Guardian Brewing Company is a 100% LGBTQ-owned, women-owned, & brewer-owned brewery located in Saugatuck, Michigan. Located just two miles from Lake Michigan, we’re lucky to be surrounded by parks and trails.
Guardian is a destination craft brewery that opened in 2018. It has 8 year-round taps and 14 seasonal, one-off, and barreled-aged taps offering a wide variety of styles that range from classic to modern, such as our “Nessie” Imperial IPA with Blue Juniper Berries. Our draft list features 22 craft beers, 2 hard ciders, and 14 wines. We also have cocktails that feature Michigan, regional, and imported liquor options.
Our kitchen’s menu focuses on fresh food sourced locally and regionally and as the seasons change, so does our menu. We make most menu items in-house and pride ourselves on serving great meat, vegetarian, and vegan dishes.
Our restaurant has seats for 92 people, including 13 around the horseshoe bar. Our space is light and airy, equally comfortable for a dinner with your family or a date night. In 2019, we installed a 3,500 square foot patio with an awning covering 50 additional seats and a six-foot gas fire pit. In 2020, we installed eight 6000 watt heaters under our awning for your outdoor dining comfort.
We feature live music on Sundays all summer and have a variety of events planned each year, including Maker’s Markets, various workout classes, and our famous monthly Beer School. Guardian serves as a third space for our community and a destination for out-of-town visitors and craft beer lovers and foodies.
GET TO KNOW THE GUARDIAN MANAGEMENT TEAM!
KIM COLLINS, OWNER, CO-FOUNDER & HEAD BREWER
Kim’s love for Lake Michigan started at an early age, growing up between the Chicago Suburbs and the Indiana National Lakeshore. Thanks to her parents’ love of the outdoors, Kim earned a B.S. & M.S. in Outdoor Recreation from Indiana
University Bloomington. After years of teaching university courses, running leadership trainings and expeditions, she decided to make the leap to brewing.
In 2012, Kim earned her Brewing and Malting Certificate from the Master Brewer’s Association of the Americas. She began her professional brewing career brewing for five breweries in Colorado. Kim became a Certified Cicerone in 2016 and uses her training and experiences to teach classes for Beer School at Guardian.
Kim is currently Board Member on the Michigan Brewer’s Guild Board and is the Founder and Co-Chair of the Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Committee. Kim’s favorite place at Guardian is on the brewhouse on any given brew day. When Kim is not working, she loves live music, camping, canoeing, gardening, and walking barefoot in Lake Michigan.
DR. CATHARINE BISHOP (KATE), CHIEF OF OPERATIONS & CO-FOUNDER
Kate grew up on a crop farm in Northwest Ohio and has early life experience working in food industry, hospitality, and environmental education fields. She holds a B.S. in Recreation Administration and a M.Ed. in Leisure and Tourism Studies from Bowling Green State University, Ohio. Kate furthered her education by obtaining a Ph.D. in Leisure Behavior through the Department of Recreation, Parks and Tourism Studies at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana.
Her area of specialization is Outdoor Adventure Education with a triple-minor in Experiential Education, Gerontology, and Gender Studies. She taught classes for several years as an Adjunct Faculty Member and Visiting Lecturer at Indiana University and spent five years as an Assistant Professor with Metropolitan State University of Denver in Colorado. There, she acted as the Program Coordinator and taught Parks and Recreation Management courses. She also has extensive practical and research experience in Therapeutic Outdoor Programming and working with special populations in both clinical and non-traditional settings.
She left the Academy to pursue another passion of hers (craft beer) and to utilize her management skills within the beverage and hospitality industries.
ABBY GLEASON, HEAD CHEF
Abby was born in Southern California before she moved to the Central Valley as a child. She was raised in a large Mexican-American family where the main activities were being loud and waiting for your next meal. Abby’s culinary influences began with her mother, grandmothers, and her “LaLa.” The passion to learn and implement many techniques of cooking and baking has grown during her many travels around the USA.
In 2017, Abby ventured to Alaska where she lived, worked, and met her husband. From Alaska, they moved to Breckenridge, Colorado, and finally moved again to Holland, Michigan. During each move, she learned to despise snow more each year.
Her favorite activities include cuddling with her Hellhound German Shepherd, Bowie, tormenting her husband, and
True Crime sleuthing.
In 2020, Abby brought her signature flavors and her own spin to the Guardian Brewing Company menu while keeping
our customers’ favorites.
JAMIE GROENEWOUD, TAPROOM MANAGER
Jamie was born and raised in the Kalamazoo area. She attended Kendall College of Art and Design in Grand Rapids and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Photography. Jamie spent the last ten years managing restaurants in the Grand Rapids area and most recently the Virtue Cider Bottle Shop, in Fennville. It was while working at Virtue Jamie met Guardian co-workers Kim, Kate, and Liz.
When not working, Jamie loves getting crafty and makes Marker’s Mark wax ornaments for sale at Guardian, as well as delicious jams and jellies, and gnome terrariums. Jamie is excited to be a member of the Guardian team and share her love of all things fermented and distilled.
ROB REBB, ASSISTANT TAPROOM MANAGER
Rob was born and raised in the metro Detroit area. He attended the University of Michigan Dearborn campus and earned a bachelor of science degree in Information Systems. Rob worked 27+ years in telecommunications at AT&T as a Technical Architect. Rob holds a US Patent granted as part of a team project on website data manipulation.
After many years of spending summer weekends in Saugatuck and Douglas, Rob and his partner of 30 years moved here permanently and retired. Rob loves to walk, hike, kayak, visit national parks, and spending time with friends and his dog Mason.
His love of craft beer brought him to Guardian first as a customer and mug club member. Pegacorn Porter quickly became his favorite Guardian beer. Now he’s excited to be part of the Guardian family!
HOLLY SCHITTENHELM, ASSISTANT TAPROOM MANAGER & ASSISTANT BREWER
Holly was born and raised in Liberty, Michigan, surrounded by farms, lakes and wooded acres. She has a science degree in Sustainable Brewing from Kalamazoo Valley CC. She interned with Imperial Beverage learning craft beer sales and distribution skills, which took her all across state. She’s been working in bars and breweries for almost 10 years, starting in small roles and slowly working her way up in the industry.
Most days, you’ll find Holly chasing sunsets at Saugatuck Dunes or hiking local trails near Lake Michigan. Her happiest times are spent with friends and family, cooking, relaxing or gathered around a bonfire. Holly loves using her fascination with fermentation to create new conversations and new friendships. She loves working at an LGBTQ+ owned business spearheaded by women – breaking glass ceilings and learning from the best.
LIZ VANDENBIL, ASSISTANT TAPROOM MANAGER
Liz was born and raised on the south side of Holland, Michigan. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Communication from Michigan State University in 2016 where she also minored in Graphic Design and Public Relations. Since graduation, Liz has worked locally in both the Saugatuck and Fennville area, event coordinating, assisting a local artist in the production of her work, and working as a Brand Ambassador and in the taproom at a local cidery.
In her downtime, Liz loves creating, spending time with friends and family, traveling around Michigan, and cheering for her Spartans. She enjoys working with such a well-rounded and hard-working group of individuals at Guardian and looks forward to continuing to grow alongside the ever-evolving company.
KAI MALUS, KITCHEN LEAD
STEPHEN STODDARD, LEAD LINE COOK