Bad Apple Brewing Company is owned and run by the Ingram family. Jason and Sarah Ingram were raised in Huron County. They have always loved living by Lake Huron and wanted to raise their two children here as well. In 2011, when a property with a beautiful house and century barn, on a 4.9 acre orchard came up for sale and was just a 10 minute walk from the lake, they decided to make it their forever home. They saw all the potential the property had and spent the first three years learning to care for the property and playing around with ideas of what they could do with it.
Jason and his father Sandy both had a passion for home brewing and during those first three years they planted all different kinds of fruit they could experiment with in their home brews: more apple trees, cherry trees, black and red currents and 5 different varieties of grapes. Jason also began building his own home brewing system and haven in the barn. Jason liked the idea of brewing his creations for others. Sarah enjoyed caring for the orchard and liked the idea of opening a farm gate store to sell the apples as well as other local products. In the end, both ideas turned into what is now Bad Apple Brewing Company.
Bad Apple Brewing Company opened in 2014 as a ferment on premises (also known as a U-Brew). Jason had been home brewing for years and wanted to teach his passion for home brewing to others. He had turned his little brewing haven in the barn into a business. You could say Bad Apple is a business literally born in a barn! In fact, that is what we called one of our first beers! Brewing was fun and something he really enjoyed doing as a side business from his full time job as a sheet metal foreman and estimator. The decision to switch licensing to a Beer Manufacturer allowing Bad Apple Brewing Company to function as a micro or craft brewery was made once Jason was able to increase the size of his brewhouse. He also had many customers coming in asking if they could buy product by the bottle which he was not able to do under the ferment on premises license.
It was September 2016 when Jason and Sarah officially received the new license for Bad Apple, and the business started to function as a craft brewery. Their flagship beer was West Coast White, a wheat beer spiced with a hint of cardamom. It is still one of their best sellers.
In 2018, they were able to grow their brewhouse again. This new brewhouse provided the ability to brew 15 hectolitre batches- still considered small batch, craft beer but greatly increasing the brewhouse output. So after installing the brewhouse himself, Jason made the difficult decision to quit his sheet metal career and go full time as the brewer and president of Bad Apple Brewing Company. Jason enjoys seeing people enjoying his beer creations, talking beer, and telling stories. He also loves giving tours and still loves teaching about the brewing process.
Through the years Jason has worked at perfecting a variety of craft beer recipes. Including the West Coast White, Jim’s Juicy IPA, Apple Blossom Honey Brown, Snappy Apple Sour, Black Monday Dunkelweizen, Irish Red Ale and Bannock Burn Scottish Ale. He also brews for some local neighbouring businesses in St. Joseph’s. Hessenland Inn asked Jason to brew their Hessenland Helles which has become one of the most popular beers sold at Bad Apple as well as at Hessenland. He also was asked in 2020 to brew a light lager for the White Squirrel Golf Club, called the Swinging Squirrel- another popular favourite available at the Golf club or at Bad Apple.
Sarah Ingram, Vice President of Bad Apple Brewing Company still likes to focus on caring for the orchard and gardens but also manages the advertising, social media and event planning side of the business. Sarah opened the orchard as a ‘you pick’ business in 2014 and to this day if you want the experience of picking your own fresh apples off the tree, you can come to Bad Apple in September or October and pick. Only now you can also enjoy a beer while you’re out picking your apples! Sarah also ran with her idea of having a store that sells local products. When you come to Bad Apple you can shop for the latest craft beers they have to offer as well as support other local companies by picking up their coffee, kombucha, meat sticks, hot sauce, maple syrup, spices, charcuterie boards and the list is always growing! Sarah loves helping to organize inventory, choosing what swag to purchase next, and putting on events for the community and Bad Apple patrons. She loves seeing people enjoying themselves and sharing in their passion for great beer, relaxing atmosphere and the beautiful scenery of the Bad Apple Orchard, she likes to call the Bad Apple Badlands!
Jason and Sarah both see the potential for Bad Apple to be a community hub. This vision really came to light in the summer of 2020 when people needed a safe place to reunite with their family after the first COVID lockdown. Picnic tables were spread out through the orchard giving people a place to meet safely with their social circle. It started with Father’s Day weekend and multiple families reporting that their meeting at Bad Apple was the first time they had seen each other in 4 months, as well as the first time they had really ‘gone out’. This encouraged the couple to give people more of what they seemed to need: a fun, safe place to enjoy with their friends and family. They brought in food trucks, live music, campfires, and Yoga and Brew in the orchard.