The Ohio craft beer scene continues to grow by leaps and bounds, with every corner of the state represented by new breweries that are experimenting with beer styles, opening taprooms and canning their beers. Up for exploring a couple breweries across the state? Add these to your list!
Let’s start in Athens, home of Ohio Brew Week and of an expanding number of breweries and beer-centric bars.
Devil’s Kettle is Athens’ second established microbrewery after the ever-popular Jackie O’s. It’s owned by Cameron Fuller, winner of multiple awards over the years in the homebrew competition during Ohio Brew Week. Cameron has been producing a wide range of beers with fun names, like the Spider Silk blonde ale or the Oktoberbeast. The taproom is open Wednesdays through Sundays and has a selection of at least five house beers on tap. They also host local food trucks like Cajun Clucker.
Little Fish Brewing Company opened in Athens and has begun garnering attention for its beers. Their taproom and brewery are powered solely by wind power, and they produce a range of styles, from a house IPA to a pilsner using local Shagbark corn. At the end of October they’re releasing their bottled beers, including barrel-aged and sour offerings. They installed a foeder (pronounced FOOD-er), which is a 30-barrel oak container used to age beers; they’ll fill it first with an English old ale and then a Flemish red ale.
Central Ohio passed the 25-brewery mark and has more taprooms and more local beers hitting grocery store shelves.
The first Central Ohio brewery is Ill Mannered Brewing in Powell. Developed by four homebrewing friends, the small brewery and taproom is located in a business strip just north of Powell’s main intersection. With their 3-barrel system, they rotate through an interesting selection of styles. Everything from a breakfast stout to a double IPA to a hoppy wheat can be found there. While they don’t serve food, you’re welcome to bring in food from Mojo Tago, Brooklyn Pizza, and other local restaurants.
Just north in downtown Delaware, Restoration Brew Worx has opened as a full-scale brewery and restaurant. Enjoy burgers and sandwiches while you try both traditional and very un-traditional house beers. You can enjoy a simple pale ale or a pumpkin ale, or go for a special like the occasional habanero IPA or the double IPA.
For a special treat, try to find the new Hoof Hearted Brewing taproom. The brewery – which has gathered quite a national following for itself – moved to an expanded production facility and taproom closer to Interstate 71 in Marengo. You can find specialty beers on tap, buy a four-pack of cans and even pitch in to help can beers!
Royal Docks Brewing brings a little bit of England to Canton. Fashioned after cozy and welcoming British pubs, Royal Docks serves as a community hub, a place to gather and enjoy a couple pints of beer. They offer UK staples to complement their beer like Scotch eggs, fish and chips and Irish potato dishes. They’re easily enjoyed with a pint of the Royal Victoria IPA or the Roundabout red ale.
At R Shea Brewing in Akron, you can meet the brewer Ron and talk to him about his vast experience in chemistry, biology and brewing. Visit his taproom Wednesdays through Sundays. He also updates his Facebook page weekly with the latest offerings. You can currently catch him serving seasonal brews like a pumpkin ale and chocolate coffee stout.
Paladin Brewing in Youngstown is slowly building out their portfolio of house beers and has eight crafted so far. You can generally find six on tap at any given time, from the CraveMore Scottish ale to the Sir Kenneth’s blonde ale. The medieval-themed taproom is open Wednesdays through Saturdays; it’s warm and welcoming, and on Fridays and Saturdays local food vendors are on site at the tavern.
These are just a few of the breweries opening recently across the state. Look for more in Toledo, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Dayton and other areas!
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