Beer News

BrewDog says it will take care of Ohio first

Ohio Beer Blog - Mon, 02/20/2017 - 9:45am

BrewDog USA says it will take care of Ohio first.

The Scottish brewer, which is opening a new brewery in Canal Winchester, Ohio, announced distribution deals last week with Superior Beverage Group and Cavalier Distributing to handle its beers in Buckeye State.

"We have some insane plans for growth in Ohio, and will be scaling rapidly in our home state to start with," the brewery said in its online announcement. "We’re focusing our efforts on the incredible response from local counties before spreading our wings beyond state lines, and are pretty excited to start seeing BrewDog beer appearing in some of the state’s amazing craft beer bars and venues."

BrewDog is close to opening its new brewery. Meanwhile, DogTap, its restaurant and tasting room, opens today. (Feb. 20.)

To read the full story, including a breakdown of which distributor is handling which Ohio county, click here.

Categories: Beer News

New brewery roundup

Ohio Beer Blog - Mon, 02/20/2017 - 8:15am

Here's the rundown of the brewing permits pending before the Ohio Division of Liquor Control. These could be for new breweries or existing breweries that are expanding with new locations. I've also added hyperlinks when I could find working websites or Facebook pages.

This list isn't a comprehensive list of every brewery planning to open in the state. It's just the ones that have filed paperwork with the state.

To help with anybody who regularly checks, I've added the word "New>>" to the operations that are new this week. I also realized that I should make a special note of breweries that aren't on the list anymore from the previous week.

So congratulations to March First Manufacturing in Cincinnati for receiving its state brewing permits.

Here you go, sorted by region, and accurate as of the morning of Feb. 17:

 

Southwest Ohio

 

• 13 Below Brewery, 7391 Forbes Road, Cincinnati.

DogBerry Brewing, 9964 Crescent Park Drive, West Chester.

Fab Ferments, 611 Shepherd Drive, Lockland.

Kennedy Vineyard, 3911 State Route 722, New Madison.

Meier's Wine Cellars, 6955 Plainfield Road, Silverton.

Sons of Toil Brewing Co., 14090 Klein Road, Mount Orab.

Taft's Ale House, 4831 Spring Grove, Cincinnati.

Tap & Screw Brewery, 3026 Madison Road, Cincinnati.

West Side Brewing, 3044 Harrison Ave., Cincinnati.

Wine House OTR, 111 E. 12th St., Cincinnati.

 

Northeast Ohio

 

Boss Dog Brewing Co., 2179 Lee Road, Cleveland Heights.

• Cle Brewing, 31525 Aurora Road, Solon.

Fat Head’s Brewery, 3885-3893 Everhard Road, Canton.

Hoodletown Brewing Co., 424 W. 3rd St., Dover.

Hop Tree Brewing, 1297 Hudson Gate Drive, Hudson.

The Jolly Scholar, 11111 Euclid Ave., Cleveland.

Magic City Brewing Co., 561 W. Tuscarawas Ave., Barberton.

Missing Falls Brewery, 10 Main St., Munroe Falls.

Monzula Farm, 83800 Monzula Road, Cadiz.

Noble Beast Brewing Co., 1468 Lakeside Ave., Cleveland.

Sandy Springs Brewing Co., 232 N. Market St., Minerva.

17th State Brewing Co., 9200 Tyler Blvd., Mentor.

Terrestrial Brewing Co., 7524 Father Frascati Drive, Cleveland.

Uniontown Brewing Co., 105 W. Main St., Ashland.

• Veteran Brewhouse, 829 Country Road 801, Ashland.

VPL, 14101 Market St., Columbiana.

Working Class Brewery, 17448 Lorain Ave., Cleveland.

 

Central Ohio

 

 

Combustion Brewery & Taproom, 80 W. Church St., Pickerington.

The Commissary, 1400 Dublin Road, Marble Cliff.

• Happy Street Bru Werks, 209 S. Gay St., Mount Vernon.

Loose Rail Brewing, 37 W. Waterloo, Canal Winchester.

Ram Restaurant & Brewery, 6632 Longshore St., Dublin.

Wild Ohio Brewing Co., 930 Freeway Drive, Columbus.

Y Bridge Brewing Co., 1417 Linden Ave., Zanesville.

 

Southeast Ohio

 

• Brewery 33, 12684 College Prospect Drive, Logan.

• Dungeon Hollow Brewing Co., 572 County Road 22, Bloomingdale.

 

Northwest Ohio

 

Amusement Ales and Brewery, 161 E. Market St., Sandusky.

• Bait House Brewery, 223 Meigs St., Sandusky.

• East 55 Restaurants LLC, which operates Goldhorn Brewery, 101 E. Water St., Sandusky.

Findlay Brewing Co., 213 E. Crawford St., Findlay.

NEW>>>>• White Shutter Winery, 3794 County Road 56, Nevada.

 

Western Ohio

 

Brew Nation, 110 E. Poplar, Sidney.

Java Nation, 108-110 S. Main St., Celina.

Categories: Beer News

Hi-Wire Brewing moving into Ohio

Ohio Beer Blog - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 12:34pm

 

Hi-Wire Brewing is moving into Ohio.

The Asheville, N.C., brewery announced that it has hooked up with Premium Beverage Supply and will distribute its full portfolio throughout the Buckeye State. The roll-out begins Sunday (Feb. 19) and there are kick-off events planned in Cleveland, Toledo, Columbus, Cincinnati and Dayton.

“Ohio has a good number of retailers that prioritize craft beer sales and putting new brands in front of their customers," brewery director of sales Chris Lutkowski said in a prepared statement. "Regardless of whether or not it’s the bar down the street or the large box retailer that covers the country, the retailers take pride in understanding what the consumers want and what they are willing to try."

Ohio is one of three new markets planned for Hi-Wire, which wants to grow sales by 60 percent this year.

"The launch of Ohio is an exciting new step for Hi-Wire and North Carolina made beer in general," co-owner Chris Frosaker said. "Ohio is a top-five craft beer state, and its beer drinkers have more commonly been making Asheville a must-visit location. We are honored to be able to 'export Asheville' to these amazing beer markets."

To view all the kick-off events, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Five questions with ... Jared Hamilton

Ohio Beer Blog - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 10:04am

Jared Hamilton is the head brewer at Taft's Ale House in Cincinnati. The brewpub was born out of a former church in the city's Over-the-Rhine neighborhood.

Question: Why did you become a brewer?

Answer: I became a brewer because I had to. I spent all four years of school at The Ohio State University bouncing between areas of study and landing on a degree that I had no passion for. During that time I started getting into beer and all of the styles out there.

When I started homebrewing and getting into the process, it clicked. Brewing is what I was looking for and not finding in the years at school. It just felt right. When I got the opportunity to start working at Mt. Carmel Brewing Co., it all came into focus. Process flow and crafting beer fulfilled the need that was absent in my working life.

Q: Taft's has announced plans to open a production brewery. Can you give us an update on the project and where it stands?

A: We are set to brew at our 50,000-square-foot production facility in mid April. Taft’s Brewing Co., as it will be called, is located six miles north of our brewpub in the Spring Grove Village neighborhood of Cincinnati.

I recently visited our equipment manufacturer BrauKon in Germany and I am just itching to put the system through its paces. We will be brewing on a four-vessel 50-barrel brewhouse and have taken delivery of seven 100-barrel fermenters.

Our plan is to launch expanded distribution with our three core brands in cans and on draft. Those are: Nellie’s Key Lime Caribbean-Style Ale, 27 Lager and Gavel Banger IPA. We will also be pushing seasonal beers out on draft that we have found success with producing at our Over-the-Rhine based brewpub, Taft’s Ale House. Soon after we start production we will be opening our taproom at the production facility.

More details to come...

Q: What advice can you give future brewers to be successful?

A: A lot of the advice I would give could apply to any industry.

Keep an open line of communication with your team. Brewing is rarely a solo sport and my experience has shown that the best results usually come from a melding of the minds.

Attention to detail and problem solving are two of the most important attributes in a brewer. You have to use all of your senses at all times to not only analyze product but also to inform you of what is happening in the brewery. Is that the sound of a malfunctioning pump? Did that shift in hop aroma mean your kettle is boiling over? Your level of awareness is going to help improve your product and your workflow.

Q: What’s your best-selling beer and why do you think it’s so popular?

A: Our best-selling beer has been Nellie's Key Lime Caribbean-Style Ale. It is a crisp blonde ale brewed with coriander and natural key lime flavor added. I think that its success is attributed to its ability to satisfy a number of segments of beer drinkers. The unique combination of ingredients and refreshing drinkability please craft enthusiasts and newcomers alike.

Q: Which beer – any beer in the world – do you wish that you created/invented/brewed and why?

A: I would have to say Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. It is the epitome of balance. Balance is what I am constantly striving for in beer design. It really just hits on all of the great attributes of a beer: drinkabilty, flavor, aroma, and the marriage of hops and malt character. On a personal note, my parents met at Chico State University where Sierra Nevada started. The environment that helped produce this beer is the same place that led to my existence. That has to be a good thing.

Categories: Beer News

Beer story sampler

Ohio Beer Blog - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 9:39am

Here are some interesting beer stories:

-- Cleveland.com reports that the Middleburg Heights Planning Commission has given preliminary plan approval for a new 125,000-square-foot building that will include a new Fat Head's production brewery. To read the full story, click here.

-- Columbus Business First reports on the new DogTap tasting room at the new BrewDog brewery in Canal Winchester. The place has 24 taps and will serve a mix of BrewDog and guest beers. To read the full story, click here.

-- The Cincinnati Business Courier reports on the 10th anniversary of the Cincy Winter Beerfest. "Cincinnati was really behind the times," founder Craig Johnson says. "The famous saying that it happens five to 10 years later was definitely true of craft beer."To read the full story, click here.

-- WCPO in Cincinnati reports on a new 20-barrel brewery and distillery planned for the historic Christian Moerlein Brewing Co. complex in the city's Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. The brewery doesn't have a name yet. "It's sort of bringing the building back to what it used to be," co-founder David Berger says. To read the full story, click here.

-- WKYC-TV in Cleveland reports on the expansion plans of Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. into Cleveland. The Akron brewery is working on opening a tasting room there. (As a side, I am interviewed for this story.) To read or watch the whole story, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Hoppin' Frog releases Rare Beer Club details

Ohio Beer Blog - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 1:53pm

Hoppin' Frog Brewery released details Thursday (Feb. 16) about its new Rare Beer Club that will launch on Feb. 25.

The club will cost $200 a year. But never fear, owner and award-winning brewer Fred Karm said, because members will receive $250 worth of beer and merchandise just for signing up. More on those perks in a second.

The club will work like this: Members will get access to limited-release beers brewed just for the club at a special club price in the Tasting Room. They also will be given the opportunity to buy other limited-release beers before the general public. On top of that, members, will get a 10 percent discount on food and merchandise.

As for the perks for signing up, each member will receive bottles of 2011 B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal Imperial Stout, 2012 Barrel Aged Naked Evil BBW (Belgian-style Barleywine), 2013 Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Bairlle Aois, 2014 Gulden Fraug Belgian-style Strong Ale, Gavel Slammer Monumental Dark Ale, Rum Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal Imperial Stout, SS Stout - Scandinavian Sour Stout, and Du Hast Mich deFrogt!.

"I've always wanted to do something like this," Karm said.

People can sign up beginning at 11 a.m. Saturday, when the Akron brewery also will host its RateBeer Best Celebration Party. Hoppin' Frog was honored last month as one of RateBeer.com's Top 100 Brewers in the World.The brewery will have RateBeer Best shirts, special beers, vinyl music, and live music by the Acid Cats from 9 to 11:30 p.m.

Membership in the club is going to be capped at a certain number but Karm wouldn't say how many. He said he doesn't want to discourage people from attending the event and signing up. The brewery plans to keep a waiting list if too many people sign up -- or even consider adding another tier to the membership.

Categories: Beer News

Scrabble anyone? Brink uses Scrabble-like tiles for beer menu

Ohio Beer Blog - Wed, 02/15/2017 - 2:44pm

Andrew McCleese admits that it’ll be a pain in the ass to introduce a new beer on the giant beer menu above the bar at Brink Brewing Co.

See, the production brewery and tasting room, which opens to the public this weekend in Cincinnati’s College Hill neighborhood, doesn’t employ the usual chalkboard or television showcasing the beer offerings.

Brink uses large Scrabble-like tiles.

Each beer name has to be painstakingly spelled out one capitalized L-E-T-T-E-R at a time. Considering the brewery has some not-so-short names such as Good Day Sir Imperial IPA and Fashionably Late-Oatmeal Pale Ale, the process can take awhile.

“They didn’t trust our handwriting,” McCleese, a co-owner and director of operations, deadpanned about the tiles.

He noted that the brewery just wanted to do something different. There’s even a large Scrabble board hanging on a front wall, tying the Scrabble-theme together. McCleese emphasized that Brink will be a family-friendly neighborhood place and the brewery is working on developing a root beer for kids.

Brink, which has a seven-barrel brewing system in the back and in full view for customers, opens at noon Sunday. (Feb. 19) It will be open 4 to 10 p.m. Monday through Wednesday; 3 to 11 p.m. Thursday; 2 p.m. to midnight Saturday; and 1 to 9 p.m. Sunday.

The tasting room has 20 taps and Brink hopes eventually to offer anywhere from 16 to 18 of its own beers on draft.

Brink is going to need a lot of tiles.

Categories: Beer News

Beer story sampler

Ohio Beer Blog - Wed, 02/15/2017 - 9:55am

Here are some interesting Ohio beer stories:

-- Cincinnati.com reports on the 10-year anniversary of the Cincy Winter Beerfest, which takes place this weekend (Feb. 17-18) at the Duke Energy Center. "When we started, it was just an idea for something fun," founder Craig Johnson says. To read the full story, click here.

-- The News-Herald reports on the opening of Brim Restaurant and Brewhouse in Willoughby. "We want  people to feel completely satisfied and happy when they leave here," owner T.J. Reagan says. To read the full story, click here.

-- Cleveland.com reports that Collision Bend Brewing Co. in the Flats is two months away from opening. The brewery is being launched by restauranteur Zack Bruell and former Great Lakes Brewing Co. brewer Luke Purcell. To read the full story, click here.

-- Patrick Woodward from Pat's Pints provides a rundown of his experience at the recent Ohio Craft Brewers Association conference in Cincinnati. "You might be wondering if a craft brewers conference is like the ultimate beer festival or more closely akin to a meeting of the American Dental Association," he writes. "The answer it turns out is somewhere in between." To read the full review, click here.

-- The Cincinnati Business Courier reports that MadTree Brewing Co. ran out of some beer styles during its grand opening Saturday. "Luckily, we had an army of people working -- people sitting listening for kegs to blow to swap them out, two people dedicated to running up and down the line in our warehouse space grabbing kegs," spokesman Mike Stuart says. To read the full story, click here.

-- The Mahoning Valley Flight Crew stopped by the Magic Tree Pub & Eatery in Boardman to get schooled on Belgian beers by Phill Reda. "I traveled to Belgium in 2011 to learn as much as I could about Belgian beers and their storied histories," Reda says. To read the full story, click here.

Categories: Beer News

CNU to host forum in Cincinnati on impact of breweries on neighborhoods

Ohio Beer Blog - Wed, 02/15/2017 - 9:35am

The Congress for New Urbanism-Midwest will host a forum as part of the upcoming Bockfest in Cincinnati that explores the impact of breweries on neighborhoods.

The event, dubbed "The New Neighborhood Brewery," is set for noon to 6 p.m. March 3 at the Woodward Theater in the city's Over the Rhine neighborhood. Tickets are $25.

"Across the United States, local breweries are establishing in communities and once again becoming part of the social and urban fabric," the group says. "They are having a tangible effect on real estate, economic development, and placemaking within their locales."

For more details or to register, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Akronym Brewing hopes for fall opening in downtown Akron

Ohio Beer Blog - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 11:51am

Akronym Brewing LLC, a new production brewery and tasting room that hopes to launch in downtown Akron this fall, is looking to be compared to the city’s brewing greats.

“We’re going to be making world-class beer like Thirsty Dog and Hoppin’ Frog,” co-founder and brewer Shawn Adams said. “Our main thing is we’re going to focus on quality.”

Thirsty Dog and Hoppin’ Frog are the city’s two established breweries that have won multiple awards at national and international beer competitions.

Adams and longtime homebrewing friends Josh Blubaugh and Aaron Cruikshank — who all live in Akron — are signing a five-year agreement to lease vacant, city-owned retail space at the High/Market parking garage.

The street-level property, at 58 E. Market St., is across the street from the Crave restaurant and around the corner from the Akron Art Museum and Akron-Summit County Public Library. The Akronym partners hope to be an anchor in the area and spur additional development there.

“We found that spot through the city and couldn’t be more excited about where we’re at,” Adams said.

City Council is expected to approve the lease agreement at its next meeting on Feb. 27. The agreement calls for annual lease payments of $25,067.

The space, about 3,000 square feet, has been empty since the parking deck was completed in 2006.

“This is a welcome [sight] to see that space occupied,” said Jeff Fusco, who chairs the council’s planning committee. “It’s going to really add to that neighborhood there. It’s wonderful.”

Akronym is part of a new wave of breweries opening in the Akron area. They include HiHO in Cuyahoga Falls, Two Monks in Akron and Wadsworth in Wadsworth. McArthur’s Brew House also is on the verge of opening in Cuyahoga Falls.

Akronym — the owners wanted the name to have a connection with the city — will launch with a 10-barrel brewing system, instantly making it one of the larger breweries in the community. The goal is to sell 12 beers on draft at the tasting room, with only limited distribution outside the brewery.

There are no immediate plans to offer food. Instead, Akronym will partner with local restaurants and allow people to bring food to the brewery.

The owners want to provide a wide variety of beer styles — everything from hop-forward brews to saisons. They also want to produce lagers.

“I think people are getting back into lagers,” said Adams, 42, a firefighter. “We like to make them fresh here. If you can get a fresh helles, it’ll change your life but you almost have to go to Germany to get one.”

Blubaugh, 42, works in the information technology field, while Cruikshank, 32, is in marketing.

The Akronym website and logo will be unveiled soon.

“We are going to strive to have world-class beers that can win medals at the World Beer Cup and the Great American Beer Festival,” Adams said.

Categories: Beer News

Cincinnati man files class action suit over Walmart beer

Ohio Beer Blog - Mon, 02/13/2017 - 9:02pm

A Cincinnati man is hoping to cause some trouble for Walmart, accusing the retailer in a new class-action lawsuit of fraudulently claiming that it's selling its own line of craft beer.

Walmart made a splash last summer with the release of its private-label Cat's Away IPA, After Party Pale Ale, Red Flag Amber and 'Round Midnight Belgian White. The beers are made under the Trouble Brewing brand at the Genessee Brewing Co. in Rochester, N.Y.

The beers have come under fire by craft beer purists who argue that they don't fit the true definition of craft. The new lawsuit, filed Friday (Feb. 10) by Matthew Adam in Hamilton County Common Pleas Court, makes the same claim.

"Defendant's craft beer has never been a 'craft beer,' nor has it been produced by a craft brewery," the lawsuit says. "Rather, it is a wholesale fiction created by the defendant that was designed to deceive consumers into purchasing the craft beer at a higher, inflated price."

The lawsuit asks for an injunction ending Walmart's ability to advertise and label the beers as craft beer, along with an unnamed amount of compensatory and punitive damages.

To read the full lawsuit obtained by Courthouse News Service, which noted that Walmart didn't return a call for comment, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Christian Moerlein releasing FC Cincinnati Blood Orange IPA in 16-ounce cans

Ohio Beer Blog - Mon, 02/13/2017 - 1:29pm

Christian Moerlein Brewing Co. is releasing its FC Cincinnati Blood Orange IPA in 16-ounce cans in late February in time for the United Soccer League season.

The beer, first released last summer, is a collaboration between the brewery and soccer team. It will be available in four-packs.

The can design features FC Cincinnati’s orange and blue colors, and showcases the FC Cincinnati and Christian Moerlein logos.

The official launch will be held at 4 p.m. Thursday (Feb. 16) at the Christian Moerlein Malt House Taproom. Free Moerlein FC Cincinnati Blood Orange IPA posters will be given out at the event. The beer also will be served at the 10th annual Cincy Winter Beerfest this weekend.

For more details, click here.

Categories: Beer News

BrewDog offers leave for workers who get new dog

Ohio Beer Blog - Mon, 02/13/2017 - 11:16am

You've heard of parental leave.

You've heard of bereavement leave.

You've heard of sick leave.

How about "Puppy Parental Leave?"

BrewDog, the Scottish brewer that is opening a brewery in Canal Winchester, Ohio, this spring, today (Feb. 13) announced that it will become the first known company in America to offer seven days off work paid leave when workers get a new dog. It can either be a puppy or a rescue.

"It’s not easy trying to juggle work and settle a new dog into your life, and many members of our crew have four-legged friends at home," brewery co-founder James Watt said in a prepared statement. "So we wanted to take the stress out of the situation and let our teams take the time they need to welcome their new puppy or dog into their family. We always want to raise the bar when it comes to offering our staff the best possible benefits; at BrewDog, we care about two things above all else. People and beer. We also just really really like dogs."

The unusual perk is available to employees at the Scotland brewery, Canal Winchester brewery and the BrewDog pubs. BrewDog has nearly 1,000 workers. (In case you're wondering, the company also offers parental leave for human babies.)

Speaking of BrewDog, the brewery will open DogTap, its restaurant and tasting room, at its new Ohio brewery on Feb. 20. A special preview event for Equity for Punks investors is set for Wednesday.

Drink Up Columbus got a preview, as well, and you can check out the website's story and photos by clicking here.

Puppy Parental Leave from BrewDog on Vimeo.

Categories: Beer News

New brewery roundup

Ohio Beer Blog - Mon, 02/13/2017 - 9:35am

Here's the rundown of the brewing permits pending before the Ohio Division of Liquor Control. These could be for new breweries or existing breweries that are expanding with new locations. I've also added hyperlinks when I could find working websites or Facebook pages.

This list isn't a comprehensive list of every brewery planning to open in the state. It's just the ones that have filed paperwork with the state.

To help with anybody who regularly checks, I've added the word "New>>" to the operations that are new this week. I also realized that I should make a special note of breweries that aren't on the list anymore from the previous week.

So congratulations to Vibrant Family Winery in Geneva, BrewDog in Canal Winchester, and Quenched and Tempered Brewery in Grand Rapids for receiving their state brewing permits.

Here you go, sorted by region, and accurate as of the morning of Feb. 10:

 

Southwest Ohio

 

• 13 Below Brewery, 7391 Forbes Road, Cincinnati.

NEW>> • DogBerry Brewing, 9964 Crescent Park Drive, West Chester.

Fab Ferments, 611 Shepherd Drive, Lockland.

Kennedy Vineyard, 3911 State Route 722, New Madison.

• March First Manufacturing, 7885 E. Kemper Road, Cincinnati.

Meier's Wine Cellars, 6955 Plainfield Road, Silverton.

Sons of Toil Brewing Co., 14090 Klein Road, Mount Orab.

Taft's Ale House, 4831 Spring Grove, Cincinnati.

Tap & Screw Brewery, 3026 Madison Road, Cincinnati.

West Side Brewing, 3044 Harrison Ave., Cincinnati.

Wine House OTR, 111 E. 12th St., Cincinnati.

 

Northeast Ohio

 

Boss Dog Brewing Co., 2179 Lee Road, Cleveland Heights.

• Cle Brewing, 31525 Aurora Road, Solon.

Fat Head’s Brewery, 3885-3893 Everhard Road, Canton.

Hoodletown Brewing Co., 424 W. 3rd St., Dover.

Hop Tree Brewing, 1297 Hudson Gate Drive, Hudson.

The Jolly Scholar, 11111 Euclid Ave., Cleveland.

Magic City Brewing Co., 561 W. Tuscarawas Ave., Barberton.

Missing Falls Brewery, 10 Main St., Munroe Falls.

Monzula Farm, 83800 Monzula Road, Cadiz.

Noble Beast Brewing Co., 1468 Lakeside Ave., Cleveland.

Sandy Springs Brewing Co., 232 N. Market St., Minerva.

17th State Brewing Co., 9200 Tyler Blvd., Mentor.

Terrestrial Brewing Co., 7524 Father Frascati Drive, Cleveland.

Uniontown Brewing Co., 105 W. Main St., Ashland.

• Veteran Brewhouse, 829 Country Road 801, Ashland.

VPL, 14101 Market St., Columbiana.

Working Class Brewery, 17448 Lorain Ave., Cleveland.

 

Central Ohio

 

 

Combustion Brewery & Taproom, 80 W. Church St., Pickerington.

The Commissary, 1400 Dublin Road, Marble Cliff.

• Happy Street Bru Werks, 209 S. Gay St., Mount Vernon.

Loose Rail Brewing, 37 W. Waterloo, Canal Winchester.

Ram Restaurant & Brewery, 6632 Longshore St., Dublin.

Wild Ohio Brewing Co., 930 Freeway Drive, Columbus.

Y Bridge Brewing Co., 1417 Linden Ave., Zanesville.

 

Southeast Ohio

 

• Brewery 33, 12684 College Prospect Drive, Logan.

• Dungeon Hollow Brewing Co., 572 County Road 22, Bloomingdale.

 

Northwest Ohio

 

Amusement Ales and Brewery, 161 E. Market St., Sandusky.

• Bait House Brewery, 223 Meigs St., Sandusky.

• East 55 Restaurants LLC, which operates Goldhorn Brewery, 101 E. Water St., Sandusky.

Findlay Brewing Co., 213 E. Crawford St., Findlay.

 

Western Ohio

 

Brew Nation, 110 E. Poplar, Sidney.

Java Nation, 108-110 S. Main St., Celina.

Categories: Beer News

New Summit Brew Path puts spotlight on Akron-Canton

Ohio Beer Blog - Sat, 02/11/2017 - 2:24pm

With beer tourism booming across the country, the Akron/Summit Convention & Visitors Bureau is launching a beer trail to take advantage of the region’s growing craft brewery scene.

The Summit Brew Path — only the second one of its kind in Ohio — will debut next Saturday. (Feb. 18)

The trail, which involves a passport, stamps and the website www.summitbrewpath.com, highlights more than 20 established and soon-to-open breweries in the Akron and Canton area.

“We’re marketing to people to come and taste some of the best beer in the country, all within a relatively small footprint,” said Gregg Mervis, president and CEO of the visitors bureau.

The region boasts many award-winning breweries, including Hoppin’ Frog Brewery and Thirsty Dog Brewing Co., both in Akron. Hoppin’ Frog has consistently been named one of the top 100 brewers in the world by RateBeer.com.

Tourism leaders see the beer trail as a way to pull in visitors to Greater Akron, with the hope that they stop by restaurants and other attractions, and decide to return to the area. The Summit Brew Path extends outside the county, as beer tourists aren’t constrained by government boundaries.

How it works

The visitors bureau has produced 5,000 passports that are similar in size to a U.S. passport. They provide a quick snapshot of key breweries and offer a map of the region.

They will be available for free at area breweries starting Saturday. Beer drinkers are encouraged to grab one and have it stamped at each brewery after enjoying a beer.

Anyone who accumulates stamps at 14 of the official stops will receive an “I completed the Summit Brew Path” T-shirt and an entry to win a grand prize overnight stay in Akron.

The 14 “official” breweries are: Aqueduct, BrickOven Brew Pub, Hoppin’ Frog, Ohio, R. Shea, Thirsty Dog and Two Monks in Akron; HiHO in Cuyahoga Falls; Mucky Duck in Green, Canton in Canton; Royal Docks and Scenic in Jackson Township; MadCap in Kent; and Wadsworth in Wadsworth.

Beer drinkers also are encouraged to check out other regional breweries such as Lager Heads in Medina, Maize Valley in Marlboro Township and JAFB Wooster in Wooster – all of which have won medals at the prestigious Great American Beer Festival in Denver.

Hoppin’ Frog owner and brewer Fred Karm said he’s been advocating for a beer trail for nearly a decade. The craft beer industry is a collegial one, with brewers often helping and encouraging each other.

“I’m super excited that it’s finally coming around,” he said.

Akron spotlight

The Akron area has been overshadowed by the tremendous brewery growth in other Ohio cities, especially in Cincinnati, Columbus and Dayton.

But the region has been adding breweries at a steady pace, including the recently opened HiHO, Two Monks and Wadsworth. McArthur’s Brew House in Cuyahoga Falls also is close to opening.

Meanwhile, many others are in the works such as Magic City and Ignite in Barberton, Hop Tree in Hudson and Missing Falls in Munroe Falls.

“We’ve been sort of the sleeper here in Akron,” Thirsty Dog co-owner John Najeway said.

Thirsty Dog, which organizes the popular Blues & Brews beer festival each year in Akron, donated some of the proceeds from the event to help fund the trail.

“It’s obviously good for Summit County tourism and great to bring awareness to all of us so we can keep growing,” Najeway said.

Beer tourism

Beer tourism is big business and coveted by many communities.

Cottage industries have popped up to take advantage of the craft beer scene, including beer festivals and beer buses, which will take people safely to multiple breweries in one day.

The Brewers Association, the Boulder, Colo., trade group, estimated that more than 10 million people toured small and independent breweries in 2014. Last year, the website Travelocity even created its first Beer Tourism Index, ranking the country’s best beer destinations.

Portland, Ore., was tops among major metropolitan areas, while Bend, Ore., was the best small area.

There are beer trails all over the country.

There’s the Finger Lakes Beer Trail in New York state, Lake Erie Ale Trail in Erie, Pa., and Lehigh Valley Ale Trail in Pennsylvania. Even whole states have gotten on the brewery bandwagon with the Louisiana Brewery Trail and Vermont Brewery Challenge.

The Columbus Ale Trail, the first one in Ohio, was launched in 2015 with 20 breweries. Organizers, not sure at first about the potential response, printed 10,000 passports, technically called a “Brew Book.”

The passports were snapped up right away and they had to make more.

The Columbus effort was started by the website Drink Up Columbus, Columbus Brew Adventures, The Ohio Taproom and Blue Label Digital Printing, with marketing help from Experience Columbus.

“The Ale Trail guests, breweries and especially the group that worked on it were surprised by how much people enjoyed it and the stories they were happy to share about their discoveries,” said Jim Ellison, co-founder of Columbus Brew Adventures, a brewery tour company in Central Ohio. “The first person to go to all 20 breweries completed the book the day after it was launched. That enthusiasm blew me away.”

In its first year, more than 600 people visited every brewery. They received a pint glass for visiting four places and the first 500 received a T-shirt. Thousands of people have visited at least four breweries.

With six weeks remaining in the second season, 200 people have been to all 28 stops. For the third season, the Columbus Ale Trail will print 35,000 to 40,000 passports and they anticipate having 38 stops.

“As the number of breweries grows it is an ongoing challenge to balance to needs of the different businesses and to keep craft beer fans engaged in the project,” Ellison said.

The Akron/Summit Convention & Visitors Bureau doesn’t expect anyone to complete the trail in one day. In fact, they don’t encourage that.

Categories: Beer News

Five questions with ... Dave Endicott

Ohio Beer Blog - Fri, 02/10/2017 - 8:45am

Dave Endicott is the head brewer at Buckeye Lake Brewery in Buckeye Lake. The production brewery and tasting room celebrated its five-year anniversary on Super Bowl Sunday.

Question: Why did you become a brewer?

Answer: I became a brewer when being in the arborist (tree work) profession was becoming taxing on my late 30-something body and had been homebrewing for about three years. I decided to take my hobby and make a run at it for a career.

I had been in the homebrew club D'OH up in Delaware and thought the beer I was producing was pretty tasty, so I took a risk and shelled out some money on educating myself by going to Siebel Institute for the two-week concise course. In the meantime, I'd swing by Actual Brewing after work or if I had any free time and read any brewing books I could get my hands on.

Luckily for me, about a month after I got my brewers certificate I saw an opening at Buckeye Lake and jumped on the opportunity.

Q: What has been the highlight of your brewing career so far and why was it so special? (Maybe it's been a beer that you brewed, an award that you won, an idol you've met ...)

A: As far as highlights in my career go, we don't enter a lot of contests just trying to get a medal. To me, I enjoy the feedback from customers or if I'm out somewhere and hear someone complimenting a beer that I've brewed.

Respect is all that any of us can hope for in this greatly expanding field. There seems to be a new brewery popping up almost weekly and I think we're producing consistently solid beer that everyone can enjoy.

Q: What advice can you give future brewers to be successful?

A: To advise any brewer hoping to make the jump to pro I'd like to say that you need to keep good notes on every step in the process and learn from mistakes. There will no doubt be more than a couple.

If every beer anyone ever produced was perfect the first time and every subsequent time, then there would be no need to better yourself and learn the minute details that give the beer its uniqueness or the why's and how's of making good beer.

Q: What’s your best-selling beer and why do you think it’s so popular?

A: Buckeye Lake is a small community that may have been slower to get on the craft beer bandwagon but that has also welcomed us with open arms. Our best-selling beer is definitely our Irish Red that is a bit malty but smooth and drinkable, followed by the Blue Goose Cream Ale (named for a local drinking establishment) which I originally brewed as an introductory offering to locals who were accustomed to the lagers of the big three breweries, which we are combating soon with an American light lager called Bouy.

If you're a seasoned veteran and enjoy a double IPA then our best-selling beer would be Shovelhead (catfish not bike engine) which I believe can stand next to some of the best beers in the nation.

Q:Which beer – any beer in the world – do you wish that you created/invented/brewed and why?

A: This is a very arbitrary question. I enjoy a wide range of beer, mostly darker malty sweet barrel aged ... drool. However, I am proud of what I have accomplished and would never want to take away from the beautiful creations that others have developed. Someday I believe that I'll be known for one of my own wonderful, tasty, awe-inspiring beverages and then will continue onto the next. The past has given us a platform on which to expand and develop as our own and I thank each and every brewer that has led the industry to what it is today.

Editor's note: The Five questions with ... feature appears each Friday. If you would like to participate or would like to nominate someone, send me an email at rarmon@thebeaconjournal.com.

Categories: Beer News

Crooked Stave comes to Ohio

Ohio Beer Blog - Thu, 02/09/2017 - 4:25pm

Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project is moving into Ohio.

The Denver brewery has hooked up with Cavalier Distributing and will begin selling in the Buckeye State next week.

Cavalier reports that it will distribute draft versions of Von Pilsner, Rotational American IPA, Trellis Buster American Double IPA, Colorado Wildsage Saison, St. Bretta Saison, Hop Savant, barrel-aged provisions, barrel-aged blends, and wild ales, and cellar reserve releases.

"Cavalier has been a dedicated partner of our good friends and collaborators at Jackie O’s Brewery and is celebrating their 25th anniversary of bringing great beer to Ohio. We believe our craft progressive beers are a perfect fit in their portfolio," Crooked Stave founder/brewmaster Chad Yakobson said in a prepared statement.

There are several launch events planned around Ohio:

Monday (Feb. 13): The Lackman in Cincinnati at 4 p.m. and Bob’s Bar in Columbus at 5 p.m.

Wednesday (Feb. 15): Jungle Jim’s in Fairfield at 5 p.m.

Thursday (Feb. 16): Lizardville in Westerville at 3 p.m., Lizardville in Copley Township at 3 p.m., Lizardville in Bedford Heights at 4 p.m., Lizardville in Lakewood at 4 p.m. and Brass Tap in Cincinnati at 5 p.m.

Friday (Feb. 17): Cappy's in Loveland at 6 p.m.

Categories: Beer News

Beer story sampler

Ohio Beer Blog - Thu, 02/09/2017 - 3:32pm

Here's are some interesting Ohio-related beer stories:

-- The Dayton Business Journal profiles the artist behind the labels for Warped Wing Brewing Co. "Dayton has so many stories to tell. That's the beauty of it," John Pattison says. To read the full story, click here.

-- Cleveland Scene asks the question whether there are too many breweries in Cleveland. "The local conversation about the brewery explosion, the so-called 'brewery bubble,' has become a conversation about brewery survival," author Sam Allard writes. "Will all these new operations make it?" To read the full story, click here.

-- Beer Advocate magazine has named Mother Stewart's Brewing Co. in Springfield as one of its Class of 2016 -- as in one of the best new breweries in the U.S. "The city’s first craft brewery features an 8,500-square-foot taproom and a 20-barrel brewing system, producing clean, traditional beers like a Vienna lager and Belgian Blonde," Bill Babbitt writes. "But what sets it apart is its 9,000-square-foot patio and grass-covered 'playground.'" To read about all the breweries, click here.

-- Columbus Business First reports on how it's getting tougher to nab market share in the craft beer business.“There’s still growth out there, but you have to think about it differently,” Brewers Association chief economist Bart Watson says. To read the full story, click here.

-- Drink Up Columbus reports on the Random Precision, which hopes to open this spring. The 10-barrel brewery will focus on sours. To read the full story, click here.

-- The Toledo Blade reports on the upcoming Glass City Beer Festival, which is expected to attract thousands of beer drinkers. To read the full story, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Ohio brewery map updated

Ohio Beer Blog - Thu, 02/09/2017 - 1:05pm

Every so often, I get an email from readers who say ... and I'll paraphase here ... "Hey dummy, your map showing all the Ohio breweries is missing brewery X or brewery Y."

Actually, folks are much more kind than that. My only excuse is that breweries are popping up faster than I can keep track of them.

Anyhoo, I am happy to report that our Google-based Ohio brewery map -- which has been out of date for awhile -- has been updated as of today. (Feb. 9)

With that said, we all know that the map will be out of date tomorrow.

So feel free to send me "Hey dummy" emails at rarmon@thebeaconjournal.com. with any additions, subtractions or corrections.

You can check out the map by clicking here.

Categories: Beer News

Emptying my notebook from the Ohio Craft Brewers conference

Ohio Beer Blog - Thu, 02/09/2017 - 10:01am

My trip to the Ohio Craft Brewers Association conference in Cincinnati was like many of my beer trips – a whirlwind. I blew into town Tuesday afternoon, drank my way through some breweries and blew out of town following Brewers Association chief economist Bart Watson’s keynote speech Wednesday morning. (In case you missed my report on his talk, you can check it out here.)

Here’s a little bit of news overheard here and there, with an emphasis on the new MadTree Brewing Co. location:

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The new MadTree Brewing Co. production brewery, tasting room, outdoor beer garden and event space ain’t IKEA.

Wait, what?

It may seem odd, maybe even confusing, to compare a Cincinnati craft brewery and a Swedish home furnishings store.

But that’s where MadTree co-founder Brady Duncan went on Tuesday. 

“I believe pretty strongly you’re not walking into IKEA,” he said Tuesday about the atmosphere as we talked about the facility.

I can confirm that I didn’t run into any bedroom or living room sets. I also didn't spot any Swedish meatballs.

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MadTree flung open the doors to the public Tuesday. It also hosted the start of the Ohio Craft Brewers Association annual conference the same day.

The brewery held six soft openings before the public opening. Yes, six.

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In a word, the new MadTree brewery is … umm … gigantic.

As in 50,000 square feet – not including, did I mention NOT including, a 10,000 square foot outdoor beer garden and 7,000 other square feet upstairs.

There’s a huge bar that flows outside to the beer garden and includes the usual beer chalkboard menu. The brewery also has plenty of large glass garage doors that can be opened during the warm weather.

Visitors are greeted inside with the MadTree name stamped onto the stamped concrete.

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The 100-barrel brewing system isn’t in place yet and MadTree will continue to brew out of its former facility until June or July when it switches over to the new site.

Duncan talked about how people are musing how MadTree is going to be pumping out a ton more beer.

“That’s not why we did this project,” he said. “We wanted a place where you can come and sprawl out and enjoy a beer.”

The former place – if you’ve never been – had gotten quite crowded, the parking situation was less than stellar and the bathrooms were … well … ugh.

“It’s more about culture than about more beer,” Duncan said.

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Let’s be honest, the brewery is going to be making more beer. So where is it going to go?

“We’re pretty sure we’re going to go to Kentucky first and then Northeast Ohio,” Duncan said.

MadTree fans in Northeast Ohio just groaned.

But Duncan said the brewery has to make sure its beers are dialed in on the new system first before going anywhere, especially before heading into Cleveland and Akron.

“It’s a very discerning crowd,” he said.

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A centerpiece of the brewhouse is a giant American flag – as in 19-by-12 foot. It was the last flag flown at the former Cincinnati Gardens, co-founder Kenny McNutt said.

The brewery, which purchased the flag at an auction for $400, had been hanging onto it for nine months.

“When we got it, I didn’t know where to put it,” McNutt said.

That problem was solved with the new facility.

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Willoughby Brewing Co. raised about $1,400 for the Eastlake Animal Rescue Shelter last month when it released bombers of Nut Smasher. The 125 tickets for the release sold out online within 30 seconds, head brewer Rick Seibt said.

Well, the Willoughby brewery is going to do another Nut Smasher bottle release on Feb. 26. Seibt said the brewery produced 700 bottles this time, compared to the 300 released last month.

The bottles will go for $11.99.

He suggested that people watch the Willoughby Facebook page for ticket details.

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Larry Horwitz, the head brewer at Four String Brewing Co. in Columbus, made this bold prediction about where the brewery growth will stop in the Buckeye State.

“I think we’re going to get to 500,” he said.

As in 500 breweries.

Ohio is approaching 200 now.

There’s still plenty of room in the market for smaller breweries, he noted, as more people want to drink beer where it’s made.

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I ran into Kevin Moreland, the man who helped build Taft's Ale House in Cincinnati. He left the brewpub recently.

What's he up to?

"Taking a break," he said.

Does he have anything in the works?

"Taking a break," he said with a smile.

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Earnest Brew Works is growing already. The Toledo brewery, which opened in November, is adding two seven-barrel fermenters. That will boost capacity by about 40 percent, co-founder Keefe Snyder says.

The brewery also is planning to add a patio and has added firkins each Thursday.

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Fifth Street Brewpub in Dayton is working on a collaboration beer with Link Dayton Ohio Bike Share to be released when the community hosts the American Trails International Trails Symposium May 7-10.

The beer will be a gose – the first gose ever made by the brewpub.

The brewery also will have its female staff get together on International Women’s Collaboration Brew Day (March 8) to create something special. Brewer Tanya Brock says they’re still deciding what to brew.

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Sonder Brewing Co., a $5 million, 20-barrel, 12,000-square-foot brewpub, hopes to break ground in April and open this fall on 6.5 acres in Mason – the home to the Kings Island amusement park.

“Our vision, quite honestly, is to be a destination,” co-founder Justin Neff says.

Sonder has hired a brewer from New Glarus to lead its operation, he says.

(There’s a lot more to this story and I’ll have a separate write-up on Sonder.)

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Patrick Woodward from Pat’s Pints in Columbus and I crashed Cincinnati’s newest brewery. Brink Brewing Co., located in College Hill, isn’t set to open to the public until Feb. 19.

But the seven-barrel brewery hosted association members Tuesday night and Pat and I showed up way early. We became the brewery’s first paying customers. The owners were quite cordial to two guys who showed up out of the blue.

As for where the name Brink came from?

“We’ve been on the brink of greatness,” co-owner and director of operations Andrew McCleese said. “And we’ve been on the brink of collapse at times.”

(Just like with Sonder, there’s a lot more story to tell and I’ll have a separate write-up soon.)

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Woodward and I also stopped by the original Rivertown Brewing Co. location in Lockland for a couple of beers.

Rivertown just opened a new production brewery, tasting room and restaurant in Monroe. We asked the bartender whether the Lockland site has seen a decrease in customers. He said no.

Categories: Beer News
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