When I moved to Michigan, specifically Kalamazoo, I was served two drinks almost immediately at the hotel bar - Oberon (which had just been tapped), and then a Two-Hearted Ale. As I looked over the cans, the sun made sense for Oberon.

But when I looked over the Two-Hearted can, I was confused, and so was the bartender (which was strange, since he said he was FROM Kalamazoo, and never thought about it). So my question was left unanswered... WHY does Two-Hearted Ale have river trout on the design?

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The story behind the beer, I found out while taking the Bell's Tour, is that it's named for the Two-Hearted river in the Upper Peninsula. And it just so happens that trout fishing in the Two-Hearted is pretty good.

Some say the beer, and the design of the beer's label, resembles the vibe of Ernest Hemingway's short story, "Big Two-Hearted River," which also mentions the great trout fishing up north.

One thing, though, that maybe even Larry Bell didn't know when conceptualizing the beer, was that the iconic river trout that he had put on the design... actually has two hearts. I won't get into the boring science details of why, but basically, mother nature evolved the fish to properly distribute oxygenated blood through the fish's body.

So there are many possibilities as to where the name, and the fish came from, but the good thing is, we should get a definitive answer soon enough.

Two-Hearted Documentary Premiering in Kalamazoo

A new documentary called "A Two Hearted Tale" just premiered at KP Cinemas in downtown Kalamazoo, May 2nd, directed by Rory K. McHarg. The film, which took McHarg three years to make, and actually documents the artwork that was made for the beer by Ladislav Hanka.

The film has actually been making the rounds for a while now, and won best feature at Fresh Coast Festival, and was screened at Indy Film Fest. McHarg also plans on taking it to the Freep Film Fest in Detroit, and the Capital City Film Fest in Lansing soon.

Take a Quick Tour of Bell's Original Downtown Brewery

Gallery Credit: Meatball/TSM

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