing the experience of how beer and food can be paired to uplift the enjoyment of both Much of the inspiration for our beer came out of a trip to the French-speaking Belgian countryside visiting small farmhouse breweries. The beer we were most excited about comes from the southern part of Belgium, called Wallonia. This area is also the inspiration of our logo, which is modeled from that region's flag and was created to honor the beer and people of that region. The word "vivant" translates as "to be alive", or "to be lively" which we thought fitting to the type of brewery we strive to be. The French term "bon vivant" which translates to "the good life” is often used in reference to people who enjoy eating and drinking well...and that is what we are all about. Though we still brew amazing Belgian-style beers, we have expanded into brewing many European-style beers including various lagers and other thirst-quenching styles. PHILOSOPHY LEAN. NICE. PROFITABLE. LEAN We will operate without excess square footage, equipment or labor hours. NICE We will run our company being nice to our customers, co-workers, community and our environment. Our brewery is designed to offer a great experience while being conscious of our environment. PROFITABLE We have identified a ‘“sweet spot” of 5,000 bbls of beer produced where we can maximize our output with our brew system and be profitable. Our goal is to get this volume of production, be profitable and stay there. THE OWNERS A FAMILY BUSINESS JASON SPAULDING Jason Spaulding Owner and CEO of Brewery Vivant, Jason Spaulding, has been brewing beer since college where he discovered just how great beer can taste when it’s made well. A ski trip to Colorado following his West Michigan undergraduate education diverted his attention from other pursuits and led him to open New Holland Brewing Company in 1997. Jason established himself in the brewing world as an innovator and all around good guy while leading NHBC. After eight years, differing visions compelled him to part ways and build the Bon Vivant brewery we now enjoy. Jason enrolled at the Doemens Brewing Academy in Munich, Germany and continued to travel through Southern Belgium and Northern France with wife and Brewery Vivant Co-owner, Kris Spaulding, to visit small farmhouse breweries. They tasted incredible beers and met many artistic brewers, building the foundation of Vivant. Back to the Mitten, Jason managed the bar at Zingerman’s Roadhouse in Ann Arbor to learn their secrets to great food and great service. Returning to West Michigan, Jason was on the hunt for a neighborhood space that could house a production brewery. As fate would have it, he found an old, historic funeral home chapel, fell in love with it, and somehow found ways to open the business despite the bad (really bad) economy. It was meant to be. KRIS SPAULDING Kris Spaulding Owner & President, Kris Spaulding, manages the operations as well as the people and planet aspects of Vivant’s triple bottom line focus while her husband and business partner Jason concentrates on the company’s product and profitability. She was the driving force in the pursuit of Vivant’s LEED and B Corporation certifications and is an advocate for businesses engaging with their community in a meaningful and impactful way. Kris has always been passionate about environmental and social issues and enjoys having the opportunity to apply that passion in interesting ways as a small business owner. BREWERY STAFF WHO MAKES YOUR BEER? JUST CURIOUS. JACOB DERYLO Jacob Derylo Production Manager Jacob brewed with New Holland Brewing Company for 10 years prior to heading up brewing at Brewery Vivant. We knew he was the only head brewer for Vivant when we opened because of his artistic skill and passion for creating great and unique beers. Jacob is one of those guys who stays until the job is done no matter what. His dedication comes through in the beer which we think you will agree. You can often catch him having a well earned pint at the end of the day at the Pub. If you see a bearded man with glass in hand, wet pants, tall boots and stains on his shirt that is most likely him. CHRIS MITUS Jacob Derylo Head Brewer Chris Mitus joined Vivant at open as a server where he was known for his knowledge of beer and love of the craft. That passion brought him onto the brewing team once we needed an extra set of hands and in 2021 he was named Head Brewer. TERRY LANCASTER Jacob Derylo Head Brewer - Broad Leaf Terry Lancaster joined the Vivant brewing team in 2019. His enthusiasm for brewing interesting styles and learning all of the latest tricks landed him the role of Head Brewer at Broad Leaf in 2021. You can still find him at Vivant helping out when they need an extra set of hands. JESSE WEINKAUF Jesse Weinkauf Brewer Jesse hails from the wilds of Northern Michigan where he cultivated his passion for the outdoors...as well as his love of brewing beer which began in 2002 alongside his father. After attending Grand Valley State University and getting his BA in Photography in 2013 he worked various odd jobs before deciding to return to one of his original obsessions; beer-making. The ethos of Brewery Vivant with its commitment to sustainability coupled with the amazing beers brewed here are his new driving force. Before arriving at Brewery Vivant, Jesse worked as a brewer for Perrin Brewing Company. Alec Hamelink Alex Hamelink Brewer Alec first found his love for beer in a home brew kit in 2013. Quickly after that he pursued a career in the industry on the packaging lines at Founder’s Brewing Company. In his free time he enjoys exploring Michigan’s fresh water coast with his wife and dog. JONATHANWARD Jonathan Ward VP of Product & Design Ward is one of few team members who works on both Vivant & Broad Leaf. His role is as non-linear, left-field and open-ended as he is, but we think he likes that his job changes as often as the seasons. He does everything in his power to make the Vivant & Broad Leaf experience a powerfully good one through community, art, design, education, events and of course food and beer. PUB STAFF KNOW YOUR LOCAL CHEF. CHRISTOPHER VANDER MEER Christopher Vander Meer Executive Chef Chris clawed his way into the role of Executive Chef through hard work and a love and passion for fine food. He graduated with honors from Grand Rapids Community College holding a degree in culinary arts. Chris has worked in a variety of kitchens around the Grand Rapids area, ranging from country clubs to fine dining restaurants. He also spent time living and cooking New England fare on the coast of Maine. Go Red Sox! AMANDA BARNETT Amanda Bernett Pastry Chef Amanda was a part of the Vivant back of house in 2017-2018 and left to pursue her culinary degree with GRCC. She returned to the team in 2020 as our Pastry Chef and we are so grateful to have her and her amazing talent back! ELI JUSTICE Eli Justice Head Cook Eli has been a part of the Vivant kitchen since 2018. He is very skilled in creating a beautiful presentation for creative dishes but can also rock out on the line with the best of them. MARCO RUIZ Marco Ruiz General Manager This guy. Hailing from Southern California, Marco has chosen to grace West Michigan with his buoyant joyfulness. Further, he's offered to herd cats here at the Chapel. Marco joined our team back in 2014 as a server where he endeared himself to guests and co-workers a like. After a stint on the East side of the state, he realized his community was here in Grand Rapids and the rest is history. When he's not at the Pub brightening peoples' days, he's outside playing with his beloved pup Holly, relaxing with tunes (and Holly and friends), and soaking up the electric energy at live music shows. HOPE BYRON Hope Byron After an almost 10 year hiatus living in the mountains of California and Colorado, Hope returned to her home state to pursue her education and dream of working at Brewery Vivant. A self proclaimed beer nerd and foodie, you can find her brewery hopping across the state (and country) exploring the local eateries and music scene. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking and camping with her pups. She dreams one day of having a large piece of property to fill with ALL the rescue animals, especially the old ones.