Despite the escalating success of the craft brewing industry in Michigan, it’s still a challenge to find a high quality beer shop within Detroit’s city limits. Beyond a meager selection, you’ll be hard pressed to find a clerk with superior beer knowledge, and a passion for the now well established craft beer culture.

Those days are finally done, though.

Craft beer nerds rejoice, because 8 Degrees Plato is finally open in the Cass Corridor section of Midtown, and it’s packed with the finest beers around, an inviting atmosphere, and a staff that’s bubbling with enthusiasm and knowledge about all things beer.


Scotty, the manager of the midtown location, is a laid back guy with an obvious enthusiasm for great beer. An avid supporter of the Ferndale location, when the company started posting jobs for the new location he applied, and was hired.

We chatted with him about the new digs, great beers, and if a good pumpkin beer actually exists.

“Tim Castello and Brigitte Beaubien live in the city of Detroit and have always wanted to have a bottle shop like this in the city. They looked for years but couldn’t really find a good spot in Detroit, so in 2011 they ended up moving into Ferndale, which is where our first location is at 9 and Livernois.”

“But Tim and Brigette have both been working really hard to find a spot in the city, and lo and behold, after a few other deals fell through they found this beauty.”


“It took over a year to get the space together. There’s been so much anticipation. We had our soft opening last weekend and we were rocking. Everyone that walks in is like ‘I’ve been so excited for you guys to open and we’re glad you’re in the neighborhood.'”

The space is beautiful. Clean cut and ripe with the smell of saw dust, but still warm and inviting. It’s elegant but not pretentious. It feels like the quintessential neighborhood shop from before the big box retail invasion.

Beyond the beautiful space, it’s clear they take serious pride in what they do here. The stock is highly specialized, hand selected by folks who love beer with fiery passion.

“No one is gonna have this type of inventory, and not just that, but this type of staff. We’re all super into beer, we’re ambassadors for each beer. When people come in here we want them to say ‘where’s Erica, she always knows what I like.’ We want to walk you through what’s going on with each beer, we take a lot of pride in that type of knowledge and our experience. It’s fun, too. People come back and are like ‘ I gotta have that beer again.'”


In addition to an a selection that will make even the biggest beer snob quiver with delight, the shop features a small bar with a number of great beers of draft, all of which are remarkably affordable.

“I’m blown away by our prices. The pours are between 5 and 6 bucks. You can also get a custom 6 pack. As long as the beers you choose normally come in a 4 or 6 pack, then you can choose your own 6 and get 10% off the total cost of that 6 pack — so you’re basically getting a free beer.”



Our bar tender, Erica, knew the ins and outs of the selection and made excellent recommendations for us. Her enthusiasm was contagious and made the experience all the more enjoyable.

The space and staff give offer the small business mentality that you won’t find at the larger corporate chains. They want to get to know you and keep you as a satisfied customer.

“I feel like we already have a couple of regulars. We want to know everybody’s name that comes in.”


From the labels on the growlers and T-shirts (made by creator of the Detroit Beer Press, Ian Burk) to the bar that supported our suds, the décor is all Detroit, all the way.

“The bar you’re sitting at, was reclaimed from the old agave where Hop Cast is now. The book shelf is from the old Cass Tech library, and those shelves over there,” he points to a shelf stocked with Michigan goods, “are bleachers from the old Cass Tech high school. The tables are from an old judges chamber. So everything is reclaimed or the original material from when the building was built.”

“The guys that we worked with were the Detroit architectural salvage company. They go around Detroit and grab stuff from old buildings and houses and fix it up and make it look great.”




I asked Scotty what is the one item everyone must try when they visit 8 Degrees. “It’s a coin flip between the Greenbush Axiom and the Redgrain Beaubien Bourbon Farm. Both beers are exclusive to our location. Brigitte and Tim had a hand in brewing those beers, and they are only available here. They both have some good wheels on them because the alcohol is 9% on both of them. So they drink really easily but they’re gonna make you feel all tingly … in a good way.”

And isn’t that what we’re all after?


In the event you can’t find what you’re looking for in stock, you can order kegs of just about anything, and they can work with you to arrange beer delivery.

Enjoying a nice buzz from the samplers, I wrapped up by asking Scotty the obligatory fall beer drinking question — which pumpkin beer reigns supreme?

“Aw man, if I had to pick a top three — Dog Fish Head Pumpkin, Ichabod Pumpkin from New Holland, and my wife would kill me if I didn’t say … NO, you know what, I’m gonna throw a curve ball and say the seasonal from Blake’s Orchard in Armada, Michigan, Blake’s Apple Lantern, it’s apple orchard. It’s an apple pumpkin molasses cider. It’s amazing. Absolutely amazing.”

Find them at 3409 Cass in Detroit.

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